Professional Linking Program

PLP Lower Mainland Dates

Method of delivery:
In person
Applications open:
October 1, 2022
Applications close:
January 31, 2023
at 4:00 p.m. (PST)
Next start Term:
Spring 2024

PLP Peace Region dates

Method of delivery:
Blended: In person and online
Applications open:
November 4, 2022
Applications close:
February 15, 2023 at 4:00 p.m. (PST)
Next start Term:
Fall 2023

Get all the information you need to apply for the Professional Linking Program (PLP). The PLP admission requirements vary based on whether you want to be an elementary or secondary teacher.

Admission Requirements

During the application process, you will be asked to select your grade-level preference. While most people generally have a single preference, you can select a second preference provided you meet the requirements for both Elementary and Secondary.

General Requirements - All Applicants 

WORK EXPERIENCE

Applicants must:

  • Have a minimum of two years of paraprofessional experience in their current role (in the school setting) and be working a minimum of three days per week, at the time of application. Paraprofessionals include student support workers, para-educators (e.g., education assistants, child and youth care workers, counselors, settlement workers), independent schools educators, and Francophone teachers working with letters of permission;
  • Be working with children and youth at the age level they are applying to teach (i.e. Elementary or Secondary);
  • Meet the minimum academic admission requirements for the age level they wish to teach; and
  • If accepted into the program, must be employed a minimum of three days a week (in a school setting) working with children and youth at the age level they have been accepted to teach.

SFU UNDERGRADUATE ADMISSION REQUIREMENT

  • All PLP applicants must be admissible to SFU at the undergraduate level.
  • Applicants who are accepted into PLP will be required to apply for admission to SFU. See SFU Undergraduate Admissions for details.

SFU LITERACY REQUIREMENT

  • All PLP applicants must meet SFU's English Language requirement. Visit the SFU Undergraduate Admissions English Language requirement website for more information.
  • To enroll in EDUC 402W or to declare the BEd 2nd degree you must meet the SFU Literacy (FAL) requirement. Direct enrollment in a W course requires a higher grade than SFU's English Language admission requirement. See option (a) under "Direct admission from Grade 12" or "Admission by college or university transfer" on the SFU Curriculum Initiative website.

SFU QUANTITATIVE REQUIREMENT

  • All applicants to SFU degree programs must meet SFU's Quantitative/Analytical Skills requirement. There are many ways to meet the quantitative requirement. Visit the SFU Undergraduate Admissions Quantitative requirement website for more information.
  • To declare the BEd 2nd degree you must meet SFU's Foundations of Academic Numeracy (FAN) requirement for direct enrollment in a Quantitative (Q) course. Direct enrollment in a Q course requires a higher grade than SFU's Quantitative/Analytical Skills requirement for admission. See option (a) under "Direct admission from Grade 12" or options (a) and (b) under "Admission by college or university transfer" on the SFU Curriculum Initiative website.
  • If you do not meet the SFU English Language requirement or Quantitative/Analytical Skills requirement prior to application to the PLP, we strongly suggest you complete an acceptable university or college level W or Q course with a grade of C- or higher

FRENCH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENT (Applicants interested in teaching French or in French only)

  • Applicants who are interested in completing their practicum in French and/or taking the EDUC 404 (summer) courses in French must submit a French language requirement.  

TEACHER CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENT

  • To teach K-12 in B.C. schools, student teachers must meet the teacher certification requirements set out by the Teacher Certification Branch (TCB) of the B.C. Ministry of Education
  • In some cases, the PLP's requirements may be higher than the TCB's. This is because the PLP is designed to prepare teachers for the challenges of K-12 schooling in B.C., while the TCB’s must also consider inter-provincial certification.

CRIMINAL RECORD CHECK

  • Once accepted into the program, you must clear a Criminal Records Check with Vulnerable Sector Search
  • This must be done through SFU Student Services. If you have been convicted of a criminal offence, you should contact the TCB for clarification of your status before applying to a teacher education program.

Elementary Admission Requirements

OPTION 1

         1. A completed, recognized Bachelor's degree

         2. Completion of the English and Elementary prerequisite courses by September 15 prior to program start in January

OPTION 2

         1. At the time of application, a minimum of 76 units of courses acceptable for units at SFU towards a Bachelor's degree

         2. Completion of the English and Elementary prerequisite courses by September 15 prior to program start in January

PLP applicants must also have a GPA of 2.0+ (approximately the last 60 units of undergraduate coursework) at the time of application.

