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Activity Assistant Certificate

Four-month part-time certificate for health care or community support graduates

Where: Comox Valley
Starts: September 2019; applications accepted as of Oct. 1, 2018
  • Learn to plan and implement supervised activities for older adults with cognitive and physical impairments.
  • Make professional connections and gain hands-on experience with 130 hours of supervised practice experiences.
  • Expand your qualifications and opportunities in the health care field.
  • Make a difference in your community helping seniors engage in an active lifestyle.
Career opportunities: As a graduate, you will possess specialized skills and knowledge as an activity assistant in a wide range of settings, including intermediate care facilities, assisted living settings, adult day care programs, clients' homes, seniors' centres and residential group homes.



  • Learn from the best. "NIC’s program instructor Deb Provencher is well-respected in field of therapeutic recreation. She brings exceptional training, energy, and insight; and her graduates are ready to contribute from day one on the job.” Liz Friis, Director of Resident Lifestyle and Community Programs, Glacier View Lodge.
  • Respected credentials. Health care programs at NIC are well respected in the communities we serve and graduates are in high demand. With NIC’s high-quality instruction, small class sizes and dedication to student success, you will be able to achieve the high standards required to work in this demanding profession Professional experience counts. Practicum experience is an integral part of the program, giving you increased personal confidence, a stronger understanding of client expectations and direct professional connections in the field.



The four-month Activity Assistant program provides specialized professional development for individuals who have previous education and training in health care (LPNs, RNs, health care assistants and home care aides) or community support (education assistant/community support graduates).

The program consists of three core courses as well as two practice experiences:

In Framework for Practice (HSR-160), you will be introduced to the activity assistant role as well as the concept of activity and how it influences and is influenced by the components of health, age, interests, values and environment. You will gain an understanding of aging and dementias in the context of activity, how groups can be used for clients and residents with complex care needs, theories in activity programming and much more.

In Activity for Well-Being (HSR-161), you will explore dementia, especially Alzheimer’s disease, and learn a wide range of strategies for activity involvement for clients who have cognitive impairments. Course highlights include the fundamentals of program development, client assessment and recreational assessment tools, client-specific goal development and working with volunteers and family - to name only a few.

In Programming for Individuals with Cognitive Impairments (HSR-162), you will develop strategies for therapeutic recreation and program development for individuals with dementia, including how to use a care planning approach to provide effective client-centred programming.

During the program, you will have opportunities to apply classroom knowledge and skills to hands-on experience in two supervised practice experiences, working with adults in a variety of care settings in facility and community settings.


Career Opportunities

Upon completion, your specialized knowledge and applied experience will qualify you to work alongside an activity coordinator to lead group activities and recreational programs in community and facility settings such as intermediate care facilities, assisted living settings, adult day care programs, clients' homes, seniors' centres and residential group homes.

Class Times / Dates

This four-month part-time program will take place from September  to December at the Comox Valley campus.

Admission Requirements

  1. Health Care Assistant (HCA) certificate or Home Support/Resident Care Attendant (HS/RCA) certificate; or equivalent credential (e.g. LPN or RN or Human Services - Educational Assistant/Community Support certificate).

Upgrade with us to meet prerequisites

Upgrade your English, math and science courses for entry into the program of your choice. Succeed with the help of NIC’s supportive instructors. Courses are flexible and start several times a year so you can learn at your own pace. We offer daytime and evening options. Learn more

Before Classes Begin

Once accepted to the program but before classes begin, you will be required to:

  • hold a current CPR C certificate
  • submit a Criminal Record Check form, which will be sent to you by Admission once you are offered a seat in the program.
  • submit a completed immunization form, which will be sent to you by Admission once you are offered a seat in the program.  This form should be validated by the public health nurse at your local health unit and must be presented to the Activity Assistant Instructor on the first day of classes.
  • hold a Food Safe Level 1 certificate (TFS-010)


Program Requirements

  • HSR-160 Framework for Practice
  • HSR-161 Activity for Well-Being
  • HSR-162 Programming for Individuals with Cognitive Impairments
  • HSR-170 Practice Experience I
  • HSR-171 Practice Experience II

Note: You must complete all courses in the program within the same term.

Completion Requirements

  1. You must complete all courses in the program within the same semester.
  2. You must achieve a grade of 80% or better in each course; and pass the practicum course.


Tuition & Costs Estimate for
Fall 2017, Winter, Spring & Summer 2018

Costs indicated are estimates for a 100% course load per year, unless otherwise noted. Additional fees may also include necessary equipment, supplies, NIC appointed uniforms, or field trips not included in these estimates.

While we do our best to share accurate and timely fee information, changes may occur. For more information, visit tuition page.

Domestic Fees

Year 1
Tuition $2,540
NISU Fees $70
Books $150
Learner Resource $70
Total $2,830

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