BC's Indigenous Public Post-Secondary Institute

Nsyilxcen Language Fluency Certificate Program


Department: UNIVERSITY TRANSFER
Program Delivery Location: Merritt & Community
Credential: University Transfer
Format: Full-Time
Start Dates: September

Nsyilxcen Language Fluency Certificate Program

The Nsyilxcen Language Fluency Certificate & Diploma programs are foundational and innovative programs with a focus on Nsyilxcen content in the language fluency curriculum. Admission is open to all learners within the respective Indigenous communities, particularly those wishing to enhance their knowledge, understanding and conversation ability of Indigenous languages. The program is designed to be delivered year-long through the Fall, Spring and Summer semesters.


The Indigenous Language Fluency Certificate & Diploma is approved by the local language authorities in their respective communities. Successful completion of the program will allow graduates to work with community members and First Nations organizations.


An Nsyilxcen Language Fluency Certificate is awarded upon the successful completion of 33 credits as prescribed below. An overall minimum GPA of 2.33 is required. Upon successful completion of the certificate, students have the option to enroll in the diploma for further study.


Admission Requirements



  • Grade 12 or equivalent or mature student status;

  • English Studies 12 or English First peoples 12 or English 12 or English 060; and

  • A letter of intent detailing reasons why one is interested in the program.

Certificate Completion Plan
An Nsyilxcen Language Fluency Certificate is awarded upon the successful completion of 33 credits as prescribed below. An overall minimum GPA of 2.33 is required. Upon successful completion of the certificate, students have the option to enroll in the diploma for further study.
  • INLG-180 - Dynamics of Indigenous Language Shift
  • INLG-181 - Issues, Principles and Practices in Language Revitalization
  • NSYL-110 - Nsyilxcen Language: Pronunciation - Learning the Sounds
  • NSYL-111 - Nsyilxcen Pronunciation - Root Syllables
  • NSYL-112 - Introduction to Writing Nsyilxcen
  • NSYL-120 - Nsyilxcen Everyday Social Language
  • NSYL-121 - Nsyilxcen Everyday Action and Interaction
  • NSYL-122 - Nsyilxcen Vocabulary in Place and Socio-Spatial Context I
  • NSYL-130 - Nsyilxcen Entry Tools: Introduction to Full Immersion (Formerly NSYL 152)
  • NSYL-131 - Special Topics - Nsyilxcen Immersion (Formerly NSYL 151 & INST 192)
  • NSYL-132 - Nsyilxcen Interpersonal Interactions through Immersion Learning (Formerly NSYL 153)
  • Diploma Completion Plan

    The Nsyilxcen Language Fluency Diploma is awarded to recognize the successful completion of the Nsyilxcen Language Fluency Diploma Program. In addition to the successful completion of the Nsyilxcen Language Fluency Certificate, students are required to take the courses as prescribed below and complete a total of 66 credits to complete the diploma. An overall minimum GPA of 2.33 is required.

    Note: Apart from the required courses below, each learner will also need to take one upper level UT Transition course.

  • IHMS-160 - Fieldwork Education Practicum
  • INLG-260 - Ways of Knowing: The Syilx Land Culture (Formerly INST 245)
  • NSYL-210 - Nsyilxcen Linguistics/Literacy (Formerly INST 255)
  • NSYL-211 - Nsyilxcen Translation/Transliteration (Formerly INST 120)
  • NSYL-220 - Nsyilxcen Vocabulary in Place and Socio- Spatial Context II (formerly NSYL 257
  • NSYL-221 - Nsyilxcen Structure and Syntax
  • NSYL-230 - Nsyilxcen Connections: Context Through Immersion Learning
  • NSYL-231 - Nsyilxcen Place and Time: Context Through Immersion Learning (Formerly NSYL 154)
  • NSYL-330 - Nsyilxcen Immersion: Pod/Cohort Learning Through Multiple Mentors
  • NSYL-350 - Nsyilxcen Immersion: Introduction to Mentored Special Topics
  • Course Listing for this program

