Primary Care Paramedic
Length: 10 months
On-Campus Day* - Your course activity is done in-person Monday - Friday, before 6 PM.
On-Campus Evening/Weekend - Your course activity is done in person on weekdays from 6 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
Online Day* - Your course activity is done online Monday - Friday, before 6 PM.
Online Evening/Weekend - Your course activity is done online on weekdays from 6 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
Online Flexible Delivery - Your course activity is not scheduled and therefore you can determine when to do the coursework.
Blended Delivery - Both On-Campus and Online - Some of your coursework will be in-person, on-campus and some will be done online.
* There may be circumstances that require some day delivery of classes to be scheduled into the evenings.
Please note due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these delivery options may shift from term to term. Please consult your program for details on delivery options.
Estimated program length is based on the recommended course load per semester as outlined in the Courses tab.
Actual program length will vary based on the number of courses registered in and successfully completed per semester.
Learn more about program length on SAIT Credentials and the Academic Calendar.
This program meets the eligibility criteria for the Post-Graduation Work Permit program for international students as long as the student is enrolled in the on-campus delivery mode or completes more than 50% of the courses on campus (for the blended option).
International students attending all classes online will NOT be eligible for a Post-Graduate Work Permit. International students are responsible for maintaining their eligibility throughout their studies.
This program is available to international students, however, program availability may be limited. This program does not meet the eligibility criteria for the Post-Graduation Work Permit program.
The Primary Care Paramedic program provides education and training for pre-hospital care professionals, preparing graduates to work within a multidisciplinary healthcare team.
Taught by experienced practitioners, this program covers all aspects of pre-hospital emergency care. Areas of study include patient assessment, diagnostics, critical interventions and treatment, including Basic Life Support (BLS), Advanced Life Support (ALS) and International Trauma Life Support (ITLS) assistance.
This program is competency-based and provides applied theory and hands-on learning through high-fidelity human patient simulation education in the Centre for Advanced Patient Care Simulation and during practicum rotations. Working under the direct supervision of a preceptor, practicums occur in hospitals or urgent care centres and ambulance settings.
Is this the right fit for me?
You'll experience success in this program and profession by developing the following traits, skills and aptitudes:
- fine motor skills
- critical thinking and adaptability
- effective communication skills (speaking, reading, writing, and listening)
- ability to work independently
- actively participate in classroom, lab, and practicum activities as scheduled by the program
- ability to work well under stress, maintain professional behaviour and emotionally self-regulate
- ability to use technology
- attention to detail
- can wear Personal Protective Equipment for extended periods of time and tolerate latex and disinfection materials
- willing to work extended hours, including nights and/or weekends and shift work
- ability to tolerate the sight of human blood and tissue
- ability to assist in transporting, lifting, and positioning patients and/or equipment and meet the physical demands of the job (for example, spending most hours working on your feet, walking, bending, and other repetitive tasks)
- comfortable with performing patient care procedures which may be sensitive or performed in close proximity
Applicants are strongly encouraged to refer to the ALIS website for career, learning, and employment information for Emergency Medical Personnel, the Paramedicine National Occupational Competency Profile and Alberta Health Service’s F.A.R.E. Paramedic requirements to ensure they understand the functional ability required to achieve all the competency-based objectives and bona fide occupational requirements for the program and profession.
Some examples include:
- Lifting a stretcher with a 95.5 kg (210 lbs) patient with a partner from a lower level to the load position and back down
- Lifting and carrying a long spine board with 95.5 kg (210 lbs) and ascending and descending 10 stairs with a partner
- Pushing a stair chair 10 m with 95.5 kg (210 lbs) and ascending and descending 20 stairs with a partner
- Lifting a bilateral side carry of 9 kg (20 lbs) of weight in each hand
- Front carrying 18 kg (40 lbs)
- Performing CPR for two minutes
The Primary Care Paramedic program delivered by SAIT is accredited by Accreditation Canada at the Primary Care Paramedic level and meets the Alberta College of Paramedics core competency requirements.
Upon completing this program, graduates will receive a SAIT Primary Care Paramedic certificate.
All graduates are eligible and required to register with the Alberta College of Paramedics to work in Alberta as a Primary Care Paramedic.
Graduates are also qualified to apply for the Advanced Care Paramedic program.
