IHCP program students outside

Health Care Assistant - Indigenous, Certificate

Develop your caregiving potential!

Program at a glance



Area of Study

Health Sciences

Indigenous Education

Study options


Work experience

Clinical/fieldwork placement

Open to International



9.5 months

At a glance image

program students in classroom

Front-line caregivers

For people of Indigenous ancestry, the Health Care Assistant - Indigenous (HCA-I) program is designed to provide you with opportunities to develop knowledge, skills and values necessary to provide care to families and individuals in First Nations and Indigenous communities.

 program students in clinic classroom

The Indigenous Health Care Assistant program will provide opportunities for you to reflect, and develop self-awareness and pride as you develop your care giving potential.

*Camosun College views any student who is a descendant of the Indigenous peoples of North America to be an Indigenous student. This includes status and non-status Indians, Métis, Inuit and Native Americans who reside in Canada.

HCA Information Session Slides (PPT)

Applicants for the HCA program must review the Info Session slides or attend an information session prior to completing the HCA Info Session Survey to qualify for program entry. 

HHS Student Handbook

Current information for School of Health and Human Services students and HCA program specific handbook sections.

In demand

Health Care Assistant grads are in high demand.

Do you have a genuine desire to work with older adults and persons with disabilities? Are you intrigued by the possibility of assisting others with personal care in the practical aspects of their day-to-day lives? Are you prepared for a career that will require you to work days, evenings, nights, weekends, holidays and 8-12 hour shifts? If you answered yes to all the above, then Health Care Assistant is the perfect career for you.

We'll help you succeed

As you work through the Health Care Assistant program's curriculum and your clinical placements, you'll acquire the skills, knowledge and values you'll need to provide professional care to the elderly and those facing other health or illness challenges.

Focusing on the elderly, you'll learn how to provide care that promotes and maintains the physical, psychological and social well-being of the clients you'll care for in your subsequent role as a Health Care Assistant.

Recognition status by the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry

The Health Care Assistant (HCA) program delivered by Camosun College has been granted a full, five-year recognition status by the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry. Graduates of the HCA program delivered by Camosun College are eligible for registration with the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry.

The BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry reviews and recognizes Health Care Assistant (HCA) programs in BC to ensure that they are: following the provincial curriculum, implementing a common set of training standards and graduating competent front-line health care providers. Confirming that HCAs meet registration requirements is integral to the Registry's mandate of patient protection and improved standards of care. For further information about the recognition process and standards please see: BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry

An investment in your career

Invest in yourself! Camosun can prepare you for a rewarding career and set you up for entry into an in-demand, health care field.

Estimated tuition

Effective from September 1, 2021 to August 31, 2022.

$3,954 (domestic)

Additional Student Fees

What to expect

Located at our Interurban campus, the full-time HCA program is 29 weeks long (approximately seven months). Monday-Friday, 8:30am-2:30pm from September through March. There is also a spring start option: April to October.

Homework commitments may vary per student but are likely about three to four hours per day including weekends. You will be required to participate in full-time clinical placements that include day and evening shifts that may occur outside of regular class time.

HHS Student Handbook

Information for Health and Human Services Students.

Health Care Assistant courses

Your studies will provide you with the skills to advocate on behalf of the rights, needs, interests and fair treatment of residents and their families. As a Health Care Assistant you will develop a person-centred care philosophy aimed at promoting and maintaining the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social well being of clients/residents.

Person-centered care

Health Care Assistants learn a wide variety of practical and resident/client care skills. Our program is hands-on, with clinical placements throughout your time at Camosun. You’ll learn about interpersonal communications, lifestyles and choices, personal care, and how to treat patients ethically and with compassion.

Curriculum & courses

Admission Requirements

Ready to get started? Get your application in for the September intake.

When you apply you will need to submit proof that you meet the following admission requirements.

Tip: Where a letter grade is specified, you must have proof of that grade or higher.


One of: 

High School Graduation/Age Requirement:

  • High school graduate or 19 years or older

Indigenous Ancestry:

  • Camosun College views any student who is a descendant of the Indigenous peoples of North America to be an Indigenous student. This includes status and non-status Indians, Métis, Inuit and Native Americans who reside in Canada.

Information Session:

  • Attendance at a Health Care Assistant program information session is required to ensure applicants have a strong understanding of the expectations of the Health Care Assistant (HCA) program and the role of the HCA in the work environment. An online information session module is available for anyone unable to attend in person.

English Language Competency Requirements:

  • BC HCA program applicants are required to demonstrate English language proficiency. Domestic and/or international applicants whose first language is not English will need to take a standardized proficiency assessment to confirm communicative competency in all four language skills areas (speaking, listening, reading and writing).
  • Applicants whose first language is not English must submit evidence of one of the following standardized English language proficiency test scores from an authorized assessment centre:
  • Canadian Language Benchmark Placement Test (CLB PT) (test must be within the last year):
    • Listening 7
    • Speaking 7
    • Reading 6
    • Writing 6 

Note: A CLB Report Card from a LINC Program may also be accepted.

  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS): Academic or General (test must be within the last two years): 
    • overall score of 6 
    • minimum of 6 in Speaking and Listening
    • no score lower than 5.5 in Reading and Writing
  • Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL) (test must be within the last two years):
    • overall score of 60
    • no section less than 50
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) (test must be within the last two years) IBT only: 
    • overall score of 76 
    • no score lower than 20 in Speaking and Listening
    • no score lower than 18 in Reading and Writing
  • English Proficiency Self-Declaration 

Missing admission requirements?

Take an assessment or upgrade with us.

Our Teaching Staff

Camosun College is fiercely proud of the excellent quality of its instruction. Our teaching staff are experienced, inspiring and supportive of our students' individual journeys.

Faculty/staff profile

Ros Gies-Pereira

Ros Giles-Pereira

Chair, Continuing Care Department

Ros has been working in health care for over 30 years; starting as a care aide while completing her BSN at UBC. She also holds a Master in Health Stud ...

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Faculty/staff profile

Heather Frame

Heather Frame

Program Leader, Health Care Assistant ESL, IHCA

Heather has been teaching in the HCA program since 2008. Heather has a Bachelor of Arts Degree and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree. She is par ...

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Faculty/staff profile


Dasha Herman


Faculty/staff profile


Cathy Josephson


Faculty/staff profile


Laurie Sivertson


Natsamaht Indigenous place and Totem pole on campus

Learn more

Find a full list of courses and specific admission requirements.

Contact information

Indigenous Advisors for HCA

We want to hear from you!

Campus location

Camosun College Interurban
Alex & Jo Campbell Centre for Health & Wellness (CHW)
4461 Interurban Rd
Victoria, BC V9E 2C1

Location link

Interurban Campus