If you want a career where you are physically active, working with our hands and being outdoors, you will enjoy working as a roofer. You will prepare and apply protective coverings to flat and sloped roof surfaces in accordance with construction plans and specifications. Roofers will work on flat roofs (primarily commercial and industrial buildings) and sloped residential roofs.
For flat roofs, you will use a variety of substance and systems which will include conventional roof system (hot applied asphalt), elastomeric roof membrane system (rubber-like properties), thermo plastic roof membrane system and modified bitumen roof membrane system (asphalt and plastic).You will put a layer of vapour/air barrier and/or a layer of insulation on the roof deck, install roofing membranes, spread adhesives (hot and cold) over and under layers of roofing membranes, or apply single-ply membranes of waterproof rubber or thermoplastic compounds to make the system airtight, and install metal or membrane flashing (strips) to protect the edges of the roofing materials.
For sloped residential roofs, you will work with shingles made of asphalt or fibreglass, concrete, clay, rubber, slate, wood shakes or metal. You will apply membranes, fibreglass or felt over parts of the surface before applying shingles, nail shingles in overlapping rows, cement or nail flashing over the joints around vent pipes or chimney, and cover exposed nail heads with cement to prevent rust and water leakage.
As a roofer, you may also inspect problem roofs to determine the best procedures for repairing them, estimate materials required and quote costs, repair older roofs, waterproof roofs, basements, foundations, plaza decks or parkades, install green/vegetated roof components and incorporate new future roofing technology (i.e. conventional and non-conventional solar roofing technology).
This is a non-compulsory trade – individuals can work in the trade without certification if the employer deems the individual to have the skills of a journeyperson. However, individuals who are working in the trade and learning the trade must become a registered apprentice.
Start your career by finding an employer who is willing to indenture you as an apprentice.
As a roofer, you will be employed by roofing contractors on construction or repair jobs. You will work outside in a variety of weather conditions throughout the year. Roofers also have the security of steady employment as there is always a demand for repair work, even when construction activity slows. You will be required to work at various building heights, so you will need to be comfortable with heights.
As a journeyperson, you will likely make a wage between $28 - $40 an hour depending on your employer.
After becoming a journeyperson, you may advance to positions such as technical marketing, inspection and supervisory roles. Some journeypersons go on to run their own businesses – we can help you build your business with our Blue Seal business certificate.
Students who have the following characteristics see greater success in the roofing trade:
- Good eye-hand coordination, strength and stamina to carry heavy materials
- Be sure-footed and able to work at heights
- Be partial to working outdoors
- The ability to work as a part of a team
- A commitment to safe working conditions
Upon successfully completing the required working hours and technical training periods, graduates will be awarded journeyperson status by Alberta’s Apprenticeship and Industry Training. Roofers are a Red Seal Endorsed trade – a recognizable standard that allows tradespeople to work across Canada.
Admission and Completion
To enter an apprenticeship, you must have the educational qualifications required or recommended education for the trade to which you apply.
Entrance Requirements are monitored and set by Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training.
- Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training Entrance Exam
Apprentices with an Alberta High School Diploma that includes the following courses:
- English 30-2
- Math 30-3
- Physics 20 OR Chemistry 20 OR Science 20
- Related career and technology studies (CTS) courses
How to register
Registration for technical training is run through Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training. Learn how you can register for your next intake.
After you register
Email is the primary source of communication after you have registered for your intake. Please ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications. We recommend you add the sait.ca domain to your safe senders' list or you risk missing critical email messages.
Apprentices in the roofing trade will spend 4 years (four 12-month periods) of on-the-job training and technical training at SAIT. Technical training will be 6 weeks each year.
|Find an employer willing to indenture you as an apprentice|
|Apply as an apprentice with AIT and your employer|
|Sign contract and recieve record book|
|Written entrance examination or get approved for previous transcripts|
|Complete first period of on-the-job-training (1600 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend first period of technical training for 6 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass first period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Complete second period of on-the-job training (1600 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend second period of technical training for 6 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass second period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Complete third period of on-the-job training (1600 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend third period of technical training for 6 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass third period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Complete fourth period of on-the-job training (1600 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend fourth period of technical training for 6 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass fourth period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Become a Journeyperson|
|Write and pass the Interprovincial Qualification Exam|
Technical Training Performance
To be successful in technical training, an apprentice must pass each section of the course and pass the AIT exam. The passing grade for each section in the course is a 65%. A passing mark on each Trade Qualification Exam and the Interprovincial Qualification (or Red Seal Exam) is 70%.
Domestic tuition and fees*
|Period||Tuition fees||SAIT fees||Saitsa fees||Lab & Material Fee||2020/21 total|
Lab and material fee: $72.00
Student support fee: $25.00
Student technology fee: $25.00
Books and supplies*
- Books or modules along with other items for class average out to $600 per period.
- It is recommended that you do not purchase books or modules ahead of time as they might be outdated by the time you attend classes and they cannot be returned to the bookstore.
- Personal Protective Equipment will be required for the program, which may be an additional cost to apprentices.
*Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change.
Membership to the SAIT Wellness centre - including an ice arena, swimming/diving pool, gymnasium, squash and racquetteball courts and eight room is available to apprentices at a discounted rate.
Financial planning tool
Our apprenticeship cost calculator can help you make a financial plan by identifying and adding up your expected expenses while attending SAIT — find out exactly how much money you need to save, seek or borrow to get you through your studies.