Post-Graduate Diploma in Canadian Nursing | Study in Canada (2023)

About the Career

About the Program

Program Courses

Post-Graduation Pathways


Accreditation and Recognition

Becoming A Nurse In Canada


Delivery Method: In-class

Duration: 120 weeks (108 weeks for direct entry), including a 48-week paid co-op

Paid Co-op (Optional): 48 weeks

Start: January, April, July, and October

(Video) Post Graduate Diploma in Canadian Nursing

Registered Nurse: $36.23-$57.38/hour
Licensed Practical Nurse: $28.43-$34.37/hour
Health Care Assistant: $22.80-$25.33/hour

Tuition: Click here

About the Career

The Post-Graduate Diploma in Canadian Nursing prepares students to become Registered Nurses (RN), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN), and Health Care Assistants (HCA). Read below to learn more about each career.

What is the difference between a Registered Nurse and a Licensed Practical Nurse?

The British Columbia Ministry of Health explains:

“Both RNs and LPNs work autonomously within their professional scope of practice and level of competence, and as part of a collaborative team, to support safe, competent and ethical care for patients, families, and communities. Although both RNs and LPNs take similarly titled foundation courses, there is a difference in both the depth and breadth of knowledge covered, in the competencies developed, and expectations for clinical practice.

LPNs care for individuals at all life stages, with a focus on stable or predictable states of health. In specific settings, LPNs may be able to care for those with more complex care needs if they have additional education and/or training and/or supervision. As RNs have more comprehensive education, they have a more in-depth and broader knowledge base to draw upon in areas such as clinical practice, advanced clinical decision-making, and utilization of health research. RNs can provide care for any type of individual including those with complex, unstable or unpredictable conditions.” –

Registered Nurses

The Canadian Nurses Associationprovides the following definition of Registered Nurses (RNs): “RNs are self-regulated health-care professionals who work autonomously and in collaboration with others to enable individuals, families, groups, communities and populations to achieve their optimal levels of health. At all stages of life, in situations of health, illness, injury and disability, RNs deliver direct health-care services, coordinate care and support clients in managing their own health. RNs contribute to the health-care system through their leadership across a wide range of settings in practice, education, administration, research and policy.”

To learn more about the role of a Registered Nurse in Canada, visit

Licensed Practical Nurses

The British Columbia College of Nurses and Midwives provides the following definition of Licensed Practical Nurses: “LPNs are health care professionals. Most work as frontline nurses caring for a wide range of clients at all stages of life. LPNs provide nursing services ranging from health pr​omotion, to acute care, to long-term and palliative care.

LPNs work in collaboration with other members of the health care team. Their education and practice — while rooted in the same body of knowledge as other nurses — focuses on foundational competencies within the LPNscope of practiceand​standards.” –

To learn more about the role of a Licensed Practical Nurse in Canada, visit

Health Care Assistants

The BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry provides the following definition of Health Care Assistants: “Care aides and community health workers are also known as health care assistants or HCAs. They are frontline care providers in a variety of institutional and community settings including home support agencies and residential care facilities.

To be eligible to work as an HCA in any publicly funded health care setting in BC, applicants must be registered with the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry.” –

Post-Graduate Diploma in Canadian Nursing | Study in Canada (1)

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Become a nurse in Canada!

Take a peek at our state-of-the-art labs and check out what your nursing career will look like in Canada.

About the Program

Becoming a nurse in Canada requires internationally educated nurses (IENs) to navigate the nursing regulatory bodies. While the outcome is certainly worth the effort, the steps can become complicated and at times, overwhelming. This is why we developed the Post-Graduate Diploma in Canadian Nursing, to help guide you through the processes and prepare you to meet the entry-level competencies.

The Post-Graduate Diploma in Canadian Nursing with Co-op respects the education and experience of IENs but also recognizes the challenges. It will prepare you with the requisite knowledge and skills to practice safe, ethical and competent care in the Canadian health care setting.

To transition IENs into the Canadian health care setting as quickly as possible, the first 19 weeks of the program prepares you to register and work as a Health Care Assistant. Your first paid, 10-week cooperative work experience sets you up for success.

Your classes, labs and clinical experiences will give you the knowledge, applied practice, and confidence to complete registration assessments and examinations, including:

  • The Nursing Community Assessment Service (NCAS) competency assessment
  • The National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX)
  • Potentially the Regulatory Exam – Practical Nurse (REx-PN), previously the Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Examination (CPNRE).

Check out ourstate-of-the-art nursing lab, which provides exceptional training in our high-fidelity simulation lab.

Admission Requirements


  • Bachelor’s degree in Nursing
    • Diploma in nursing may be considered if work experience is 4+ years of employment as a nurse
  • Current registration as an RN from your country of origin or last country where majority of work experience was completed
  • Minimum 2 years full-time work (30hrs/week), or the part-time equivalent, as a Registered Nurse within last 10 years
    • 900 hours of that work must be within the last 5 years
  • Completion of a Criminal Record Consent Form under theCriminal Record Review Act
  • International students must provide a police certificate from your country of origin

Language Proficiency Requirements:

  • Overall IELTS Test score* of 5.5 with no component less than 5.0 in Speaking and Listening and no score lower than 5.5 in Reading and Writing (or other ESL equivalencies as determined by Stenberg).
  • Advanced Entry: Overall IELTSTest score* of 6.0 with no component less than 6.0 in Speaking and Listening and no score lower than 5.5 in Reading and Writing (or other ESL equivalencies as determined by Stenberg).

*Must be within the last 2 years.

Program Courses

Post-Graduation Pathways

Our Faculty

Becoming a Nurse in Canada

To become a nurse in British Columbia, internationally educated nurses must work with various regulatory bodies. The process can become difficult to navigate, which is why we are here to support you through the journey. From introducing you to the Canadian health care system to preparing you for the regulatory examinations, we are committed to setting you up for success.

Please see below for a basic step-by-step guide on becoming a nurse in BC.

Step 1: Apply to the National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS)

Your first step is to apply to the National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS). They will review and verify your documents including:

  • Proof of identity documents
  • Nursing Education Form (including copies of your academic records/transcripts, nursing program curriculum/course descriptions and/or course syllabi). TIP: Have your school provide as much detail about your nursing education as possible.
  • Nursing Registration Form
  • Nursing Practice/EmploymentForm (detailing all employment over the past five years)

Please note: If NNAS receives documents written in any language other than English or French, they will need to be translated. NNAS can translate them, at your request, for a fee.

TIP: You can complete the entire NNAS process from outside Canada. Start early as it can take up to 1 year to complete.

Step 2: Apply to the British Columbia College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM)

After the NNAS reviews your application, you’ll need an NNAS registration number, an NNAS application number and an NNAS advisory report in order to apply to BCCNM.

Most internationally educated nurses are directed by the BCCNM to the Nursing Community Assessment Service (NCAS) which measures an applicant’s entry-level competencies as compared to a new Canadian graduate. All applicants must demonstrate entry-level competencies, including those who have engaged in specialized practice.

Step 3: Competence assessment

All applicants for registration must demonstrate the entry-level competencies for Registered Nurses in BC. A competence assessment evaluates your nursing skills, knowledge and practice in comparison to what is expected of a new BC graduate. The majority of internationally educated applicants will demonstrate these competencies through completion of a competence assessment (NCAS) and transitional education.

Nursing Community Assessment Service (NCAS)
Competency assessments for BCCNM are completed through the Nursing Community Assessment Service and involve three components that enable internationally educated nurses to demonstrate their nursing experience and competencies that may not be reflected through an evaluation of their education alone. They are:

  • Computer-based assessment
  • Simulation lab assessment and
  • Oral assessment

While the computer-based assessment can be written in more than 100 countries around the world, the simulation lab and oral assessments must be taken in person in Vancouver, BC, Canada.

Step 4: Assessment of your application for registration

After you complete the competency assessment, BCCNM will receive a report. They will review the assessment report, along with your other application documents, to identify if you have any competency gaps.

If gaps exist, you may be required to complete transitional education including: i) one or more individual courses, ii) a re-entry to practice program or iii) a BC Bachelor of Nursing program before you can write the national nursing exam (NCLEX-RN) and register with BCCNM.

Step 5: Transitional Coursework for Internationally Educated Nurses

Your BCCNM assessment will tell you which course(s) or program you need to complete at a BCCNM-recognized institution (Thompson Rivers University or Kwantlen Polytechnic University):

  1. a re-entry to practice program or Bachelor of Nursing,
  2. individual courses, iii qualifying course(s)

Note: You will have to meet the entrance requirements for these educational programs.

Step 6: National Council Licensure Examination for RNs (NCLEX-RN)

Upon successful completion of your Transitional Coursework, applicants for BCCNM registration must write and pass the National Council Licensure Examination for RNs (NCLEX-RN).

Step 7: Eligibility for registration

Once you have completed all BCCNM registration requirements, including any required transitional education and passing the NLCEX-RN, you must ensure your practicing RN registration is approved before you start practicing as a Registered Nurse in BC.

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Is PG Diploma enough to get a job in Canada? ›

PG diploma is mostly a 1-year program, but they can also be for two years. They are regarded as a path to your job or a master's program as Canadian universities offer varied opportunities for students across the world.

How can I pass my post graduate diploma? ›

Here are 12 tips from students who have or are completing a postgraduate qualification:
  1. Choose your research carefully. ...
  2. Choose you supervisor carefully. ...
  3. Know yourself and be honest with yourself. ...
  4. Things change. ...
  5. “ ...
  6. Get a mentor. ...
  7. Map out your studies. ...
  8. 8.Do your research.
Aug 10, 2018

What is a postgraduate diploma equivalent to in Canada? ›

A Postgraduate Diploma is considered academically over the level of a Bachelor's, but under a Master's level. A Postgraduate Diploma can normally be started after the completion of a Bachelor's degree and is typically completed in one year or less.

Is Canadian PG Diploma valid in USA? ›

The short answer is yes. Background checks/educational verification will include Canadian educational institutions. Depending on the school of graduation, (U of Waterloo, U of T), that will have widespread recognition. My Canadian educational credentials were recognized by both employers and immigration visa officials.

Can I get a job after 1 year PG diploma in Canada? ›

About the post-graduation work permit

A post-graduation work permit (PGWP) allows you to remain in Canada and work full-time after you complete a certificate, diploma, or degree program that is at least 8 months in length. You don't need a job offer to apply and can work anywhere in Canada in any occupation.

Can I get work permit after PG diploma in Canada? ›

You can apply for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) from inside Canada as long as you're eligible. You have up to 180 days after you graduate to apply for a PGWP. When you apply, you must confirm the following: that you attended and completed your program.

Is a postgraduate diploma difficult? ›

"There is no denying that a postgraduate course is harder than an undergraduate course. You will have to put in a lot more work than what you have previously. If you expect and prepare to put in a lot of work, you will find it easier when it comes to doing it, which will then be reflected in your results."

Are postgraduate diplomas hard? ›

As PGDips and PGCerts are at the same level as Masters degrees, the work involved is just as challenging, and depending on the subject can be a mix of academic and vocational study. However, they differ in some key ways - the most obvious being that they are shorter.

Is a postgraduate diploma worth anything? ›

A PGDip will give you the same level of input as a Master's but in less time and at less cost. It can help towards a career change, promotion, increased remuneration for your services and more. And it can act as a springboard towards yet higher qualifications, including a full Master's degree or even a PhD.

How many years stay back in Canada after PG Diploma? ›

The time permitted to stay back in Canada

The post-study work permits the students to stay back or settle in Canada as a worker for full-time, up-to a period of 3 years after they qualify from a post-secondary institution in Canada.

Is there 2 year Post graduate diploma in Canada? ›

Canada is home to over 135 colleges and universities that offer 2 year PGDM courses in various disciplines. Some top colleges offer more than 300 PGDM courses, so you can be sure to find the course of your choice to pursue your higher education. This blog will guide you to pursue 2 year pg diploma courses in Canada.

Is PGDM in Canada worth it? ›

Is it worth doing a PGDM in Canada? If students want to study in Canada, opting for the courses mentioned above makes their desire more logical. The best colleges in Canada for PG diplomas provide students with a bright career and high-earning jobs.

Can you work in the US with a Canadian diploma? ›

Yes, with the proper work authorization depending on the employment situation and status, Canadians can work in the USA. The type of work authorization depends on an individual's education and employment situation, and the type of work they will be doing in the USA.

