Health Care Aide Challenge

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This Health Care Aide (HCA) Challenge program is a certification process for uncertified health care workers who have previous related work experience in Canada as well as for foreign-trained nurses and other healthcare professionals with similar experience.

Health Care Aide Challenge Program Information

The condensed Health Care Aide Challenge program for experienced Health Care Professionals and foreign-trained nurses is offered both in-class on online in a self-paced format and is available during the day, on weekends and in the evenings. 


The Health Care Aide program is offered at following locations:

  • Online
  • Calgary
  • Edmonton
  • Winnipeg

*Length of Program varies by location


Winnipeg & Online Study Requirements

To be eligible to enroll in the challenge health care aide courses offered in Winnipeg and online you must:

  • Have 1200 hours of experience in the last 24 months as an uncertified Health Care Aide in Canada or be a foreign trained nurse*
  • Have proof of English language proficiency
  • Provide a recent resume
  • Photo ID and Social Insurance Number
  • Up-to-date immunizations
  • Criminal Records check
  • Submit a form completed by your employer stating your hours and your detailed job description

* You will be required to provide Robertson College with a copy of your degree. Not all foreign nursing programs are accepted.


Health Care Aide Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition – Alberta

The Health Care Aide (HCA) Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) process is for those who are currently employed as Health Care Aides, Personal Support Workers, Nursing Attendants, Internationally-Trained Nurses and out-of-province trained HCA's who do not have a Government of Alberta recognized certificate but have the knowledge and skills required to meet the Health Care Aide certificate standards in Alberta.

Self-assessment and Analysis

  • Applicants are required to complete a self-assessment to determine their level of proficiency in each learning outcome

Creation of an Individual Study Plan

  • Robertson College will review the self-assessment form and will identify the applicant’s skill and knowledge gaps to help create an individualized training plan

Challenge of the HCA Course Written Exam

  • If an applicant is deemed to be fully competent in the subject areas, the applicant may challenge the HCA course exam, with an 80% grade required to pass.

Self Study or Robertson College Campus Based Workshops

  • If an applicant is not successful in completing their challenge exam for an individual course or the assessor from Robertson College indicates that the applicant requires training in a course, the applicant will be provided with a self-study module. 

Assessment of Knowledge and Skills

  • When the student receives a passing grade on an individual course exam, they will then be required to successfully complete an in-lab assessment that is facilitated by either a Robertson College educator or an authorized RN or LPN.

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