News

National Breath Test Program Training Offered in New Delivery Format

The RCMP's Forensic Science and Identification Services (FS&IS) and CPKN have joined forces to adapt the delivery of the National Breath Test Program training.

A combination of online and classroom components, this course will provide learners with a more flexible self-paced, interactive experience, and, in most cases, reduce the cost and time associated with the traditional training program.

National Breath Test Program
"This new learning approach responds to a growing demand from police services to reduce the duration of breath test training," says Randy Prokopanko, National Breath Test Program Coordinator. "While this new model streamlines training, it also standardizes program content for consistent delivery to users across the country."

FS&IS has worked closely with CPKN's development team to ensure a comprehensive and cost-effective program. Under the new delivery model, Part I, Breath Test Pre-Course Training, is delivered via CPKN's online learning portal, while Part II is offered via scheduled classroom sessions. Select theory-based components from the traditional training program have been adapted into eight mandatory web-based modules:

  • Roles of a Qualified Technician
  • Principles of Measurement
  • Principles of Breath Testing
  • Instrument Overview
  • Accessories
  • Interpreting Breath Test Results
  • Distinguishing the Impairing Effects of Alcohol
  • Submission of Exhibits

The Breath Test Pre-Course Training will require ten to fourteen hours of online study during which candidates can work according to their own pace and schedules. Access to this portion of the program is available from any Internet-connected computer, allowing candidates to work from home, the office, or other locations. While candidates can work independently through the Pre-Course, FS&IS instructors and Senior Field Instructors are available to respond to questions.

Part II of the training is in a classroom setting over an average five day period. The materials reinforce and expand on the principles and theories discussed in the Pre-Course with hands-on application of the approved instrument(s) (BAC Datamaster C or Intoxilyzer 5000C).

"Candidates who have piloted the blended program appreciate what e-learning provides - the opportunity to learn at their own pace and to review the material as many times as needed." says Liz Dittmar, a Breath Test Program instructor and primary contributor to the adapted program. "Because candidates have learned most of the theory prior to the classroom portion of the course, instructors are able to devote more of their time to instrument-based instruction and one-to-one operational problem solving."

The Breath Test blended learning program is currently being offered in select locations before full implementation in September 2007. At that time, all candidates seeking designation as Qualified Technicians will be trained via the two-part program.

For more information on the Breath Test blended learning program, please visit the CPKN website or contact:

Randy Prokopanko
National Breath Test Program Coordinator
Office Phone: 1-204-983-7363 E-mail:randy.prokopanko@rcmp-grc.gc.ca