Program calendar icon Program Length

  • 24 Weeks

Program credential icon Credential

  • Certificate

Program option icon Options

  • Apprenticeship

Program location icon Location Offered

  • Nanaimo

Lead the charge as an electrician

Are you looking for a well-paying career that gives your brain a workout? Electricians are a vital part of the building industry and work at the forefront of change. Electricians lead the trades in building automation and controls, and renewable energy systems.  

The VIU Electrician Foundation program gives you a competitive edge by giving you the skills and know-how to be ready for anything. You learn to work with new technologies and use sustainable practices. And we work with industry partners to make sure you learn the skills employers look for.

Gain real-world experience

At VIU you get hands-on training in residential, commercial and industrial labs. 

The program features an industry work experience placement. This is your chance to put your learning into action. And more than 70 percent of our students get permanent employment from their work experience placements. Our strong connections with local contractors and businesses means you start building your professional network while you’re a student. 

Electrician career options

The foundation program prepares you for an entry-level position in commercial, residential or industrial settings. If you choose to do an apprenticeship next, you are on your way to becoming a certified electrician. You can work as an independent contractor or find work with any number of businesses. You can become a technician with a specialization like renewable energy systems or building automation. You can also do inspections and home warranty work. 

The Electrician Certificate Program

For more information and schedules visit VIU's Trades and Applied Technology Apprenticeship page. For Apprenticeship Registration: call 1.888.920.2221 Ext. 6112

The Vancouver Island University Electrical Department provides both Foundation and Apprenticeship training. Foundation training prepares graduates for employment in the electrical trade where the electrical worker plans, assembles, installs, tests, repairs and maintains electrical equipment and systems in residential, commercial, industrial and marine facilities.

Foundation Electrician Program

The Foundation Electrician program provides trades training that grants graduates a Vancouver Island University certificate as well as SkilledTradesBC Electrician Level I Certification. Graduates of this program may receive credit towards the technical portion of the first year of the Electrical Apprenticeship program. In order to complete the apprenticeship and become a journeyperson, graduates would find an employer in the industry to provide the on-the-job training and 10 weeks in-school training per year in each of the next three years.

Electrician Program
Essential Skills
ELEF 111T - (Apply Circuit Concepts 1)
ELEF 121T - (Apply Circuit Concepts 2)
ELEF 131T - (Trade Safety, Organization and Communication)
ELEF 141T - (Install and Maintain Electrical Components & Systems)
ELEF 151T - (Work Experience)
ESFE 100T - (Personal Management Skills)
ESFE 105T - (Trades Math)
ESFE 110T - (Business Operations)
ESFE 115T - (The Emerging Workplace)
ESFE 120T - (Employment Strategies)

All program courses must be successfully completed before certificates will be issued.

  • Grade 12, or equivalent, or mature student status.
  • Minimum 17 years of age.
  • Minimum grade "C" in English 11 or Technical and Professional Communications 12.
  • Minimum grade of "C" in one of Principles of Mathematics 11, Applications of Mathematics 11, Foundations of Mathematics 11, or Pre-calculus 11.
  • Valid BC driver’s license.
  • Successful completion of assessment testing.
  • See also Trades general admission requirements.

Recommendations for Admission

  • English 12, Mathematics 12, and Physics 12

Notes on Admission

  • Those with a good reasoning, basic science, mathematical, and study skills will experience the most success.
  • Enrolment in this program is limited. Students who meet or exceed the minimum admission requirements may not necessarily be admitted to the program.

Domestic Fees

Tuition and Other Mandatory Student Fees

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Fees Amount
Tuition (6 months x $499.20 per month) 2,995.20
Lab fee 323.41
Student Activity fee (4% of tuition and lab fee) 132.74
Student Services fee (4.417% of tuition) 132.30
VIU Students' Union fee (6 months x $27.60 per month) 165.60
Health and Dental Plan fee ($265.00 per year) 265.00
Books and supplies
(approximate costs)

The VIUSU Health and Dental Plan fee is assessed for all students enrolled in 6 credits or more per term, or in Trades/Vocational programs of 5 months or longer.  

All fees are subject to change without prior notice and are expected to increase by 2% each year on April 1.

Domestic (Canadian)

Program Start Date Accepting Applications Campus Options
Anticipated intake for someone applying today:
Application Fee:
Testing Required:
Admissions Assistant:
Name: Alana Gaetz
Phone: 250.753.3245 ext. 2071
Chair Contact:
Name: Shane Dalager
Phone: 250.753.3245 ext. 2054
Document Deadline:

Students will be added to the wait list once their application is complete.


Vancouver Island University’s Faculty of Trades and Applied Technology Department is administering a self-assessment test which will be mailed out to applicants after they have applied.




Further information on this program can be found on the Department website.

Visit the Department Website

Previous versions of this program can be found in the Program Archive.

Amanda Dawe

“I’ve found it positive to be challenged to truly understand the material, not just pass the tests. My classes have been a place of inclusion and provide an enriching learning environment. I have had the pleasure of instructors who push you to a complete understanding of the trade -- to know the theory and not just memorize.”