Skip to the main content
This website uses cookies to give you a better online experience. By using this website or closing this message, you are agreeing to our cookie policy. More information
Alberta Supports Contact Centre

Toll Free 1-877-644-9992


The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted legislation and services. Information on this website may not reflect the current situation in Alberta. Please visit for up-to-date information about these impacts.

College, Technical or Vocational Instructor

College, technical and vocational instructors provide instruction to adults in a wide variety of subject areas including vocational, technical, business or services training, trades, academic upgrading, university transfer courses and university degree program courses.

  • Avg. Salary $70,708.00
  • Avg. Wage $40.67
  • Minimum Education 2 years post-secondary
  • Outlook below avg
  • Employed 11,600
  • In Demand Lower
Also Known As

Career and Technical Education Teacher, Educator, Instructor, Music Teacher, Teacher, Technical Instructor, Vocational College Instructor

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: College and Other Vocational Instructors (4131) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: College and Other Vocational Instructors (E121) 
  • 2011 NOC: College and other vocational instructors (4021) 
  • 2016 NOC: College and other vocational instructors (4021) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

Average Wage
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Interest Codes
The College, Technical or Vocational Instructor is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
College and Other Vocational Instructors

Interest in co-ordinating information to develop curricula and prepare teaching materials, course outlines and examinations


Interest in administering and marking tests and papers to evaluate students' progress and in supervising independent or group projects, field placements, laboratory work or hands-on training; may serve on committees concerned with matters such as budgets, curriculum revision, and course and diploma requirements


Interest in instructing students, providing individualized tutoring and advising on program curriculum and career decisions

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Updated Dec 15, 2016

College, technical and vocation instructors teach adult students of all ages and academic backgrounds. Some students may have very little formal education; others may be experienced individuals seeking vocational upgrading or retraining.

Duties vary depending on the type and size of the post-secondary school, the subject area and the level of instruction. In general, however, instructors:

  • develop curriculum
  • research and prepare lessons
  • use instructional techniques such as lectures, demonstrations, laboratory work, hands-on training, case studies, independent or group projects, field assignments, field placements and multimedia technologies (including on-line learning)
  • provide individualized instruction and tutorial or remedial instruction
  • prepare, administer and mark student exams
  • evaluate student performance and assignments
  • consult with students regarding specific academic or vocational concerns
  • maintain and submit program or student records.

Instructors also must keep abreast of current developments and changes in their fields by maintaining contact with industrial or business sectors. Attending workshops, seminars and refresher courses is a necessary part of the job.

Some instructors have assistants who help prepare materials, set up laboratory and audiovisual equipment, gather research data, mark assignments and examinations, and perform other non-instructional duties.

College instructors may teach a broad range of courses, ranging from academic upgrading to applied degree programs, in fields such as:

  • communications studies
  • arts
  • sciences
  • community and health services
  • business and computers
  • technical, vocational and trades training
  • general interest programs.

Instructional responsibilities and required qualifications vary with the programs taught. For example, instructors who teach university transfer programs generally have instructional responsibilities similar to those of lecturers who teach undergraduate programs at universities. Career certificate programs usually are taught by instructors who have industry experience in specific fields.

Technical institute instructors provide technically-oriented instruction to adult students involved in studies relating to:

  • business (accounting management)
  • commercial and service occupations
  • engineering technologies
  • medical and health sciences
  • life resources
  • media and information technologies
  • mechanical, manufacturing and building sciences
  • industrial and commercial trades (including apprenticeship courses).

Technical schools provide technical in-school training for over 90% of Alberta's apprentices as well as academic upgrading for students lacking the entrance requirements for further technical studies.

Vocational college instructors provide instruction in programs such as:

  • basic literacy
  • academic upgrading
  • short, intensive vocational training programs relating to business, health, trades and service fields.

