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Parole or Probation Officer

Parole officers and probation officers help offenders integrate into the community. At the same time, they protect the community by supervising offenders. Parole officers are employed by the Correctional Service of Canada to manage the conditional release of federal and provincial offenders. Probation officers are employed by Alberta Justice and Solicitor General to conduct investigations, prepare presentence reports, and supervise offenders in the community.

 

Also Known As

Parole Supervisor

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: Probation and Parole Officers (4155.1) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Probation and Parole Officers and Related Occupations (E025) 
  • 2011 NOC: Probation and parole officers and related occupations (4155) 
  • 2016 NOC: Probation and parole officers and related occupations (4155) 
Interests & Abilities

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2006 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Probation and Parole Officers

2006 NOC: 4155.1

Interest Codes

Interest Codes for This NOC Group
SOCIAL

Interest in mentoring in order to plan rehabilitation programs with offenders by establishing rules of conduct, goals and objectives; and in referring offenders to community and social service programs

METHODICAL

Interest in co-ordinating information to compile case records and in submitting information and recommendations to parole boards; may perform administrative duties

DIRECTIVE

Interest in supervising the terms of probation orders, and in recommending remedial action or initiating court action when probationers or parolees violate the terms of rehabilitation programs; may supervise support staff

Your Interest Codes

To identify or change your interest codes, complete the Interests Exercise in CAREERinsite.

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 for this NOC group 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 About Interests

Abilities

Typical ability expectations for this NOC group
Your abilities

To fill in or change the values for your abilities, complete the Abilities Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Mental Abilities

General Learning Ability

Verbal Ability

Numerical Ability

Visual Abilities

Spatial Perception

Form Perception

Clerical Perception

Physical Abilities

Motor Coordination

Finger Dexterity

Manual Dexterity

Understanding Abilities

A Quick Guide

You are born with abilities that help you process certain types of information and turn it into action. These abilities influence which skills you can learn more easily.

The abilities or aptitudes shown for this NOC group come from the General Aptitude Test Battery (GATB). The GATB measures 9 aptitudes. It groups them into 3 categories: mental, visual, and physical.

The abilities scores range from 1 to 5, with 5 being stronger.

Learn About Abilities

Duties
Updated Mar 31, 2019

Duties vary from one position to another.

Parole officers, in general, make recommendations regarding the initial placement in an appropriate federal penitentiary for any offender who receives a sentence of 2 years or more or a suspension of an original federal sentence. Parole officers also may:

  • Investigate offenders’ past and present behaviours by interviewing other inmates, institutional authorities, police, family and friends of the offender
  • Plan programs for offenders during their imprisonment
  • Assess the suitability of penitentiary inmates for release under parole and statutory release, and submit recommendations to the National Parole Board
  • Develop networks with other parole officers and social welfare and community agencies
  • Liaise with staff in correctional institutions, psychiatric facilities and after-care agencies
  • Supervise individuals who have been released on parole, day parole or statutory release
  • Offer guidance and direction to parolees in dealing with job-related and personal problems

Parole supervisors work in the private sector. They are contracted to supervise parolees who live in communities and rural areas without Correctional Service of Canada offices.

Probation officers, in general, prepare presentence reports as requested by the court. These reports describe the offender’s criminal history, personal circumstances, social and cognitive skills, and mental health concerns. Probation officers make recommendations for sentence including conditions which may be imposed by a court order. They also:

  • Gather information through interviews with offenders, police, family, friends, employers, school authorities and others to help the court determine appropriate sentences
  • Gather information to assist in casework and the supervision of offenders
  • Supervise individuals who have been released on pretrial release, peace bond or temporary pass from a correctional or young offender centre, and individuals sentenced by the court to probation, community service work or conditional sentences or supervision
  • Administer and supervise individuals accepted to the alternative measures, extrajudicial sanctions and fine option programs
  • Complete risk assessments
Working Conditions
Updated Mar 31, 2019
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg

Parole and probation officers work in offices, courthouses, and penitentiaries. They visit offenders’ homes and workplaces.

Parole and probation officers sometimes work long hours to interview offenders and their associates. This may include evenings and weekends.

