Indigenous Language Fluency Certificate

Explore Indigenous language through this unique certificate program. You’ll draw on local Indigenous knowledge systems, ways of knowing, and protocols through experiential and land-based learning to explore the values and beliefs encoded in Indigenous language. This cohort based program will help you to unearth the understanding of how language forms the foundation of all Indigenous relationships.


FALL 2020: students interested in ILF 101, 102, 111 should apply through University Studies.


 This program is currently not available to international applicants.
Where: Port Hardy
Starts: September 2021
Length: 1 year

We are navigating new ground. This will be an empowering journey to rediscover the deep connection between our Indigenous languages, our connections to self, others and the natural world and our individual and collective wellness. This journey will change the perspectives of our students and their communities, and transform how we do education.

Sara Child, NIC Aboriginal Education Facilitator

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Program Requirements

Kwak’wala Option

  • ILF-101 Kwak’wala Immersion 1
  • ILF-102 Kwak’wala Immersion 2
  • ILF-103 Kwak’wala Immersion 3
  • ILF-104 Kwak’wala Immersion 4
  • ILF-105 Kwak’wala Immersion 5
  • ILF-106 Kwak’wala Immersion 6
  • ILF-108 Foundations in Indigenous Ecological Knowledge - Kwak’wala
  • ILF-110 Indigenous Language Revitalization and Technology
  • ILF-111 Pathways to Reconciliation and Social Action
  • ILF-112 Strategies for Indigenous Language Revitalization
  • ILF-109 Internship – Kwak’wala

Nuu-chah-nulth Option

  • ILF-121 Nuu-chah-nulth Immersion 1
  • ILF-122 Nuu-chah-nulth Immersion 2
  • ILF-123 Nuu-chah-nulth Immersion 3
  • ILF-124 Nuu-chah-nulth Immersion 4
  • ILF-125 Nuu-chah-nulth Immersion 5
  • ILF-126 Nuu-chah-nulth Immersion 6
  • ILF-128 Foundations in Indigenous Ecological Knowledge - Nuu-chah-nulth
  • ILF-110 Indigenous Language Revitalization and Technology
  • ILF-111 Pathways to Reconciliation and Social Action
  • ILF-112 Strategies for Indigenous Language Revitalization
  • ILF-129 Internship – Nuu-chah-nulth

Completion Requirements

  1. Kwak’wala Option
    • Student must achieve a B in all immersion language courses (ILF-101, ILF-102, ILF-103, ILF-104, ILF-105, ILF-106)
    • completion of ILF-108, ILF-110, ILF-111, and ILF-112
    • And pass in ILF-109

    Nuu-chah-nulth Option
    • Student must achieve a B in all immersion language courses (ILF-121, ILF-122, ILF-123, ILF-124, ILF-125, ILF-126)
    • completion of ILF-128, ILF-110, ILF-111, and ILF-112
    • And pass in ILF-129

  2. This is a 10 month cohort.  A student will have up to three years to complete the program.  If a student exits the program, and re-applies for entry, a language fluency assessment is required, and the student may be required to repeat courses depending on the results of the assessment.
  3. A minimum of 75% of the program must be completed at North Island College.

Admission Requirements

  1. C in one of Provincial English 12, English Studies 12, English First Peoples 12, ENG-096, or ENG-098; or C+ in ESL-092 and ESL-095; or English assessment

Program Highlights

The framework for the certificate will support the infusion of culture into language learning and draw on local fluent elders and knowledge keepers. The program is built on a multi-faceted, multi-disciplinary, intergenerational process and offers an opportunity for students to gain an understanding of the integral link between language, culture and wellness.  The program is meant to provide a pathway to healing. Students will achieve an intermediate level of proficiency in their Indigenous languages during first year of the program and will also have the opportunity to apply their language skills.

The program includes several courses that are intended to expand our students’ skills, abilities and understanding of reconciliation, language revitalization and how to draw on technology to support their language learning.  These courses are designed to not only expand our students’ skills but help them to support the language revitalization goals of their communities.

The language certificate was designed to create pathways for students to build proficiency in their languages, support language revitalization outside of typical educational programming, and help to build capacity for language learning and teaching in a variety of settings within in their communities.

It was also developed to prepare students to move into higher education programs and to become researchers working with their respective Indigenous communities language revitalization.

Career Opportunities

There is an increasing demand for teachers of Indigenous languages across several sectors of Indigenous communities including in infant development, head-start, preschool and all levels of education.

This demand is also expanding outside of the education sector as a growing number of communities and individuals seek supports for language learning opportunities across multiple sectors of their Indigenous societies.; This includes the tourism and hospitality industry, lands and resources, as well as, the health and wellness sectors.

There is increasing support, both provincially and federally, for Indigenous language revitalization. Demand for positions and expertise in the field of language revitalization is expected to continue to grow. 

This certificate will serve candidates for band government and support worker employment in addition to formal and informal language training and higher education.

There is also a growing interest in the field of Indigenous Language Revitalization that is actively seeking better ways to mobilize the products of language documentation for use in language reclamation and community capacity building especially for Indigenous youth and land-based learning

This certificate supports the growing demand for experts in the field through the proposed language revitalization, reconciliation and technology development courses. In addition, knowledge mobilization, increased awareness and understanding of holistic language revitalization programming and growing need for collaboration and strategic planning is expanding the employment opportunities across sectors of Indigenous communities and beyond.

Tuition & Costs Estimate

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 our tuition page.

Domestic Fees

Per Course
Tuition $475
NISU Fees $15
Learner Resource $16
Total $506

Find out if this program is eligible for Student Aid BC Funding.

This program is tuition refund Category 1.