These programs are designed to give unemployed or under-employed adults the academic and employment skills they need to enter or re-enter the work force. Instructors may be teaching students who:

  • come from culturally, socially or educationally disadvantaged backgrounds
  • have decided to upgrade or retrain
  • are new Canadians and require English proficiency (for more information, see the English as a Second Language Instructor - Adults occupational profile).
Working Conditions
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Most college, technical and vocational instructors work in classroom, office and laboratory environments.  Facilities generally are well equipped and enrollments are limited in size.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Dec 15, 2016

College, technical and vocational instructors need the following characteristics:

  • good oral and written communication skills
  • a desire to share knowledge with others and meet adult student needs
  • enthusiasm for their subject or skill area
  • respect for people from diverse backgrounds
  • the ability to identify with students' aspirations and offer sound advice.

They should enjoy co-ordinating information in innovative ways to prepare teaching materials, supervising and evaluating student progress, and helping others achieve their goals.

Educational Requirements
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Most college, technical and vocational instructors have related post-secondary education. Specific educational requirements vary depending on the position:

  • College instructors usually have graduate degrees (master's or PhD degrees).
  • Instructors responsible for teaching academic upgrading usually have at least a bachelor's degree. An Alberta teaching certificate or a certificate, diploma or degree in adult education are definite assets.
  • Instructors of technical, trade or vocational programs should be experts in their particular fields. Instructors in technical schools normally hold professional or technical certification and may be required to have a licence for their particular field of expertise.
  • Most instructors have extensive work experience as well as formal education qualifications.
  • Familiarity with web-based instruction and research is becoming increasingly important.

Employers usually provide staff development programs about instructional methods and teacher-student relations for instructors who do not have formal teacher training.

Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Adventure Aviation

Calgary Flight Training Centre

Calgary Flying Club

Centennial Flight Centre Inc.

Cooking Lake Aviation Services

Edmonton Flying Club

Excel Flight Training Incorporated

MaKami College Inc. - Edmonton

Makami College Inc. - Calgary

Namao Flying Club

Northern Alberta Institute of Technology

Prairie Aviation Training Centre

Sky Wings Aviation Academy

Southern Alberta Institute of Technology

Springbank Air Training College Ltd.

Super T Aviation Academy

Synergy Flight Training Inc.

Synergy Flight Training Inc. - Spruce Grove

University of Victoria

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Dec 15, 2016

There is currently no provincial legislation regulating this occupation in Alberta.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Dec 15, 2016

College, technical and vocational instructors are employed in:

  • public and private colleges
  • private vocational schools (career colleges)
  • institutes of technology
  • religious colleges.

In all adult learning facilities, instructors with experience may advance to department or program head positions with increased supervisory and administrative duties. There are, however, relatively few administrative positions available compared to the number of classroom teaching positions.

College, technical and vocational instructors are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 4021: College and other vocational instructors.  In Alberta, 76% of people employed in this classification work in the following industries:

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

In Alberta, the E121: College and Other Vocational Instructors occupational group is expected to have a below-average annual growth of 1.6% from 2016 to 2020. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 211 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Dec 15, 2016

Salaries for instructors usually are based on a grid system that takes into account their years of related training and years of experience in the field. Positions are about equally divided between contract positions and sessional or permanent positions that offer benefits.

College and other vocational instructors

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $17.22 $42.74 $31.89 $32.83
Overall $20.00 $58.94 $40.67 $46.22
Top $21.00 $66.77 $48.40 $50.00

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.

Industry Information
Public Administration
Professional, Scientific & Technical Services
Educational Services
Other Services (Repair, Personal Services and Related)
Health Care & Social Assistance

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years


Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties


Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months


Vacancy Rate

Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Agriculture and Related Technologies
  • Aviation
  • Business, Management and Administrative Studies
  • Communications
  • Computer and Information Technology
  • Driver Training
  • Education and Library Studies
  • Engineering and Science Technologies
  • Engineering, Architecture and Related Studies
  • Environment, Forestry and Related Studies
  • Fine Arts and Performing Arts
  • Health Care and Medical Sciences
  • Human Ecology, Fashion and Food Sciences
  • Mathematics
  • Physical Education and Recreation
  • Humanities and Languages
  • Personal and Food Services
  • Sciences
  • Social Sciences, Law and Religious Studies
  • Social, Community and Protective Services
  • Trades, Industrial and Related Training

Updated Mar 09, 2016. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

Was this page useful?