PREREQUISITE COURSES

  • 6 units of English (including a minimum 3 units of English Literature)
  • 3 units of Canadian History
  • 3 units of Canadian Geography
  • MATH 190 (Principles of Mathematics for Teachers) or equivalent
  • 3 units of Laboratory Science

If you are missing any prerequisite courses, you may still apply to the PLP with the understanding that all prerequisite courses must be completed by September 15 prior to the program start (i.e. one full semester before starting PLP), if accepted. Official transcript(s) showing enrollment in outstanding prerequisites must be submitted by April 1. We strongly recommend this be submitted by January 31.

For a list of accepted prerequisite courses offered at SFU and other B.C. post-secondary institutions, refer to the Chart of Acceptable Courses.

Secondary Admission Requirements

Completion of a 4-year Bachelor's degree, including the following:

  • At least 1 major OR 2 minors in teachable subject area(s)
  • 6 units of English (minimum 3 units of English literature) completed by September 15 prior to program start in January

PLP applicants must also have a GPA 2.0+ (approximately the last 60 units of undergraduate coursework) at the time of application.

Check the Chart of Acceptable Courses offered by SFU and several other B.C. institutions to ensure you meet the English requirements.

TEACHABLE SUBJECTS

Secondary applicants must have a major or two minors in the following subjects:

In the PLP, Theatre, Dance, Computing Science, and Physical Education (Kinesiology) are considered to be teachable minors and must be combined with another teachable subject.

MAJORS AND MINORS

The exact requirements for majors and minors vary by university and department. For the purpose of admission into PPS programs majors and minors units are defined as follows:

  • A major is approximately 42 units: 12 to 18 units of lower division coursework (100 & 200 level courses), plus approximately 28 to 30 units of upper division coursework (300 & 400 level courses), all in one subject 
  • A minor is approximately 30 units: 12 to 15 units of lower level coursework, plus approximately 14 to 18 units of upper division coursework all in one subject.

Refer to the SFU Calendar for the specific major and minor requirements. Not all university majors and minors translate into teachable subjects in B.C. secondary schools.

Tuition & Costs

Tuition 2022/23

  • Approx. $12,750 (total for all semesters)

Note: All fees are subject to change, subject to provincial legislation and the Board of Governors' approval.

SFU Supplementary Fees

Simon Fraser University assesses the Student Services/Recreation-Athletics fee, the student activity fee and the U-Pass BC fee to all eligible students in each term of enrollment.

More information

Financial Resources

Note: The Professional Linking Program is not eligible for student loan funding.

How to Apply

Follow this step-by-step guide to applying for the program.

Simon Fraser University has a Code of Academic Integrity and Good Conduct (S10.01 Policy o), which applies to this application. Applications with falsified, misleading, plagiarized, or ghost-written materials will be removed from the competition.

PLP Application Deadlines

The PLP application deadline for the January (Spring) intake is January 31 at 4:00 p.m. (PST)

Step 1: Review important information

Review the admission requirements, deadlines, and application samples

  • Review PLP Admission Requirements
  • Review the application timeline and process as shown on the PLP Application Instructions to make sure you will have all your materials together in time
  • Review the PLP Application Evaluation Process to understand how your application will be evaluated
  • Review our PDP Application Samples to understand how to be successful at creating your own PLP application. These examples are specifically designed for PDP applicants. As such, the educational backgrounds and work experience may differ. However, the PLP and PDP application components are very similar and you may find referring to the examples useful as you prepare your PLP application.

Step 2: Prepare your application

Request academic transcripts

Due to the high volume of transcripts being received, the PPS Admissions cannot confirm receipt of transcripts. We will email you if your transcripts have not been received once you have submitted your application. It can take up to two weeks after submission for your file to be updated.

Submit an official transcript from every college and university that you've attended, including withdrawals, incomplete, failed, repeated studies and attendance as an exchange student.

We cannot review your application if any transcripts are missing.

  • SFU students do not need to order their SFU transcripts, as we have access to those records
  • The PPS Admissions office does not accept electronic (XML/EDI) transcripts as our computer system is not compatible with receiving electronic transcripts. SFU Undergraduate Admissions does accept electronic transcripts. Check the Student Services website for details.
  • We will accept emailed transcripts sent directly from the post-secondary institutions to our office. Have them sent directly to pps_transcripts@sfu.ca from the institution.
  • You must include original transcript(s) for College Board - Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), or any transfer credits (i.e. exchange program and college transfer) where applicable.
  • Order ALL transcript(s) to be sent directly from the issuing institution to both the PPS Admissions office and the SFU Undergraduate Admissions office to be received by JANUARY 31

Reminders:

  • You must submit official transcripts from institutions where you are currently taking courses
  • If your transcript does not show degree conferral, you must submit a letter from an academic advisor at your institution confirming your degree will be complete prior to the start of PLP in January

Do not drop documents off in-person. Transcripts should be mailed directly from the post-secondary institution to the PPS Admissions office at:

PPS Admissions, Faculty of Education
Education Building, Room EDB 8630
Simon Fraser University
8888 University Drive
Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6
778-782-4129

The deadline for your transcripts to arrive at the PPS Admissions Office is January 31.

