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JIBC paramedic students in training

Is this program right for you?

Be the one helping to save lives. Your work as a first responder will give you the opportunity to build relationships with and provide immediate medical response skills to people across your community.  

Gain Credentials  

With the successful completion of the course, students receive a Canadian Red Cross EMR certificate (valid 3 years), and a Canadian Red Cross BLS card (valid for 1 year).

Dynamic Training 

Participants are engaged in dynamic training techniques including video, media presentations, skills demonstrations, practice sessions, discussions and scenarios based on real-life situations.

People or organizations interested in training to handle medical or traumatic emergency events while waiting for an ambulance to arrive. 

Professionals in fire service, rescue team, workplace response team, sports medicine professionals, lifeguards, ski patrol, recreation facilities and special-care facilities.

Program strengths 

Participants acquire the life-saving skills and knowledge to perform patient care to the public before an ambulance arrives. Knowing what to do in that first few minutes of an emergency can make a difference between life and death.


The First Responder (FR) course teaches students the skills they need to save lives. In this entry-level program, students acquire a full complement of basic skills that prepare them for carrying out all critical life-saving duties as a First Responder.


  • Patient assessment model
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Hemorrhage control
  • Care for a variety of acute and chronic conditions


What You Need to Graduate 

Students are assessed and coached throughout the course.

Formal evaluations are as follows:

  • Canadian Red Cross (CRC) Basic Life Support (BLS) practical exam and written exam.
  • Canadian Red Cross Final comprehensive written exam. 75 multiple choice questions.
  • Emergency Medical Assistants Licensing Branch (EMALB) FR practical medical & trauma exams.

Students are given one opportunity to do retests should they be unsuccessful in their final exams.

Program Format 

This course is delivered in person at the Maple Ridge, New Westminster, Chilliwack, Kelowna and Victoria campuses.

It is offered Monday - Saturday (6 days) or if there is a Monday stat it is Tuesday - Sunday (6 days) from 8:30am - 4:30pm.


It is also offered through Contract Training giving organizations the opportunity to deliver the training where and when the organization wants.


Upon successful completion of the FR exams, students will receive a Canadian Red Cross First Responder / BLS certificate.  The first responder certificate is valid for 3 years and the BLS is valid for one year.  A digital certificate is sent directly to the student's email from the CRC within a few days of completing the course.


In order for successful students to receive their first responder license, the JIBC, Paramedic Academy program area will submit course results to the EMALB.  Then EMALB will then contact successful first responder students outlining the steps required to setup a BCeID and password and get access to online licensing exams.



Tuition $620.40

Additional Fees

Learner Services Fee $18.48

Textbooks and Supplies
Required Textbooks

Once enrolled, students must purchase books prior to attending. Below are the textbooks that are required.

  • Canadian Red Cross, Emergency Care for Professional Responders (2018)  
    ISBN: 978-1-58480-698-1 
  • Canadian Red Cross, Basic Life Support Field Guide (2018)
    ISBN: 978-1-58480-704-9 

These textbooks can be purchased from the JIBC Store at jibcstore@jibc.caThe store is open Monday to Friday, 12 pm - 5pm to walk-in customers (closed weekends & holidays).

Students can order required textbooks via email or pre-arranged pick-up times.  Please send orders to or 604.528.5870.  Include your full name, phone number and order details in the request.

Pre-Class Assignment

Please read chapters 1 - 6 of the Emergency Care for Professional Responders and the BLS Field Guide for day 1.

There is a TT & P  (Training, Treatments & Protocols) for review prior to attending class.  You will receive this once enrolled.

As well, all students must complete the Canadian Red Cross, First Responder Workbook and bring it with them to class day 1.  There is no mark associated with this as the workbook is designed to prepare the student for final written examinations. 

STEP ONE - Register Online

Visit the First Responder ONLINE course catalogue to enroll yourself in one of our course offerings.


Important Dates / Application Deadlines

This is an open enrolment course. There are no application deadlines or set start dates.


Admission Requirements

The course and certificate are open to anyone. There are no formal admission requirements.


International applicants

International applicants are encouraged to contact JIBC's Office of International Affairs at


Q: What is the First Responders program about?
A: The First Responders program provides students with Advanced First Aid training. Graduates volunteer their services as on-site medical assistants for their schools and at outside community events.


Q: Who can become a First Responder?
A: Anyone who is at least 16 years of age can take the course. We recommend students have their grade 10 English.


Q: Is this course offered online?
A: This course is face-to-face in the classroom, Full attendance in class is mandatory for the completion of this course.


Q: Where do you offer this course?
A: This course is offered at several JIBC campuses including Maple Ridge, New Westminster, Chilliwack, Kelowna and Victoria. We also offer it in other locations throughout BC, at other post-secondary institutions, colleges and private facilities. Check the course catalogue for scheduled dates and locations.


Q: Can a full organization take this course?
A: The first responder course is available through JIBC's Contract Training. It is also available through our Paramedic Academy where details of the course and delivery of the training, including time and preferred location, are chosen to best suit the organization. Contact the First Responder Program for more details.


Q: What certification will I receive after completing this course?
A: Upon successful completion of the FR course, students will receive a Canadian Red Cross certificate (valid for three years) and a Canadian Red Cross BLS card (valid for three years). 


Q: Are there any required textbooks or pre-read information?
A: Students must purchase books before attending their first class. Contact the JIBC Store at 604.528.5870 or to order your materials. 


Q: What textbooks are required for this course?
A: Two textbooks are needed: "Canadian Red Cross Emergency Care 2018 Manual" and "Canadian Red Cross Basic Life Support Field Guide 2018."



PARA-1004 First Responder


Questions about the first responder course