Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic (Apprenticeship)
2018/19 | Conestoga College
Program Code: 1347
School of Trades and Apprenticeships
Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning
This is a companion document to the current Conestoga College Student Guide
Program Handbook Guidelines
The purpose of this handbook is to provide students with program-specific details and other important information. The material in this handbook is accurate at the date of posting, and is applicable for the current academic year. Students will be informed of handbook changes that occur, if any, through college email. Program handbooks are updated yearly and students must check their program handbook for the current edition.
Welcome to the School of Trades & Apprenticeship and thank you for choosing Conestoga for your post-secondary education in skilled trades.
Conestoga offers a comprehensive array of programs in the Construction, Motive Power, Industrial and Service sectors to suit your interests and career aspirations. Our established partnerships with many successful local, national and international companies, result in program enhancements and significant career opportunities for our students.
Operating from campuses in Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge, Guelph and Brantford, as well as a training facility in Ingersoll, we deliver current and relevant skills-based education and training allowing our students and graduates access to successful careers in the skilled trades.
I encourage you to take full advantage of the learning opportunities and resources available.
Julia Biedermann, PhD, PEng
Program Academic Team
Room 1C10 - Waterloo Campus
519-885-0300 ext. 5234
Room A3-4 - Guelph Campus
519-824-9390 ext. 6122
Office Services Assistant
Room 1C10 - Waterloo Campus
519-885-0300 ext. 5552
Room 1D26 - Waterloo Campus
519-885-0300 ext. 5232
Room 1D26 - Waterloo Campus
519-885-0300 ext. 5250
Room A1213 - Cambridge Campus
519-748-5220 ext. 3244
Apprentice Liaison Team
519-748-5220 ext. 2154
IT Service Desk
Main Desk - Room 1E12 - Doon Campus / Various Campuses
519-748-5220 ext. 3444
Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD)
4275 King St E, Suite 200, Kitchener ON N2P 2E9
Ontario College of Trades (OCOT)
655 Bay St, Suite 600, Toronto ON M5G 2K4
For additional financial and other supports for apprentices and employers, students should visit Conestoga College’s website.
This 720-hour program, which consists of a 240-hour level 1, a 240-hour level 2, and a 240-hour level 3, is designed to provide the apprentice with theoretical knowledge of refrigeration and air conditioning systems as well as practical training necessary to complement the apprentice's on-the-job training experience.
Program Learning Outcomes
Program learning outcomes can be found on the Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic (Apprenticeship) program page of the college's website.
Program Curriculum Sequence
Apprentices are placed on a waitlist for school based on their 'Program Start Date' with the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD). When it is the apprentice's turn to go to school, MAESD is responsible for mailing the "Offer of Classroom Training" to each apprentice approximately 90 days prior to the start date of class. Conestoga College does not control when an apprentice is sent an "Offer of Classroom Training". In addition, the apprentice must be a member in good standing with the Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) throughout their apprenticeship in order to remain eligible to receive an "Offer of Classroom Training". MAESD is also responsible for sending the Employment Insurance (EI) reference code directly to block release apprentices.
Apprentices are required to track their on-the-job progress in an "Apprenticeship Training Standard" from OCOT. Please note that faculty and staff at Conestoga College are not permitted to sign off any skills in the training standard.
Current Program Design
Students can find their program design on the Student Portal by following the steps below:
- Log in to the Student Portal
- Click on 'My Courses' tab
- Select 'View Progress Report' button
Courses are listed by level / semester. Students can also view courses for the most current program design for this academic year on the Conestoga College website. To find these courses, students need to scroll down the page to the 'Program Courses'.
Program Information and Standards
If an apprentice is experiencing barriers to learning the academic content in any course they are encouraged to speak with a member of the apprentice liaison team (ALT). An ALT member is available to all trades students and will provide one-on-one learning support or referrals to other services. Apprentices can also access the Student Success website for detailed information on the academic services they provide, including learning skills (study strategies, note taking, time management and exam preparation), tutoring, math and writing support.
