Frequently Asked Questions

Many of the most frequent questions asked about ESA are listed below.

Still have a question? Get in touch today.


18 years of age on the first day of class.

Students may be accepted into the EMR, EMT/PCP and Professional Fire Fighter Programs at ESA who have not met this requirement for existing education. Please contact ESA in advance of submitting your application with details of your education and work experience. Your inquiry will be considered by the Registrar. 

The Professional Fire Fighter Program - Enhanced is 12 weeks, Monday through Friday, full-time.

The Professional Fire Fighter Program - Flex is a total of 16 weeks.  The first 12 weeks are online, part-time study.  The last section of the program is 4 full-time weeks, the first being a review week at ESA and the last 3 consisting of live, practical training.

  • An EMR certificate/ transcript from an Alberta College of Paramedics approved program.
  • Beginning January 1, 2018, prior to gaining access to the Alberta College of Paramedics exams, all students who are new to practice or are changing their practice level, must first obtain provisional registration at their designation level with the Alberta College of Paramedics.  Once provisionally registered, students will then be able to apply to take the Provincial Registration Examination. Upon successful completion of the exam, they will receive their Practice Permit and automatically be moved to the general register.

Yes. EMR Refresher programs are typically offered in advance of each Alberta College of Paramedics exam in order to prepare for the exam. See our EMR Refresher page for more information.

Each province has different standards for EMR. You are advised to contact the provincial regulating body.

The PCP Program at ESA is accredited by Accreditation Canada. As such, you would be able to work anywhere in Canada as long as you also meet all other provincial or municipal requirements.

  • The PCP Program is licensed by the Private Career Colleges Branch of Alberta Advanced Education for 28 weeks of full-time training.The actual end date may vary for each student, based on the availability of practicums and the ambulance practicum call volume.  The whole program may take 6 months to complete.
  • There are 400 hours of didactic including theory and lab/scenario training.
  • Practicums start the month after the didactic is complete.
  • ESA arranges practicum placements for each PCP student:
    • Clinical- 60 Hours
    • Transfer- 40 Hours
    • Emergency Ambulance- 192 Hours minimum

No, Biology 30 is not a prerequisite for the PCP Program at ESA.

Biology 30 or an equivalent (such as EMR taken at ESA, post secondary Anatomy and Physiology courses, or Science 30) is recommended and a definite advantage in PCP training. As well, such courses can be a factor in the candidate competition for placement in the PCP Program at ESA.

Practicums are arranged by ESA.

Typical locations include Strathcona County Emergency Services, St Albert, Parkland, Camrose, White Court, Bonnyville and the City of Edmonton. 

Ambulance practicums can be placed anywhere in Alberta.

No. Fire certifications do not expire.

Each fire class spends a maximum of 15 days at the fire training grounds of the Emergency Training Centre (ETC), Lakeland College, Vermilion AB.

Other sites used include:

  • Buck's Auto Parts, Sherwood Park,
  • Strathcona County Emergency Services Stations 1 and 6 (Sherwood Park), and Station 4 (Strathcona County),
  • Wildland locations in Strathcona County  
  • An aquatic centre such as Kinsmen Centre in Sherwood Park or the Butterdome at the University of Alberta, Edmonton.

At ESA, EMR and PCP are separate programs from the Professional Fire Fighter Program.  

Many fire services have EMR or PCP as a prerequisite; several require a paramedic status.

  • Go into each competition as if you were going to a competition for a job.
  • If you are applying for a Fire Program, search online for practice aptitude exams.
  • Research the career you are pursuing, the employment opportunities, and ESA.
  • Be early for your appointment.
  • Be clean, well dressed and polite.

EMR, EMT/PCP and Fire programs are eligible for various funding opportunities. Students should go to any Canada Employment Centre to pick up student loan forms, or to talk to a career counselor for funding options.

The EMR Program and all Accessory Courses at ESA are not eligible for Canada Student Loans as each program or course must be at least 12 weeks to be designated as eligible for funding.

The EMT/PCP Program and the Professional Fire Fighter Programs (Enhanced and Flex) at ESA are eligible for Student loans.

Alberta students can apply online at  They will be advised within the application of how much funding they can receive.

Students in other provinces can access Canada Student Loans for EMT/PCP and Fire at ESA.  Contact a Canada Employment Centre in your home province. 


  • Application fees (non-refundable) must be paid as part of your application.
  • All fees for Accessory Courses must be included with applications.
  • EMR Program - Administration, Programs Materials and Registration Fees must be paid as part of your application.  Balance of fees are due on the first day of classes. Upon acceptance, Program Materials and Registration Fees must be paid before or the first day of classes. All other fees are due on the first day of classes.
  • Professional Fire Fighter Programs - Administration and Registration Fees must be paid as part of your application.  A non-refundable deposit covering Program Materials must be paid upon acceptance to the program.  Balance of fees are due on the first day of classes at ESA.
  • If you have applied for funding for programs at ESA, written confirmation must be provided to ESA. In this situation, tuition is not due as listed above, but when the funding is received. If the funding is not approved, the student is personally responsible for covering any outstanding fees.
  • Final marks and transcripts are not released if there are any fees owing.

All program and course fees are payable to Emergency Services Academy Ltd.  Payments may be made by cash, cheque, Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Debit Card and e-Transfer.  Cash payments must be for correct amount as ESA does not keep any cash onsite.

Funds may be transferred to Emergency Services Academy Ltd. by INTERAC e-Transfer if your bank provides this service.  Please contact ESA by phone 780.416.8822 or email for details about Interac e-Transfer.  Your bank may have limits on daily and/or weekly transfer amounts.

We are not able to accept final payment of tuition fees for licensed programs (EMR, EMT/PCP and Professional Fire Fighter) until the first day of classes, based on licensing by the Private Career Colleges Branch of Alberta Advanced Education.

Fees for Accessory Courses are due with an application.

ESA offers very intense and information filled programs, with curriculums enriched beyond the licensing requirements.

ESA training is facilitated by field practitioner instructors. ESA instructors are Fire Fighters, EMRs, EMT/PCPs, Paramedics, Doctors and Registered Nurses who have chosen emergency response as a career. They are current and teach from a wide range of experience.

As a private vocational college, ESA does not receive any government funding.

Class sizes are small so that individuals receive more attention. ESA works to prepare you for the future.

There is no food for sale at ESA.  A lunchroom is with a fridge and multiple microwaves is available.

There are several restaurants and fast food locations within walking distance of ESA.

ESA is greener! We use less paper!  

  • You need an email address! ESA is using email extensively to contact students with course information, assignments and evaluations. An email address is required on all ESA application forms. Free email addresses are available on and Google (gmail).
  • Survey Monkey, an online program, is being used for ESA evaluations.  
  • E-Learning is supplementing the EMR Program as an online resource available before, during and after an EMR Program or EMR Accessory Course. 
  • The Fire Programs use an online platform, including Fire Essentials (the main textbook) as an e-Book.
  • The PCP Program uses an online interface and Google Classroom.


An ASN is needed for EMR, EMT/PCP and Fire Programs at ESA.

Go online:  Alberta Student Number

  • If you have been a student in Alberta, use the Lookup ASN on the website.
  • If you need an ASN, use the Request ASN Online.

If you require further assistance, contact the Help Desk at 780.427.5318 or email


"Instructors were great. Doing hands on scenarios was very helpful."
- Morgan, EMR 1104