Requirement shift aims to make trades ‘more accessible’

Last modified: November 30, 2021 at 9:27am

The GNWT is changing its trade entrance requirements – the standards that must be met before beginning an apprenticeship – as they were creating barriers to certain careers.

The territory did not state what the specific changes are but, in a news release, implied the requirements would be downgraded as they did not align with other educational standards.

After this article was first published, the territory provided a one-page guide that sets out what the new requirements will be, though not the change from the prior requirements.


Prospective apprentices must either complete specific high school courses, achieve a mark of 70 percent or more in the Trades Entrance Exam, or complete all five General Educational Development tests.

“The high school courses currently required are higher than the NWT’s graduation requirements and are therefore creating barriers to accessing careers in the trades,” the territorial government stated.

“While all students are encouraged to complete the high school graduation requirements, amending the trade entrance requirements will reduce barriers to entry into the trades in the NWT and better align the NWT to Alberta’s trade entrance requirements.”

The changes come into effect in January 2022.


Employment minister RJ Simpson said in a statement that the changes “strike a more appropriate balance between making trades accessible to as many people as possible, while ensuring that potential apprentices have the academic capacity to successfully complete technical training.”