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Why Polytechnic?

Humber offers a polytechnic style of learning. What's a polytechnic?

Here's the short version.

Being a polytechnic means that our programs are career-focused and responsive to changes in competitive global job markets. Humber professors bring a wealth of relevant industry experience to the classroom. Class sizes are small, and simulation labs and work placements bridge the gap between classroom and industry. We put theory into practice from day one, which is important because work-integrated learning means you will have experience working in your industry before you graduate! When you leave Humber you will be a professional, poised and ready to make your mark.

The Polytechnic Teaching Model

Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning subscribes to the polytechnic model of education.

The polytechnic model of education is made up of four tenets: technology related education, experiential teaching methods evaluated on competency based outcomes, strong ties with industry, and applied research that aim to solve problems faced by industry and provide students with work integrated learning (WIL).

Humber’s programs are skills-intensive and technology-based. The most prominent differentiators between our programs when compared with universities, is how employment-connected our credentials are. To fulfil our mandate to the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development as a conduit for meeting emerging labour market needs our programs undergo annual consultations with a Program Advisory Committee (PAC), whose purpose is to advise Humber on its programs’ curriculum. These annual consultations assure Humber students that their curriculum is regularly updated to reflect the developments in their industry and that they are gaining competency in the skills required for gainful employment.

Program Advisory Committee (PAC)

A Program Advisory Committee (PAC) meets at least twice annually to ensure all Humber programs are relevant and align with industry needs. Each PAC is voluntary and compromised of eight to 12 members external to the college (e.g. employers, graduates, business and industry leaders, representatives from professional and accrediting bodies, and agencies) who review every postsecondary degree, diploma, and certificate program offered by Humber.

The mandate is to provide advice on a number of key indicators including field placements and co-ops, employment prospects, student awards and scholarships, curriculum, technology, and public relations. Program Advisory Committees play an integral role in maintaining the integrity and strategic direction of programming at Humber.

Employment-Connected Credentials

Employment-connected credentials refers to the contemporary teaching model that focuses on fostering competencies (skills) that can be applied in industry. The connection between curriculum and industry allows students to develop the specific skills that employers expect them to bring to the job. Faculty works closely with industry to clearly define the competencies students should be able to demonstrate when they graduate and establishes reliable assessments for measuring progress.

This approach diverges from the traditional education model as it underpins the importance of mastering skills that align with industry using a variety of methods to help students synthesize and apply knowledge. Competency-based education challenges the one-size-fits-all method of teaching and learning, and works to develop competencies at the student's pace over time.

Teaching Method & Faculty

Faculty is focused on leveraging industry experience to develop a comprehensive curriculum that aligns with evolving employer needs. Shaping students' understanding of key concepts and learning outcomes, and facilitating an ideal learning environment that bridges the gap between classroom and industry is the institutional teaching model.

Faculty works directly with students to foster learning using a variety of methods including group discussions and team work, applied research projects, exposure to industry, and active learning initiatives. It is critical that faculty build a foundation for students that connects learning outcomes to the specific needs of industry by way of application and experimentation.

Work-Integrated Learning (WIL)

Work Integrated Learning (WIL) is the process where students learn from experience in educational and practice settings such as apprenticeships, field placements, co-ops, internships, and applied research projects.

WIL addresses young graduates’ lack of work experience when entering labour markets by providing relevant industry experience that they can leverage for future employment opportunities. Students exposed to WIL gain a competitive advantage in understanding how to articulate what they can do for a company and how they can do it.

Types of Work-Integrated Learning  

It starts with the in-class experience

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We are focused on your future

With technology rapidly advancing, a Humber education will help you chart a sure path to your career and keep you in the know about changing trends in the professional world. Our programs blend theory and hands-on learning, giving you the opportunity to gain practical experience in-class and on-the-job. You’ll learn from professors with industry experience who know what skills are in demand.

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Types of Programs

You’ll have the option to select from a wide range of credentials including Apprenticeships, Certificates, Diplomas, Advanced Diplomas, Honours Bachelor's Degrees and Ontario Graduate Certificates. You’ll be able to get the credit you deserve and further your education through many pathways and transfer opportunities. With our diverse experiential learning opportunities ranging from placements, internships, applied research projects and more, you’ll be even closer to your dream career by the time you graduate.

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Getting Started

At Humber, we recognize that not everyone who comes to us is looking for exactly the same thing, so we've created this guide to help you find the resources you need to get started. The Guide to Getting Started includes how to determine if you are a Secondary School Applicant, Mature Student or Transfer Student as well as how to find and narrow down your program search.

Get to know the six Humber faculties

Humber is made up of six faculties, each with a reputation and extensive industry and community partnerships. Our programs are delivered in state-of-the-art facilities and creative spaces by professors with extensive real-world experience. Humber's Centres of Innovation offer students the opportunity to join interdisciplinary teams with faculty and our partners to solve complex, real-world problems and gain valuable experience while making a contribution.


Whether you’ve completed a postsecondary program or are looking for a change, we want to give you the credit you have earned.

  • 80+ Pathways from Ontario Graduate Certificates to Master’s programs at partner institutions.
  • 100+ Humber diploma to Humber degree pathway opportunities.

Join the Humber network and get industry-recognition

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Graduates Annually



of employers believe Humber graduates are well-prepared for work*

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of employers are satisfied with the quality of work*



of Humber grads are employed six months after graduation*

People with checkmark icon95%

of graduates would recommend Humber*

*We’re proud to have the highest graduate employment rate of the GTA colleges at 83.6% and the highest employer satisfaction rate of the GTA colleges at 96.6% based on Colleges Ontario’s key performance indicators for college graduates in 2022-2023.