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Basic Skills Certificate - A (BSCA) Program

The Basic Skills Certificate- A (BSCA) Program supports students in an individualized course of study to achieve their educational and personal development goals. This program is for students who wish to develop academic and independent living skills. Program content includes courses which focus on basic literacy and math skills, interpersonal and self management skills, creativity and self-expression, workplace awareness, and skills for increasing independence. Students will have a maximum of four years to complete the program (under special circumstances and with permission of the Dean this maximum may be increased).

Courses are scheduled from Monday to Friday, between 8:30 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Admission Requirements

Age Requirement: Applicants must be at least 19 years of age, or be at least 18 years of age and have been out of the public school system for at least 12 months, or have a school-leaving certificate. Any applicant not meeting the age requirements must be recommended for admission by a secondary school principal or counselor and be interviewed by the ASE Admissions Committee. The recommendation and interview information of the underage applicant will be referred to the Dean. The applicant will be admitted only if approved by the Dean and space is available. In cases of underage admission, continued registration and attendance is dependent on the achievement of specific educational and behavioural standards outlined in an individual performance contract.

General Requirements: All students must participate in an intake interview with the ASE Admissions Committee.

All students must:

Complete a Level One reading assessment demonstrating recognition ofthe alphabet, a sight vocabulary of at least 25 words, and the ability toread pre-primer material at the level of instruction according to theSilvaroli Classroom Reading Inventory or demonstrate mature listeningcapacity and ability to communicate ideas by listening to a Level Onestory from the Silvaroli Classroom Reading Inventory and responding tocomprehension questions at the level of instruction.

  • Demonstrate the ability to learn and participate in a group setting
  • Demonstrate emotional stability- have no behavioural or emotionalproblems that would significantly interfere with the learning or safety ofself or others
  • Demonstrate a commitment to learning
  • Demonstrate an identified cognitive disability

Eligibility for admission is based on evidence of the above requirements being demonstrated in the assessment interview and must include at least two of the following (students must provide documentation at their own effort and expense):

  • Psycho-educational assessment
  • Records of previous participation in special or supported programs in a public institution or school (ex: IEP or school transcript)
  • Documentation of disability from a physician or medical specialist
  • Referral from Community Living BC (CLBC)
  • Recommendation from an instructor in the Okanagan College Adult Upgrading Department, another college, or high school
  • Referral from a community agency

Special Circumstances: Students who lack appropriate documentation may be admitted conditionally on the recommendation of the instructor with the approval of the Department Chair. In cases of conditional admission, continued registration and attendance is dependent on the achievement of specific educational and behavioural standards outlined in an individual performance contract.

A student who is non-verbal or multi-disabled and requires special accommodations can only be accepted into the program when those specific accommodation needs have been addressed and met. The student may be required to attend with a qualified support person who will be required to participate in a learning contract.

Program Outline

Students will be supported to achieve their educational and personal development goals. Courses within the BSCA Program are not in a required sequence. Courses will be offered in a variety of combinations at each centre. Students will be able to enter at any point and will graduate when they have completed the required combination of courses. ASE courses are skills-based and are adjusted to meet individual student need. Course work begins at each student's level of competency. Skills aimed at and achieved will vary according to the needs, goals, and abilities of the students. To continue skills development, and to complete the BSCA program, students are required to take core courses more than once. Each course of study will take two to four years to complete unless there are special circumstances and approval of the department to extend the program time. Students may attend full-time (three courses per semester) or part-time. On approval from the department, students may add one additional course per semester. Individual, stand-alone courses will still be available.

Special Circumstances: Under special circumstances students will be allowed to take longer than four years to complete their program. Circumstances may include:

  • Lengthy illness - supported by medical documentation

  • Disability-related barriers (mobility/strength/ability to sustain work focus) which necessitate a slower pace

  • Lack of necessary disability-related support (Individualized Support Worker and/or equipment) which causes a break in attendance.

  • Lack of available courses at the centre

BSCA students must complete (courses are taken more than once):

  • Two semesters of LSIN 010 Literacy - English 1
  • Two semesters of LSIN 010A Numeracy - Mathematics 1
  • One semster of LSIN 020 Human Relations
  • One semester of LSIN 017 Literacy - Workplace Awareness 1
The remaining six courses will be an individualized combination of:
LSIN 010 Literacy - English I
LSIN 010A Numeracy - Mathematics I
LSIN 020 Human Relations
LSIN 017 Literacy - Workplace Awareness 1
LSIN 015 Express Yourself
LSIN 022 Rights and Responsibilities
LSIN 023 Health and Safety
LSIN 027 Social Communication
LSIN 029 Consumer Awareness
LSIN 030 Cooking
The following four Level 2 courses listed below may be offered as electives with permission of the ASE Department:
LSIN 012 Basic Computer Skills
LSIN 034 Banking and Budgeting
LSIN 036 General Science
LSIN 037 History of People with Intellectual Disabilities in BC

Optional Electives:

Students may choose to take up to four additional electives with permission of the department if:

  • There is space. Priority will be given to students who require the course to complete their program.
  • The course content is appropriate for the student at this stage of their learning.
  • The course load is reasonable for this student given their circumstances and disability /abilities and will not cause overload /burnout.
  • Addition of this course does not make contact hours exceed 20 hours per week.

Graduation Requirements

Completion of 6 core courses and 6 elective courses (12 courses in total). Courses must be completed within a maximum of four years unless there are special circumstances, upon recommendation of the department, and approval of the Dean. Students must achieve a minimum passing grade of 50% in each course with an overall average of 70%.

Program Area:

Adult Special Education

Campus (Intake):

  • Kelowna (Feb, Sep)




  • Part-Time
  • Full-Time


Please contact your campus.


Department Website

Okanagan College Calendar: Printed 05/28/2022