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Education | Faculty of Education Simon Fraser University Calendar | Summer 2023

Teacher Education (PLP)

Professional Linking Program

This is a 16 month, part-time teacher education program for employed paraprofessionals, paraeducators, adult educators and teachers (Francophone, trades, independent) who are operating on letters of permission issued from the Teacher Certification Branch (TCB) and who are seeking certification as teachers in British Columbia.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must be attending Simon Fraser University or be admissible.

Candidates who have not attended Simon Fraser University previously, or who have not attended in any of the three terms prior to their intended enrollment, must apply for admission or readmission.

All candidates are required to complete the online professional linking program application form located at

All applications must be submitted to the Preservice Professional Studies Admissions office by January 31.

In addition to the standard requirements for admission to the university, PLP requires candidates to have a minimum of two years of work experience in their fields at the time of application.

Elementary Applicants

Non-degreed elementary applicants must, by the date of application, have completed a minimum of 76 units towards a bachelor's degree, including the following prerequisite courses:

  • six units in English (including a minimum of three units of English literature)
  • one course (three units) in each of Canadian history, Canadian geography, and laboratory science
  • MATH 190
  • elementary applicants are recommended to have education, fine and performing arts and kinesiology courses

Elementary prerequisite courses must be completed one full term prior to starting PLP.

Secondary Applicants

Applicants who plan to teach at the secondary level must fulfil the requirements of a four-year degree with a teachable major subject or two teachable minor subjects prior to commencing PLP.

Teachable Majors or Minors

  • Anthropology*
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Archaeology*
  • Asia/Pacific Studies*
  • Biological Sciences
  • Canadian Studies*
  • Chemistry
  • Classics/Greek & Roman Studies*
  • Computing Science (Minor only)
  • Criminology*
  • Dance (FPA) (Minor only)
  • Earth Science
  • Economics*
  • English
  • First Nations Studies*
  • French
  • Gender Studies*
  • Geography*
  • Germanic Studies*
  • History*
  • Humanities (Minor only)*
  • International Relations/Studies*
  • Law*
  • Mathematics
  • Music (FPA)
  • Physical Education/Kinesiology (Minor only)
  • Physics
  • Political Science*
  • Slavic Studies*
  • Social Studies*
  • Sociology*
  • Spanish & Latin American Studies*
  • Theatre (FPA) (Minor only)
  • Visual Arts (FPA)
  • World Literature

*see admission requirements for Social Studies here:

Students planning to teach at the secondary level must complete requirements prior to commencing PLP, except BEd candidates who cannot complete their degree until they have successfully completed PLP. These BEd candidates complete one teachable major or two teachable minors prior to commencing PLP. Students from other institutions may apply prior to degree completion.

Secondary applicants must complete six English units (including a minimum of three units of English literature) one full term prior to starting PLP.

It is recommended that applicants have credit for at least one EDUC course before applying for admission.

All Applicants

All PLP 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;
  • 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.

All PLP applicants are required to submit the following:

Before program admission, applicants must demonstrate competence in written and oral English (and written and oral French for French immersion and French as a second language programs).

Students may be interviewed before being considered for program admission.

Admission selection is based favourably on students whose applications show employment experience of working collaboratively with school professionals and community stakeholders in their roles and responsibilities to the children in their care. Commitment to community service is also given consideration both in teaching and other helping roles.

Because of the number of well qualified PLP applicants, it is unlikely that candidates who have been unsuccessful in four previous competitions will be considered favourably in any subsequent competition. Those who have been unsuccessful in gaining entry on at least four occasions are discouraged from further application.

Program Requirements

The program's duration is four terms.

Professional studies and activities are arranged in the following sequence.

In the first term, students complete

EDUC 402W - Studies of Educational Theory and Practice (7) *

A half term of study which provides students with workshops, seminars, and lectures designed to introduce them to basic curriculum and methods appropriate for the age/grade level in which they expect to teach. Students will also be given an introduction to generic teaching skills, as well as to current issues in educational theory and practice. Grading is on a pass/withdraw basis. Prerequisite: Admission to PDP or PLP program. Students must successfully complete a Criminal Record Check. Writing.

In EDUC 402, student teachers begin the study of the literature of education and examine educational issues. Campus-based seminars will introduce theory, concepts and methodologies relevant to teacher development. Student teachers may also attend curriculum workshops to become more familiar with a vast array of educational resources. During the first term, the goal is to make meaning of the vast and complex world of educational practice, and have this meaning informed by the extensive study of the literature and by thoughtful, reflective discourse.

In the second term, students complete

EDUC 404 - Coursework Semester (0) **

Students undertake 15 upper division units in Education to complete the professional development program requirements. Prerequisite: EDUC 401/402 or corequisite EDUC 403.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
D001 TBD
D002 TBD
D003 TBD

All PLP student teachers are required to take a minimum of 15 units of upper division education courses in order to complete the Professional Coursework requirements for certification.