Traits & Skills
Updated Mar 31, 2019

Parole and probation officers need:

  • Maturity
  • Good judgment
  • Conflict resolution skills
  • Time management skills
  • Interpersonal and communication skills

They should enjoy:

  • Dealing with and helping people
  • Having clear rules and organized methods
  • Supervising others
Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2019
  • Minimum Education 2 years post-secondary

Parole officers employed by the federal government must have at least a bachelor of arts (BA) degree with a specialization in sociology, psychology or criminology, or a bachelor of social work (BSW) or bachelor of applied arts (BAA) in justice studies. Some parole officers have a master’s degree or equivalent. A 2-year college diploma in a related field plus extensive related work experience may be considered.

Parole supervisors employed in the private sector must have at least a 2-year college diploma in a related field.

Probation officers employed by the provincial government must have a university degree in a directly related field, or at least a 2-year diploma in a directly related field and appropriate work experience. For probation officers engaged in a more dynamic counselling model, a 4-year bachelor’s degree specializing in justice or human services may be required.

Parole and probation officers must be aware of community resources such as psychiatric services and addiction treatment centres. They must also have a working knowledge of client behaviour and motivation. Knowledge of Indigenous culture or languages is an asset.


Related Education

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

To expand or narrow your search for programs related to this occupation, visit Post-Secondary Programs.

Completing a program does not guarantee entrance into an occupation. Before enrolling in an education program, prospective students should look into various sources for education options and employment possibilities. For example, contact associations and employers in this field.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2019
  • Certification Not Regulated

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

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 31, 2019

Parole officers are employed by the Correctional Service of Canada, and by private agencies under contract to the Correctional Service of Canada. Those employed by the Correctional Service of Canada must complete a 1-year probation. Advancement to section supervisor and area manager positions is based on merit and experience.

Probation officers are employed by the Government of Alberta.

Parole and probation officers are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 4155: Probation and Parole Officers and Related Occupations. In Alberta, 96% of people employed in this classification work in  Public Administration (pdf) industry.

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

  • Trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the Public Administration industry)
  • 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

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

In Alberta, the 4155: Probation and parole officers and related occupations occupational group is expected to have a below-average annual growth of 0% from 2019 to 2023. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 0 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

Note
NOC groups often include several related occupations. Although there is labour market data for the larger NOC group, this occupation makes up only a part of that group. It means data for this occupation may be different than the data shown. For example, only some of the new positions to be created will be for this occupation. It also applies to other data for the NOC group such as number of people employed.

Source: 2019-2023 Alberta Regional Occupational Demand Outlook

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 31, 2019

In 2018, probation officers employed by the provincial government earned $33 to $43 per hour. 

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Probation and parole officers and related occupations

2016 NOC: 4155
Average Wage
$43.68
Per Hour
Average Salary
$82,032.00
Per Year
Average Hours
36.1
Per Week
Average Months on Payroll
12
Survey Methodology Survey Analysis

Source
2021 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey

NOC 4155 Wage Profile

Unless otherwise noted, the data shown here is for all industries and all regions in Alberta.

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.

To see the full survey data for this NOC group, visit the wage profile.

Other wage sources
To make an informed wage and salary decision, research other wage sources [pdf] to supplement this data.

A: High Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

High Reliability, represents a CV of less than or equal to 6.00% and 30 survey observations and/or represents 50% or more of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Hourly Wage

For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top

Hourly Wage

For full-time and part-time employees
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $31.18 $42.06 $34.68 $33.95
Overall $37.47 $51.31 $43.68 $43.62
Top $40.31 $53.44 $45.13 $43.89

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.

Pay brackets for hourly wages

  • Starting pay: average pay offered for entry-level positions
  • Overall pay: average pay across all employees in this occupation
  • Top pay: average pay offered to top-paid employees

Industry Information

Public Administration
ALL INDUSTRIES

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years
N/A
Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties
N/A
Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months
N/A
Vacancy Rate
N/A
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Social Sciences, Law and Religious Studies
  • Social, Community and Protective Services
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 31, 2019

Alberta Ministry of Justice and Solicitor General website: www.alberta.ca/ministry-justice-solicitor-general

The Correctional Service of Canada website: www.csc-scc.gc.ca

Get information and referrals about career, education, and employment options from Alberta Supports.

Updated Mar 31, 2019. 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.

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