All degree students are required to complete a 225 hour practicum. This planned, supervised and evaluated experience will usually be completed at the end of the student's program of study.

Heather Ulmer
Practicum Coordinator
Tel: 250-721-6628

For additional information please review the FAQ section.

What is a practicum?

Practicum is a course that provides an opportunity to explore the meaning and application of your course work in a workplace setting. While completing your practicum you will have the opportunity to work with a team in an organization, and develop/enhance your interpersonal and team building skills in a professional setting.

Your practicum course (HLTH 430) includes 225 hours at an organization as well as an accompanying on-line course.   HLTH 430 is offered only in the January semester.

Where will I complete a practicum?

Most students choose to complete their practicum placements in their home communities; however that option is based on the capacity of organizations within that community to host and supervise a student. All students have the option to complete their placements in the community of their choice in either Canada or U.S.A.

What are some key considerations for the practicum?

Set aside adequate time and space to complete the expectations of the HLTH 430 Practicum (3.0 units) and HLTH 435 (3.0 units) Major Culminating Paper since they must be taken in the same semester.

Here are the requirements for HLTH 430 Practicum:

  1. The Placement:

You must complete 225 hours in your placement (approximately 17 - 19 hours per week). The schedule for completing your hours can vary depending on your needs and the organizational needs but you must plan to complete them over the duration of the semester. You must also be also be available during regular work hours.  Students are strongly discouraged from working full-time while completing their practicum.

  1. The On-line Course:

In addition, you must complete the accompanying on-line course and should plan for an additional 26 – 30 hours over the course of the semester (approximately 2 to 3 hours per week).

It is important to plan ahead as you enter this program so that you can make the arrangements necessary to complete the practicum and its concurrent coursework.  For example, if you are currently employed, you should begin discussions about time off with your employer as early as possible.

Can I complete my practicum at my regular workplace?

Undergraduate students are expected to complete their practicum outside of their usual workplaces so they have exposure to new opportunities and experiences. The practicum should take place in an organization separate from the student’s employer.

Can I transfer any courses I have completed at other institutions?

At least 30.0 units of coursework must be completed in the BA in Health and Community Services. Polices and procedures for granting transfer credit are described in the University Calendar.

Will I be paid during my practicum?

Most organizations provide only unpaid placements opportunities. An organization may pay a stipend at their discretion (and ability to pay). Students will also likely be expected to pay for any additional costs of practicum—e.g.  immunizations, criminal record check, travel to and from the agency, etc. It is important for students to plan for the financial considerations that might arise from the practicum semester(s).

Where will I learn more about the practicum?

You will learn more about the practicum at the Gateway (orientation) in August and throughout your program. If you have questions and/or need further clarification, please do not hesitate to contact Heather Ulmer, practicum coordinator at: