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Main Programs and Courses Health Care Programs Medical Spa Therapy

Medical Spa Therapy

Please check with the campus of your choice for program availability.

Have you ever wondered which professions conduct laser hair removal and skin rejuvenation techniques, such as facial chemical peels and microdermabrasion?


Now, at Vancouver Career College, you can obtain a diploma in Medical Spa Therapy and cover a wide range of topics from laser and light techniques and skin care to acupressure, reflexology and specialized massage treatments such as prenatal, hot stone, lymphatic drainage, and more.


This 50-week program offers courses in aromatherapy, hydrotherapy, therapeutic stretching and sports massage, laser hair reduction, photo-rejuvenation, skin resurfacing, and much more. With training in a number of different medical spa treatments, including hands-on practice with DermaLase IPL laser machines, you will be skilled to practice as a spa therapist, spa technician, or spa practitioner in a variety of settings including day spas, destination spas, medical spas, wellness centres, or pursue opportunities in self-employment.


With a growing demand and interest in medical spa practices, Vancouver Career College’s Medical Spa Therapy program has been specifically designed to meet the needs of the public and cater to the increasing standard of education for medical spa therapists in North America.


Admission Requirements

High school graduation or equivalent* OR mature student status**.

*From an English language teaching institution.

**19 years of age upon starting classes, and pass college’s English admissions test.


This program has been approved by the registrar of the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training.

This program is 50 weeks in length.
  • Spa Therapist
  • Spa Technician
  • Spa Practitioner
Program Courses
MST100 / Essentials of Spa Therapy

This is the introductory module for the Spa Therapy program. This course offers students a history of massage, introduction to basic skeletal anatomy and introduction to major muscles. Students will also be given basic information on hygiene, draping and general massage technique. Contraindications and basic pathology will also be addressed. Students will be introduced to basic movement terminology and basic medical terminology. They will learn 5 classical Swedish Massage movements and perform back massage.

MST110 / Introductory Anatomy

This course introduces the structure and arrangement of gross surface features with special attention to the musculoskeletal, respiratory cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, nervous and genitourinary systems. Students will study functions and regulation of organ systems in this course. Specific attention will be placed on the respiratory, cardiovascular, nervous, digestive, urinary and reproductive systems.

MST120 / Structural Anatomy

In this module, students will learn planes of movement and movement terminology. The skeletal system will be covered in depth with emphasis on bony landmarks and types of joints. The muscular system will be taught including origin, insertion and action of all major muscles and their nerve innervations. The entire muscular system will be broken down by segment (axial and appendicular skeleton). Types of muscles, muscle fiber and direction will also be addressed.

MST130 / Pathology for Body Workers

Focus in this module will be directed towards indications and contraindications pertaining to specific disease and dysfunction. Students will be able to identify conditions that would cause them to alter their massage treatment. Pathology of the skeletal, nervous, endocrine, muscular, immune, cardiovascular and respiratory system will be taught. Special attention will be paid to common pathologies, identifying potentially dangerous conditions and precautions for avoiding communicable conditions.

MST140 / Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is the controlled use of essential oil to maintain and promote physical, psychological and spiritual well -being. In this course, you will learn about aromatherapy and essential oils. Student will be introduced to various essential oils their sources, constituents and properties; as well as, how the essential oils can be used and the different methods of application. The course also covers knowledge about safety, the uses and contraindications in order to be able to use it in a spa setting.

MST150 / Sales and Marketing in Spa Therapy Industry

In order to ensure success and employability the spa therapist must provide consultative selling of services and products in order to ensure continuity and full benefit of treatments for the clients. This component of training is a critical link between a therapist and the client. The knowledge of professional products, their features and benefits as well marketing and business fundamentals is the requirement of the industry.

MST160 / Hot Stone Therapy

In this module, students will learn the effects of hot stone therapy. Stone placement and the use of stones during massage treatment will be covered. Students will learn the principles, precautions, indications and contraindications of hot stone treatment. The heating and cooling properties of stones and their therapeutic effect will be covered in this module. The use of stone treatments (either hot or cold) on acu-points will be taught as well. They will master the full body massage routine using hot basalt stones. Students will gain an in depth understanding of this treatment which is gaining popularity in spa environments.

MST170 / Prenatal/Infant Massage

This module will teach students about the stages of pregnancy and the physiological changes the body undergoes. Students will learn appropriate draping for pregnancy as well as bolstering for different stages and will perform massage routine for a client. Infant massage will be included in the curriculum and the technique the students can pass on their pregnant clientele, or continue working postpartum. Common body tenderness associated with pregnancy will be discussed, as well as home care for pregnant clients. Risk factors in pregnancy will be taught, as well as pathologies associated with pregnancy.

MST180 / Hydrotherapy/Spa Techniques

This module will cover the essentials of Spa Therapy and Hydrotherapy. Students will be taught the physiological effects of thermal therapy, the contraindications and the appropriate uses for hot and cold for therapeutic purposes and relaxation purposes. Students will also be introduced to standard Spa therapy and practice the use of thermal wraps, body scrubs, masks, sugar and salt glows, as well as scalp massage. This module will teach the use of hydroculator equipment, paraffin wax baths and the appropriate use of ice. Hygiene, sanitation and professional conduct guidelines will form an integral part of this module. Students will also learn about aromatherapy, essential oils and how to incorporate them into their spa treatment.