Courses can be taken over one or more terms to accommodate work schedules. With careful course and minor selection, student teachers can also complete a bachelor of education (BEd) as a second degree without adding any extra time or cost to the program. An Advisor will provide more information on this option during the first term of the program.

To be recommended for certification, in EDUC 404, students must achieve a minimum 2.0 grade point average in courses taken towards the EDUC 404 requirement (or receive a P in Pass/Fail courses).

In the third term, students complete

EDUC 403 - Studies in Teaching and Learning (11)

Aims to develop students' dispositional capacities and engage them in comparative studies of teaching/learning between their current roles and their future roles as teachers. Students participate in observation and practice teaching. Grading is on a pass/withdrawal basis. Prerequisite: EDUC 402. Students must successfully complete a Criminal Record Check. Students with credit for EDUC 401/401W may not take this course for further credit.

During EDUC 403 (part-time studies), students will need to take a 3 week leave in order to complete a short practicum in a school with a supervising teacher. Students also attend seminar classes each week on Saturdays. The course integrates in school experiences with theoretical concepts discussed in seminars which are held during evenings and weekends. Students observe, practice teach and reflect on experiences in their practice teaching placement, and use these to further their understanding and practices as future teachers.

In the fourth term, students complete

EDUC 405 - Teaching Semester (15) *

A full term of classroom experience supervised by University appointed school associates. The school placement is appropriate to the grade level and subject specialties which the student expects to teach after graduation. Grading is on a pass/withdraw basis. (Not offered in summer term.). Prerequisite: EDUC 401/402 or EDUC 402/403. Students must successfully complete a Criminal Record Check.

During EDUC 405, student teachers are assigned to a classroom for 10-12 weeks of student teaching experience. The school associate and faculty associate provide help and guidance, as well as make assessments of students’ growth toward the achievement of standards of professional competence. The school placement is appropriate to the educational level and subject specialties in which the student expects to gain certification. All PLP student teachers must arrange with their districts for a full-time leave of absence for the entire practicum of EDUC 405. Students assume a large measure of responsibility and participate in a wide range of teaching and supervisory activities. Students will be placed by the placement coordinator in local schools in the Lower Mainland or Fraser Valley. Students must be prepared to travel a distance to attend their school placements.

* not offered in summer term

** this zero-unit course functions as an umbrella course where the student completes 15 units of course work

General Regulation

Students complete normal Simon Fraser University enrollment procedures before commencing studies in any term of the professional linking program.

Successful applicants will be required to undergo a criminal record check. If the check indicates the applicant has a criminal record, that may preclude continuation in PLP.

Students must meet program goals, as outlined in the Preservice Professional Studies Handbook.

Those with valid reasons may be given permission by the director of Professional Programs to interrupt their program. A formal request must be submitted in writing to the director, Professional Programs. A program interruption requested by a student may normally last no longer than two years.

Students who indicate their intention to undertake a given PLP term and then do not honour this commitment are considered to have withdrawn from the program. Permission to re-enter is not given automatically. 


Students who withdraw from EDUC 402 must re-apply through Preservice Professional Studies Admissions.

EDUC 403: Students may apply for re-entry into EDUC 403 by the March 15 deadline for the two fall terms following the withdrawal. Students must meet the conditions for re-entry outlined in their withdrawal paperwork. An interview may be required. Applications must be submitted within two years of the withdrawal. Re-entry is competitive; there is no guarantee of admission to a particular term.

EDUC 405: Students may apply for re-entry by September 15 for the spring term or March 15 for the fall term. Students must meet the conditions for re-entry outlined in their withdrawal paperwork. An interview may be required. Applications must be submitted within two years of the withdrawal. Re-entry is competitive; there is no guarantee of admission to a particular term.

A student withdrawn from EDUC 405 for a second time may not re-enter the program unless by appeal.

Students who withdraw from PLP may apply for re-entry within two years of withdrawal. Students who do not re-enter within the specified time must re-apply to the program and must meet the admission requirements at the time of reapplication.

Recommendation for Certification

The academic and professional records of all students who have completed the four professional linking program terms will be subject to review by the faculty before a recommendation for certification is forwarded to the Teacher Certification Branch (TCB).

Course Challenge

Students with a minimum of one year of full-time teaching experience in Canada or in a school setting where English or French was the normal language of instruction, and where the curriculum was reasonably similar to a Canadian public-school curriculum, may challenge EDUC 405 subject to the following: 

  • Course challenge applicants will be considered according to generally established requirements and procedures.
  • Normally, students can enroll in course challenge for EDUC 405 only while enrolled in EDUC 402. Additional full fees will be levied for challenging EDUC 405 regardless of whether the challenge is successful.
  • Course challenge credit for EDUC 405 will not be granted before successful completion of EDUC 402.
  • Applications, available from the Professional Programs director, must be submitted by: May 15 for the fall term; September 15 for the spring term.

Residency Requirements and Transfer Credit

  • At least half of the program's total units must be earned through Simon Fraser University study.
  • At least two thirds of the program's total upper division units must be earned through Simon Fraser University study.