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Student Practice Education

Welcome to BC Children's Hospital and thanks for choosing us  for your placement! We look forward to having you and hope your experiences are challenging and rewarding.
Placement process


A program's capacity to accept student practicum requests is based on operational requirements and abilities.

Due to our limited capacity and support, we give priority to local students first.

Our Hospital accommodates thousands of students annually. We prioritize placements as follows:

  1. Schools in the greater Vancouver and surrounding area
  2. Schools throughout BC
  3. Schools throughout the rest of Canada
  4. Schools outside of Canada

Need more information about priorities? Please see the Health Sciences Placement Network's Practice Education Guidelines of BC (Section 1-1: Placement Process).



For you to have a placement with us, your school must be in partnership with BC Children's Hospital.

Before we can confirm a placement, a signed Affiliation Agreement outlining the roles and responsibilities between both organizations is required. This agreement addresses the risks in the relationship for the organizations and their employees, patients, clients, residents and students.

To set up an agreement, your school contacts the Academic Practice Coordinator at three to six months prior to a placement start date.

Your school should provide the coordinator with:

  • a link to the school website
  • the program outline & learning objectives
  • contact information of the individual with signing authority

If your program is approved, we will send the provincially approved Affiliation Agreement to the school. We do not sign agreements that have been prepared by schools; we sign our provincially approved Affiliation Agreements only.

To get an idea of what an Affiliation Agreement covers, please see the Affiliation Agreement Template (PDF).

Need more information about Affiliation Agreements? Please see the PHSA Student Practice Website and the Health Sciences Placement Network's Practice Education Guidelines of BC (Section 1-1: Placement Process).


Placements are coordinated through the Health Sciences Placement Network of BC (HSPnet).

Schools are to seek placements on behalf of students and to submit the placement requests through HSPnet. We do not accept placement requests directly from students.

Schools that are not HSPnet users, or schools based outside of British Columbia, should email us at

Need more information about provincial expectations? Please review the Practice Education Guidelines of BC.


Each discipline we support may have unique procedures relating to the placement process or orientation. Please choose your discipline to see specific information.

In order for a medical student to be eligible for placement at a hospital in British Columbia, students from other medical schools must contact the University of British Columbia, Faculty of Medicine, as they organize all medical student placements in British Columbia.

  • Registered nurse (RN)
  • Registered psychiatric nurse (RPN)
  • Licensed practical nurse (LPN)
  • Specialty education
  • Clinical nurse specialist (CNS)
  • Nurse practitioner (NP)
  • Masters of Nursing (MN) programs
  • Social worker
  • Dietetic
  • Paramedic
  • Music therapist
  • Psychologist/counsellor
  • Audiologist
  • Respiratory therapist (RT)
  • Cardiac technologist
  • Medical laboratory assistant (MLA)
  • Medical laboratory technician (MLT)
  • Nuclear medicine technician
  • Pharmacy technician
  • Sonographer
  • Unit clerk/coordinator (UC)
  • Medical office assistant (MOA)
  • Hospital support specialist (HSS)


Orientation is divided into three sections. Please take the time to read through each section carefully, as well as complete and submit all required documents.

Every student and instructor placed at our hospital must complete the components outlined below.


All orientation requirements need to be completed and up to date before beginning your practicum. Proof of completion may be requested. Unfortunately, if any component applicable to you is not completed or up to date, you may be asked to leave your placement until all requirements have been met.

Part 1: Student Practice Education Core Orientation (SPECO)
All students and Faculty entering a Lower Mainland health authority for a practice education experience must complete the following five online courses before commencing placement.

  • Student Practice Education Core Orientation
  • Infection Control
  • Waste Management
  • Code Red

Part 2: PHSA Student Orientation - Mandatory


Please review the following as you are expected to follow these guides.

Photo identification
School identification must be worn on the left upper chest and be visible at all times while on placement, preferably ID with a photo. Only instructors and preceptorship/ internship students requiring access to locked units will be granted BC Children's Hospital/BC Women's Hospital identification, unless otherwise indicated by the unit manager.

Computer training
All students in a clinical placement will require access to the electronic patient records system, Cerner. Refer to the Mandatory Training page for more detailed information.

Hand Hygiene Policy (PDF)

Communicable diseases outbreak

In the event of an outbreak, implementation of specific infection control protocols is necessary. During outbreaks, restrictions for students may be required in order to help contain and prevent the spread of infection as well as protect the health and safety of the student. The level of the restriction is based on the degree of the outbreak. If a whole facility is deemed an outbreak location, all students may be prevented from entering the facility. Need more information? Review the Practice Education Guidelines of BC.

Dress code
Dress must reflect a professional appearance and maintain safe standards of care. All students and faculty are to be appropriately groomed: neat, clean and tidy at all times. When giving direct patient care, hair longer than shoulder length is to be tied back and moustaches or beards are to be neatly groomed. Cosmetics should be moderate and jewellery limited to non-dangling small earrings, plain chain, plain rings and watches. Prosthetic nails are not acceptable. Shoes are to have the toe and heel closed. Scented products are to be avoided, ie. lotions, perfumes, etc.

Social Networking

Discipline-specific information
Ensure you complete all applicable orientation requirements before starting your placement by reviewing the Discipline Specific Page.

Faculty that are new to our hospital or returning after an absence greater than one year must be oriented before commencing a placement. This is to be done by another faculty member with previous experience on the appropriate site/unit. If this is not possible, please contact us at to arrange for site orientation at least 3 weeks before a placement is scheduled to begin.

Your instructor, preceptor and/or supervisor will orientate you to your site.


Know our expectations of you by reviewing the provincially approved Practice Education Guidelines of BC.


Directions & Parking

Due to high demand and limited spacing, special rates will not be offered to students or instructors. Alternatively, public transit is available within a close proximity to all facilities and often recommended. Directions if you are taking transit to BC Children's Hospital.

Bike Rack Locations
Bicycle racks are available for use near main entrances.


Booking Education Rooms

Academic partners may book meeting rooms on-site within 7 days of the desired date. Please contact Intercampus Operations for further information. Fees may apply.

Education for Non-staff

Classroom-based education and E-learning modules/courses are listed in the Learning Hub under Workshops and Courses.

Simulation Centre
The Simulation Centre, in the E6 wing in the Shaughnessy building, includes several rooms that closely resemble a typical emergency or acute care environment. High-fidelity, sophisticated, baby, child and adult computer-based, human-patient simulators are available, as well as other low and medium fidelity simulators and task trainers. Simulators allow physicians, nurses and other health care staff to practice clinical skills, interprofessional communications and teamwork, so that they become fully confident and competent to manage critical situations in health care. Simulations allow practice to a mastery level with no risk to patients.

Study and Learning Commons


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Cell phones

Cell phone use is permitted site-wide, unless otherwise indicated. Please use cell phones respectfully.

Food and Amenities

Lockers and showers

Lockers for students are very limited and not available in all areas. Your practicum supervisor will provide you with further specifics. Students are strongly advised to not bring valuables with them on their practicum.

Shower facilities are available on site. Speak to your practicum supervisor about the nearest location to your assigned work area.

Smoke Free

The entire C&W grounds are smoke-free. This means that staff, patients, and visitors are not permitted to smoke on our site.

The security team is here to provide safety and security as it relates to staff, patients, and faculty assets including students and instructors. While on site, if you require assistance or an escort to your car during evening or early morning hours, please call Protection Services at (604) 875-2999.

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