Can I get job in USA with Canadian diploma? ›

The short answer is yes, Canadian citizens can indeed work in the United States, but just like any other foreign national, they must first obtain the appropriate U.S. work visa from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Can you use a Canadian diploma in the US? ›

Throughout Canada's 13 provinces and territories, there are more than 150 colleges and universities. A degree, diploma or certificate from a Canadian institution is globally recognized as an equivalent to those obtained in the USA or UK.

What is the salary after PG diploma in Canada? ›

Average Salary after PGDM in Canada

Salary for a newbie following a PG Diploma might range from 25,000 to 50,000 CAD (INR 14,71,464 – INR 29,42,928) depending on the sector and employment role attained by a student.

Can I get visa for PG diploma in Canada? ›

You have up to 180 days, from the date of completion of your course, to apply for a PGWP Canada. You need to prove this with the help of your degree/diploma/transcript/official letter from the school. Moreover, your Canada student visa must be valid during these 180 days.

Who is eligible for PG diploma in Canada? ›

Eligibility criteria for post-graduation in Canada

Most common requirements include: Bachelor's degree: Undergraduate degree or equivalent from a recognised educational institution. Work experience: One to two years of work experience to gain entry into a Canadian university or college for a post-graduate course.

Can I get Canadian PR after 3 year diploma? ›

Every student in Canada is eligible to apply for PR in Canada. All students pursuing a 4 year Bachelor's degree or 3-year Diploma in Canada will get a 3-year open work permit. Permanent residence for students in Canada means that you can live, work and study in the country permanently.

Can I stay in Canada after post graduate? ›

After you graduate from your program of studies, you may be able to work temporarily or even live permanently in Canada.

Is PG diploma easier than masters? ›

If you wish to make your decision based on the value and worth of your degree, it is better to go for a Master's program over a PG diploma. A Master's degree is considered academically stronger and can help you pursue further education like a PhD.

How many months is a postgraduate diploma? ›

Duration of study

While a Postgraduate Diploma typically takes a year to complete for a full-time study programme, a Masters degree requires 18-24 months to complete a full-time study.

Why is PG diploma better than Masters? ›

Pursuing a Master's Degree will provide more credits than pursuing a PG Diploma Course. PG Diploma courses offer a minimum of 120 credits, while a Master's Degree can provide a minimum of 180 credits.

What is the pass mark for postgraduate? ›

In some cases taught masters are merely graded as a pass or fail, but commonly taught masters degree grades are fail, pass, merit (or credit) and distinction. The boundaries for this are usually 50% for a pass, 60% for a merit and 70% for a distinction as the table illustrates.

Is postgraduate diploma better than diploma? ›

Postgraduate Diploma

Just like graduate diploma, it is also commonly done after a bachelor's degree course. In some countries, the terms graduate diploma and postgraduate diploma are interchangeable, whereas in others, the postgraduate diploma is a higher qualification.

How many credits is a postgraduate diploma? ›

Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip)

A postgraduate diploma is a shorter postgraduate study option that includes challenging masters level content but without the dissertation or major project. A PGDip typically takes approximately 15 months to complete if you're studying part-time and is worth 120 academic credits.

What level is postgraduate diploma? ›

A postgraduate diploma is the same level of qualification as a master's degree but takes less time and doesn't require a dissertation. Postgraduate diplomas (PGDip), as well as postgraduate certificates, are both seen as level 7 in higher education, following levels 4, 5, and 6 in undergraduate degrees.

How long is Canada post graduate work permit? ›

A post-graduation work permit (PGWP) may be valid anywhere between eight months and up to three years. The length of your permit will depend on the length of the study program you completed in Canada. The permit won't be longer than the length of your study program. Find out more about how long a PGWP can be valid.

Is it better to do PG Diploma or Masters in Canada? ›

IT completely depends on you to choose what you want out of your study in Canada, if you want job-specific short-term courses, go for PG Diploma. On the other hand, a master's program will offer a specialized prestigious degree and a longer stay in Canada.

