School of Applied Sciences and Technology

Power Engineering, 4th Class

Sep 01, 2022
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  • Degree - NAIT offers a number of business degrees and applied science and technology degrees accredited by Alberta Advanced Education.
    Applied degree programs offer a stronger emphasis on practical applications of the concepts learned in the classroom
  • Diplomas & Certificates - These credit programs take 1 or 2 years and lead to government approved and industry-recognized credentials.
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Delivery Options

The flexible schedule options for this course including time of day and full/part-time.

Please note due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these delivery options may shift from term to term. Please consult your program for details on delivery options.

  • On-Campus Day - Your course activity is done in-person Monday - Friday, before 5 PM.
  • On-Campus Evening/Weekend - Your course activity is done in-person on weekdays from 5 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
  • Online Day - Your course activity is done online Monday - Friday, before 5 PM.
  • Online Evening/Weekend - Your course activity is done online on weekdays from 5 PM or later, or Saturdays and Sundays.
  • Online Flexible Delivery - Your course activity is not scheduled and therefore you can determine when to do the coursework.
  • Both On-Campus and Virtual - Some of your coursework will be in-person, on campus and some will be done online.


The average or expected time it will take to complete your program.

Open Studies

Open Studies allows you to explore credit courses without applying to a program.
It is an opportunity to get a feel for school and what program you want to be in.

International Students

Program availability may be limited for international applicants. Contact your student advisor for more information.

Advanced Credit

You may apply for advanced credit once you have been accepted into the program. Advanced Credit can be Transfer Credit (for completed post-secondary courses) or PLAR (Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition).

Transfer Credit

In addition to the common guidelines outlined on the Transfer and Credit Options section and on the Transfer Credit Request Form (PDF), your program has other advanced credit requirements that are applied to each request including:

  • You must have completed the course or program no more than 7 year(s) ago unless a formalized articulation agreement is in place
  • You must have a minimum mark of C in the course(s) or program

Prior Learning and Assessment Recognition (PLAR)

If you do not qualify for transfer credit or credential recognition, Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) may be an option.

Contact the program for additional information about Advanced Credit.

Program delivery varies by program and may be subject to change.. We encourage you to review how your classes will be delivered for the upcoming terms. If you have questions about program delivery or class enrolment, please contact your program area.

The Power Engineering, 4th Class certificate is not currently accepting new applications.

The Power Engineering, 4th Class certificate is currently under review and will not be accepting new students at this time. Should you have any questions, please contact the program at Please note, the Power Engineering Technology diploma is accepting applications.

In the NAIT Power Engineering Certificate program, you’ll learn foundational concepts and become familiar with the components of large heating and cooling facilities, oil upgraders, gas refineries, pulp and paper mills, chemical industries, and processing facilities.

In just 1 year, you’ll gain practical skills needed to operate and maintain boiler operations, pumps, compressors, generators, turbines and water treatment systems. You’ll also learn the operation and control logic of refrigeration and air conditioning systems while gaining knowledge in electricity, instrumentation, and equipment design.

Employment rates reported by NAIT alumni are for information purposes and do not guarantee future employment opportunities.

Salaries reported by NAIT alumni are for information purposes and are not a guarantee of future alumni income.

Hands-on, industry-relevant skills

You can expect to be in the NAIT Power Lab 6 hours a week (8 hours a week in term 2) for hands-on training. You’ll see what it’s like to be a Power Engineer and operate a power generating facility and grow familiar with the tools, equipment and safety protocols. 

In the classroom, we will discuss foundational concepts of boilers, electricity, instrumentation, safety, codes and legislation, thermodynamics and physics. 

By the time you graduate, you will have the knowledge, skills and confidence to:

  • operate boilers
  • operate turbines
  • control and operate refrigeration and air conditioning systems
  • maintain and repair boilers and auxiliaries, pumps, compressors, turbines, generators
  • commission equipment

Tools for success

To be successful in this program, you’ll need to demonstrate manual dexterity, hand-eye coordination and mechanical inclination for the operation of switches and control of monitoring instruments. Colour vision may also be required by some employers.

Enter the workforce with confidence

Power engineers generally have steady year-round employment, with no seasonal layoffs, in plants that operate around the clock. Because of this, shiftwork consisting of 12-hour day and night shifts on weekends and holidays is typically required. 

As you gain experience and higher levels of certification, your work responsibilities as a power engineer will increase in complexity.

Graduates of the Power Engineering program typically find employment in:

  • electrical generating plants
  • pulp mills
  • oil and gas plants
  • food processing plants
  • hospitals
  • breweries
  • office buildings
  • heating plants
  • chemical plants

Typically, power engineers:

  • assist in the operation and maintenance of boilers, pumps, compressors, fans, turbines, refrigeration units, heating systems and other related equipment
  • work as a shift engineer who coordinates the operational and maintenance activities of assistant engineers engaged in the constant control and surveillance of power plant equipment

Become a trusted professional

Provincial legislation requires the certification of employees before they assume responsibilities in heating and power plants. There are five certificate levels; 5th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd and 1st class. Each involves qualifying time requirements and examinations administered by the Alberta Boilers Safety Association (ABSA).

The objective of this program is to prepare you for entrance into the Power Engineering field at the 4th Class and 3rd Class, Part A level. This will be done by providing you with both theoretical and practical training. In addition to earning a passing grade in all courses, you must also attend a minimum 80% of all theory classes and every lab to successfully complete the program. 

If you choose to write the ABSA exams, you will be charged the ABSA examination fees. These fees are set by ABSA and are subject to change. 

ABSA exam fees (prices include tax and are not eligible for student loans):

  • Term 1:         $97.00 (4th Class - Part A)
  • Term 2:         $97.00 (4th Class - Part B)

You will be assessed these fees separate from tuition due to ABSA being an outside agency that is not affiliated with NAIT.

After graduation, you will also be eligible to write the 3rd Class (3A1 and 3A2) ABSA exams. 

Learn more about the ABSA

Two guys in hard hat Boiler

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Thank you for your interest! We want to get you in contact with the right person to answer your questions.

Please contact the Student Service Centre for general inquiries such as:

  • Student application support
  • Program entrance requirements, tuition & fees, and how to apply
  • Program admissions process
  • Enrolment support
  • Student funding options
  • Fee and refund inquiries
  • General program and course withdrawal procedures
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Please note: Post-secondary articulation agreements within Alberta are approved by the Alberta Council on Admissions and Transfer (ACAT). To view the details of specific agreements, please visit or contact

For questions regarding transfer agreements or to obtain a course description/outline that is no longer available on our website, please contact



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Term Definition
Open Program still has seats available.
Waitlisting Program is full and qualified applicants are being placed on a waitlist. For information about waitlists, please visit the Waitlist FAQs.

If you’re on a non-competitive waitlist, you should consider NAIT’s Academic Upgrading program or NAIT Equivalency Tests to become a more competitive applicant.

There is no guarantee that waitlisted applicants will be offered a seat, however it is common for seats to become available until the start of class. As seats become available, they are filled from the waitlist.
Closed Program is no longer accepting applications.
N/A Not available for this term.

*Program availability is subject to change without notice.

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