TIP: If you are requesting transcripts from institutions outside of B.C., you should start this step as far in advance of the deadline as possible.

Create your resume

Your resume should include your contact information, your education, your work and volunteer experiences and any honours, awards, special talents, skills or training. It should:

  • Be no longer than four single-sided pages
  • Be detailed, but in an outline rather than a narrative form
  • List the length of time you were in each position, the average number of hours per week you worked (or volunteered), and your duties

Please include a detailed summary of the nature of your duties in each paraprofessional position (CYCW, SEA, CCSW, EA, etc); the name of schools/districts and contact persons; the length of experience in each paraprofessional experience and the total years of experience as a paraprofessional.

When evaluating resumes, we are looking for evidence of knowledge and experiences that will be useful to you if you were to become a teacher, including evidence of experience:

  1. Working with children/youth at the grade level you wish to teach
  2. Engaging in work or activities in an instructional setting
  3. Collaborating and working with others
  4. Showing leadership and/or initiative
  5. Demonstrating organization and time management skills
  6. Engaging with a diverse range of learners
  7. Engaging in novel situations and/or with a diverse range of individuals
  8. Using skills or knowledge related to the subject(s) you wish to teach

It is important to highlight your experiences which relate to the above dimensions.

You will upload your resume to the online application system in PDF format.

Applicants who would like to do their practicum in French and/or take the EDUC 404 (summer) courses in French are encouraged to submit their resume in English and French. They should combine their English resume and French resume into one PDF. The online application has only one document upload button for the resume.

Note: in addition to the academic and admission requirements, applicants interested in this option, including Francophones, must demonstrate an appropriate level of French language by completing the DELF-DALF. For more information, please see the French language requirement page.

PDP French Module applicants are encouraged to submit their resume in French.

Write your essay

Choose one or two experiences from your resume and explain:

  • What you learned from these experiences that will help you as a future educator
  • What they show about your interest in and potential for a career in education
  • What questions they raise for you related to teaching and learning
  • Why you chose these examples

Your essay should be 500–1000 words and fit on two single-sided pages. Use 12 point font, single spacing and 1" margins on all sides.

If you refer to other people in your essay—especially children or youth with whom you have worked—change their names and describe your experience with them in such a way that you guard their right to privacy.

Proofread your paper carefully. It will be evaluated based on:

  • The overall quality of the writing
  • The evidence it shows of critical reflection upon your part
  • How well you demonstrate your potential for and interest in education

You will upload your essay to the online application system in PDF format.

Applicants who would like to do their practicum in French and/or take the EDUC 404 (summer) courses in French are encouraged to submit their essay in English and French.  They should combine their English essay and French essay into one PDF. The online application has only one document upload button for the essay.  

Note: In addition to the academic and admission requirements, applicants interested in this option, including Francophones, must demonstrate an appropriate level of French language by completing the DELF-DALF.  For more information, see the French language requirement page.

Find three recommendations

When submitting your online PLP application form, you will be asked to submit three email addresses for individuals who are willing to complete a recommendation for you. The system will then automatically send these individuals an email requesting they fill out an online recommendation form.

Paper recommendations are no longer accepted. Download the PPS Recommendation Form Questions to review most of the questions they will be asked.

One recommendation must come from a school administrator supporting your PLP application. The other recommendations must come from educators who have observed you interacting with children/adolescents in an educational setting (public and/or independent school).

When considering who to ask, keep in mind that:

  • We reserve the right to contact recommenders to verify the information they provide; and recommendations must be professional in nature.
  • Recommendations from friends or relatives are not acceptable, even if those friends or relatives are educators. Inappropriate recommendations will render the application ineligible for consideration.

Examples of inappropriate recommenders include:

  • Family members, including in-law, step-family, etc. 
  • Friends and co-workers

If the individual you ask is willing to complete a recommendation, ask them for an email address you can submit to the application system and explain how the system will send them an email request to complete the form. Inform them of the due date for their recommendation.

You will not be able to submit your application until all three of your recommenders have submitted their recommendation forms.  For this reason, it is important to give each recommender a deadline (and as much notice as possible) to submit their application.

TIP: Provide your recommenders with a copy of your resume. They may find it useful for writing the recommendation.

