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The Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission (SATCC) is an industry-led, arms-length government organization dedicated to training apprentices and certifying tradespersons. We are an educational institution—much like a college, university or technical training institution. We are also a certification body responsible for issuing journeyperson credentials.

The key difference between our education system and other education institutions is we don’t train apprentices ourselves on site. Instead, we rely on thousands of individual employers to deliver the bulk of the training to their own apprentice employees in their workplaces under the guidance of skilled journeyperson mentors. We also contract other institutions—Saskatchewan Polytechnic and regional colleges, for instance—to provide theory-based technical training to complement the work-based learning.

There are more than 47 designated trades and sub-trades in Saskatchewan. Most trades are voluntary. This means there are two pathways to certification—through completion of an apprenticeship (available only to residents of Saskatchewan), or as a tradesperson who can demonstrate sufficient on-the-job experience.

Aside from the voluntary trades, five trades are compulsory. Those five trades are: 1) Construction Electrician, 2) Plumber, 3) Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanic, 4) Sheet Metal Worker, and 5) Sprinkler Fitter. This means that to work in those trades, you must be a registered apprentice or journeyperson.

Pathways to Certification

The two pathways to certification in the voluntary trades are: 1) as an apprentice, and 2) as a tradesperson

1. Apprenticeship Pathway

Apprenticeship is perhaps the best known pathway to certification in the skilled trades in Saskatchewan. In order to be an apprentice, you MUST be a resident of Saskatchewan.

In order to apprentice in a voluntary trade, candidates need to secure employment with an employer who is willing to commit to their on-the-job education, and who is able to provide the necessary mentorship.

Depending on the voluntary trade, there are two to four levels of three to ten weeks of technical training sessions that occur in a classroom or online. These technical training periods are relatively short because the bulk of the learning happens on the job. Apprentices learn “how” to perform their work on the job site, and learn “why” they do what they do at the technical training session.

2. Applying for Certification as a Skilled Tradesperson

Tradespersons are skilled workers who work in one of the voluntary trades and have not entered into an apprenticeship agreement. A tradesperson must work a set number of hours in the trade before they can apply to have their skills assessed as a Trade Qualifier (TQ). If their application is approved, they could then challenge the Journeyperson exam.

These are some important definitions to take note of:

Tradesperson: An individual who is working at one of the non-compulsory designated trades, but is not an apprentice or a journeyperson.

Trade Qualifier (TQ): A tradesperson is a skilled worker who is not a registered apprentice, but has established eligibility to challenge a certification examination.

Other important definitions are contained in the appendix of any SATCC Annual Report.

Once the application for assessment has been approved, the applicant will be eligible to challenge the Journeyperson exam. However, if the application for assessment results in a rejection to challenge the exam, the assessment process will outline any options to take.

Upgrader Training for Domestic Tradespersons Only

Upgrader training is available for some trade qualifiers in some trades. This training is not mandatory, but may be available to help prepare trade qualifiers for the exam. It is especially useful if a trade qualifier believes they may not have been exposed to the full scope of the trade during their careers. The Trade Qualifier Assessment process will provide affected tradespersons with their upgrading options. See Form 7 for more information.

For More Information

To learn more about trade qualifier assessments, visit, call us toll-free at 1-877-363-0536, or email us at

Definition of Terms Used in This Site

Act and Regulations: The Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Act, 1999 and regulations are the authority under which the program operates.

Apprentice: An individual who is working in a designated trade, has signed a contract of apprenticeship with his or her employer, and is registered with the Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission. Note: Apprentices are not students. They are employees in a skilled trade in which they are acquiring skills.

Apprenticeship Training: A system of training that has two main components: workplace training and technical training. The apprentice, the employer or joint training committee, and the Chief Operating Officer sign a contract of apprenticeship. Apprentices learn the knowledge and skills associated with a trade through workplace training which is supervised by a certified journeyperson, combined with technical training. Upon completion of the final level of training, apprentices are eligible to write the journeyperson examination.

Certificate of Completion of Apprenticeship: A certificate issued to an apprentice who has completed the prescribed apprenticeship term for their designated trade; has successfully completed all levels of required technical training; has met all requirements for the Journeyperson Certificate of Qualification; and has submitted a record book to the SATCC in designated trades which require a record book.

Compulsory Apprenticeship: An individual must be an apprentice or a journeyperson to work in the trade. There are five compulsory apprenticeship trades in Saskatchewan: Electrician, Plumber, Refrigeration Mechanic, Sheet Metal Worker and Sprinkler Fitter.

Designated Trade: An occupation designated under The Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Act, 1999. Designation of an occupation means that legislated rules apply; standards, technical training and certification examinations are established.

Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program (Red Seal): A national certification program that assists workers seeking employment in any province/territory in Canada.

Journeyperson: An individual who has worked at a trade for several years, passed all examinations, and has been issued a Journeyperson Certificate of Qualification from the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission or other Canadian apprenticeship authority.

Journeyperson Certificate of Qualification: A certificate issued to a person pursuant to Section 29 of The Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission Regulations.

Learner’s Certificate: A certificate in a designated trade issued to an applicant who has met the eligibility requirements set by the SATCC and trade regulations.

Proficiency Certificate: A certificate is issued to reflect an individual’s ability in a significant area of their trade.

Red Seal Endorsement (RSE): An acronym to use as an enhancement to a journeyperson’s professional title, representing his/her successful achievement of obtaining the Red Seal endorsement in the given Red Seal trade.

Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission (SATCC): SATCC is responsible for administering the programs for apprenticeship training, trade certification, upgrading for non-journeypersons and updating for journeypersons.

Sub-trade: A branch of a designated trade that is recognized for training and certification purposes.

Tradesperson: An individual who is working at one of the non-compulsory designated trades, but is not an apprentice or a journeyperson.

Trade Qualifier: A tradesperson who is not a registered apprentice, but has established eligibility to challenge a certification examination.

Updating: Training designed to enhance the skills of an individual who already holds journeyperson certification.

Upgrading: Training designed to assist a tradesperson in preparing to take a journeyperson examination.

Voluntary Apprenticeship: Workers are encouraged to take apprenticeship training or attain journeyperson certification, but it is not a mandatory requirement to work in the trade.

Work (Workplace) Experience / On-the-Job Training: Also known as “experiential learning.” The experience an individual gains on a job site learning the skills and performing the actual tasks involved in the work of the trade/occupation.


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Start working toward your Red Seal journeyperson certification in the Bricklayer trade. Register as a Bricklayer apprentice and attend Level 1 Technical Training in January! For more info call: 306-787-2447 or visit ... See MoreSee Less

Start working toward your Red Seal journeyperson certification in the Bricklayer trade. Register as a Bricklayer apprentice and attend Level 1 Technical Training in January! For more info call: 306-787-2447 or visit

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