Conestoga College is committed to providing a safe and accessible environment for students with disabilities. Accommodating disabilities at the college is a shared responsibility between students, faculty and administration. Students are responsible for providing relevant and up to date documentation of their disability to Accessibility@Conestoga, when they first register. This documentation will allow the student to be considered for accommodations and access to available services.
Refer to the Student Guide for information on student services including Counselling, Student Financial Services and Student Engagement.
Students can also access professional and confidential counselling support through the Good2Talk Post-Secondary Student Helpline at 1-866-925-5454.
Follow the link for a listing of important academic dates for the current school year, including a list of holidays when classes are cancelled. Students should be aware that programs within the School of Trades and Apprenticeship do not necessarily follow all of the listed dates. Speak with the program coordinator regarding program-specific dates, including Student Success Week, if applicable.
Credits may be transferred for students who have proven that they have comparable or equivalent learning in a formal educational environment. Grades obtained and course learning outcomes will be the criteria for determining exemptions, which includes an assessment as to the currency of the content taken previously, as determined by the academic team. The notation of "G" is used for the grade.
Note: When a student who has previously completed courses at Conestoga College registers into an apprenticeship program and where course numbers are identical (or content is equivalent), automatic credit is given if apprenticeship course passing grades (i.e. 70%) are met. The course grade from the original course will stand. Credit transfer may cause a student to move into part-time status, which could have an impact on Employment Insurance and income support eligibility. Contact the program coordinator or records officer for further details.
Students who hold a Certificate of Qualification in a related trade will be required to submit transcripts and course outlines when applying for any credit transfers.
Previous work experience is not eligible under the Credit Transfer process.
If a student believes that they should be exempt from any complete level of in-school training they are to contact MAESD for further guidance.
Academic Standing and Promotion Requirements – Program Standard
If for any reason a student is concerned about their academic progress, they should arrange to meet with a full-time faculty member or the program coordinator.
Students must achieve a minimum passing grade of 70% in each and every course. Failure or withdrawal from any course will result in the student not being eligible for the next level.
Common Academic Decisions
At the end of each level, the program team reviews students' grades. Below are the most common academic decisions issued by the program team:
Eligible to Continue
Students who pass all reportable subjects (courses) are eligible to continue in the program.
Students who have not successfully completed all of the required courses for the level may be eligible to complete work or write a supplemental assessment in order to complete the requirements of the level. Only one supplemental assessment will be permitted per level.
Supplemental Assessment: Students who have failed any courses may request a supplemental assessment (a "make-up"). It is the student's responsibility to check the grade postings. It is not the responsibility of the professor to contact the student and offer a supplemental. Supplemental assessments may be approved by the program team, if the course is supplemental-eligible and if the following academic criteria is met by the student.
- Failed course (F grade) was within 10 marks (10 percentage points – 60% to 69%) of the required passing grade of 70%.
- Attended 80% or more of the specific course.
- Passed at least one formal evaluation in the course.
- No registered academic offence during the semester in which the supplemental is being requested. (Warnings do not constitute an academic offence.)
The test must be completed within three weeks from the end of the level. To register for a supplemental, the student must meet with the applicable faculty and complete an Authorization for Supplemental form and submit the appropriate non-refundable fee ($40.00) to the Registrar's Office. The student must provide proof of fee payment at the time of the supplemental exam.
Failure in the supplemental will result in no change to the original course grade. Successful completion of the supplemental evaluation will result in the minimum passing grade of 70% being awarded. The final grade as a result of the supplemental will be automatic and is ineligible for appeal.
Discontinuance and Withdrawals
MAESD and Conestoga College mandates that all students must maintain 100% attendance in their in-school training. Students who are marked absent for three occurrences may be discontinued from the level. Students may also be discontinued from a level based on misconduct.
Retaking Failed Courses
If a student has failed one or more courses within a single level of their apprenticeship program, there may be the opportunity for that student to re-take just the failed course(s) and not the entire level. If a student would like to be considered for an individual course make-up, they must speak with their program coordinator. The program coordinator, in consultation with the program chair and MAESD, will determine whether the student can retake the failed course(s) or must retake the entire level. In both cases, the standard classroom fee for apprentices will apply.