Which diplomas are accepted in Canada? ›

These are some of the most popular and job-oriented diploma courses in Canada.
  • Nursing.
  • Engineering Management.
  • Business Administration.
  • Computer Science & Information technology.
  • Supply Chain Management.
  • Agricultural Science.
  • Big Data Analytics.
  • Marketing.

Can I get job in Canada after diploma in Canada? ›

The post-graduation work permit (PGWP) makes you eligible to temporarily live and work in Canada after graduating from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI). The validity of your post-graduation work permit (PGWP) depends on the length of your program. For programs longer than 2 years, you can get a PGWP for 3 years.

Is it worth moving to USA from Canada? ›

Is it Worth Moving to the USA from Canada? Yes, absolutely! If you are looking for a better salary, more job opportunities, several tax benefits, affordable housing, and a vibrant lifestyle shifting to the USA from Canada is totally worth it.

Does US Accept Post graduate diploma? ›

In Ireland or the United States, a Postgrad. Cert. is equal to a Master's qualification. Both in Canada and the US, a Postgraduate Certificate can also be one of the requirements for graduating a Master's programme.

Is Canadian diploma valid worldwide? ›

Are Canada qualifications recognised worldwide? Yes, degrees from Canadian institutions are accepted worldwide and known for their quality of education.

Which is better USA or Canada for international students? ›

Canadian universities are more likely to offer financial aid or scholarships to international students, something that is very rare in the United States. Additionally, on average, Canadian university tuition fees are 27% more economical than tuition fees at US universities.

What is the US equivalent of a Canadian college diploma? ›

A pre-university Diploma of College Studies is roughly equivalent in the rest of North America to a combination of grade twelve and the first year of an Associate's degree, while a three-year vocational is often equivalent to an Associate's.

Is my diploma valid in USA? ›

The short answer is, yes, the majority of US employers will accept your international degree.

Is Wes Canada valid for USA? ›

WES evaluations are recognized throughout the USA and Canada. It is the largest and among the oldest evaluation services and is also a founding member of NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services).

What is post graduate diploma equivalent to? ›

Postgraduate diplomas are considered by the National Qualification Framework (NQF) to be at a comparable level to a master's degree, however, they require fewer study credits to achieve (120 credits) when compared to a full master's degree (180 credits).

How long does it take to complete a postgraduate diploma? ›

Postgraduate diplomas usually takes one year of full-time study.

Is PG Diploma easier than masters? ›

If you wish to make your decision based on the value and worth of your degree, it is better to go for a Master's program over a PG diploma. A Master's degree is considered academically stronger and can help you pursue further education like a PhD.

How many years does it take to complete post graduate diploma? ›

Postgraduate diplomas can typically be completed in one year of full-time study or part-time up to two years or more.

What are the disadvantages of post graduate diploma? ›

Postgraduate courses can be expensive

Coursework students generally pay full fees at postgraduate level, which means that tuition can be expensive. You may also need to fund additional costs such as study tours, which are common in business and management programs.

Is postgraduate better than diploma? ›

PG Diplomas are a great option for you if you want to study further but don't want to commit to the time and research required for a Masters degree. However, if your career plans include an academic career or getting a PhD, then a Masters degree will be the best option for you.

How many credits do you need for a postgraduate diploma? ›

Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip)

A postgraduate diploma is a shorter postgraduate study option that includes challenging masters level content but without the dissertation or major project. A PGDip typically takes approximately 15 months to complete if you're studying part-time and is worth 120 academic credits.

What is the salary after PG Diploma in Canada? ›

Average Salary after PGDM in Canada

Salary for a newbie following a PG Diploma might range from 25,000 to 50,000 CAD (INR 14,71,464 – INR 29,42,928) depending on the sector and employment role attained by a student.

Can I convert my PG Diploma to a Masters? ›

Postgraduate Diplomas can usually be extended towards achieving a full Master's degree, such as a Master of Science or Master of Arts, at a later time. Postgraduate Diplomas are gaining popularity because they are more affordable than a Master's degree and take less time to complete.

Is it worth doing PGDM in Canada? ›

Is it worth doing a PGDM in Canada? If students want to study in Canada, opting for the courses mentioned above makes their desire more logical. The best colleges in Canada for PG diplomas provide students with a bright career and high-earning jobs.


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