April 6, 2022

CPR Level A vs CPR Level C vs BLS: Know Your Course

First aid has multiple different certifications that you can receive through training. Unbeknownst to some, first aid training does vary in content, length and the amount of hands-on practice that is involved. CPR levels A, C, and Basic Life Support (BLS) have some commonalities in terms of the life-saving techniques taught, but ultimately they differ significantly. So, before you pay for first aid training to fulfill a requirement for school, work, or better your life-saving skills, find out the innate differences between each course. 

Here is everything you need to know about CPR levels A, C, and BLS and what each delivers individually. 

CPR Level A

CPR Level A is the first and most baseline CPR level you can receive. Upon completing this training, you are only required to administer CPR to adults. CPR Level A is usually a requirement in many work environments in order to meet workplace safety guidelines. This type of first aid training is helpful to know in case of medical emergencies in environments like the workplace, where the person who will need medical assistance will most likely be an adult.

CPR Level A will only take about 4-6 hours to complete, and you will learn the basic CPR skills to save an adult’s life, like choking procedures to follow and how you use a defibrillator.

CPR Level C

CPR Level C trains participants for emergencies that involve CPR administration to adults, children, and infants. This level differs from Level A as it covers the first aid techniques that can be used for all ages and not just adults. Because the material taught in Level C is much more extensive and inclusive for all ages, it is a bit longer and more costly. Firefighters, police, and lifeguards are most often required to get a Level C certificate. 

CPR Level C consists of three courses: standard first aid training, heart saver CPR AED Level C, Emergency First Aid, and CPR Level C. 


Basic Life Skills certificate is training sought out by emergency responders and healthcare professionals for workplace requirements to better and more acutely respond to medical emergencies. Basic Life Skills is meant to build the skills and confidence in a team of professionals to perform many CPR skills accurately and promptly. This thorough course covers rapid response to an emergency event, Airway Management and Oxygen Therapy, and Automated External Defibrillator (AED). 

This course is much more advanced than both CPR Level A and C due to its targeted participants of healthcare professionals. 

Which course is right for you

First aid training will often differ from course to course, with varied and focused proficiencies you will be trained in depending on the certificate you pursue. While CPR Level A is the most basic first aid training you can acquire where you will learn life-saving skills to save only adults, Level C is more extensive in its training that is applicable to help all ages in an emergency. Basic Life Skills is meant to teach more advanced skills than both Level A and C to healthcare professionals for apprehensive training in their professional fields. 

First Aid Training Calgary is your industry experts dedicated to providing comprehensive and life-changing first aid and CPR training in Calgary. Our core belief that everyone should be empowered with the knowledge to respond to an emergency situation, helping them make a positive difference in someone’s life when it matters. Our instructors are highly-trained professionals, teaching courses that are Canadian Red Cross and Heart & Stroke™ approved and widely accepted by numerous organizations, including Occupational Health and Safety, AHS, Alberta Social Services and Alberta Human Services – Child Care. Affordable, important and life-saving – make a difference with our first aid training in Calgary. Book your spot online or call us at 403-407-0756 today!

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