Get important updates about our health and medical programs
Graduates can pursue job opportunities in:
- emergency medical services
- industrial sites
Related careers include:
- police officer
- audiometric technician
Tuition and fees
Estimated cost per year:
Domestic total 2023/24
- Year 1: $6,772
Final costs are dependent on the number of courses a student takes per semester.
This program is eligible for Canada Alberta Job Grant funding.
You will be offered admission to this program through direct entry if you meet the admission requirements and space is available.
Funding increases training capacity for medical programs
Virtual simulations create new opportunities for on-the-job experience in healthcare education
At least 50% in each of the following courses or their equivalents:
- Math 20-1 or Math 20-2,
- English Language Arts 30-1 or English Language Arts 30-2,
- Biology 30 or Science 30
- Proof of completion of an Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) certificate or a medical sciences-related diploma, degree, or equivalent.
Students must be at least 18 years old by the program's second semester.
All applicants, including students educated in Canada, must demonstrate English language proficiency.
SAIT accepts high school course equivalents for admission. If you don't meet the requirements, consider Academic Upgrading.
SAIT evaluates international documents for admissions. After applying, consider our international document assessment service if your education is from outside Canada. SAIT may also accept courses completed at certain international post-secondary institutions.
The School of Health and Public Safety has many practica partners located within Alberta and across Canada. Practicum placements in Calgary are limited, and you may be required to travel or relocate outside of the city. Due to limited practicum spots for the paramedicine programs provincially, some of the practica may not end until August.
Successful applicants will be assigned their practicum placement. While we'll strive to assign your practicum location based on your preference, it is not guaranteed. Special considerations will not be given. You will be responsible for fees associated with the practicum, such as entrance requirements, relocation and travel costs.
In compliance with the practica agreements with our clinical partners, you will be requested to provide proof of the following requirements:
- current Heart and Stroke Foundation BLS Provider course
- updated immunization records
- Police Information Check, including Vulnerable Sector Check
- N95 respiratory mask fitting
- health and wellness status
Please note: If you cannot obtain a tight facial seal due to the presence of facial hair and refuse to shave for religious reasons, you are considered unfit by AHS standards and will not be allowed on an ambulance practicum. As practicum is an essential component of the program, you will not be able to complete the Primary Care Paramedic program successfully.
Learn more about practicum requirements
When should you apply?
Visit our Apply page to see when applications open and close for upcoming semesters.
To see which semesters this program has intakes for, look at the Available Intakes information at the top of this page.
Direct entry: four-step process
Step 1: Read the program information to see the qualities needed for student success.
Step 2: Ensure that you meet all of the admission requirements listed above.
Step 3: Apply to the program and submit your transcripts.
Admission will be extended on a first-qualified, first-offered basis until the program is full.
Step 4: Continue to monitor your application status through mySAIT.ca.
You must submit final transcripts/grades to show you have completed the courses and met the minimum admission requirements by the transcript deadline or your seat will be rescinded.
Communication during admission
Email is the primary source of communication during the admission process. Ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications.
We recommend you add firstname.lastname@example.org domain to your safe senders' list or you risk missing critical email messages.
When do classes start?
Classes for this program adhere to the following year start and end dates based on the semester the student begins their program.
|Classes begin||Year start date||Year end date|
|Fall 2022||Sept. 6, 2022||Aug. 18, 2023|
|Fall 2023||Sept. 5, 2023||Aug. 16, 2024|
|Winter 2024||Jan. 8, 2023||Dec. 13, 2024|
Looking for course descriptions and requisites? Visit the course catalogue
|Course code||Course name||Credit|
|ANPH-201||Physiology & Physical Assessment||1.5|
|EMRG-236||Primary Care Paramedic Laboratory I||3.0|
|EMRG-244||Professional Practice I||1.5|
|Semester 1 total||15.0|
|Course code||Course name||Credit|
|EMRG-266||Primary Care Paramedic Laboratory II||3.0|
|FTNS-202||Fitness and Wellness||1.5|
|Semester 2 total||15.0|
Depending on practicum site availability, your final practicum may continue beyond the end-of-year date.
|Course code||Course name||Credit|
|EMRG-265||Professional Practice II||1.5|
|Semester 3 total||4.5|
Students must attain a PGPA and/or a CGPA of 2.0 or better in each semester and pass the necessary prerequisite courses to progress through the program. To qualify for graduation, students must pass all courses, attain a CGPA of 2.0 or better and complete course requirements within the prescribed timelines.
