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Overview - 2021/2022

How many programs can claim that they teach you multiple employable skills? Well, there is at least one with Fanshawe’s Heating, Refrigeration, and Air Conditioning Technician diploma.

If the name sounds like a mouthful, it’s because as a student in this well-respected refrigeration technician course, you’ll learn a whole lot of skills. Throughout your refrigeration technician training, you'll learn how to view a building as a system and how to design, test, install and service mechanical, heating and cooling equipment. You’ll also explore hands-on lab work and theory.

After graduation:

After you graduate from our refrigeration technician course, you’ll be eligible to write the Gas Technician II and Gas Technician III certificate exams, putting you in a great position for employment. You’ll find job opportunities in development and testing laboratories, estimating, HRAC companies, equipment manufacturers and distributors, construction companies and technical support of large buildings. Not only will your refrigeration technician training allow you to work hands-on to improve the quality of life of other people, but you’ll have spent your days designing, building, or implementing equipment. What’s better than that?

If you want strong training that will help prepare you for a stimulating career in a number of different professions, consider this program. Whether it’s hot or cold, you’ll be ready to go.


Admission Requirements - 2021/2022

Admission Requirements

OSSD with courses from the College (C), University (U), University/College (M), or Open (O) stream WITH:
- Any Grade 12 Mathematics* (C) or (U)
Academic and Career Entrance Certificate (ACE)
Pre-Technology Ontario College Certificate
Ontario High School Equivalency Certificate (GED) AND:
- Any Grade 12 Mathematics* (C) or (U)
Mature Applicant with standing in the required course stated above

  • *Applicants who lack the required Mathematics may be admitted to the program subject to appropriate prior upgrading.

English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate proficiency in English by one of the following methods:

  • A Grade 12 College Stream or University Stream English credit from an Ontario Secondary School, or equivalent, depending on the program's Admission Requirements
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) test with a minimum score of 79 for the Internet-based test (iBT), with test results within the last two years
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic test with an overall score of 6.0 with no score less than 5.5 in any of the four bands, with test results within the last two years. SDS Program Requirements. 
  • Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL) test with an overall score of 60 with no score less than 50 in any of the four bands, with test results within the last two years
  • Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE) with a minimum score of 53, with test results within the last two years
  • A Cambridge English Test (FCE/CAE/CPE) with an overall score on the Cambridge English Scale of 169 with no language skill less than 162, with test results within the last two years
  • An English Language Evaluation (ELE) at Fanshawe College with a minimum score of 70% in all sections of the test, with test results within the last two years
  • Fanshawe College ESL4/GAP5 students: Minimum grade of 80% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 8, 75% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 9, or 70% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 10

Recommended Academic Preparation

  • Grade 11 or Grade 12 Physics (C) or (U)
  • Grade 12 English (C) OR Grade 12 Business and Technological Communication (O) 
  • It is recommended that students in the Academic and Career Entrance Certificate (ACE) program take a Technical or Apprenticeship Mathematics course within the ACE program.

Recommended Personal Preparation

  • Training or experience in any one of the following areas would be helpful preparation for this program: Physics, Chemistry, Electricity, Electronics, Refrigeration/Air Conditioning, Blueprint Reading, Environmental Science, Computer Programming.

Advanced Standing

  • Credit for any course in the program will be given to students who can demonstrate that they have the required skills to meet the objectives of the course.

Applicant Selection Criteria

Where the number of eligible applicants exceeds the available spaces in the program, the Applicant Selection Criteria will be:
  1. Preference for Permanent Residents of Ontario
  2. Receipt of Application by February 1st (After this date, Fanshawe College will consider applicants on a first-come, first-served basis until the program is full)
  3. Achievement in the Admission Requirements
  • Admission to the Fanshawe College Pre-Technology program does not guarantee admission in a subsequent year to the Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Technician program. Successful completion of the Fanshawe College Pre-Technology program, however, does enable the student to be given additional consideration when applying to the Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Technician program. The Pre-Technology program is the preferred designated preparatory program for admission to the Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Technician program.


Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Tech'n (Coop)-2021/2022

Level 1
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:
This introductory course provides for electrical troubleshooting techniques. Electrical troubleshooting techniques allow technicians to correctly diagnose electrical problems associated with heating, refrigeration, and air conditioning equipment. Combining theoretical and practical work, this course explores basic electrical theory and concepts, electrical hazards and applicable codes. It also introduces electrical testing equipment and safe working practices and procedures.
MACH-1175Basic Gas Technician6
Students will learn hazards and safety procedures that relate to working conditions, and the safe handling and procedures for materials they will be using. Students will be introduced to common fasteners, hand and power tools used in the HRAC field. Students will study the origin and properties of natural gas and propane, identify the characteristics of complete and incomplete combustion, upper and lower explosive limits, potential sources of ignition, carbon monoxide and other by-products of incomplete combustion. In addition, students will examine the natural gas and propane installation codes and code adoption documents, Ontario regulations, and standards associated with the manufacturing, testing, installation, and servicing of natural gas and propane appliances, components, and equipment.
MACH-1019Introduction to Gas Appliances2
This course trains student HRAC technicians to interpret information from appliance manufacturer's installation and service manuals, service bulletins, and safety directives. It also familiarizes students with important sections of a gas appliance manufacturer's installation and service manual and explores the association between the manufacturer's installation instructions and the Natural Gas and Propane Installation codes. In addition, students will be introduced to electrical drawings, mechanical drawings and the purpose of various charts, graphs and tables. This course examines the operating characteristics, features, and methods of heat transfer in natural gas and propane appliances, as well as explaining the purpose of venting and the different types of venting materials used on gas appliances. Customer relations are also studied.
MACH-1020Propane & Natural Gas Piping Systems3
Piping, tubing, hose, and fittings used with natural gas and propane must be installed and tested in accordance with Natural Gas and Propane Installation Code. This course includes the interpretation of the gas code as it pertains to piping and tubing systems. Through a combination of theory and hands-on shop classes, students learn to identify piping, tubing, and fittings, pressure-testing requirements, and purging requirements. Students will also learn how to size pipe systems and the requirements for the installation of polyethylene pipe and fittings, for water, vent, and underground gas service.
WELD-1013Welding Technology/Fabricating Skills2
This course trains students to operate oxy-acetylene equipment to perform various cutting and welding operations. Basic M.I.G. welding skills are taught as well as metal fabricating techniques.
PSYC-1025Human Relations 13
This course is designed to assist the student in developing a greater understanding of the basic social and psychological principles of human behaviour. Emphasis will be on the cultural elements of interpersonal behaviour, socialization and personality development, the self-concept, perception, verbal, nonverbal and listening skills. As a result, the successful student will acquire practical life skills, essential for both personal and career development.
WRIT-1039Reason & Writing 1-Technology3
This course will introduce technology students to essential principles of reading, writing, and reasoning at the postsecondary level. Students will identify, summarize, analyze, and evaluate multiple short readings and write persuasive response essays to develop their vocabulary, comprehension, grammar, and critical thinking.

Level 2
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:
ELEC-1015Basic Electricity5
HRAC technicians must understand how electrical power is supplied and accessed, as well as the various methods and devices used to ensure that the electricity is distributed safely. This course examines amperage service, ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI), electrical bonding to gas piping, single-phase and three-phase power supply, electrical hardware, types and ratings of fuses and breakers as well as types and gauges of wire. It also introduces students to thermocouple and power pile DC millivolt systems. In addition, it focuses on appliance wiring, schematic diagram design and interpretation. Using furnace simulation boards and gas-fired furnaces, students will design and draw schematic and wiring diagrams for natural draft, gas assisted and high-efficiency furnaces. Students will then learn to wire and troubleshoot operational faults.
MECH-5018Piping & Tubing Systems-Adv2
This course examines gas code requirements for industrial and commercial propane and natural gas piping systems intended for gas pressure systems exceeding 2 psi.. Piping layout, drawings, symbols, joining methods, identification of underground piping and pressure testing are studied. Welding safety, certification and procedures are also included.
MACH-1026Press Regulators/Meters, Fuel Containers3
A thorough understanding of the principle elements of gas pressure regulators and their operation is necessary in order to properly install and service gas equipment. This course explores the need for pressure regulators, examines the code and regulation requirements, explains the basic operation of a regulator, compares different types of regulators, regulator selection requirements, location and piping practices as well troubleshooting common regulator problems.
MECH-1080Refrigeration & Air Conditioning-Theory3
This course studies the 'Refrigeration Cycle': theoretical and actual compression cycle. Students will be introduced to refrigerants used in the industry with respect to pressure, temperature and application. It also explores types of compressor and starting mechanisms, operation and application, methods of refrigerant and simple system control as well as safe use of hand tools and electrical meters. Students learn about the operation of domestic gas-fired refrigerators. In addition, students learn how to work safely in accordance with all applicable acts and regulations.
MECH-1081Appliance Venting3
This course familiarizes students with the venting operation of gas-fired appliances and how appliances are categorized so that venting systems and system components match an appliances particular requirements. Students learn categories of vented appliances, review draft definitions and effects, venting system components, gas code and vent sizing requirements. This course also examines key aspects of venting design for fan-assisted and draft hood-equipped appliances as well as high temperature plastic venting associated with high efficiency appliances and power vented water heaters.
MECH-1082The Building as a System2
This course examines prevailing construction methods and technologies that support the concept of a building as a series of interdependent parts. Students will learn about air distribution systems, balancing and code requirements. Key components of the building as a system are taught including the relationship between heat, moisture and air flow and how to minimize negative impacts on the building. Principles of heat loss and gain are also studied.
SHMT-1018Sheet Metal Fabrication 13
This course teaches practical geometry used in the layout of sheet metal fittings. Students will demonstrate the use of lines, angles and plane figures in sheet welding. Students will also learn to read and interpret residential blueprint drawings and specifications, produce the blueprints of required sheet metal fittings, and demonstrate layout and pattern development of sheet metal fittings.
COOP-1020Co-operative Education Employment Prep1
This workshop will provide an overview of the Co-operative Education consultants and students' roles and responsibilities as well as the Co-operative Education Policy. It will provide students with employment preparatory skills specifically related to co-operative education work assignments and will prepare students for their work term.

Level 3
Gen Ed - Take a 3 credit General Education elective course
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:
This course covers control concepts and components associated with gas fired appliances including: the basic control system, operating controllers, limit and safety controllers, combustion and safety controls, ignition control modules, valves, regulators and motors. Numerous practical shop projects assist in reinforcing the theoretical concepts.
SHMT-3009Sheet Metal Fabrication 23
This course is designed to give students the necessary practical sheet metal experience required to successfully fulfill their duties as a heating, refrigeration and air conditioning technician. The majority of class time is spent performing practical assignments such as fabricating new sheet metal fittings required to perform residential changeovers involving the installation of new equipment into an existing HVAC system.
MECH-1083Domestic Appl & Space Heating4
This course examines the general requirements of space heaters including: room heaters, wall furnaces, baseboard heaters, infrared heaters, fireplaces, and construction heaters. This course covers the different types of gas ranges, servicing of gas ranges, oven controls and their calibration, testing burners and ignition systems. The installation and service requirements for clothes dryers, moisture exhaust venting, and dryer burner ignition systems are also studied.
MECH-1084Water Heaters & Hydronic Heating Systems4
The installation, servicing and sizing of gas fired water heaters, combination systems and boilers are studied in this course. This course explores the various types of water heaters and boilers and their associated controls, accessories, piping layout, removal and installation procedures.

Level 4
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:

Group 1
MECH-1086Forced Warm Air Heat/Conv/Add-Ons5
This course looks at typical furnace installations, factors that must be considered when sizing a furnace, as well as cleaning, adjustment procedures, efficiencies, venting, and the operation of diagnostic equipment used in troubleshooting forced-air furnace. Students also examine guidelines for converting appliances, media filters, electrostatic filters and electronic air cleaners that can be used with forced-air furnaces. In addition, students study the operation requirements and service procedures for various types of humidifiers.
COMP-1391HVAC Design Computer Applications3
This course introduces the concepts of computer assisted design. Industry recognized software applications are used to solve a variety of heating, refrigeration, and air conditioning operating problems by applying computer modelling software and technology to correct problems or produce satisfactory building design.
MECH-1087Air Handling2
This course looks at the properties and characteristics of air, the operation of the return and supply air duct system, air flow in the duct system, service and adjustment procedures for air handling devices, blower speed, cfm, horsepower and static pressure. Codes and industry standards that apply to air flow are examined.

