Upcoming Sessions

Starts 24 September 2024

Prep Course for the NRCan Foundation Level Exam

clock Virtual Real-Time Classroom - CDT Time -

Niels Anthonsen,

Early bird fee
$745/ Before July 30, 2024

Register now

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

Program Overview

Are you looking to conduct home energy audits? Take the first step toward becoming an NRCan-Registered Energy Advisor (REA) with CIET’s Foundation Level Prep Course. This comprehensive program prepares you for the Foundation Level Exam by providing an overview of building science principles and sound business practices for REAs.

Over three days, participants learn to complete hands-on geometric and arithmetic calculations and unit conversions, interpret house plans, and examine entire building envelopes from fenestration to mechanical and renewable energy systems.

Upon completing the course and passing NRCan’s Foundation Level Exam, participants may advance to CIET’s Energy Advisor Prep Course and become a full-fledged REA.

Please note that the exam is not administered during the course. To schedule and pay for the exam, please visit How to become an NRCan-Registered Energy Advisor



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.


In this course, you will learn to

  • Use the “house as a system” concept (environments, building envelopes, mechanical systems, and occupant activities). 
  • Complete geometric and arithmetic calculations and unit conversions. 
  • Interpret house plans. 
  • Recognize Canadian architectural house types. 
  • Navigate the residential building design process, construction and renovation techniques, and high-efficiency design principles. 
  • Comprehend mechanical systems including domestic water heating, spaceheating, ventilation, heat pumps, cooling systems, and safety considerations when accessing existing and new home constructions and work sites. 
  • Prepare to take the NRCan Foundation Level Exam. 


This course is ideal for

  • Future Registered Energy Advisor 
  • Construction professionals 
  • Service organization (SO) staff 
  • Heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning experts, electricians, and other technicians 
  • Individuals working in residential energy efficiency  

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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...

Policies and FAQ

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

Do you have questions? Consult our FAQ for answers. 

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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!