Education Assistant Diploma

Program Description

The Education Assistant program provides theory, develops compe­tency in required skills, and promotes professional development towards the training and preparation of an Education Assistant to enhance the child’s involvement in the educational environment.

Education Assistants may be employed to provide support to children with varying levels of special needs or they may provide general support to classroom teachers in the delivery of educational programs to a number of children or the entire class.

Northern Lights College offers a 12 month Certificate* or two-year Diploma program. This program may be completed on a part- or full-time basis. Students may complete the program within their own community through online delivery. Face-to-face offerings may be available within the NLC region (contingent on student enrollment or special project offering).

Graduates of the Education Assistant Diploma program can further their knowledge, skills and abilities working with children and youth in regular elementary and secondary classrooms. The Diploma program may lead to further laddering educational opportunities in the areas of Child and Youth Care and other educational related fields.

Career Prospects

Qualified Education Assistants are employed in public, private and independent schools around the province as a Special Needs Support Worker, Personal Care Attendant, and Playground and/or School Supervision Monitor.


Location: Online/Distributed Delivery

Length: Two years (full time)

Start: September, January (full time or part time), or April (part time only)

Fees: Current Fee Schedule

Need upgrading first? Start with NLC’s Career and College Preparation program.

Admission Prerequisites

NLC Education Assistant Certificate graduates:

  • An NLC Admissions Application form stating the program as EA Diploma.
  • Letter of intent stating your desire to complete the EA Diploma.
  • Students are required to enroll in ENG 100 as part of the diploma program. Students must have a "B" or higher in English 12 or complete the NLC Writing Assessment with an evaluated placement of ENGL 100. The NLC Writing Assessment application can be found on the admissions page.

Applicants new to NLC:

Important Notes

  1. The program is eligible for Canada Student Loans. Visit StudentAid BC to apply for financial assistance online.
  2. Each student is required to authorize a Ministry of Justice Criminal Record Check before participating in any courses involving access to children or vulnerable adults.
    Under no circumstances will students be permitted to complete any practical work in a child care or school setting until NLC has received a clear Schedule B criminal record check with the Ministry of Justice.
    Students are obligated to report any Schedule B criminal convictions that occur after they authorize a Criminal Record Check but are still enrolled in the program. Failure to do so may result in immediate dismissal from the program.

    Please see the NLC Criminal Records Check page for completion instructions and more information pertaining to Criminal Record Checks

  3. Students complete practica within their own communities provided the options exist for acceptable placements. Students unable to locate suitable practicum placements in their own communities may need to relocate to another community for one or more of the practica.
  4. Please note the following application deadlines: May 1 for Fall (September) start; October 1 for Winter (January) start; and February 1 for Spring (April) start.
  5. The information on this program page is a summary of the official Program Completion Guide approved by NLC’s Education Council. Download a PDF of the Program Completion Guide.
  6. Northern Lights College has partnered with Collège Éducacentre for delivery of the Education Assistant Certificate in French. For information on delivery of the program in French, please contact Emiie Dehoubert, French Student Advisor
    Collège Éducacentre
    604-708-5100 poste 1404
  7. Program graduates are eligible for direct admission into the Justice Institute of British Columbia’s Advanced Specialty Certificate in Community Care Licensing. Advanced standing is granted for HDEC 104.  

View to the Education Assistant Admissions Page

Do you need more information?

ECEC/EA Office:


Core Courses:
Specialty Courses:
3 Electives-current considerations include:

EAP 108 Autism (College of the Rockies) - 3 credits

Practicum Courses: