Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

Adult Basic Education (ABE)


If you are a BC resident, you can take Adult Basic Education (ABE) programs tuition-free (applicable fees still apply).

ABE courses and programs help you, as an adult learner, to prepare for post-secondary studies and the workplace. (An adult learner means a person who is at least 19 years old or 18 years old and out of the public school system a minimum of 12 months.)

Our ABE programs are designed by the Ministry of Advanced Education and are similar to those offered by other BC post-secondary institutions.

Estimated Costs

If you are a BC resident, you do not pay tuition, only fees. If you are not a BC resident or have questions about applicable fees, contact us.


Choosing Courses

Credits you earned in high school may be applied toward the BC Adult Graduation Diploma, as long as you complete at least three courses as an adult learner. To succeed in your studies, you need certain skills in English and math. You can use self-assessments to help you decide where to start.

Your choice of courses depends upon your educational goals. If you plan to transfer to a post-secondary program, you must complete at least one advanced-level math course and four provincial-level courses. You might also require basic knowledge of a second language. Check admission requirements at BCCAT (British Columbia Council on Admissions & Transfer).

The number of courses you take at the same time depends on what you can comfortably handle. Many students start with one or, at most, two courses. You may find that your learning is more effective when you are able to focus on one course at a time.

You have anywhere from 7.5 to 9 months (30 to 36 weeks) to finish each course.

Getting Started

Please read about distance education and course delivery formats.


If you have applied for or been admitted to an OL ABE program, you may be eligible for credit based on an assessment of your prior learning. PLAR allows you to earn academic credits for knowledge, training and skills gained through your work and life experience.

Contact Us

We're with you at every step of your educational journey! Please contact us if you have any questions about the program application process, ABE courses and programs or any of the services available to you as an Open Learning student.