Review our grading and progression procedure >
The opportunity to advance your education by transferring in, within or on from SAIT is available.
Learn more about program and institution partnership agreements.
Tuition and fees
The following costs are effective as of July 1, 2023. They are an estimate of tuition and fees based on the recommended course load per year. *
|Year||Number of semesters||Tuition fees||SAIT fees||Saitsa fees||Total|
*For a detailed breakdown of tuition costs per course, visit the domestic fee table.
**.5 indicates a combination of full-time semester(s) and part-time semester(s) in the same academic year. In many cases, students are completing a practicum during their part-time semester. Part-time students are those taking less than nine (9) course credits in a semester.
What your SAIT fees pay for
Student support fee: supports student services and resources to help you succeed throughout your academic career, including services such as Career Advancement Services, and Student Development and Counselling.
Student technology fee: supports improvements to cybersecurity to protect student and institutional information, access to learning material outside the classroom, and technology to enhance the student experience.
Campus recreation fee: supports the provision of recreation and fitness facilities, movement classes, wellness programs, student events, intermural activities, varsity sports programs, and a variety of student engagement initiatives offered throughout the academic year. Exemptions to recreation fees are made in some circumstances.
Upass: provides you with unlimited access to Calgary Transit. Ineligible students are not required to pay this fee. Learn more about eligibility requirements.
Lab and materials fees: ensures SAIT labs and living classrooms have the required equipment and materials to support the necessary training for students.
Laundry fee: covers the cost of laundering the required uniforms. Applicable only to certain programs and apprenticeships.
Saitsa fees: supports the student-led, non-profit organization representing students. Fees support the operation of a variety of student services, activities, and programming.
Health and dental fees: provides access to thousands of dollars in coverage for prescription medication, dental treatments, paramedical services, and multiple other benefits. Domestic students with existing health and dental coverage may opt out. Find more details at saitsa.com/benefits.
Your fees are calculated based on the number of course credits you take per semester (approximately 16 weeks of study). In most cases, your fee is determined based on whether you're taking more or less than nine (9) course credits (more than nine credits in a semester are considered full-time studies.)
Fees are adjusted for programs with start dates outside of the typical 15-week program.
Learn more about what your fees are for
Fees are subject to change without notice.
|Fees||< 9 credits per semester||> 9 credits per semester|
|Campus athletic and recreation||$51.50||$103|
|Student support fee||$52.75||$105.50|
|Student technology fee||$52.75||$105.50|
|Student association fee**||$16.22/credit||$146|
|Health plan***||N/A||$86 ($172 annually)|
|Dental plan***||N/A||$79 ($158 annually)|
*Additional eligibility requirements apply for students to obtain a UPass. To check your eligibility, visit our Upass page.
**Saitsa fees are paid per credit to a maximum amount of $146 per semester.
***Health and dental fees are charged per semester to an annual maximum amount of $172 for health and $158 for dental. In most cases, program fees quoted are based on students paying for a full year of health and dental coverage. International students are charged these fees regardless of course load. Domestic students with existing health and/or dental plans can opt-out. Learn more at saitsa.com/benefits.
Books and supplies*
Books and supplies cost approximately $1,900 for the program.
Students are responsible for any additional expenses related to their practicum, including pre-practicum requirements as outlined by the program, and relocation costs to practicum sites outside of Calgary.
For an estimate of the costs associated with purchasing a computer that meets the program's hardware and software requirements, see our computers and laptops page.
Additional program fees: approximately $875
- There is a $75 CompTracker user fee per semester.
- There is a fee for the Alberta College of Paramedics (ACP) provincial exam and an annual registration fee. ACP annual registration fees are approximately $425 (the initial registration fee is approximately $475).
- There is a fee associated with obtaining a Police Information Check including a Vulnerable Sector Check and is payable to the Police or the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
- Students must have their immunizations reviewed by the SAIT Health Clinic. There is a $75 charge to review vaccine history. Any vaccines to be administered will result in additional charges.
- There is a fee, approximately $50-$100, associated with an Electronic Student Permit Checking submission which is required for clinical practicum placements, payable to Synergy Gateway through the Verified software platform.
Learn more about your tuition and financial aid options
*Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change.
Next steps for incoming students
Have you been accepted to this program? Here's what you'll need for your first day of classes.