Step 3: Submit your PLP application

Apply to PLP Online Here

The same system is used for a number of teacher education programs at SFU. You will need to do the following to complete your online application:

  1. Create an account
  2. Confirm the account (you will receive a confirmation email)
  3. Select 'PLP' as the program you are applying to
  4. Complete the online application form
  5. Upload your resume, and essay
  6. Enter the names and email addresses of your 3 recommenders (the system will contact these people)
  7. Submit your application (only possible after all three of your recommendations have been received)
  8. Pay the application fee CAD$60 using PayPal. (PayPal will accept a credit card or an Interac/Visa card if you do not have a PayPal account). The application fee is non-refundable.

You may start your application early and work on it over time. You may review, edit or change your application at any time until you click the final submit button. After that time, you cannot change your application or any of your submitted materials. Your application form, resume, essay, and recommendation forms must all be complete before you can press the final "submit" button.

Step 4: If accepted to the PLP, apply to SFU Undergraduate / Activate your SFU ID

Instructions for students new to SFU

If accepted to the PLP, you will be required to apply for admission to SFU. You must apply to the University by the September 15 deadline in order to start the PLP in January. Applicants accepted to PLP who do not apply to SFU by the application deadline will not be able to enroll in the PLP.

You will be required to submit transcripts from all educational institutions you have attended to the SFU Undergraduate Admissions office to support your undergraduate application to SFU.

Unfortunately, the PPS Admissions office and the SFU Undergraduate Admissions office are not able to share documents. See information on submitting documents to SFU Undergraduate Admissions.

Instructions for SFU alumni and current SFU students

If you were previously an SFU student, you must apply for readmission OR reactivation. Check with SFU Undergraduate Admissions to be certain which one applies to you.

The deadline to apply for readmission is September 15 for a January start.

The deadline to apply for reactivation can be found on the Student Services webpage.

If you are a current SFU student and will be an active student in the semester preceding the start of PLP, you don’t need to apply for reactivation.

If you are a current SFU student and will not be an active student in the semester preceding the start of PLP, you should follow the instructions for readmission or reactivation. Check with SFU Undergraduate Admissions to be certain which one applies to you.

SFU Undergraduate Admissions Questions

The PPS Admissions office does not handle SFU Undergraduate applications. For more information regarding admission to SFU, contact SFU Student Services:

Phone: 778-782-6930
Email: reginfo@sfu.ca
Website: sfu.ca/students/admission-requirements

Frequently asked questions

What is the difference between the PLP and the Bachelor of Education (BEd)?

The PLP is a teacher education program offered by the Faculty of Education's Preservice Professional Studies. It is for anyone who wants to teach K-12 and get their B.C. teaching certificate. Successful applicants who have completed a bachelor's degree before the start of the PLP may have the option of completing a Bachelor of Education as a second degree during the program—without adding extra time or cost.

The BEd is a 150-unit first degree offered by the Faculty of Education's Undergraduate Programs. Students can only apply to the BEd once they have completed 60 units of undergraduate coursework. To complete this program, students MUST be admitted to the PLP for their final year. Visit our website for more information on our Undergraduate degree options.

Can I apply to the PLP if my degree is from outside of Canada?

Applicants with recognized degrees from outside of Canada can be considered for admission to the PLP. Applicants should refer to our admission requirements page for specific course/content requirements.

If you have specific questions about meeting the academic admission requirements you can send a copy of your transcripts to: pps_admissions@sfu.ca

Can I apply to the PLP if I am still finishing my degree?

Yes, Elementary PLP applicants can apply with a minimum 76 units completed at the time of application towards a degree. All Secondary PLP applicants and Elementary PLP applicants who wish to be considered for the Bachelor of Education as a Second Degree, can apply with their degree in-progress but it must be completed before starting the PLP (by the end of December).

All Secondary PLP applicants and Elementary PLP applicants who wish to be considered for the Bachelor of Education as a Second Degree, whose transcript does not show degree conferral at the time of application, must submit a Degree Confirmation Letter from an Academic Advisor at their post-secondary institution. This letter must confirm that your degree (major/minor) requirements will be complete by December 31, prior to the start of PLP. The letter can be emailed to our office at pps_admissions@sfu.ca and should be received by August 1st.

How do you calculate GPA? 

The GPA is calculated on your most recent 60 units (minimum) of undergraduate level coursework. We use all courses completed each term (e.g. we do not stop in the middle of a term when you reach 60 units). We use the higher of the two grades if you repeat a course. Percentage grades from other universities are converted to the SFU Standard Grade System for GPA calculation. Applicants are required to have a minimum 2.00 (on the 4.33 scale).