Attendance - Program Standard
In the case of unforeseen circumstances that result in late arrival or early departure, whenever possible, students are expected to communicate this in advance with their faculty. Otherwise, students who arrive late for a scheduled class may be counted as absent immediately after the start of the class. Students who leave early, prior to the dismissal time, may also be counted as absent.
The School of Trades and Apprenticeship uses a 'flag' system to track unauthorized absences. As a result, attendance issues may be flagged during the program. The first missed day will result in a verbal warning. The second missed day will result in a 'blue flag' being issued. The third missed day will result in a 'red flag' being issued. Through this process, meetings will take place between the student and program coordinator and / or chair. Consultations may occur with MAESD and the student runs the risk of being ineligible for supplemental assessment opportunities due to poor attendance as well as possible discontinuance from the program. A 'day' is determined by the number of equivalent class hours missed, normally set at six hours. An accumulation of class hours missed over a number of weeks will equate to a day missed.
GraduationGraduation does not apply to this apprenticeship training program.
Communication – Program Standard
Conestoga College and eConestoga student email accounts will be used to communicate to students. Students are expected to regularly check their email accounts. Faculty are not expected to respond to emails from non-Conestoga email addresses. Faculty will respond to student emails by the end of the next business day after receipt of an enquiry.
The email utility in eConestoga is permitted for course content-related items only.
Awards – College Application Procedure
Since apprenticeship students are not considered full-time for an entire academic year they are not eligible to apply for most College-wide awards, scholarships or bursaries. However, students who are interested in awards may contact the Financial Aid and Student Awards office for more information.
School of Trades and Apprenticeship Awards – Program Specific
Every year, the School of Trades and Apprenticeship hosts an awards ceremony in May where over $220,000 worth of monetary and product prizes are awarded to deserving students. Students are to speak with faculty for more information on possible apprenticeship-related awards.
Weston Family Scholarship in the Skilled Trades
Conestoga College is proud to receive support from The W. Garfield Weston Foundation for a new multi-year Weston Family Scholarship in the Skilled Trades program to support first year post-secondary students and apprentices within the School of Trades and Apprenticeship. Apprentices who have registered and paid for their Level 1 in-class training (block or day release) within many of the construction, industrial, and motive power sector programs are eligible to apply. Selected apprentices will receive up to $4,000 from The W. Garfield Weston Foundation ($1,000 per level of in-class training, plus an additional award upon successful completion of their apprenticeship) as well as tuition awards from Conestoga College per level to assist with classroom fees. Refer to the Weston Family Scholarship in Skilled Trades webpage for further details, a list of eligible programs, and to apply for the scholarship.
Activities within Conestoga's Co-Curricular Portal (CCP) enhances students' growth and development outside the classroom. The Co-Curricular Record is an official document, complementary to an academic transcript, which recognizes and records learning that has been achieved through approved co-curricular experiences at Conestoga College.
Student feedback is an essential component of our continuous improvement process. Our opportunities for student feedback include:
Key Performance Indicators
All college programs in the province are evaluated using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) through the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD). This survey is conducted each academic year in select classes. Strategic goals to improve the programs are developed from these results. This data and other data specific to the campus and the program/school are collected so that Conestoga College can continually improve quality.
Student Appraisal of Teaching (SAT)
The Student Appraisal of Teaching (SAT) allows direct feedback from students on teaching for a particular course. Completion of the SAT form gives teachers and academic managers valuable information to use for the improvement of teaching at Conestoga.
The SAT process occurs in the last one-third of the semester. Typically about one-quarter of the faculty is appraised per term, and each has two courses selected by their academic managers for appraisal. All teachers have a SAT review at least once every two years. The SAT process is managed by the Office of Institutional Research and Planning using an online survey system specifically designed for course/teacher evaluations. After all marks for the semester have been submitted, a summary of results goes to the academic manager to be shared with the faculty member. Continuing Education students may have an opportunity to complete a SAT form at the conclusion of each Continuing Education course.