    IHMS-160 - Credits: 3.000
    Fieldwork Education Practicum
    The fieldwork course provides the link between the classroom and the work place. Under supervision, students will integrate core concepts of human service practice in a fieldwork agency. Students will spend two days a week in a fieldwork placement from January to April. Fieldwork seminars will be held weekly to enable students to discuss what they are learning to make the connection between theory and practice. More Details on this course
    INLG-180 - Credits: 3.000
    Dynamics of Indigenous Language Shift
    This course will introduces the human dynamics, political, and social factors associated with Indigenous language shift and language loss, including the profound psychological, intellectual and spiritual effect on individuals, families, communities and culture. Language revitalization may be explored as a source of healing and empowerment. More Details on this course
    INLG-181 - Credits: 3.000
    Issues, Principles and Practices in Language Revitalization
    This course will introduce the contemporary issues, principles and practices in the revival, maintenance and revitalization of Indigenous languages in Canada and around the world. Participants identify community assets supporting individual, family and community language revitalization. Students explore factors influencing language maintenance, loss revival and their social and political contexts. More Details on this course
    INLG-260 - Credits: 3.000
    Ways of Knowing: The Syilx Land Culture (Formerly INST 245)
    This course will introduce students to the study of pre-contact Okanagan culture. Traditional knowledge, systems and practices are examined in relation to roles and responsibilities, worldview, philosophy and spirituality. More Details on this course
    NSYL-110 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Language: Pronunciation - Learning the Sounds
    Nsyilxcen language proficiency in adult learners prepares them for learning and hearing Nsyilxcen sounds. The student will actively participate in an Okanagan introduction to Nsyilxcen. Instruction method develops proper pronunciation skills in the forty-seven separate sounds of Nsyilxcen, develops recognition and differentiation of separate sounds in speech. This method provides the learner with foundational communication skills as a beginner learner. More Details on this course
    Prerequisites: ENGL 060 or English 12 or English Studies 12 and/or English First Peoples 12 or permission of instructor.
    NSYL-111 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Pronunciation - Root Syllables
    This course will provide students with an understanding of the polysynthetic syllable structures as they apply to the Nsyilxcen language for pronunciation in constructing words. These structures are crucial for the student's the way Nsyilxcen root syllables are essential to construct meaning and their part in word construction and word meaning. Root structures are foundational for understanding root morphemes. Instruction and activities will include English and the Nsyilxcen language. More Details on this course
    Prerequisites: NSYL 110 / (Previously INST 111) or permission of instructor.
    NSYL-112 - Credits: 3.000
    Introduction to Writing Nsyilxcen
    This course will introduce the Nsyilxcen orthography and develop the ability for reading, writing and in the context of continued pronunciation. Students will apply foundational writing based on previous knowledge and pronunciation skills to improve learning in Nsyilxcen. More Details on this course
    NSYL-120 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Everyday Social Language
    This course will introduce students to Nsyilxcen Language proficiency in adult learners. The student will actively participate in an oral Nysilxcen class. Instruction method provides new vocabulary words and phrases essential in everyday social use. Greetings, introductions, basic questions, responses and other necessary word concept to function in everyday situations. Instructors are experienced in utilizing associative/cognitive (immersion) second language learning method combined with some aspects of total physical response as an instructional methodology. More Details on this course
    NSYL-121 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Everyday Action and Interaction
    This course develops Nsyilxcen language proficiency in adult learners. Students will actively participate in class action-based activities. Students will develop skills in interacting in oral Nsyilxcen using basic foundational phrases for interactive contexts. All instruction and activities take place in the Nsyilxcen language. Total Physical Response (TPR) method will be used to imbed action contexts. More Details on this course
    NSYL-122 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Vocabulary in Place and Socio-Spatial Context I
    This course provides students with foundational immersion learning tools following the three principles of (a) leaving English behind, (b) relating to everything and every action in Nsyilxcen and (c) re-learning the world in Nsyilxcen. Fluent Nsyilxcn speakers engage students in activities focused on increasing the interactive use of Nsyilxcen in selected topics including (a) workplace action and description sentences and phrases, (b) school or place of learning action and description sentences and phrases, (c) gatherings (formal, feast, ceremonies, and meetings). (d) action and description sentences and phrases and (e) elders home visits, action and description sentences and phrases will be given. More Details on this course
    NSYL-130 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Entry Tools: Introduction to Full Immersion (Formerly NSYL 152)
    This course is an introductory-level to a full immersion course. It provides students Nysilxcen immersion-learning tools following the principles of leaving English behind, and conveying every object and process in Nsyilxcen. Students will be relearning the world in Nsyilxcen. The course provides immersion learners with essential Nsyilxcen phrases to assist them with words, phrases that allows them to interact and ask for repetition or slowing down or demonstrating. Students will learn the use of basic phrases as well as the process of participating in an immersion setting. More Details on this course
