Designed to equip you with the specialized skills to manage railway vehicles, our 12-week program Railway Conductor is your ticket to the rapidly expanding railway operations sector.

As a student, you will:

  • learn the critical roles of a train conductor, including the safe and efficient movement of rail cars
  • learn how to assemble trains in the correct order, ensuring the cargo is organized according to its destination and the operational requirements of the railway
  • gain the skills to safely change the path of a railcar from one track to another, a process essential for organizing and directing rail traffic
  • learn how to apply your skills in a real-world setting with our private mini rail yard, featuring actual tracks and rail cars
  • master the Canadian Railway Operating Rules (CROR) and related safety systems to ensure compliance and secure operations
  • learn about the mechanical aspects of rail cars, including air brake systems and communication systems
  • learn effective communication skills.

This course includes on-campus classes, labs, and field trips to nearby industrial sites. Get training from industry professionals with extensive field experience and a passion for training the next generation.

With the increasing need for rail transport of goods, the railway industry is on an upward trajectory, promising a stable and growing field for employment.

Position yourself in a market that values job-ready individuals, especially as current workforce demographics signal high retirement rates and the need for new talent.

The program paves the way for career growth, with prospects to move into various roles within the railway sector, such as engineer, dispatch, trainer and management.

If you’re ready to play a crucial role in the movement of goods across the country and beyond, whether for Canadian National Railway, Canadian Pacific or another, our Railway Conductor program is the ideal start. Enroll today and get on track for a career that moves you forward.

As a railway conductor, you need: 

  • strong safety awareness 
  • effective communication skills, including proficiency in verbal and written English 
  • solid planning and decision-making abilities 
  • physical fitness and ability to work outdoors in all weather conditions 
  • capability to lift heavy objects (up to 85 lbs) 
  • responsibility to understand and meet medical and physical standards set by rail companies.
You will require flexibility to work at any time of day as railways operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

To gain employment, you may need to pass medical exams, including vision, hearing and drug tests, and pass a security screening.

After successfully completing this program, you’ll receive a SAIT Railway Conductor certificate. 

Download program info

Careers and opportunities

Each year, SAIT conducts a survey between February and April to determine the employment rate, salary and satisfaction of our newest SAIT alumni. 

people icon 100% graduate employment rate

salary icon $80,000 average starting salary

Find out more about our graduate employment statistics >

Our graduates may work in the following occupations. Some careers require additional experience and education.

Associated National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes: 14400, 14405, 70020, 72023, 72024, 72403, 72604, 73310, 73311, 74200.


Career counselling and support

Unsure which career path is for you? SAIT offers career planning services to help you decide your future.

You can also get started by taking our online career finder quiz, which can help you narrow down your search based on your current skills and interests.

Finally, you can also head to Alberta alis for various tools and resources, including additional quizzes and labour market information to help you narrow down a career path.


The Railway Conductor certificate requires 13.5 credits (five courses) to complete.

Course Credits

This introductory overview provides general information about the rail industry and the conductor’s role and responsibilities. Course topics explore railway business, conductor’s duties, the importance of leadership, communication and teamwork, the impact of environmental regulations and technology on operations, and finally, how to prepare for a career as a railway conductor.


This course supplements the theory learned and further focuses on the specifics of working in the railway industry, including the use of specialized equipment and the fundamentals of marshalling. Material will cover inspections, switches and derail devices, movement of rail equipment, handbrakes and air brakes, the train information braking system (TIBS), fundamental skills for a conductor and general worksite maintenance procedures.


This course focuses on the fundamentals of railway operations such as methods of traffic control and tracks within territories, railway signals, and the types of forms and documents used in Canadian rail operations.


This course introduces the fundamental knowledge, skills and attitudes required for conductors to ensure workplace health and safety. You will examine safety regulations including the transportation of dangerous goods, identify hazard and mitigation procedures, and discuss the importance of proper communication protocols and protection procedures.


This course provides a deeper look at rules and regulations essential to the railway industry. You will examine the Canadian Rail Operating Rules, signals and emergencies, the role of authorities as well as procedures for General Bulletin Order compliance. Regulations for interlocking and centralized traffic control, as well as automatic black signaling and occupancy control systems will also be covered.



