Student Practice Education

Welcome Students and Faculty!

Island Health is committed to supporting students through safe and healthy learning opportunities.

This page is for local, provincial, and national public and private post-secondary institutions, as well as other agencies that are interested in placing students in an Island Health facility relevant to a student’s field of practice or study.

Island Health recognizes the importance of students and continuous learning. Our goal is to provide a broad scope of learning opportunities, in collaboration with our academic partners, for students and practitioners from all health-care disciplines.

We welcome students’ energy, perspective and commitment to learning.

Practice Education Networks

Island Health uses a Practice Education Network (PEN) to advance student practice initiatives across the island.

PEN provides a forum for partnering agencies to collaborate, coordinate and advise on practice education activities and initiatives.

Observational / Job Shadow Experiences

Island Health has necessary processes established for observational or job shadow experiences at Island Health facilities. 

At this time, we are only considering requests for job shadow or observational experiences for Grade 9 students participating in Take Our Kids to Work Job Shadowing program.

International Student Requests

Island Health is not able to accommodate requests for student placements from internationally based schools at this time.

Medical Student Requests

All medical student placement requests must go through the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia.

Co-op Student Requests

Please visit our Co-op Students web page for information about our co-op placements.

Supporting Student Placements in Healthcare in British Columbia

The BC Student Practice Education website has been created to provide a one-stop resource for information related to student placements in healthcare in BC and acts as a repository for information, resources and materials to support the post-secondary institutions (PSIs), healthcare organizations (HCOs) and BC government ministries (Ministry of Health, and Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training) that collaboratively and collectively support health student placements in BC.

In August 2022 the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training released a Provincial Student Practice Education Policy to guide Student Practice Education in BC.  

All Other Requests

Please refer to the following section on Student Placement Requests.

Student Placement Requests

Post-secondary institutions must request placements through the national web-based system, Health Science Placement Network (HSPnet). This system is utilized across Canada. HSPnet provides a database and tools to support practice education goals:

Coordinating and managing placement requests process can be found by accessing the Practice Education Guidelines on the BC Student Practice Education website.


Before requesting a student placement, an Educational Affiliation Agreement (EAA) must be in place and signed by both the post-secondary institution and Island Health.

Do not contact the practice setting or an Island Health employee about student placement opportunities.

Once the agreement is signed, the post-secondary institution may enter the placement in HSPnet.

The EAA defines the roles and responsibilities of the health authority and the educational institution in providing practice education, and addresses the risks in the relationship for both organizations, their employees, patients, faculty and students.

Education Affiliation Agreement Process

How to request an EAA with Island Health?

Email Island Health’s Professional Practice Student Practice at

Island Health uses the standard provincial Educational Affiliation Agreement Template.

For more information, read the Affiliation Agreements in British Columbia (BC): Frequently Asked Questions.

Island Health does not accept modifications to the standardized provincial Educational Affiliation Agreement.

Student Placement Process

How do I submit a placement request?

  • Educational institution placing agency submits a placement request through HSPnet
    • Request should be sent at least three months before the placement start date
    • We ask that students and faculty do not contact unit or staff with placement requests. All requests are to be submitted through HSPnet.
  • Upon entering the placements in HSPnet students and faculty complete all necessary training and requirements.
  • If your program is outside of B.C. and you meet all of the requirements above, we will arrange guest access to HSPnet for you.

What are the requirements that a confirmed student and faculty need to complete prior to their placement at Island Health? 

Note: It is the post-secondary institutions responsibility to ensure their student(s) and faculty completes all the required pre-requisites prior to the start of the placement. 

Failure to complete the requirements may result in a delay of the placement.


Contact if you have any questions.