Assisting Students in the K-12 Classroom
If you are excited to support students in the K-12 education system who have a variety of academic, physical, social, and emotional diverse abilities, this might be the career for you.
Important Notice for Program Applicants Re: Immunization During COVID-19 Outbreak
Thank you for your interest in applying to be a student in one of our Health and Human Services programs at the College of the Rockies. As a successful applicant, you will receive or have received a request to provide documentation confirming you are current in immunizations.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic obtaining and completing these admission requirements has been more difficult, your admission into the Health and Human Services programs will not be held up while you wait to complete these requirements. Recently services have begun to open up and obtaining these documents is becoming available. It is the responsibility of the student to continue to actively seek to obtain and complete these requirements. Please submit any missing admission requirement documentation to Enrolment Services.
Immunization services in BC are in flux as Public Health Departments must regularly reprioritize resource distribution in response to changing COVID-19 conditions. Our local Public Health agency will do their best to accommodate College of the Rockies student immunizations by individual appointment. Immunizations are also available through local pharmacists and Travel Clinics. We recommend that students continue to pursue obtaining required immunizations to complete program admission and practicum placement requirements as soon as available.
If you have chosen not to be immunized, you should submit the waiver form in your application package, as per the package instructions.
The Education Assistant (EA) program at College of the Rockies is a 10-month program that prepares students for a career in supporting students with diverse needs in K-12 classrooms.
The EA program can be done fully online or you may choose to take a selection of courses in a traditional classroom setting. Online courses have been designed to incorporate a high degree of discussion and interaction between students, and instructors are actively involved in guiding learning.
A minimum of thirty new full-time students (online or on-campus) are accepted each year. A block of seats will be reserved for applicants within our regional campus areas as well as in rural and remote locations within British Columbia. Students begin their studies in September, and complete them by the end of the following June.
Part-time students (online or on-campus) begin in September of each year and have up to three years to complete the program’s course work and practica.
- View: Education Assistant Program Planning Guide for students starting in 2022 and later
- View: Education Assistant Planning Guide (2021 and earlier)
You will participate in a variety of learning activities including:
- In class and online lectures
- Group discussions
- Individual and group assignments
- School-based practicum placements
In addition to your coursework, you will have the opportunity to participate in supervised, hands-on practice in public or private K-12 classrooms.
Education Assistant Certificate Requirements:
|CYFS 101||Inclusive Interpersonal Communications||3|
|EAP 150||Guiding Behaviour in K-12 Schools||4|
|EAP 112||Introduction to Systems, Structures and Roles in Education||4|
|EAP 102||Technology and Augmentative Communication||3|
|EAP 110||Healthcare in the School System||3|
|EAP 104||EAP Practicum 1 (120 Hours)||4|
|EAP 105||Special Education||3|
|EAP 111||Understanding the K-12 Curriculum||4|
|CYFS 116||Lifespan Development||4|
|EAP-151||Trauma and Challenging Behaviours||3|
|EAP 107||EAP Practicum 2 (180 Hours)||4|
Why Consider a Career as an Education Assistant?
- There is a high demand for Education Assistants.
- You can make a positive difference in students’ lives.
- Employment options include: elementary, middle and high schools, community centres, after-school programs and more.
Year 1 – Semester 1 – Fall
CYFS-101 – Inclusive Interpersonal Communications
Inclusive Interpersonal Communications enables the student to develop interpersonal communication skills to enhance their professional and personal relationships. We also expect students to clearly evaluate their own values, beliefs, and attitudes that influence their interpersonal communication.
EAP-150 – Guiding Behaviours in K-12 Schools
This course focuses on understanding behaviour as communication and on learning strategies to support and guide behaviours in the K-12 classroom. Learners will also explore the influences that inform their own behaviour, including culture, beliefs, lived experiences, and personal biases. A variety of foundational concepts and theoretical perspectives relating to behaviour will be explored. The content of this course is specific to developing the core competencies required of Education Assistants and Aboriginal Education Support Workers in the K-12 school setting.
EAP-112 – Introduction to Systems, Structure, and Roles in Education
This course focuses on the systems, structures and roles within the K-12 education system. Students explore the evolution of the education system in British Columbia, levels within that system, alternate forms of education, and the roles and responsibilities related to supporting learners with diverse abilities.
EAP-102 – Technology and Augmentative Communication
This course provides students with an introduction to augmentative and alternative communication. Characteristics of various strategies related to the needs of the users are explored. Students also look at a variety of ethical and technological issues that emerge when supporting children who use alternative and augmentative forms of communication in the K-12 classrooms.
EAP-110 – Healthcare in the School System
In this course, learners will develop a global understanding of healthcare in the K-12 school system, and the roles and responsibilities of an Education Assistant within it. The course looks at current healthy schools initiatives in the province of British Columbia, how to support the healthcare of students with diverse needs, and strategies for managing personal health and wellness as Education Assistants.
