Harmonization Transition of Landscape Horticulturist

Effective September 1, 2018 the program standards and curriculum for the Red Seal Landscape Horticulturist Apprenticeship are changing as a result of the Harmonization initiative to align training standards nationally for all Red Seal Trades.

All new Red Seal Landscape Horticulturist Apprentices beginning their technical training after September 1, 2018 will manage their apprenticeship under these new standards. Apprentices will need to ensure the technical training they are registering for is the new program standard. Training institutions will differentiate between course offerings by stating it is Harmonized until all levels under the new program content have been phased in and prior content levels are phased out. All level 1 block training classes after September 1st, 2018 will be in the new format.

All foundation programs, where the program begins after September 1, 2019, will be delivered in the new format.

Current apprentices who are registered as a Landscape Horticulturist apprentice, but have yet to complete any technical training, will automatically be transferred to the new program. Hours recorded for work experience will be included in your transfer.

Current apprentices who have completed one or more levels of technical training have two options for completion; either, option #1, train out of the old program while technical training for the old standard is still available; or, option # 2 they will have to transition to the new program, and study for the gaps in training before taking technical training in the new format.

Option # 1: Implications of training out the old program:

Apprentices will need to complete technical training levels before they are phased out

Levels 2, 3, & 4 will be offered in the old format between now and 2020. Level 4 will be run through 2021. Level 3 may be run in 2021 if there are enough active apprentices that require the training level; however, this is not certain at this point.

Current Level 2 – Must be completed by September 2020
Current Level 3 – Must be completed by September 2021
Current Level 4 – Must be completed by September 2021

The IP Exam taken at the end of Level 4 has change to the new 2018 standard

Currently the exam is based on the 2018 RSOS. Review the “Apprentice Resources for Technical Training & Exams” for more study resources.

Apprentices will have the same standards for completion they began with including the requirement of 6,480 workplace hours. They will receive the same “Red Seal Landscape Horticulturist” certification as apprentices’ training under the new standard. Tax credits and grants remain unaffected.

Option #2: Implications of transferring to the new program:

Once an apprentice switches to the new training standard they cannot go back to the old standard

If a current apprentice who has completed one or more levels of technical training transfers to the new program and completes a level of technical training under the new program format, they will not be able to switch back to the old program.

Apprentice work hours requirement will go down by 1200 hours to 5,280 hours

Apprentices may have to wait longer than they planned for technical training

Level 2 technical training will not be available until September 2019,

Level 3 will be offered beginning September 2020,

Level 4 will be offered beginning September 2021.

Apprentices who have completed one or more levels of technical training under the old standard, will have gaps in their training they will need to fill

This means, there will be curriculum material they will have to catch up on, or material they will have to repeat). There is some new curriculum in the new program standard, but the greatest change is the order in which topics are delivered.

For example, there will be material a student studying in the old format would have been learned in Level 4 but is now being taught in Level 1.  Students who are past level 1, who want to change to the new program standard will need to learn this new material before taking their next level of technical training.

There is enough time for current apprentices to train out of their technical training. However, for apprentices that want to or need to transition to the new program standard, the ITA will provide a gap training course for apprentices who have completed level 2 technical training, who want to transition to the new program for level 3. This will provide a transition for the majority of apprentices who would be affected by transitioning to the new standard, including Foundation Program students who want to carry on with the apprenticeship for levels 3 & 4.

Students transitioning at level 1, level 3, or level 4 will be responsible for learning both the new material and, material they have missed under the new standard. If there is a demand, HortEducation.ca may create a supplement manual of the new material and missed material for levels 2, 3, and 4.


Links to further information:

For information regarding transition, see the Program Update

For transition details, see the full Transition Plan

For details of changes to the program, see OPSN 2018 009

Harmonized Training Standard Program Profile

Harmonized Training Standard Program Outline

HortEducation.ca Harmonized Red Seal Landscape Horticulturist Current Standard Apprentice Handout pdf download

HortEducation.ca 2012 Red Seal Landscape Horticulturist Former Standard Apprentice Handout pdf download