Health Care Aide Certificate Program

Start working as a Health Care Aide in a hospital, supportive care facility, or assisted living housing in under a year!

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Why Our Health Care Aide (HCA) Program?

Ready for a career where you can truly make a difference in someone’s life? Then the Health Care Aide certificate program may be right for you! Our experienced and knowledgeable staff have worked as professionals in the field and can provide hands-on training so you can confidently enter into the health care aide field.

Right now there is a huge demand for health care aides in Alberta, due to the growth in an aging population and the need for health care front line workers. The arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic to Alberta increased the demand for workers. In response, the Government of Alberta has increased pay for certified health care aides who are working in contracted home care agencies in an effort to retain current staff and attract new workers to Alberta’s home care system. In addition, new tuition bursaries offering up to $9,000 are available for Health Care Aide students who started their HCA program after July 1, 2022 and are working in continuing care centres. Learn more about these bursaries.

Health Care Aides can work in hospitals, supportive care facilities, and assisted living housing facilities. Individuals with HCA certification provide important assistance to a wide variety of patients including the elderly and individuals with disabilities who require support and care.

MaKami College’s Health Care Aide certificate program offers the most up-to-date health care aide courses from the Government of Alberta in a blended format. This allows students to learn theory for their health care aide certificate online and complete practical labs and clinical placements in person. Get a job as a health care aide in Alberta immediately and earn as much as $27 an hour!

Maria, a MaKami College Health Care Aide program graduate

It’s a really good experience and I would recommend it to each one of my friends or whoever asks me. I would do it twice if I had the opportunity.

Maria / MaKami HCA Graduate
Mirna, a MaKami College Health Care Aide certificate program graduate

I’m feeling so blessed, HCA is fantastic. When somebody is so sick and you help, and the next day the person says to you, ‘thank you’ or they take your hands to say, ‘thank you’ – it’s awesome. I feel so blessed because I helped, I cared. It’s my passion, it’s my love, it’s everything for me. And MaKami has a fantastic team. I’m now a successful HCA because my teacher’s were strong and they met all of my needs. I say all the time, ‘thank you, thank you, MaKami! Everybody come to MaKami.’ It’s awesome.

Mirna / MaKami HCA Graduate

Receive Additional Certifications

In addition to a variety of transferrable skills and clinical placements you’ll also earn a certification in First Aid during this program.

Fit Testing for N95 Respiratory Masks

With the continued rapid spread of the Covid-19, MaKami College’s clinical placement partners are creating new policies to ensure the safety of their staff and students while they care for the most vulnerable in our communities. One of the new policies that is becoming more common is the use of N95 masks while caring for clients. In response, MaKami is now arranging N95 Respiratory Masks Fit Testing prior to students going out on clinical placements.  Learn more about MaKami’s N95 mask fitting process.

Eligibility and Admissions

The following requirements must be met to be eligible for entry into a licensed health care aide program, as outlined by Alberta Health Services (AHS).

  • Grade 11, 20-2 level course (see MaKami course), with a minimum score of 60% achieved or Canadian jurisdiction equivalent; or
  • English 20-1 with a minimum of 60% achieved or Canadian jurisdiction equivalent; or
  • English 30-1 or 30-2 with a minimum of 55% or Canadian jurisdiction equivalent; or
  • Deemed equivalent by completion of ACCUPLACER (assessment placement test)


Students who have not completed the ELA 20-2 can take the course at MaKami College if they meet the admission requirements. Upon completion of the course with a grade of 60%+, they will be able to apply for the Health Care Aide program

Alternatively, some students may also complete the ACCUPLACER assessment test. This can include students out of province, out of country or mature students that have been out of school for a significant length of time.

Candidates where English is a Second Language (ESL) must meet the English Language Proficiency requirement in addition to the Academic English requirement. Equivalencies are as follows:

  • By completing high school in Canada. Studies must have been in English at an approved Canadian high school (grades 9, 10, 11, 12) with at least three consecutive years of full-time academic study; OR
  • By completing a recognized post-secondary degree or diploma program in Canada. The program must have involved at least two full years of full-time, consecutive academic study in English.
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic: 6 (no section score below 5.5)
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet Based Testing (TOEFL iBT): 71
  • Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) General: 7 (with no section score below 6) and
  • Required Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) (7 in each strand, not an average of 7)
  • Canadian English Language Benchmark Assessment for Nurses (CELBAN) of a minimum of 7 in each of the 4 language skills (speaking, listening, reading and writing) and not an average of 7
  • Duolingo: minimum score of 95


  • Test Currency: Results must have been obtained within two years of the start date of the program.
  • Test Validity: IELTS (Academic) and TOEFL results are valid for two years from the day of testing. Results that expire prior to the Start Date of the program will not be accepted.

MaKami College gives professionals in the health care aide industry the opportunity to get certification through our HCA certificate program. We work with health care professionals to assess their knowledge and skills and complement them with the ones offered in our program to ensure success at MaKami as well as in their career.

All applicants looking to use the PLAR methods will be provided with a PLAR Student Guide that explains PLAR and the Alberta HCA PLAR process. Please contact the HCA Department for a copy of the PLAR Student Guide, and more information on the PLAR policies as well the associated application and processing fees.

Candidates must possess knowledge of computer/technology tools to be successful in the program.

Candidates must:

  • Be able to communicate, research and understand information
  • Know how to use computer to surf web, email
  • Be able to critically evaluate and understand how technology can affect one’s behavior
  • Be able to create, produce content and effectively communicate using email, media, internet

Additional Helpful Program Information

Where is the Health Care Aide Program Offered?

MaKami College Edmonton campus in Bonnie Doon Mall

MaKami College Edmonton

Located in the Bonnie Doon Shopping Centre

MaKami Calgary NE Reception

MaKami College Calgary

Located in the Marlborough Mall Shopping Centre


Interested in Health Care Aide at MaKami College?

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