QAQFF-AD QA/QC for Pharmaceutical and Food

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  • One-year advanced diploma
  • September entry date
  • Notre Dame Campus, Winnipeg
  • International applicants please visit Academic Program, Dates and Fees for a listing of programs for international students, current availability and online application instructions

This program provides hands-on practical skills in the concepts of quality (QA/QC) in a manufacturing environment that is controlled by good manufacturing practices, quality systems, and regulatory agencies.

Take this program if you have a diploma in science or a Bachelor of Science. You will be introduced to the following topics and concepts:

Quality Assurance (QA)

  • Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and associated guidelines for drugs, natural health products, cannabis and food
  • Good documentation Practices (GDP) and Data Integrity (DI)
  • Validation for equipment, methods, cleaning and process
  • Quality systems such as investigations, document management systems, Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), change management system, recall management and inspection management
  • Food safety systems including hazard analysis critical control points and preventative control plans

Quality Control (QC)

  • Acceptance sampling methods
  • Testing of incoming materials and finished products according to industry standards
  • Operation of various laboratory equipment such as UV-Vis spectrophotometer, FTIR spectrophotometer, AAS spectrophotometer, GC and HPLC systems.
  • Basic Microbiology laboratory techniques
  • QC charts and data trending

Prior to starting the program, you will be invited to attend a program overview information session.

Admission Requirements

If your academic history includes any of the following, please visit for important information: post-secondary studies at an institution other than Red River College; Modified (M), English as an Additional Language (E), or GED high school courses; or home schooling.

However, if you apply within 6 weeks of the program start date, admission requirements are due within 5 days of applying.

Regular Admission Requirements

  1. Relevant Diploma or Degree
    • Submit proof of graduation from or enrolment in the final year of:
    • If you provide proof of enrolment at time of application, your official final grades indicating successful completion must be submitted by July 15 for fall enrolment or by the deadline specified in your admission letter
    • Post-secondary transcripts must have been issued within 6 months prior to your application date, and submitted in a sealed envelope directly from the post-secondary institution.
    • If you are required to complete an English language assessment, do not submit your transcripts until requested to do so.  See English Language Requirements (ELRs) for more information.
  2. English Language Requirements (ELRs)
    • Have you successfully completed the equivalent of three years of full-time secondary (high school) education in Canada, the United States, or an ELR exempt country where English was the language of instruction? To view a list of ELR exempt countries click here.
      • If yes, you appear to meet English language requirements. Submit your transcripts for verification purposes.
      • If no, you are required to submit proof of meeting an English language requirements option.  If you choose to complete an English language assessment, review this program's approved assessments and required levels.
      • If you completed all of your education in Canada, the United States, or an ELR exempt country in English but did not complete three years of high school, submit your transcripts for review.

English Language Assessments

English Language AssessmentMinimum Required Levels
L - Listening, S - Speaking, R - Reading, W - WritingLSRW
AEPUCE (Academic English Program of University and College Entrance )
CAEL (Canadian Academic English Language)
CLB (LINC) (Canadian Language Benchmark (Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada))
Canadian Citizens: LINC programs are not available.
CanTEST (Canadian Test of English for Scholars and Trainees)
RRC Institutional or Official CanTEST accepted EXCEPT for the Medical Laboratory Sciences (MLS) program. The MLS program requires the Official CanTEST (the RRC Institutional CanTEST will not be accepted).
IELTS - Academic (International English Language Testing System)
TOEFL-iBT (Test of English as a Foreign Language - internet Based Test)

Locations, Dates and Fees

Next Estimated Term 1 Start Date (subject to change)

Location Start Date Apply Link
Notre Dame Campus Aug 31, 2020 Apply now

Costs (estimates only; subject to change)

Program/Student Fees
Year 1
Books and Supplies
Year 1
Program/Student Fees (International)
Year 1
1Includes the cost for safety goggles and a lab coat

Red River College is a participating institution in the HigherEdPoints program. Through this program, students are able to convert Aeroplan® Miles and TD Points into funds to help cover their tuition. Family members and friends can also contribute to a student’s education by converting their loyalty points - anyone can donate their points to an individual student.

Visit the HigherEdPoints website for more information about the program and/or to set up an account to convert your points.

Courses and Descriptions

(Click the course name to view the description of the course)
Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)
In addition to Transfer of Credit from a recognized post secondary institution, other RPL processes are available for RPL courses. Click here for more information. For courses with no RPL, please check for additional contact information.
COMM-1180Resume Development and Interview Skills
More Information

This course provides students with the skills to conduct a job search, outline transferable skills, develop a resume, and adapt a resume to a job specific search. Students will also learn about different interview approaches, and through role-play activities will be able to experience and practice the interview process.

MBIO-1001Applied Microbiology
More Information

This course is an introductory course designed to provide students with the basics of microbiology which leads into specific areas important in the pharmaceutical and food industry. Emphasis is placed on the fundamental basics of microbiology such as microbial plating, isolation, identification of microbes using the microscope and basic environmental monitoring.

PHAR-1050Laboratory and Report Writing
More Information

This course focuses on the writing skills required of students for success. The course assists students in gaining confidence and proficiency in keeping notes, laboratory books, reports and audit documentation.

PHAR-1051Analytical Instrumentation 1
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Students will learn instrumental methods of analysis used in a testing laboratory. This course focuses on the following: electrochemical (potentiometry, conductometry, potentiometric titration) and spectrophotometric (ultraviolet, visible, infrared spectroscopy and atomic absorption spectroscopy) analysis. Experiments are based on testing standards used in the industry and are designed to simulate real work environments.