Group 2
TAKE BUSI-1005 OR BUSI-1103 OR INNV-1001
BUSI-1005Introduction to Business Processes3
This course explores the various functional areas of business in Canada and demonstrates the interrelationship among these areas. Students are introduced to many concepts, including major business trends, the role of government in business, marketing, operations, employee-management issues, financial resources management, business ethics and social responsibility.
BUSI-1103Introduction to Small Business Concepts3
This introductory course will examine some of the theoretical concepts and practical experiences necessary for effectively running a small business. A wide variety of topics such as the social and ethical responsibility of a contemporary business, the importance of human resource and financial resource management, and the current trends in Canadian business will be studied.
INNV-1001Innovation Applications3
Organizations and individuals need to be innovative to succeed in the complex and rapidly-changing global marketplace. In this course you will learn the fundamentals of innovation and how innovation applies to your discipline or field.Using this foundational knowledge, you will apply the novel and adaptive thinking processes and tools presented in the course to complete an innovative learning project in collaboration with other students.The project will be based on a real-world scenario with a defined scope as chosen by your professor. The project may involve external live clients and a multi-disciplinary approach.Throughout the course, novel and adaptive thinking skills as well as collaboration skills will be evaluated through self assessment.This course is designed to give students in certificate and diploma programs a foundation in innovative thinking.

Add'l Req
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:
Normally taken in Levels 3 or 4
MECH-1085Air Conditioning Lab Applications4
This hands-on course provides introductory training to install, service, maintain and update residential air conditioning systems, select appropriate types of condensers, evaporators, compressors, refrigerant, and flow controls. Students also learn joining and connection operations that conform to industry code, proper use of recovery equipment, troubleshooting refrigerant problems and use of electronic scales for charging.
MECH-1088Refrigeration Lab Applications4
This hands-on course provides introductory training to install, service, maintain and update refrigeration systems, select appropriate types of condensers, evaporators, compressors, refrigerant, and flow controls. Students also learn joining and connection operations that conform to industry code, proper use of recovery equipment, troubleshooting refrigerant problems and use of electronic scales for charging.

Gen Ed - Electives
Take 3 General Education Credits -
Normally taken in Level 3

Program Residency
Students Must Complete a Minimum of 22 credits in this
program at Fanshawe College to meet the Program Residency
requirement and Graduate from this program

Careers - 2021/2022

Career Opportunities

This program has a well established reputation throughout industry and graduates continue to find opportunities for interesting and challenging employment. They are employed in development and testing laboratories, estimating, sales and service departments of heating, refrigeration and air conditioning companies, equipment manufacturers and distributors, construction companies and technical support of large buildings.

More Information - 2021/2022

A Co-operative Education Program
A Two-Year Ontario College Diploma Program
Program Code: MHT2W
Campus Code: WC (WC - Woodstock)
September Admission
15 week terms
Academic Calendars available at


Woodstock/Oxford Regional Campus: 519-421-0144

Program Description

The Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Technician (Co-op) program will provide you with the academic studies and the practical experiences through which you will see a building as a system. Opportunities will be provided to develop and demonstrate skills in welding, sheet metal, electrical, plumbing, heating, refrigeration and air conditioning trades. As a Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Technician, you will be involved in many stages of design, testing, manufacturing, installation and servicing of mechanical, heating and cooling equipment.

With a combination of lab work and theory, this program is recommended for those who are interested in an apprenticeship with a mechanical, heating and cooling contractor or a position in the sales and service sector providing technical support. Graduates are eligible to write the Gas Technician II and Gas Technician III certificate exams.

Co-operative Education

Students who fulfill both the academic and co-op requirements of the program will be eligible to graduate with a Co-op Endorsed Diploma.  More information about Co-operative Education can be found at

Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Relate effectively to heating, refrigeration, and air conditioning supervisors, coworkers, and customers;
  2. Work safely and in accordance with all applicable acts, regulations, legislation, and codes to ensure personal and public safety;
  3. Select and use a variety of heating, refrigeration, and air conditioning tools and equipment safely and properly;
  4. Solve math and applied science problems required to effectively install and maintain heating, refrigeration, and air conditioning systems, and associated components;
  5. Prepare and interpret electrical, mechanical, and piping drawings;
  6. Install, service, and troubleshoot heating, refrigeration, air conditioning systems, and associated components;
  7. Develop strategies for ongoing personal and professional development, that will lead to enhanced work performance and career opportunities, and keep pace with industry changes.

Program Pathways

For information about Program Pathways visit

Program Details

More details

2022/2023 academic year: Refer to the More Info tab to view offerings for the 2022/23 academic year. Canadian students can start applying in early October for programs with Sep. 2022, Jan. 2023 and May 2023 start dates through

Canadian Students

Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2022 September

International Students

Start Dates
2022 September
Program Code

Program Coordinator:

Mike Kapin

Day Time
Ontario College Diploma
60 weeks