You must attain a PGPA and/or a CGPA of 2.0 or better each semester and pass the prerequisite courses to progress through the program.

To qualify for graduation, you 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 >

Admission requirements

Applicants educated in Canada

All applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency and meet the following requirements or equivalents:

  • at least 50% in Math 20-1 or 20-2 or 20-3 and
  • at least 50% in a Grade 12 English.

SAIT accepts high school course equivalents for admission for applicants educated outside Alberta.

All applicants who were educated outside of Canada must demonstrate English Language proficiency and provide proof they meet the program admission requirements with an international document assessment. Find out what educational documents are accepted and assessment options.

SAIT may also accept courses completed at certain international post-secondary institutions.


Academic Upgrading

Missing an admission requirement for this program? Upgrade your prior education to help you receive admission into one of SAIT's career programs.


English language proficiency

All applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency prior to admission, including students educated in Canada.

Transfer agreements

At SAIT, we evaluate post-secondary credit you have previously earned and apply it to your SAIT credential. Explore our formal transfer agreements available for this program.

We can evaluate your prior education, even if we don't have a formal agreement in place.

Submit a transfer credit application

There are no formal transfer agreements currently in place for this program.

Transfer options for graduates

Build on the knowledge you’ve learned at SAIT. The opportunity to advance your education at an accredited post-secondary institution may be available.

🔗 Visit Transfer Alberta search tool for a full list of transfer opportunities within the province.

Available intakes

Fall 2024

Start dates:

Domestic students: Waitlisted
  • Application deadline: Extended
International students: Closed
  • Application deadline: May 29, 2024

Winter 2025

Start dates:

Domestic students: Open
  • Application deadline: Oct. 25, 2024
International students: Open
  • Application deadline: Sept. 30, 2024


2024/25 tuition and fees

The following estimated costs are effective as of July 1, 2024.

Domestic students

The estimated total cost of tuition and fees for domestic students is based on the recommended course load per year.
Year Number of semesters Tuition fees Additional fees Total per year
1 1 $10,935 $979 $11,914
Total cost:

The estimated total cost of tuition and fees for international students is based on the recommended course load per year.
Year Number of semesters Tuition fees Additional fees Total per year
1 1 $18,400.50 $979 $19,379.50
Total cost:

Books and supplies are approximately $600.

This is a bring-your-own-device program with a standard computer hardware and software requirement. See the specific requirements on our computers and laptops page.

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.

Required personal protective equipment (PPE)

The industry-approved PPE you'll need will be discussed during your first few days of classes, including:

  • CSA-approved hard hat
  • safety-toed footwear
  • reflective vest
  • safety glasses
  • work gloves.

Financial aid

Paying for your education may feel overwhelming, but we have resources and programs that can help, including information about payment options, student loans, grants and scholarships.

Canada Alberta Job Grant icon

This program is eligible for Canada Alberta Job Grant funding.

Application process

Ready to apply?

Follow our step-by-step guide to submitting a successful application.

Learn how to apply

Communication during admission

Email is the primary source of communication during the selection process. Ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications. We recommend you add the transportation.info@sait.ca domain to your safe senders list or you risk missing critical email messages.


Begin your application

Apply now using the online application portal. 

Ensure you have a valid Visa or Mastercard to pay the non-refundable application fee of $120 for domestic applicants or $150 for international applicants. 

Information sessions

Prepare for a strong start in your chosen program or get the details you need to decide your future path.

Our expert staff and faculty are ready to answer your questions and provide information about the following:

  • What sets SAIT apart
  • An introduction to the program and area of study
  • Admission requirements
  • Future career paths
  • Information on the earning potential and graduate employment rates.

Contact us

School of Transportation Advising


International Student Advising

a view of the moutains and stream in between

Oki, Âba wathtech, Danit'ada, Tawnshi, Hello.

SAIT is located on the traditional territories of the Niitsitapi (Blackfoot) and the people of Treaty 7 which includes the Siksika, the Piikani, the Kainai, the Tsuut’ina and the Îyârhe Nakoda of Bearspaw, Chiniki and Goodstoney.

We are situated in an area the Blackfoot tribes traditionally called Moh’kinsstis, where the Bow River meets the Elbow River. We now call it the city of Calgary, which is also home to the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region 3.