Upgrade your skills for school, work and everyday life

Fanshawe offers a number of academic upgrading (AU) options to help you qualify for admission to a college program or apprenticeship; to upgrade your skills for employment; or to learn foundational literacy skills that are essential to everyday life.


Programs designed with your unique needs in mind

Whether your goal is to prepare for further education or to transition to the workforce, Fanshawe's upgrading programs are personalized to meet your needs.

Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS) program | FREE


The Ontario Literacy and Basic Skills (LBS) program help adults to develop and apply communication, numeracy, interpersonal and digital skills to achieve their goals. The LBS program is FREE and serves learners who have goals to successfully transition to employment, apprenticeship or post-secondary education. Upon successful completion of the LBS program, students are eligible to continue in the ACE certificate program (see below).

Program features

As part of the program, you'll receive:

  • Information and referrals;
  • An assessment of your literacy skills;
  • A personalized learner plan;
  • Training;
  • Follow-up support.

Who is eligible?

  • 19 years of age or older
  • Ontario resident
  • Out of school for one full year or more
  • With or without a high school diploma
  • Proficient in English
  • Completion of admission assessment

Some applicants 16 to 18 years of age may also be eligible.

Next steps

Contact us at academic_upgrading@fanshawec.ca to get started with a one-on-one intake appointment and free assessment of your writing, reading and math skills in London, or connect with your preferred regional campus:

Simcoe | CCES@fanshawec.ca

St. Thomas | cesstt@fanshawec.ca

Aylmer | cesayl@fanshawec.ca

Woodstock | cholt@fanshawec.ca

Fanshawe offers a variety of academic upgrading options across most of our campus locations for your convenience.

Note: Due to COVID-19, academic upgrading has moved online to offer virtual classes for your health and safety.

Location LBS ACE GED prep OSLT ADC
London Downtown Campus X X   X X
Simcoe/Norfolk Regional Campus X X X   X
St. Thomas/Elgin Regional Campus (& Aylmer) X X X    
Woodstock/Oxford Regional Campus X X X  
  • Step 1: Learn more about Fanshawe's academic upgrading options by expanding the programming sections above.
  • Step 2: Ask questions about academic upgrading options by contacting us at 519-452-4430 x6501 or academic_upgrading@fanshawec.ca in London, or connect with your preferred regional campus at the links above.
  • Step 3: Staff will book a one-on-one virtual or phone appointment with you to assess your goals and determine the best way to help you on your academic upgrading journey.

Frequently asked questions about the ACE program

Find answers by expanding the commonly asked questions below. If you still have questions, please contact us as academic_upgrading@fanshawec.ca or complete the form below.

Can I take a single ACE course?


In order to qualify for the tuition-free Academic and Career Entrance (ACE) certificate program, you must complete four (4) courses in the program. If you need to upgrade a single course to qualify for admission to a post-secondary program at Fanshawe, you may pay to register in a course without enrolling in the full ACE program. See the above section on upgrading prerequisite courses, or email academic_upgrading@fanshawec.ca for more information about our next intake of upgrading classes.


I graduated from the ACE program years ago. Can I still take a science course for free?


Yes! Please email academic_upgrading@fanshawec.ca for more information about our next intake of upgrading classes.


How long is the ACE program?


The ACE program itself takes approximately eight (8) weeks to complete. However, the diagnostic assessment beforehand determines whether or not you are ready to begin the program. If you need more upgrading before starting ACE, it could take up to eight months to complete all of the necessary upgrading including the ACE program.


I am not quite 18 years of age yet. Can I still register in ACE?


Yes, some students may qualify for the ACE program even if they are below 18 years of age. Please email academic_upgrading@fanshawec.ca for more information about determining your eligibility.