MST190 / Reflexology

In this module students will learn the theory of reflexology. Students will explore the reflex points of the hands and feet that directly correlate with the body systems. Treatment and assessment of body dysfunction will be taught, as well as, focus on foot care and maintenance. The body reflected in the extremities as mirrors will provide students with another alternative approach to Western Medicine.

MST200 / Acupressure/Chinese Massage/Tuina

This is a study of the Chinese method of therapeutic massage, which deals with Yin, Yang, Qi, Blood and the internal organs. This course covers Tuina basic principles, manipulation techniques, functions, indications and contraindications. The five elements and meridian theories of eastern philosophy are discussed. Students will learn acupressure points including a full body Chinese Massage. This course takes the approach of the healing the body as a whole, not in segments.

MST210 / Sports Massage/Therapeutic Stretching

This module introduces pre and post event sports massage along with therapeutic stretching. Students will gain an in depth understanding of tissue injury and repair, as well as what an athlete must endure for their training. Muscle movement is explored in depth, types of contraction, aerobic exercise, anaerobic exercise, strength training, endurance and cardiovascular training. Students will learn to focus massage based on individual athletic needs. Therapeutic stretching will be addressed and students will learn the elastic and contractile component of muscle tissue, as well as the most effective ways to stretch and gain range of motion.

MST220 / Swedish Massage

This module teaches the students basic Swedish massage strokes and sequence and postural mechanics for the massage practitioner. Draping, bolstering and adapting for each client pathological conditions that may be present will also be addressed. Students will learn a full body sequence and be able to allot time for thirty minute, hour long and hour and a half long sessions. Chair massage sequence will also be introduced along with chair massage marketing and promotion.

MST230 / Lymphatic Drainage Massage

This course covers the study of the lymphatic system and gives the students a solid foundation in order to perform lymphatic drainage massage on the face and body.

MST240 / Documentation, Consultation and Product Knowledge

In this module, students will learn how to gather information pertinent to spa sessions and home care advice. The detailed consultation, assessment and documentation procedures will be examined and applied in a variety of different case studies. A variety of client’s record keeping formats will be discussed as well as introduction to spa’s specific software for record keeping in the spa industry, as more and more spas keeps electronic records. Understanding client’s needs and wants through effective listening skills will be accompanied by sound technical knowledge of spa treatments, professional products for salon and home care use. Professional ethics, technical skills, health and hygiene knowledge will be integrated in this module.

MST250 / Foundations of Skin, Consultation and Evaluation

This course provides the students with a solid foundation in laser and light therapy. The topics include physiology of the skin, skin disorders, consultation, evaluation, documentation and professional image and conduct. Coverage of these topics are essential and will greatly serve the student in their professional career.

MST260 / Fundamentals of Laser & Light Technologies

This course teaches students solid laser and light science, with terminology, types of lasers and light systems, laser principals, laser safety, lasers on the market today, effects of laser on the skin. Additionally, an emphasis on professionalism, preparations for treatments, client draping and care are covered.

MST270 / Laser & Light Hair Reduction

This course teaches students a solid foundation in the understanding of the hair and hair growth, while also comparing other methods of hair removal, both temporary and permanent reduction. This course focuses on improving the consultation process and communication for hair reduction treatments so the student is well prepared to work in the industry. Students will operate and apply the laser/light devise to perform the hair reduction procedures on the body and face. By the end of this course, the students will be able to perform full treatment services from the time the client arrives to when they leave.

MST280 / Photo-Rejuvenation

Photo rejuvenation treatments are exciting for the aesthetics industry, as these give visual results in a short amount of time. Sun damaged, scaring, aging skin and acne are the typical indications for treatments. It is an asset for the technician to take training with this technology because of the popularity of the treatments and the results that are achieved. This course covers the devices, histology, causes of and the evaluation of the signs that can be treated by photo rejuvenation. The students will be reliably and safely performing treatment applications by the end of the course.

MST290 / Laser Spider Vein Removal

This course covers the vascular system, and the basic principles and concepts necessary to safely and effectively perform laser and lightbased cosmetic treatments for spider vein removal.

MST300 / Advanced Skin Rejuvenation

This course covers advanced skin rejuvenation for the following treatments: Broken Capillaries, Rosacea, Cherry Angioma, Epidermal Melasma, Scars, Pigmentation, Folliculitis, Collagen Remodeling, and Freckles.

MST310 / Facial Care Fundamentals I

This course is the first part that covers the comprehensive study of the skin and gives the students a solid foundation in facial care in order to perform mini facials at a professional level. Professionalism, general sciences, and skin sciences, infection control and communication are also studied in this course

MST320 / Facial Care Fundamentals II

This course continues the comprehensive study of the skin and provides the students with a solid foundation in facial care in order to perform the full length professional facial. Knowledge and skills from Facial Care Fundamentals I are reinforced in this course.

MST330 / Skin Resurfacing with Advanced Exfoliation

This course provides the skin care specialist and the esthetician a new level to their to their career practice. This course covers the study and practice necessary for resurfacing aging and sun damaged skin with the advanced exfoliation methods, chemical peels and microdermabrasion. By the end of the module, students will be able to safely apply chemical peelings and microdermabrasion.

CES4 / Career and Employment Strategies

This course builds on the skills learned in the Student Success Strategies course or its equivalent. It provides information on how to use the communication skills learned in order to make a successful presentation to a prospective employer. Students also learn how to uncover the hidden job market and identifyemployment opportunities. Self-assessment during this course allows students to identify their personal skills that are transferable to the work place and to describe these skills to a prospective employer. Students may be videotaped during a mock interview and will participate in the analysis of their performance in the “interview”.

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