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How To Become an Electrician

Do You Want to Be an Electrician?

 

So, you want to be an electrician? We may be a little biased, but we think getting a trade and becoming an electrician is a great choice and we applaud you. Like most professions, there’s a course of study and training you must complete to become a certified electrician. In Alberta, this is done through an apprenticeship.

 

An apprentice-what? An apprenticeship is on the job training supervised by a certified journeyman electrician. Apprenticeships in Alberta are governed by the provincial government and have two parts, the on the job training done with your employer and the technical training done at an accredited post secondary institution. By having the two components, an apprenticeship allows you to get the knowledge and skills you need, plus real world experience.


An electrician apprenticeship in Alberta consists of:

  • Enrolling in an apprenticeship program.

  • A term of four years (four 12-month periods), the term could be up to six years depending on your field of speciality.

  • Years one through three – 1,560 hours on the job training and eight weeks of technical training each year.

  • Year four – 1,440 hours on the job training and twelve weeks of technical training.


To start an apprenticeship program you must meet the following qualifications:

  • You must be a legal citizen of Canada or have an appropriate work permit.

  • You must find an employer to take you on as an apprentice.

  • Your apprenticeship contract must be registered with Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training.

  • You must satisfy the entrance educational requirements or pass the entrance exam.

It is up to you to find an employer willing to take you on as an apprentice. Once you are hired, you need to complete the apprenticeship application, sign an apprenticeship contract with your employer, and submit the contract to the Alberta government. 

There is a fee to apply and you complete your application online. Once you have submitted your information, your employer completes their part of the application. The information you both provide is used to create an apprenticeship contract. You can’t become an apprentice without a signed contract.

Your next step is to enroll for technical training. The following schools offer electrician apprenticeship technical training:

  • Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (Edmonton)

  • Grande Prairie Regional College

  • Lakeland College (Vermilion)

  • Lethbridge College

  • Keyano College (Fort McMurray)

  • Medicine Hat College (Brooks Campus)

  • Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (Calgary)

  • Red Deer College

  • Northern Lakes College (Slave Lake)

  • Portage College (Lac La Biche)


To graduate, you must complete your on the job and technical training and pass an industry-related exam. You will then receive an Alberta journeyman certificate.

 

Did you know you can start an apprenticeship while you are still in high school? There are two programs, the Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP) and the Career and Technology Studies (CTS) Apprenticeship Pathways. RAP is an apprenticeship program for high school students and completion of CTS allows students to write the Apprenticeship and Industry Training exam for advanced standing in the first period of technical training for the trade.

 

This is an overview of the process to becoming a journeyman electrician in Alberta. To find the specifics, please visit the Government of Alberta’s Apprenticeship and Training site. 


We wish you good luck on your journey to becoming an electrician.

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