Do you have a list of acceptable courses to meet the prerequisites?

Yes, we have provided a Chart of Acceptable Courses offered by Simon Fraser University and other BC post-secondary level institutions. We also have a specific chart for Secondary - Social Studies Requirements. This chart lists SFU courses only. The equivalent courses can be completed at another institution.

Note: These charts do not include every eligible course at the institutions named. They provide a sampling of appropriate courses from British Columbia. These courses reflect current offerings. Other courses may previously have been acceptable in satisfying the prerequisites.

Email our office at pps_admissions@sfu.ca if you have any questions about the charts.

Can I apply without a prerequisite?  

You should be registered in, or have previously completed, the prerequisite course requirements prior to submitting your application for the PLP. This includes 6 units of English Literature (elementary and secondary), as well as 3 units of Canadian History, Canadian Geography, Mathematics for Teachers (SFU Math 190 or equivalent) and Lab Science (elementary only).

We require official transcripts showing registration in (or completion of) the required courses at the time of application. All prerequisites must be completed by September 15th.

If I have a declared math major or minor, do I need to take the Mathematics for Teachers (SFU Math 190 or equivalent) course? (Elementary applicants only)

No. If you have a declared math major or minor and are applying to teach at the elementary level you do not need to complete the Mathematics for Teachers pre-requisite course.

Note: The math major or minor must show on your transcript.

Do I need to take the Mathematics for Teachers prerequisite course if I have taken a calculus or other math course at the post-secondary level? (Elementary applicants only)

Yes, you will need to take the Mathematics for Teachers course. The only exception is if you are a declared math major or minor student (see question above for details). We do not accept pre-calculus, calculus, finite math or statistics courses to meet this requirement.

Can I use a kinesiology lab course to meet the lab science requirement? (Elementary applicants only)

No, we do not accept kinesiology courses to meet the lab science requirement. Refer to the Elementary Chart of Acceptable Courses for acceptable lab science courses.

Is volunteer experience required? How many hours are required or recommended for the PLP?

There is no minimum number of hours that we require. However, we highly recommend that applicants spend time observing, volunteering and/or working in B.C. K–12 classroom(s) before applying

The program is very competitive and most successful applicants enter the PLP with extensive volunteer experience in a B.C. classroom setting. This experience can help you decide if teaching is a profession you wish to pursue.

I don't have 2 years of experience working with children/youth as a paraprofessional – can I still apply?

The PLP is designed specifically for working paraprofessionals with extensive experience working with children in school settings. The PLP differs from PDP (the standard teacher education program) in that some of the more introductory aspects, especially those that pertain to orienting the student teacher to the public school system, are eliminated or tailored to the paraprofessional’s work activity in the school. In addition, PLP students are expected to apply their on-campus learning to their school-based employment, and visa versa.

For these reasons, applicants must be working a minimum of 3 days per week and have at least 2 years of experience at the time of application in a school setting as a paraprofessional, working with students in the age range they wish to teach and at the level to which they will be applying, at the time of application. It is also a requirement that all PLP students be employed in a school setting working with students in the age range they wish to teach and at the level for which they have been accepted when the program starts.

I am casual or on-call. Can I still apply to the PLP?

You are eligible to apply to the PLP if you have worked at least 3 days per week (60%) over the past 2 years and will continue to work at least 3 days per week (60%) while in the program.

What transcripts do I need to submit to the PPS Admissions Office?

The PPS Admissions office requires all post-secondary transcripts (college, university, institutes, exchange programs) at the undergraduate and graduate level. We also require College Board Advanced Placement (AP) transcripts and International Baccalaureate (IB) transcripts if you have received post-secondary transfer credit for them.

The SFU Undergraduate Admissions office may ask for secondary (high school) level transcripts if they cannot determine that you meet the SFU Literacy or Quantitative requirement with your post-secondary transcripts.

I have an international transcript. Do you need my transcript translated?

The PPS Admissions office will need an official transcript in the original language as well as an official English translation. Transcripts in French do not need to be translated.

Questions?

If you have questions about the PLP not covered on our website, contact our admissions team.

Email: pps_admissions@sfu.ca
To prevent missing emails from us, add pps_admissions@sfu.ca to your contact list if you are not using an SFU email account.

Phone: 778-782-3559

Virtual Hours

Get help with your application and connect with a member of the admissions team during our virtual drop-in hours: every Wednesday from 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. (PST).

Meet on Zoom:
https://sfu.zoom.us/j/66007885834?pwd=ckVtTXVkVllsak9BU0FZd3hMUWE0dz09
Meeting ID: 660 0788 5834
Password: 833520
Regular Schedule: Wednesday, 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. (PST)