About SAIT

What is polytechnic education?

Polytechnic — "many arts and skills"

A polytechnic is an innovative and entrepreneurial post-secondary institution, distinct from universities and colleges in that it offers a skill-focused approach to learning.

From apprenticeships to baccalaureate degrees, full-time to part-time, polytechnic institutions offer a range of credentials in diverse program areas focused on experience-oriented training. Multi-disciplined and industry responsive, polytechnic programs provide students with the required knowledge and skills for a rewarding career.

Leaders in applied research and innovation, polytechnics work closely with industry, regional and local organizations and community partners, providing access to leading-edge knowledge, skill and resources. Canada's polytechnics also offer diverse industry training products to corporations across the country and around the world.

As one of Canada's leading polytechnics, SAIT Polytechnic provides relevant, skill-oriented education to more than 75,000 registrants each year. Approximately 1,000 business and industry partners help shape curriculum by serving on more than 65 advisory committees. SAIT was the first publicly-funded institute of its kind in the country, and 97 years later, it is well on its way to becoming Canada's premier polytechnic.

SAIT is a member of Polytechnics Canada, a national alliance of leading research-intensive, publicly-funded colleges and institutes of technology dedicated to helping colleges and industry create high-quality jobs for the future. 

Programming areas


The SAIT Strategic Plan 2006-2016 charts an ambitious course for the next decade under three directional priorities: Leader in Learning, Entrepreneurial Outlook and World-Class Service Culture.

Leader in learning

  • First publicly funded technical institute in Canada, established in 1916
  • More than 2,200 faculty and staff providing training to more than 75,000 registrants annually
  • Graduate employment rate of 94 per cent (2012)
  • $3.9 million in scholarships and bursaries awarded annually
  • Founding member of eCampusAlberta, a consortium of 16 schools delivering online courses and programs
  • More than 207,000 alumni in 76 countries
  • Created and fostering an environment committed to student success
  • The number one research college in Canada (RE$EARCH Infosource Inc.)

Entrepreneurial outlook

  • More than 65 program advisory committees
  • More than 1,000 business and industry advisors
  • SAIT generates $1.6 billion of economic activity
  • Return on investment for students of 16 per cent
  • Known for innovative applied research and development activities
  • Corporate training delivered worldwide

World-class service culture

  • One of Canada's 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures (Waterstone Human Capital)
  • One of Alberta's Top 60 Employers in 2013, 2011 and 2010 (Mediacorp Canada Inc.)
  • One of Alberta's Best Workplaces for Training and Development in 2013 (Alberta Venture)
  • One of Alberta's 2010 Best Overall Workplaces (Alberta Venture)

Programs and courses (2012/13)

  • 82 certificate, diploma and applied degree programs
  • Two baccalaureate degree programs
  • 30-plus apprenticeship programs
  • 1,675 continuing education, domestic and international, corporate training, credit and non-credit courses
  • 13,683 full-load equivalents (FLEs)
  • 75,473 total registrants