Heavy Equipment Techniques

Post-Secondary Programs
Credential Earned: College Certificate (1 Year)
Campus: Timmins
Program Length: 2 Semester

Program Codes
T093 (PC) – Timmins Campus

With Northern’s Heavy Equipment Techniques certificate, you’ll become a critical player in maintaining the heavy-duty machinery that keeps our economy on track. From order systems and preventive maintenance to customer service and repairs, you’ll master every aspect of the motive power industry along the way.

In a hands-on environment focused on teamwork, personal safety and problem solving, you’ll learn to diagnose and service a variety of power system problems, including hydraulic, electrical, electronic, fuel, braking, steering, suspension, and more.

You’ll gain confidence through practice and, after just one year, graduate with a level of skill and craftsmanship that will give you an edge in the workplace.

This program can help you identify basic heavy duty equipment power system problems, inspect and test basic heavy duty equipment components and systems, and use a variety of test equipment and schematics to support heavy duty equipment operation and maintenance.

This program provides a basis for you to:

  • Develop desirable work attitudes and a keen sense of responsibility, particularly with regard to personal safety.
  • Acquire sound theoretical training to meet the challenges of today’s increasingly complex work environments.
  • Reinforce fundamental skills of the trade through exposure to practical applications.
  • Develop high standards of craftsmanship, problem solving skills and personal pride in your trade.

Contact Information

For questions about being admitted into the program, please contact Northern College Admissions at admissions@northern.on.ca or by phone at 705-235-3211 ext. 7222.

For questions about the content of the program, contact the Program Coordinator.

Matt Dupuis
Program Coordinator
Tel: 705-235-3211 ext. 2196
Email: dupuism@northern.on.ca

Student Success & The Northern Experience

This program can help you identify basic heavy duty equipment power system problems, inspect and test basic heavy duty equipment components and systems, and use a variety of test equipment and schematics to support heavy duty equipment operation and maintenance.


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Course Information

Course descriptions can be found below.

Please note, course information is based on our current offering and is subject to change. Current students can find more information on courses in their student account.

If you have questions or require program information for previous academic years, please contact the Program Coordinator.

2024-2025 Academic Year

Semester 1

Students learn the fundamentals of DC electrical and electronic systems, using problem solving techniques and circuit board testing. Topics include basic electrical and electronic theory, problem solving using Ohms’s Law and use of Digital Multimeters.

42 Hours

Communication Fundamentals will provide students with an opportunity to reinforce their use of Standard English, develop their abilities to communicate effectively in the workplace and improve their capabilities with computer technology, particularly in using Word, Excel and ProDemand to produce accurate and professional documents. As well, students will be required to use information technology like Blackboard and their own computing devices to research information online to learn about their trade pathway, find technical information using an industry system like ProDemand, and to complete course assignments.

28 Hours

This course introduces the student to health and safety in their home, in society and within an occupational setting. Students learn about the social and personal benefits of safe work practices and the methods to best prevent accidents or injuries. Students will review the role, right and responsibilities of an individual in today’s health and safety conscious world. Students also learn how to read and interpret the Occupational Act and Regulations.

42 Hours

This general education course will provide students with an introduction to Canadian Indigenous Nations’ history, sovereignty, land titles, cultural history and current critical issues. Topics addressed include the content of Indigenous rights, economic and social development, community and political processes, and business law and policies, justice & social services. Canadian Indigenous History and Relations is a general education course that has been incorporated into all programs at Northern College.

42 Hours

This course introduces students to careers in the motive power sector. Students will also use various service information systems required to successfully inspect, test and repair motive power vehicles. Students will access online service information to create work orders, research motive power system operations, identify component locations and electrical diagrams, and locate service information to aid in diagnostics and repairs.

28 Hours

Students will learn the basic mathematics and measuring instruments needed in the repair trade for mechanics and will relate the basic math for measuring and problem solving in repair and maintenance.

28 Hours

Topics include shop safety and safe working habits, proper vehicle lifting practices, hand, shop and power tool identification and selection, use of precision tools, learn about fasteners, torque, bearing and seals. The students will put into practice what they have studied in theory class.

56 Hours

The continual introduction of innovative techniques and more complex equipment is resulting in increasing demands for trades people who are not only skilled in the practical aspects of the trade, but who have a sound theoretical knowledge of all procedures associated with the servicing and repairing drive train systems of motor vehicles. The general aims of this course are to provide the theoretical knowledge, and practical instructions to complement the work experience of Auto Service Technician apprentices.

70 Hours

This course is designed to assist beginning students with the basic principles of welding. The emphasis is placed on practical applications and to assist the student in developing more advanced skills.

28 Hours

Semester 2

This course is required in the second semester of the Motive Power Technician – Automotive Service, Heavy Equipment Techniques, Motive Power Technician – Heavy Equipment and Mechanical Technician and Techniques – Industrial Millwright and Mechanical Technician – Welding Fitter trades programs at Northern College. The purpose of this course is to give students an opportunity to develop and enhance basic communication skills as required in the workplace. Students will also be required to use a computer to complete assignments and other course work, work independently and collaboratively, follow instructions and complete assigned tasks on time.

28 Hours

Students will be able to explain the fundamentals, rules and laws that govern fluid power systems. Students will perform mathematical calculations to find pressure, force, and area. Students will learn the symbols of components and be able to identify and explain the principles and purpose of the components found in a hydraulic circuit.

42 Hours

This course is designed to introduce students to the diesel fuel system. Students will learn about the properties of diesel and alternative fuels and be able to map the fuel system and explain the purpose of each component of the fuel system. The students will have the opportunity to identify and describe systems, demonstrate the use of diagnostic tools and repair various problems as it relates to the engine fuel system and its component.