    NSYL-131 - Credits: 3.000
    Special Topics - Nsyilxcen Immersion (Formerly NSYL 151 & INST 192)
    This course uses a special topics approach to expose and immerse students in the Nsyilxcen language. Students will enhance their basic knowledge and ability to speak the Nsyilxcen language within a topical context. Students will gain sufficient knowledge to understand, listen and speak sufficient vocabulary related to each special topic. Special topics may include one or more of the following: medicine protocols, roots, berries, feasts, and hunting/fishing protocols, depending on the time of year the course is conducted. More Details on this course
    NSYL-132 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Interpersonal Interactions through Immersion Learning (Formerly NSYL 153)
    This course is a total immersion course. It utilizes supervised fluent speakers to engage students in an interpersonal foundational conversation in Nsyilxcen. The goal is to assist development of oral use in soci-spatial contexts. To assist development of phrasing fluency using personal and emphatic first, second and third person pronouns in selected real-world settings. More Details on this course
    NSYL-210 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Linguistics/Literacy (Formerly INST 255)
    This course provides a foundation in theory and practice in linguistics and literacy. Students will learn the processes that occur in word formation, phrase formation, and sentence formation. A general introduction to linguistics will be given. More Details on this course
    NSYL-211 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Translation/Transliteration (Formerly INST 120)
    This course provides foundation in theory and practice for transcribing and translating Nsyilxcen oral text. Students will transcribe and translate texts and/or tapes using the International Phonetic Alphabet. As a part of this course, students will develop touch-keyboarding skills using the Nsyilxcen font. There will be a basic introduction to linguistic processes such as phonology, phonetics, morphology and syntax. There will also be practice in transcribing and reading texts. More Details on this course
    NSYL-220 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Vocabulary in Place and Socio- Spatial Context II (formerly NSYL 257
    This course provides students with increased active immersion learning tools following the three principles of (a) leaving English behind, (b) relating to everything and every action in Nsyilxcen and (c) re-learning the world in Nsyilxcen. Fluent Nsyilxcen speakers engage students in activities focused on increasing the interactive use of Nsyilxcen in selected topics including (a) a story gathering convened by students, (b) a special feast with elders with elders convened by students, (c) a visit to a sacred sited convened by students and (d) a visit to a traditional gathering selected by students. More Details on this course
    NSYL-221 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Structure and Syntax
    This course will expose the student to the basics structure and syntax of Nsyilxcen. Topics include an overview of the Salishan languages with regard to patterns and rules of various components of language. This course will also cover the introductory linguistic components of phonetics, phonology and morphology as it relates to Nsyilxcen. Including descriptive components of sentence building. More Details on this course
    NSYL-230 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Connections: Context Through Immersion Learning
    This course will focus on developing listening and speaking for using Nsyilxcen in situational contexts. Students will apply previous knowledge and communication skills to improve or increase vocabulary to connect ideas to everyday situational contexts in Nsyilxcen. Practical application to situations within schools/classroom, community gatherings and formal situations. More Details on this course
    NSYL-231 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Place and Time: Context Through Immersion Learning (Formerly NSYL 154)
    This course is a full immersion course. It utilizes supervised fluent speakers to engage student in full-immersion activities in Nsyilxcen use. This course will develop proficiency and fluency in contextualizing the speaker and the receiver and third persons in real world situations. The course will increase vocabulary use of simple explanatory statements, responses to questions, use of spatial indicators and appropriate pronoun designations and time differentiation related to present, past and future contexts. More Details on this course
    NSYL-330 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Immersion: Pod/Cohort Learning Through Multiple Mentors
    This course builds on the apprentice Nsyilxcen Immersion where students will expand beyond the elements of the language learning tools (literacy) and communication (phrases for use). Students will be a part of the Mentor pod process which is unique in that students will be with a cohort of advanced immersion leaners moving from one fluent Elder Mentor to another (rather than having one Elder per one speaker). Students will have immersion topics with each of the fluent Elder Mentors. More Details on this course
    NSYL-350 - Credits: 3.000
    Nsyilxcen Immersion: Introduction to Mentored Special Topics
    This course is an introductory apprenticeship course. The course provides students immersion learning following a master apprentice model. Fluent Nsyilxcen speakers engage students in total immersion sessions focused on increasing the use of Nsyilxcen by pairing students with community or family Mentor Fluent or Elder speakers. To develop an instructor guided Mentored learning plan including selecting a Mentor Fluent or Elder speaker to commit to homework with. Developing a day-by-day Mentor/learner setting and topics plan for seven selected sessions approved by Instructor and Mentor Fluent or Elder speaker (to be carried out by the student and monitored, observed and evaluated by the Instructor). More Details on this course

    Current Course Offerings

    01 = Merritt Campus
    V1 = Burnaby Campus

    Spring 2020 (January - April)


  • IHMS-160-01
  • Fall 2020 (September - December)


  • NSYL-220-01
  • Spring 2021 (January - April)


  • IHMS-160-01
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