Conestoga Students Inc. (CSI) is the official student association representing all full-time, fee-paying students. CSI and Conestoga agree that a student has the right to invite a member of CSI to a student / faculty meeting, provided that 24 hours advance notice is given to faculty. This advance notice will ensure that all parties will have an opportunity to adequately prepare for the meeting.
Required Supplies and Texts
Faculty members are responsible for distributing a suggested minimum tool list, where applicable. Texts required for each course are included on the pertinent course outline.
After-hours Access Policy
Conestoga College's hours of operation are 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. The Waterloo campus does not allow entry into the building after-hours. However, if a student is working in the building, and wishes to remain past closure, they will be permitted to do so. Students must then sign-in at the Security Office and sign-out upon their departure. Students are expected to leave a classroom / computer lab, at any point, if requested to do so by Security, Maintenance and / or Cleaning staff.
The after-hours access is a privilege, not a right. This privilege requires that students follow established guidelines, rules and regulations to ensure safety and security of person and property. Additional details on the after-hours access policy can be found in the Student Guide.
A system of paid parking is in place at Doon, Cambridge, Guelph and Waterloo. Students must display a valid parking permit on their car windshield if parking on campus lots between 7:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Information on parking regulations and permits can be found in the Parking Services section of the College's website.
Classrooms, Computer Labs and Shop Access
Generally, no food is permitted in any classroom, computer lab or shop. In some areas, and at the discretion of faculty, beverages may be permitted in unbreakable, re-sealable containers; however, they must be kept away from any computers or other sensitive equipment.
Access to shops and use of equipment outside of regularly scheduled class times is not permitted without written permission from the faculty and the presence of either the faculty or technologist. For safety reasons access will only be granted for a minimum of three people.
Full-time courses at Conestoga are typically delivered during the following hours:
- Monday to Thursday, 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM
- Friday, 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM
In some instances, classes will be scheduled outside of this time frame to accommodate course, program, and college requirements.
Students are required to sign a Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning (CCITAL) Acknowledgment of Safety Training and Responsibilities Form (if applicable to program), which will be provided by the faculty at the start of the program.
Any student who is under the influence, or is deemed to be under the influence, of alcohol or drugs will not be allowed entry into the shop. The student will have to meet with the program coordinator and chair to discuss readmission to the shop. As per the Student Guide, students shall not "possess, use, manufacture, produce, distribute or aid in the use, manufacture, production or distribution of any controlled substance involving alcohol or drugs, except as expressly permitted by law." Violation of this could impact a student's continuance in the program.
For life threatening emergencies, from any landline:
DIAL 9 (for outside line), then dial 911.
Notify the Security Office at ext. 5555 whenever emergency response personnel are contacted. The Security Office should also be contacted whenever there is an individual requiring medical attention but is not life threatening or whenever there is a minor injury and no medical attention is required. Conestoga College (Doon) has a nurse on duty Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. who can be reached at ext. 3254.
There is an Emergency Guide located on Conestoga College's webpage for information on how to respond to emergency situations.
Faculty will discuss the following at the beginning of each level:
- Fire Exits - the closest fire exit and any alternates
- Fire Alarms - the location of the nearest pull station
- First Aid Locations – usually the closest Security Desk/Office
- Telephones - the nearest telephone to report accidents, illnesses or emergencies
- First Aiders - identify lab faculty and staff who are trained in first aid
All accidents and injuries must be reported by the student within 24 hours to the program chair or program manager and an Incident Report Form will be completed and submitted to the Occupational Health and Safety Office (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Students are encouraged to download Conestoga's free mobile safety app, which features emergency contacts, safety tips, a personal safety toolbox and maps.
Machine Operation and Safety
Machine operation and safety requirements will be provided by the faculty responsible for the delivery of each course, as necessary. Students will sign-off after they have received safety training relevant to the machinery in use. Students must not use any equipment for which they have not received training or which they do not feel comfortable using.
A student who does not follow appropriate safety measures and puts him/herself and/or others at risk, may be asked to leave the shop by the faculty, technologist or staff. It will be the student's responsibility to make up for the content missed while away from the shop.