56 Hours

This course continues the development of knowledge and skills required to achieve success in the motive power industry. Students will review precision measurement and percent applications, as well as learn about ratios and proportions, geometry, and graphing.

28 Hours

This course is designed to provide students with a fundamental understanding of the operating principles, types, and designs of the modern internal combustion engine. Students will be able to explain how the engine produces torque and identify short block and cylinder head components. Students will have the opportunity to practice the skills learned using special tools and measuring instruments in the practical section of the course.

70 Hours

This course continues the development of knowledge and skills required to maintain and diagnose motive power electrical systems. The subjects of study include the following systems: electromagnetic devices, wiring and wire repairs, advanced circuit diagnosis, electrical schematics, flooded batteries, and starter motors. The students will have the opportunity to identify and describe systems, demonstrate the use of diagnostic tools, and recognize and solve problems using a strategy-based approach.

42 Hours

Students are introduced to motive power type steering, suspension, and braking systems. The subjects of study include the fundamentals of steering systems and components, tires, wheels, hubs, and hydraulic braking systems. Students will have the opportunity to practice the skills learned in the practical section of the course.

70 Hours

This course continues the development of welding and safety. The emphasis is placed on practical applications including ARC welding, power tools, and metal shears.

28 Hours

Graduate & Career Information

Articulation Agreements

A number of articulation agreements have been negotiated with universities and other institutions across Canada, North America and internationally. These agreements are assessed, revised and updated on a regular basis. Please contact the program coordinator for specific details if you are interested in pursuing such an option.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of this program may find employment as a Heavy-Duty Equipment Mechanic. Graduates may be employed by companies that own and operate heavy equipment, heavy equipment dealers, rental and service establishments, railway transport companies, and urban transit systems.

  1. Identify basic heavy duty equipment system problems using critical thinking skills and strategies and by applying fundamental knowledge of heavy-duty equipment operation, components and their interrelationships.
  2. Identify, inspect, and test basic heavy duty equipment engine components and systems in compliance with manufacturers’ recommendations.
  3. Identify, inspect, and test basic heavy-duty equipment electrical and electronic components and systems in compliance with manufacturers’ recommendations.
  4. Identify, inspect and test basic power train components and systems in compliance with manufacturers’ recommendations.
  5. Identify, inspect, test and maintain basic suspension, steering, and brake components and systems in compliance with manufacturers’ recommendations.
  6. Disassemble and assemble heavy duty equipment components to required specifications.
  7. Use a variety of test equipment and schematics to assess basic heavy duty equipment fuel systems and subsystems.
  8. Inspect and test basic heavy duty equipment systems and subsystems using basic knowledge of hydraulics and pneumatics.
  9. Use information technology and computer skills to access data concerning repair procedures and manufacturers’ updates.
  10. Prepare logs, records, and documentation to appropriate standards.
  11. Apply communication skills to improve customer service.
  12. Complete all assigned work in compliance with occupational, health, safety, and environmental law; established policies and procedures; codes and regulations; and in accordance with ethical principles.

Admissions Information & Requirements

Admission Requirements

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD)
  • Grade 12 English (C, U)
  • Grade 11 Math (C, M, U)

Or equivalent


Academic prerequisites for this program may be obtained free of charge through Academic Upgrading.

Applicants who do not have a high school diploma or equivalent and will have reached the age of 19 years on or before the start of the program must undergo academic testing and may be required to complete Prior Learning Assessment & Recognition (PLAR) process to demonstrate equivalency of admission requirements prior to admission into a program.

For more details, please contact the Admissions Office at 705-235-7222 or admissions@northern.on.ca.

Additional Requirements for International Students

In addition to the admission requirements, international students must have proof of English Proficiency and meet the requirements below.

1. Proof of Senior High School Diploma/Certificate

2. English Proficiency (we will require one of the following):

  • IELTS Academic International English Language Testing System: a minimum overall score of 6.0 must be achieved with no individual band score under 6.0; however, we will accept one band at 5.5.
  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) – Internet Based Test (iBT) overall minimum score of 79
  • PTE (Pearson Test of English) Academic – Graduate Diploma: 58+

If your country of citizenship has English as its official language, we may accept alternate proof of English Proficiency.

All educational documents must be submitted in English and will be dependent on the country of citizenship.

For more information, please contact admissions@northern.on.ca.

Tuition, Fees & Payments

Tuition and fees are updated yearly for the upcoming Academic Year by May 1.

Current amount may be based on last years amounts and are subject to change. Ancillary fees vary by campus and program.

If the tuition and fee information for international students does not appear on this page, visit northerncollege.ca/international/tuition to see amounts for general programs.

Please refer to your Student Account for the most up-to-date information.

Student Year Campus Program Code Tuition Ancillary Fees Total Fees
StudentDomesticYear1CampusTimmins - PCProgram CodeT093Tuition$2,720.56 Ancillary Fees$899.50 Total$3,620.06
StudentInternationalYear1CampusTimmins - PCProgram CodeT093Tuition$14,382.00 Ancillary Fees$1,422.58 Total$15,804.58
Tuition & Payment Information

Find Your True North.

At Northern College, you’re a part of a community.

From your teachers to support staff and administrators, we are all here to help you get an education and make some lasting connections along the way.

Your success is incredibly important to you, so we provide student supports to help you achieve your goals. From study assistance and accessibility services to mental health supports and financial aid, we’ve got you covered.

Each of Northern’s campuses boasts exercise facilities, a gym, cafeteria, study areas and a library – places that you can go to help keep you focused as you work your way through your studies. The communities we call home are incredible places, filled with amazing people and things to do.

Student Supports & ServicesTimmins Campus

timmins campus building

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