Upcoming Sessions

Starts 13 February 2024

Prep Course for the NRCan Foundation Level Exam

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Niels Anthonsen,

Early bird fee
$745/ Before December 19, 2023

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clock 3 days, 9:00 am - 4:30 pm CST

Starts 27 February 2024

Cours préparatoire à l'examen de base de RNCan - In French

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Véronique Groulx,

Early bird fee
$745/ Before January 2nd, 2024

Register now

clock 3 days, 9:00 am - 4:30 pm EST

Program Overview


Are you looking to conduct Energy Audits in residential homes? The Greener Homes Initiative aims to provide up to 700,000 grants for homeowners to engage Energy Advisors to conduct assessments and advise on retrofit opportunities.

Taking CIET training and writing the Foundation and EA level exams is one of the faster ways to become a full-fledged NRCan-registered Energy Advisor involved in the initiative.

The CIET NRCan Foundation Level Prep Course is the first step toward becoming a residential Registered Energy Advisor (EA). The course provides participants with an overview of building science principles and a review of sound business practices for EAs.

During this three-day course, participants prepare for the Foundation Level exam by learning to complete hands-on geometric and arithmetic calculations and unit conversions, how to interpret and understand house plans, and looking at the whole building envelope from fenestration to mechanical systems to renewable energy systems.

The CIET NRCan Foundation Exam Prep Course is intended to prepare participants to take NRCan’s Foundation Level Exam. Upon completing the course and passing the exam, you will be able to take the next step and attend the CIET Energy Advisor Prep Course and eventually become a full-fledged EA.


Note: You must pay and schedule a time to write the exam directly on NRCan’s website. The exam is not  administered during the preparation course.

Have you already passed the Foundation Level Exam and are you looking for the next step? Click here for more information on the CIET Energy Advisor Prep Course.


Key Learning Objectives

During this course, participants will learn:

  • The four elements of a house as a system concept (environment, building envelope, mechanical systems, and occupant activities).
  • How to complete hands-on geometric and arithmetic calculations and unit conversions.
  • To interpret and understand house plans.
  • About typical Canadian architectural house types.
  • The residential building design process, construction and renovation techniques, and high-efficiency design principles.
  • All about mechanical systems, including: Domestic water heating; Spaceheating; Ventilation; Heat pumps; Cooling systems; The safety considerations when accessing existing and new home constructions and work sites.


  • Individuals wanting to become an energy advisor and conduct home energy assessments.
  • Construction professionals.
  • Service organization (SO) staff.
  • HVAC experts, electricians, and other technicians.
  • Individuals with an interest in energy efficiency and a desire to understand what makes a building comfortable and energy efficient.
  • Individuals with an understanding of building sciences.

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Construction and Renovation of Low-Rise Housing

  • Typical Canadian architectural house typology
  • Building design process and construction techniques using appropriate construction terms and definitions
  • Renovation techniques using appropriate construction terms and definitions
  • Recognising highly efficient design principles for new constructions and renovations
  • Interpreting plans


  • Performing geometric and arithmetic calculations accurately
  • Executing unit conversions between metric and imperial

Safety Considerations When Accessing Home Construction or Renovation Sites

Building Envelopes (new and existing homes)

  • Building envelope barrier systems (air, vapour, moisture, weather/wind, thermal)
  • Windows, skylights, and doors

Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (new and existing homes)

  • Common terminology
  • Mechanical heating, cooling, and ventilation systems
  • Operation of heating, ventilation, and cooling systems
  • District energy systems

Renewable Energy Systems and Their Properties

Building Science Principles and the House-as-a-System Concept

  • Elements that make up a building and their interdependences
  • Physical processes that occur within a building (heat, air, and moisture flow)
  • Indicators of indoor air pollutants

Certification Process

How can I become an energy advisor?

You will find all information on Natural Resources Canada’s website. Notably, to register as an energy advisor to deliver services under EnerGuide Rating System v.15, energy advisor candidates must demonstrate proficiency by:

  • Passing the Foundation Level exam
  • Passing the Energy Advisor exam
  • Being affiliated with a service organization


What is the energy advisor exam process?

For more details on the exam process, you are invited to read the Candidate Exam Handbook by Natural Resources Canada.

Exam related information can be found at https://nrcan.ysasecure.com.

  • If you wish to register for the exams, you must first complete the Register section.
  • Then, you can purchase the exams in the Products section.
  • To find the locations where exams are administered, consult the Exam Centres section.

For each of the exams, you are invited to read the appropriate Exam Competency Profiles found in the ERS-EnerGuide Rating System v15/ERS v.15 Competencies section of the File Exchange website. To obtain login details, please contact us at nrcan.homes-maisons.rncan@canada.ca. In the Subject section, please write “EG”.

How can I become a licensed service organization? 

You will find all information on Natural Resources Canada’s website. Notably, you must:

  • Be an individual or legal entity incorporated or registered in Canada
  • Show proof of liability insurance
  • Have a minimum of 2 years of experience and knowledge related to energy efficiency and building science in the residential housing sector
  • Employ key personnel in the organization such as service organization managers, quality assurance specialists or energy advisors who have successfully passed the relevant NRCan exams


Where can I find reference documents?

To access reference documents such as the EnerGuide Rating System v.15, the exam competency profiles as well as Candidate Exam Handbooks, please contact nrcan.homes-maisons.rncan@canada.ca.  

CIET has also developed two supplementary study guides to help participants with items identified as the most difficult, namely the Foundation Level Exam Study Guide and Energy Advisor Exam Study Guide.

This course includes...

Access to a private SharePoint website with additional training material, references, and links.


Policies and FAQ

Click here, to see our course postponement and cancellation policy.

Do you have questions? Consult our FAQ for answers. 

Send us your question

Send us an email and we will respond as soon as possible.

This is to inform you that the course date is too close to be able to ship hard copies of the material to you on time. If you are willing to use the material in secured PDF, receive the material later (likely after the course) and pay upon registration, please click OK to continue the registration process. Please note that the shipping process will start only when the course fees are paid in full and delays are to be expected. Many thanks!