Program Details, Costs, and Admission Requirements

  • Program Length 
    10 Months
  • Credential 
  • Options 
  • Location Offered 
    Nanaimo, tiwšɛmawtxʷ (Powell River)

Do you like working with your hands and fixing things? Consider a career as an auto mechanic.

VIU’s 10-month, entry-level Automotive Service Technician program gives students the skills and knowledge they need to find work as an automotive apprentice, a trainee parts person or service advisor.

What’s unique about the VIU Automotive apprenticeship is that students work in a live shop environment, applying classroom theory to real-world situations using all the latest tools and diagnostic equipment. VIU’s auto mechanic program is housed in a building that mimics a real dealership.

The Automotive Service Technician Certificate Program

The Vancouver Island University Automotive Department provides both foundation and apprenticeship training. Foundation training is designed to prepare students for a career in the automotive repair trade. Graduates of this program may find work as apprentice automotive technicians, or as automotive parts persons/service writers. Job opportunities exist on Vancouver Island, and throughout BC and Canada. Upon receiving the Interprovincial Certificate, graduates are eligible to work anywhere in Canada.

Automotive Service Technician Foundation Program

The Automotive Service Technician Foundation Program is a full–time comprehensive program taught through daily lectures, seminars and demonstrations of current servicing techniques, as well as extensive practical training in a functioning automotive shop setting. The course curriculum reflects today's technology and is relevant to the needs of industry. The instructors are all highly trained Journeyperson Automotive Technicians with at least ten years' trade experience.

This program is suited to individuals with all levels of mechanical experience. Upon successful completion of all the program courses, students receive an Automotive Service Technician Foundation Program certificate and an Essential Skills for the Workplace – Automotive Service Technician certificate. Graduates of this program may receive credit towards the technical portion of the first year of the Automotive Service Technician Apprenticeship program.

SkilledTradesBC Automotive Apprenticeship Information

The apprentice level training provides provincially certified apprenticeship training for registered Automotive apprentices in Level 1, 2, 3, and 4. The Automotive Apprenticeship program consists of 4 years on-the-job experience combined with in-school technical training in order to become eligible to write the Interprovincial (Red Seal) examination for journeyperson certification.

For more information on apprenticeship training, please visit the SkilledTradesBC, phone 1.866.660.6011, or contact Vancouver Island University at 250-740-6227 or For more information and schedules visit VIU's Trades and Applied Technology Apprenticeship page.

Automotive Service Technician

AUTO 101T - (Auto Shop Safety)

AUTO 109T - (Welding)

AUTO 105T - (Electrical Systems and Components)

AUTO 106T - (Steering, Suspension, and Braking)

AUTO 110T - (Engines)

AUTO 104T - (Driveline Systems)

AUTO 102T - (Tools, Equipment, and Documentation)

AUTO 103T - (Communication and Mentoring)

AUTO 107T - (Restraint Systems and Body Components)

AUTO 108T - (Hybrid and Electric Vehicles) 

Essential Skills

ESFA 100T - (Personal Management Skills)

ESFA 105T - (Automotive Service Technician Math)

ESFA 110T - (Business Operations)

ESFA 115T - (The Emerging Workplace)

ESFA 120T - (Employment Strategies)

All program courses must be successfully completed before certificates will be issued.

Sunday, January 22, 2023

Notes on Admission

  • Applicants should not be allergic to solvents and/or lubricants.
  • Those with good reasoning, basic science, mathematical, study skills, and a strong mechanical aptitude will experience the most success.
  • Enrolment in this program is limited. Students who meet or exceed the minimum admission requirements may not necessarily be admitted to the program.

Domestic Fees

Tuition and Other Mandatory Student Fees

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Fees - Nanaimo Campus


Tuition (10 months x $489.41 per month)


Supply fee


Student Activity fee (4% of tuition and supply fee)


Student Services fee (10 months x $21.63 per month)


VIU Students' Union fee (10 months x $26.59 per month)


Health and Dental Plan fee ($265.00 per year)


Books, CSA approved steel-toed boots, CSA approved safety glasses, seat/fender covers, and uniform (approximate costs)





The VIUSU Health and Dental Plan fee is assessed for all students enrolled in 6 credits or more per term, or in Trades/Vocational programs of 5 months or longer.

All fees are subject to change without prior notice and are expected to increase by 2% each year on April 1.

Monday, April 3, 2023

Domestic (Canadian)

Program Start Date Accepting Applications Location Options
Anticipated intake for someone applying today
Sep 5, 2023
Next Intake(s)

The Automotive Service Technician program has one intake each Fall.

Accepting International Applications
Application Fee
Accepting Late Applications
Testing Required
Admissions Assistant

Name: Powell River Campus
Phone: 604.485.2878


No testing required if you have proof of grade 12 graduation.

See Powell River Automotive Technician program for more information.



Anticipated intake for someone applying today
Sep 3, 2024
Next Intake(s)

The Automotive Service Technician program offers 2 classes each September.

Accepting International Applications
Application Fee
Testing Required
Admissions Assistant

Name: Darlene Norby
Phone: 250.753.3245 ext. 2594

Chair Contact

Name: Dean Cadieux
Phone: 250.753.3245 ext. 6148

Al Babuin, Automotive Service Technician Foundation Program

“The instructors went above and beyond to ensure that the students understood the material that was presented to them. During practical hours the instructors were always available to assist the students while they were working on the vehicles. The shop facilities are top notch. Students have all the latest tools and diagnostic equipment available to them. They are given step by step instruction on how to use the equipment.”