✅ Plan ahead ❗️
You are required to complete several health, confidentiality and consent forms before starting your program. All completed and signed paperwork is needed on orientation day.
Get started on practicum requirements
Your program orientation (ORNT 118) will be held on campus on Aug. 31. Check your schedule in mySAIT for the time and location details.
Learn more about your campus orientation.
How to register for classes
Course registration opens on March 1 through March 15 for Spring 2023.
You’ll receive an email from us indicating what registration process you’ll use to enroll in your classes.
Learn more about how to register and the different registration methods used at SAIT.
Computers and laptops
This is a bring your own device program with a standard hardware and software requirement. See the specific requirements on our computers and laptops page.
You will be evaluated on your level of competency performance using a tracking system called CompTracker. You will require a wi-fi-enabled Apple tablet with the ability to run the most up-to-date operating system to support the CompTracker system. Any size tablet is acceptable. Keyboards are advisable but not mandatory. Smartphones are not acceptable devices for CompTracker. There is a required user license fee billed on a per semester basis. Each program will have a different student fee depending on how the system is used within the program. More information will be shared at orientation.
Required personal protective equipment (PPE) and uniform
Uniforms and PPE are to be purchased prior to Orientation day and worn to Orientation.
Print and take the uniform order form to Trademark Workwear Inc. to order your SAIT uniforms. Refer to the form for details and ensure you order your uniform early. CSA approved safety glasses and CSA approved black steel-toed duty boots may be purchased where available.
Ballistic vests are not required by the SAIT PCP or ACP programs. Currently, many practitioners have the option of being issued a ballistic vest by their employer as PPE. This is an employee decision if they want the ballistic vest or not. As best practice for scene safety, police deem the situation safe before EMS crews enter, and students are not first into any situation where this type of PPE is required. If a student wishes to purchase their own ballistic vest for use on practicum they can do so through the AHS approved vendor (Urban Tactical, Winnipeg) who has the required minimum specifications for a ballistic vest. If a student decides to purchase and wear the vest, they must ensure that their SAIT crest and student identification are clearly visible on the vest without compromising the integrity of the vest. >
Please note: If a student has a ballistic vest from an employer, they are not allowed to wear that employer’s issue as part of the SAIT uniform. If a student chooses to wear a ballistic vest during their program they must purchase a personal ballistic vest. Ballistic vests are personally fitted, have a finite lifespan, and are not resalable as they do not provide the appropriate protection second-hand. If a student chooses to wear a personal ballistic vest, they will be required to wear it for every call during their practicum rotations.
- Heart and Stroke BLS Provider Course
- N95 Mask-fit testing
- Police Information Clearance (Criminal Records Check) with Vulnerable Sector Check
- Up to date immunizations record
- Health and Wellness Status
- Note: A Class 4 Driver's license may be required for employment. It is recommended that you review the Alberta government information for requirements and begin the process while in the program.
To support your success, short courses are available to you to help prepare you for the academic year:
PERS 050: Student Rights and Responsibilities
This course is designed to introduce you to student rights and responsibilities at SAIT. You will learn about SAIT's rich and diverse community, become familiar with guidelines and procedures that create a safe, respectful learning experience for you, and gain practical tips for how you can engage in the SAIT community in a positive and responsible way. PRES-050 must be completed within 30 days from the start of the semester.
PREP 100: The SAIT Experience
Get tips and insider information on time management, exam preparation, effective notetaking and more through this free, online short course for new students. Plus, learn about discussion boards, online communication and submitting assignments online. Course completion is recommended by the end of your first semester.
Both courses can be accessed through Brightspace (D2L) before the first day of classes.
Students taking a full-time course load, or more than nine (9) credits per semester, will be automatically enrolled in these courses.
They are optional for students taking a part-time course load (9 or fewer credits per semester). Part-time students can register by emailing email@example.com.
Find your booklist on the SAIT Bookstore's website. The booklist will be available closer to the program start date.
Can’t find your program or course? The bookstore didn't receive a textbook list. Contact your program directly to determine if they’re still refining course details or if you're in luck, no textbook purchase is required this term.
Next steps for all students
Here's what else you'll need to do to get ready!
Next steps for accepted students
Important dates and deadlines
Find important dates applicable to all students, including your transcript and tuition payment deadlines on our Important Dates page.
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