Special Education Teacher Assistant Certificate

Program Overview:

The Special Education Teacher Assistant (S.E.T.A.) program prepares students for a variety of careers in schools, institutions and other workplace settngs.

SETAs provide support in training and/or education involving basic life skills support and academic support in subjects requiring an understanding of the course curriculum content and learning concepts. Various alternative communication techniques may also be included. Assistants help classroom teachers in the implementation of behaviour programs that assist with the severely behaviourally challenged to achieve specific goals. Personal care assistance may be required.

The Program includes both theoretical studies, observation and practical applications of the role of the Education Assistant. The program is scheduled to be completed in one year.

Classes are scheduled for evenings and Saturdays. Students must also be available for observation during the day (2 weeks, 10 days total) as well as a four-week practicum placement during the day in a school arranged by RMC. You can expect 3 evenings of course work a week, plus full day Saturdays. There are no classes on Saturdays that fall before a statutory holiday.

Program duration is approximately 615 hours. Application for admission is required and attendance at the application session is mandatory.

This program is accredited with the Private Career Training Institutions Agency.

Program schedule available here.

Fall 2014 Registration/Application:

  • Registration for the SETA program opens on June 6, 2014 at 8:00 am, the registration form is completed at that .me (a limited number of registrations are accepted on a first come – first served basis, see below). There is a $28 application fee to be paid at registration.
  • Once accepted at registration, applicants are required to aTend the Application Session Friday, June 13, 2014 from 9:00 am to noon, please bring all relevant documentation as below:

Admission Requirements:

  • Grade 12 (G.E.D. not accepted), copy of diploma or transcript.
  • Volunteer .me and/or appropriate work experience (100 hours) – ideally, volunteer or work experience would be in a school setting, though experience with special needs individuals in other supported goal-oriented environments can apply: for example, formal recreation programs, group homes, pre-school or after school programs. Parents of special needs children would benefit from some volunteer time in a school setting.
  • Criminal record check – required for practicum placements. This will be processed; fees paid and submitted by the College
    on the student’s behalf, students do not need to apply for a CRC on their own.
  • English and math skills assessment, performed at the application session. A writing sample will be taken.
  • Two professional references – written. These are not personal references; if you have volunteered in a school setting, we recommend references from the school administration, teachers and support teachers. Relevant employer references are accepted as well – for example: group home, care facilities or after school programs.
  • Bring documentation, references and a calculator to the application session.

Core Courses:

  • History & Issues – Introduction
  • Observation 1 (5 days)
  • Observation 2 (5 days)
  • Child Development & Special Needs
  • Curriculum Adaptations
  • Interpersonal Communication
  • Augmented Communication
  • POPARD – Introduction to Autism
  • Diversity in the Classroom
  • Positive Behavior Supports
  • Observation and Recording/Inclusive Schools: Curriculum/Behaviour
  • Health Care Issues
  • Non-Violent Crisis Intervention
  • ASL Prep I Units 1 to 3
  • ASL Prep II Units 4 to 6
  • Practicum Orientation
  • Practicum Seminars
  • SETA Practicum (three – four weeks)


  • Occupational First Aid Level I
  • Ethics
  • Back Care
  • WorkSafe: Preventing and Investigating MSI (Musculoskeletal Injury or Sprains and Strains)

**Program profile is subject to change based on program advisory committee recommendations.