Year 1 – Semester 2 – Winter
EAP-104 – EAP Practicum 1
The content of this course is specific to developing the skills, knowledge, and values of an Education Assistant in a school setting. Students have the opportunity to begin integrating theory and skills learned in the classroom within a school setting.
EAP-108 – Autism
This course is designed to provide students with an in depth understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and how to successfully support children and youth with ASD in the K-12 school system. This includes academic, behavioural, and environmental challenges which are specific to ASD. Students learn various skills and strategies to address sensory stimulation, communication, anxiety, and language challenges.
EAP-105 – Special Education
This course reflects the BC Ministry of Education’s Special Education Services Policy. It provides learners with in-depth information on the categories associated with diverse abilities and the associated Ministry funding. It provides learners with a variety of observation and documentation methods, as well as strategies used to support K-12 students. The content of this course is specific to developing the core competencies required of Education Assistants and Aboriginal Education Support Workers in the K-12 school setting.
EAP-111 – Understanding the K-12 Curriculum
This course provides students with the opportunity to explore ways to support students and facilitate learning in the K-12 classroom. Strategies for supporting literacy and numeracy are discussed in detail. This course uses the BC Ministry of Education curriculum and core competencies as the foundation for directing support. The content of this course is specific to developing the skills, knowledge, and values in an Education Assistant setting.
CYFS-116 – Lifespan Development
This course explores the development of humans from conception to death. It includes physical, cognitive and psychosocial developmental domains. Students preparing to work in careers that involve other people need to clearly understand the complex, dynamic process of development throughout a person’s lifespan. This knowledge can provide students with insight into their own development and the development of those they will encounter in their personal and professional lives.
Year 1 – Semester 3 – Spring
EAP-151 – Trauma and Challenging Behaviours
This course focuses on the acquisition of knowledge and skills in understanding and supporting students with challenging behaviours in the K-12 classroom. Learners will explore topics such as the neurology of challenging behaviour, how trauma impacts behaviour, the challenging behaviours of students who have complex diverse needs, and various internal and external behaviour disorders. The practical skills of strategies, observing and documenting are emphasized throughout the course. The content of this course is specific to developing the core competencies required of Education Assistants and Aboriginal Education Support Workers in the K-12 school setting.
EAP-107 – Education Assistant Practicum 2
In this ten-week course, students integrate theory and practice skills that have been learned in the Education Assistant program and apply them in a school setting. Students complete a seven week full-time practicum in a classroom setting with concurrent classwork, as well as three weeks of focused online guided reflection.
- Secondary school graduation or equivalent
- Minimum 65% in either English Studies 12, English First Peoples 12, ENGL 090, or equivalent.
- Completion and submission of CYFS Application Package
- Completion of immunizations, documented by the immunization form in the admission package, or completion of immunization waiver form (lack of immunizations may impact applicant’s access to Practicum placements and employment opportunities following graduation).
- Good command of oral and written English language.
- Complete a criminal record check through the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General Criminal Records Review Program*
Tuition and Fees:
|Student Association Fee:||$92.00|
*These prices are for domestic students and may not be 100% accurate. However, these estimates will give you an adequate idea of tuition and fees for our programs. These prices do not include textbook costs. All prices are subject to change. Tuition fees include an alumni fee, student activity fees, and a student technology fee. In certain cases a materials and supply fee may also be included. For more information, visit: Tuition and Fees.
Students interested in enrolling in our Education Assistant program should be aware of the workload involved. As a full-time student, you are required to spend approximately 30 hours per week of, “in-class time” whether online or in the classroom. You will also have several hours of homework each evening. As a general guideline:
- A 45-hour (3 credit) course will require 5-8 hours per week.
- A 60-hour (4 credit) course will require 7-12 hours per week.
- The average student will spend 40-55 hours per week if taking the program full-time.
There are two practicums in this program.
- EAP 104 Practicum #1 is completed in the winter semester. You will spend three weeks online doing coursework, then will be at your practicum site Monday through Thursday mornings for eight weeks, followed by four more weeks online.
- EAP 107 Practicum #2 is completed in the spring semester. You will spend one week online doing coursework, then will be at your practicum site Monday through Friday (full days) for seven weeks, followed by two more weeks online.
Practicums may be completed in a student’s local community, assuming a suitable site can be secured. At this time, practicum placements are generally limited to within British Columbia. If you hope to complete practicum placements in other provinces, please consult with the Child, Youth, and Family Studies Practicum Coordinator prior to applying. More information is provided in the application package.
Credit can be awarded for one or more courses in this program through Flexible Assessment.
Responsibilities and Duties:
Under the direction of a teacher and/or administrator, Education Assistants support students who have a variety of academic, physical, social, and emotional learning challenges.
Specific responsibilities and duties are outlined in the British Columbia School Act as well as in the BCTF document “Roles and Responsibilities of Teachers and Teacher Assistants“.
Graduates are prepared for employment in educational settings (elementary, middle and high school levels).
There is high demand for Education Assistants. The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE BC) estimates that there are 14,000 people working in this position in BC.