PHAR-1052Quality Control Analysis 1
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Students will acquire the fundamentals of quality control analysis, and the principles of laboratory control and compliance for the pharmaceutical, natural health, food, and cannabis industries. This course covers basic laboratory operations, records and statistical methods of data analysis relevant to QC activities. Students also learn pharmacopoeia requirements for raw materials testing.

PHAR-1053Quality Assurance for Pharma and Food Quality Systems 1
More Information

Quality Assurance (QA) for Pharma and Food Quality Systems 1 provides and in-depth review of Good Documentation Practices (GDP), Data Integrity (DI) and Quality Systems (QS) such as Document Management, Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), and Investigations. This course focuses on providing students with hands-on QA experience applying regulations (GMP) and utilizing Quality Systems to complete industry level Quality Assurance activities such as creating, reviewing, and revising Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for drugs and APIs and investigating nonconformances such as deviations, out of specification products, and customer complaints using root cause analysis and quality risk management tools to determine corrective and preventative actions.

PHAR-1054Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)
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This course provides an in depth review of the relevant Acts, Regulations - Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and associated guidelines for Drugs (sterile and non-sterile), Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API), Natural Health Products (NHP), Food and Cannabis. It is designed to introduce students to the fundamentals and application of regulation including personnel, training, qualification, sanitation, pest control, facilities, equipment, material control, manufacturing control, packaging/labeling control, shipping/receiving and storage.

PHAR-1055Applied Validation
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This course focuses on validation activities such as equipment qualification (DQ, IQ, OQ and PQ), cleaning validation, method validation, computer validation and process validation (non-sterile and sterile processes) to ensure consistency in processes, procedures, methods and products. This course provides hands on experience of validation activities such as protocol and report development, standard operating procedure writing, and change control assessment.

PHAR-1056Food Safety and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP)
More Information

This course provides an in depth review of relevant Food Safety Systems with a focus on HACCP. It is designed to introduce students to the fundamentals and application of food safety and HACCP including hazard identification and analysis, determination of critical control points and associated limits, monitoring, verification and record keeping. Students will also obtain hands on experience applying GMP, HACCP, and Food Safety systems by creating a prerequisite program, developing a HACCP Plan, designing an allergen control plan, developing a food defense plan and utilizing sensory evaluation to determine product shelf life.

PHAR-1057Facilitating Workplace Training
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This course develops an understanding of train the trainer programs. Students will learn the basic principles of training design, instruction, assessment, and evaluation through hands on activities in individual and group training situations.

PHAR-1058Professional Development and Capstone Project
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This is a capstone project based course that provides students with an industry partnered project that presents an opportunity to practice team building, conflict resolution, and project management skills.

PHAR-2051Analytical Instrumentation 2
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This course covers the following topics: fundamentals of analytical separation, planar and column chromatography, gas and liquid chromatography, and capillary eletrophoresis. Students use computer software associated with the instrumentation. Experiments are based on testing procedures used in the industry and are designed to simulate real work environments.

PHAR-2052Quality Control Analysis 2
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In this course students learn essentials of sampling, testing of raw materials and finished products. Testing methods of solid dosage and liquid products for potency, impurities and performance quality are discussed in detail. Students become familiar with specific statistical tools used in trend analysis and laboratory investigations. Students expand their knowledge of process control, adjustment, and finished product testing.

PHAR-2053Quality Assurance for Pharma and Food Quality Systems 2
More Information

Quality Assurance for Pharma and Food Quality Systems 2 provides an in-depth review of Quality Systems (QS) such as Change Management, Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), Recall Management, inspection/Audit Management, and Annual Product review. This course focuses on providing students with hands-on QA experiences applying regulations (GMP) and utilizing Quality Systems to complete industry level Quality Assurance activities. These include creating, reviewing, following and revising SOPs for Natural Health Products and Food including cannabis, creating and analyzing change control reports, conducting a recall from initiation to closure using a recall strategy, conducting an internal audit to identify areas of non-compliance and writing an audit report.

PROJ-1007Project Management Basics
More Information

This course provides the fundamental aspects and principles of project management including life cycle, integration, planning, organization and communication. Students will learn about work breakdown structures, diagramming, and resource allocation. The course examines issues affecting project management including risk management, quality, conflict, and team building.

Recognition of Prior Learning

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is a process which documents and compares an individual's prior learning gained from prior education, work and life experiences and personal study to the learning outcomes in College courses/programs. For more information, please visit

Graduate Employment Report

Red River College surveys its graduates on an annual basis to collect data related to the graduates’ employment status, salary, occupation and skill use. In addition, graduates are asked to indicate their level of satisfaction regarding the education they received at Red River College.

Visit for graduate satisfaction and employment reports.

Contact Information

For general information about this program or how to apply, contact Enrolment Services at 204-632-2327.

For detailed program information, contact:

Curtis Aab
Program Coordinator

How to Apply

For information on how to apply to this program, follow the link below.

Student Evaluation of Program

Every year Red River College surveys students, in all full-time programs, to learn more about their college experience. The questionnaire includes questions about students’ experiences with College programs, facilities, and services offered.

Visit for student evaluation of program reports.

College Support Services

Red River College is committed to student success and provides valuable support services to assist in helping students make the most of their time at RRC.

Visit for more information.

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Red River College endeavours to provide the most current version of all program and course information on this website. Please be advised that classes may be scheduled between 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. The College reserves the right to modify or cancel any course, program, process, or procedure without notice or prejudice. Fees may change without notice.