Physical Protection / Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
For classes with a shop component, the following are the minimum PPE requirements:
- CSA-approved (Omega Symbol recommended) steel toe work boots or shoes
- CSA-approved clear-lensed safety glasses
Other physical protection requirements in the shop include:
- Long pants must be worn (shorts or capris are not permitted)
- No loose coats or clothing items
- Long hair must be tied back
- No rings, bracelets or loose jewelry
Any additional personal protective equipment requirements will be provided by the faculty responsible for the delivery of each course. Faculty and staff will monitor the student's compliance with college and class specific safety requirements and may restrict access to the shops if safety policy and requirements are not followed.
Use of Electronic Devices in Classrooms and Labs
Electronic devices may be used for learning or instructional purposes. Professors or technologists may request devices be put away when a safety issue or distraction occurs. Devices used for accommodations are always welcome. Unauthorized devices used in a testing situation constitutes an academic offence and the Academic Offences Procedure will be applied in this situation.
Conestoga Policies and Procedures
Student Protection Acknowledgment
A Student Protection Acknowledgement confirmation pop-up will appear when a student logs into the Student Portal on a yearly basis. This will direct students to policies and procedures relevant to their academic responsibilities. All Conestoga College wide academic policies and procedures are listed on the college website under "About Conestoga", "Policies and Procedures".
- Academic Credential Procedure
- Academic Dispute and Resolution Policy & Procedure
- Academic Offences Policy & Procedure
- Academic Recognition Policy
- Clearance of Academic Deficiency Policy & Procedure
- Co-operative Education Policy
- Discontinuance Policy & Procedure
- Evaluation of Student Learning Policy & Procedure
- Grading Procedure
- Graduation Requirements and Convocation Procedure
- Honours Policy & Procedure
- Program Withdrawal and Refund Procedure
- Student Code of Conduct Policy
- Student Concerns and Issues Policy & Procedure
- Student Feedback Policy
- Student Fees Policy & Student Fee Invoicing and Payment Procedure
Students must follow all of the policies and procedures for Conestoga College and it is expected that faculty will accept, fulfill and enforce these standards.
Attendance at Evaluations
Working Together to Plan Your Success
Your success matters! As an emerging professional, it is important that you demonstrate the same professional attitude to your program that you will be required to demonstrate to your future workplace. Regular, punctual attendance, and active participation in scheduled classes, field and clinical placements, labs and any on-campus and off-campus activities scheduled by your program will help you to understand and master the learning complexities of your program.
If extenuating, unplanned circumstances require you to miss a class, please note that it is your responsibility to follow up with individual faculty members and to acquire any missed information.
Attendance for Evaluations
Evaluations are critical components of each course and your overall success in your program. An evaluation is defined as a test, exam, presentation or any other formal assessment that contributes to your course mark that requires your presence, in class or on-line. Please note that in many programs across the College, every field placement, clinical day, and lab/shop day is considered crucial to your overall learning and success and the expectation is that you attend. If you are in a program that includes field or clinical placements, labs/shops, or any other on or off campus activities, it is essential that you discuss attendance requirements with your program faculty in order to understand expectations and consequences.
Your attendance for all evaluations is a requirement. If there is a concerning pattern of absence from evaluations across your program, you may be asked to meet with the Program Coordinator and/or Student Advisor to discuss strategies for success.
While circumstances such as religious holidays and academic accommodations may necessitate rescheduling of evaluations and will be accommodated, please note that there will be no special arrangements made for rescheduling evaluations due to personal conflicts such as work or vacation plans.
In order to facilitate a smooth implementation for all scheduled evaluations, both you and your program faculty have responsibilities which are listed below:
- To communicate all course obligations to you at the beginning of each semester through the Instructional Plan, including evaluation and presentation dates.
- To communicate, in writing, any unplanned extenuating circumstances involving the college, the program or the faculty members that may require changes to the course schedule.
- To provide alternative evaluation arrangements for missed evaluations/work due to recognized religious holidays as defined by the College Employer Council and documented accommodations through the Accessibility Office.
