Pre-service Firefighter Education and Training

Program: FIRE
Credential: Ontario College Certificate
Delivery: Full-time
Length: 1 Year
Duration: 3 Semesters
Effective: Fall 2019, Winter 2020
Location: Barrie


In this program, students gain the knowledge and skills of basic fire science, fire suppression principles and practice, first responder emergency care, and fire prevention and public education. This program also provides students with specialty knowledge in confined space and water and ice rescue.

This three semester program meets the following National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards:

  • NFPA 1001, Standard for Firefighter Professional Qualifications: Firefighter I and Firefighter II,
  • NFPA 472, Standard for Competence of Responders to Hazardous Materials/Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents,
  • NFPA 1006, Standard on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents.

Career Opportunities

Successful graduates may find employment opportunities in the following areas:

  • professional firefighting,
  • fire inspection,
  • fire prevention and public education,
  • private fire service,
  • Ministry of Natural Resources, and
  • as volunteer firefighters.

Program Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

Successful graduates may find employment opportunities in the following areas:

  • professional firefighting,
  • fire inspection,
  • fire prevention and public education,
  • private fire service,
  • Ministry of Natural Resources, and
  • as volunteer firefighters.

External Recognition

The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management (OFMEM) endorses the content of this curriculum.

The Program Progression

Fall Intake 

  • Sem 1: Fall 2019
  • Sem 2: Winter 2020
  • Sem 3: Summer 2020

Winter Intake

  • Sem 1: Winter 2020
  • Sem 2: Summer 2020
  • Sem 3: Fall 2020

Admission Requirements

OSSD or equivalent with

  • Grade 12 English (C or U)
  • Grade 12 Mathematics (C or U)

Mature students, non-secondary school applicants (19 years or older), and home school applicants may also be considered for admission. Eligibility may be met by applicants who have taken equivalent courses, upgrading, completed their GED, and equivalency testing. For complete details refer to:

Applicants who have taken courses from a recognized and accredited post-secondary institution and/or have relevant life/learning experience may also be considered for admission; refer to the Credit Transfer Centre website for details:

Criminal Reference/Vulnerable Sector Check

Placement agencies require an up-to-date clear criminal reference check and vulnerable sector check prior to going out on placement. Students should obtain their criminal reference three months prior to placement; checks conducted earlier may not be considered current. As some jurisdictions require longer lead-time for processing, please check with the program coordinator to ensure you allow for sufficient turn-around time. It is the student's responsibility to provide the completed document prior to placement start.

NOTE: A record of criminal offences, for which a pardon has not been granted, may prevent students from completing their placements, thereby affecting their ability to graduate.

Additional Information

Applicants must have an up-to-date immunization record. Also, a CPR Basic Rescue Certificate (Level C or higher) and Standard First Aid certificate must be maintained throughout the program. Students are required to submit a copy of both certificates prior to program start.

Applicants are expected to attend a group orientation session prior to the beginning of the first semester in September or January semesters.

Physical Fitness: Students must be physically fit to participate. A waiver and informed consent indicating the ability to perform the physical fitness and physical duties is required for firefighter training. During the orientation process students will be required to confirm that they are not affected by acrophobia (fear of heights) and claustrophobia (fear of confined space). If you are unsure of your health status or phobias, you should consult your doctor prior to entering the program as these may preclude you from gaining employment in firefighting. Students must successfully complete the requirements of the York Firefighter Fitness test or CPAT prior to graduation.

Special Considerations

Vision: Uncorrected Visual Acuity should be at least 6/12 (20/40) binocularly (both eyes). Corrected Visual Acuity should be at least 6/6 (20/20) binocularly. There are additional minimum requirements regarding refractive surgery farsightedness (hyperopia), colour vision, depth perception and peripheral vision. No marked degree of color blindness is permitted. Hearing requirements are normal unaided hearing at frequencies of 500 to 4000 Hz measured by audiometer.

A hiring municipality or fire department may have additional special requirements for those entering a career as a firefighter. Students wishing to pursue such careers should ensure that they will be able to meet the physical and educational requirements before enrolling. Potential students with a criminal record will need to discuss their personal situation with college counsellors before enrolling in the program.

Graduation Requirements

32 Program Courses
1 Communications Course

Graduation Eligibility

To graduate from this program, a student must attain a minimum of 70% for each theoretical fire course and a letter grade of P (Pass) for each practical Fire course. 

To graduate from non-fire courses in the program, the passing weighted average for promotion through each semester, and to graduate is 60%. Additionally, a student must attain a minimum of 50% or a letter grade of P (Pass) or S (Satisfactory) in each course in each semester unless otherwise stated on the course outline.

Program Tracking

Plan of Study Grid
Semester 1Hours
Program Courses  
FIRE 1067 Career Preparation 1 42
FIRE 1068 Introduction to Fire Service 42
FIRE 1069 Firefighter Fitness 1 42
FIRE 1070 Fire Protection Systems and Public Education 42
FIRE 1071 Protective Equipment and Rescue Theory 14
FIRE 1072 Protective Equipment and Rescue Practical 28
FIRE 1073 Ladders, Ropes and Illumination Theory 14
FIRE 1074 Ladders, Ropes and Illumination Practical 28
FIRE 1075 Emergency Medical Responder 1 Theory 28
FIRE 1076 Emergency Medical Responder 1 Practical 14
FIRE 1077 Fire Grounds Practice and Testing 1 14
Communications Courses  
Select 1 course from the communications list during registration. 42
Semester 2
Program Courses  
FIRE 1078 Firefighter Fitness 2 42
FIRE 1079 Fire Control Theory 14
FIRE 1080 Fire Control Practical 28
FIRE 1081 Hazardous Materials Awareness Theory 14
FIRE 1082 Hazardous Materials Awareness Practical 14
FIRE 1083 Emergency Medical Responder 2 Theory 14
FIRE 1084 Emergency Medical Responder 2 Practical 28
FIRE 1085 Fire Hose, Water Supply and Tactical Ventilation Theory 14
FIRE 1086 Fire Hose, Water Supply and Tactical Ventilation Practical 28
FIRE 1087 Loss Control, Forcible Entry and Fire Cause Determination Theory 14
FIRE 1088 Loss Control, Forcible Entry and Fire Cause Determination Practical 28
FIRE 1089 Technical Rescue Theory 14
FIRE 1090 Technical Rescue Practical 28
FIRE 1091 Fire Ground Practice and Testing 2 Practical 42
Semester 3
Program Courses  
FIRE 1092 Hazardous Materials Operations Theory 14
FIRE 1093 Hazardous Materials Operations Practical 28
FIRE 1094 Vehicle Rescue and Extrication Theory 28
FIRE 1095 Vehicle Rescue and Extrication Practical 14
FIRE 1096 Career Preparation 2 42
FIRE 1097 Fire Safety Inspections for Firefighters 28
FIRE 1098 Fire Ground Practice and Testing 3 70
 Total Hours896

Graduation Window 

Students unable to adhere to the program duration of one year (as stated above) may take a maximum of two years to complete their credential. After this time, students must be re-admitted into the program, and follow the curriculum in place at the time of re-admission.

Information contained in College documents respecting programs is correct at the time of publication. Academic content of programs and courses is revised on an ongoing basis to ensure relevance to changing educational objectives and employment market needs. The college reserves the right to add or delete programs, options, courses, timetables or campus locations subject to sufficient enrolment, and the availability of courses.  

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