- To accept alternative evaluation requests in good faith and examine based on the unique circumstances and students' individual needs.
- To facilitate alternative evaluation arrangements as described below.
- To be informed about all course obligations and due dates.
- To inform your faculty member in writing of the need to reschedule evaluations due to a religious holiday as defined by the College Employer Council.
- If you have to be absent from any scheduled evaluation, report your absence on the Student Portal using the procedure below. You must do this prior to the start of the evaluation or risk receiving a mark of zero.
How to Report Absences on the Student Portal
- Log into the Student Portal and click on the 'Absence tab'.
- Indicate whether or not there is an assessment scheduled on that day by clicking 'Yes or No', as well as the reason for the absence (illness or other).
- Click 'Continue' to report the absence.
- Click 'I agree' to confirm the absence.
- You will receive a confirmation email that your absence has been recorded.
Important! Please note the following:
- The earliest you can record an absence for a particular day, is after 8:00 p.m. the day before. You must report each day you are absent.
- The Absence Recording System will show you as being absent for the day, starting from the time that you recorded the absence. For example, if you record your absence on a specific day at 11:00 a.m., the system will show you as being absent for all classes starting after 11:00 a.m. that day.
- If you are going to be present for any other classes on the day for which you recorded an absence, please let the faculty member know by attending or following up by eConestoga or college email.
- When you return to campus, make eConestoga or email contact immediately with the faculty member associated with the evaluation you missed in order to arrange appropriate follow up.
Valid Absence from Scheduled Evaluations Less than 20%
Conestoga recognizes that unexpected circumstances such as brief illness do arise during the semester and that a visit to a health practitioner may not be necessary. A valid absence from a scheduled evaluation worth less than 20% of the final grade which is not documented through the Accessibility Office or previously arranged due to religious holidays, will be accommodated once per course during the semester, subject to proper communication as described in the Student Responsibilities section above. If the evaluation cannot be rescheduled, (for example an experiential activity, lab or participation in a group presentation) reallocation of marks to another evaluation item will be determined by faculty and communicated to student via email to their eConestoga or college email address, or documented on an interview record and signed off by both faculty member and student.
Absence from additional scheduled evaluations worth less than 20% in the same course may require documentation for verification.
Valid Absence from Scheduled Evaluations 20% or More
Absence from scheduled evaluations worth 20% or more of the final grade that are not documented through the Accessibility Office or arranged due to religious holidays, will require appropriate documentation for verification, subject to proper communication as described in the Student Responsibilities section above.
Alternative Evaluation Arrangements
- Faculty members will determine alternative evaluation arrangements as appropriate.
- Students will complete any necessary forms.
- Students are required to complete the alternative evaluation as scheduled. If an evaluation cannot be rescheduled (for example an experiential activity or participation in a group presentation) reallocation of marks will be determined by faculty and communicated to student via eConestoga or college email, or documented on an interview record and signed off by both faculty member and student.
- Tests will be made up in the Conestoga Test Centre in the following week, or by individual arrangements with course faculty member.
- If the evaluation is to be conducted in the Conestoga Test Centre, students will be asked to show their ONECard* before permitted to write the test.
* Students taking part-time courses or in programs where OneCard is not provided such as Apprenticeship may be asked to show alternate ID.
Program Handbook Revision Log
Last Updated: June 2018
Conestoga College is dedicated to promoting an equitable environment where students have the opportunity to participate in all aspects of College life. In accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and the Ontario Human Rights Code, Conestoga College recognizes its responsibility and legal obligation to provide education, information and services in an accessible manner.
The Program Handbook is intended to provide general information with respect to program expectations. There may be individual accommodations and/or medical circumstances that require exceptions. For example, students may need to be accommodated for a missed assignment or evaluation. Students who are registered with Accessibility @ Conestoga are not required to provide an additional doctor's note for a missed or late evaluation. For more information about Accessibility @ Conestoga please drop in or visit our website.
We recognize that other extenuating circumstances may apply. Consult with your Professor. All exceptions based on extenuating circumstances must be approved by the Chair.