Transferring qualifications into a recognisable form accepted by Canadian Employers can be a lengthy and frustrating affair. Unfortunately, most of the Canadian Agencies that regulate the licensing for trades and professions in each Province will only assess your
Professional and Trade Qualifications
once you are residing in Canada. These assessments normally take the form of examinations and/or formal interviews. You will need documented proof of your experience and qualifications.
This subject is so important it has now been given its own dedicated page so please follow the link above.
Educational qualifications are assessed by an agency for each particular Province. Whether these assessments are required depends upon the type of immigration visa you are applying for and the kind of work you will be looking for in Canada. There has been considerable discussion regarding the transfer of international qualifications. This has included the announcement that a country wide agency will be set up in the near future that will handle all transfers (still no official word on this election promise in 2005!). This is still a way off though and here is the best information at present:
In all cases, you will need to ensure that you have the correct ORIGINAL documents that are requested by the assessment service. This may include the certificates, confirmation of marks for each course and course curriculum. Either the originals or certified photocopies have to be submitted - full details are given by the assessment provider. Each Province has different, independent agencies that provide this service:
which provides a service that evaluates educational documents to provide a Canadian equivalent that can be used for employment, immigration or further education. Also has information and advisory services for all types and levels of education - elementary, secondary, postsecondary and technical.
Also, the mission of the Ontario based
World Education Services
is to facilitate employment and educational opportunities for internationally educated individuals through the provision of cedential evaluation services.
Probably the biggest news we have heard for a while is that the
Canadian Virtual University
have developed an online resource to help immigrants complete a Canadian university education. This is acheived by demonstrating how many credits they can receive for their foreign credentials. This resource, developed with funding support from Human Resources Development Canada, is aimed at anyone with foreign education but can equip a potential Immigrant with a recognised Canadian Degree before they arrive!
This is a major leap forward in educational credential transfer which can dramatically improve YOUR employability upon your arrival.
A great website for general "Canada-wide" information on this subject is the Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials
This is a huge site that has a lot of excellent material for all cases. CICIC assists persons who want to know how to obtain an assessment of their educational, professional, and occupational credentials by referring them to the appropriate bodies.
As I mentioned, the site is BIG so make sure you are sitting comfortably and explore the whole site. You can link directly from the site to the assessment provider you require. There is one excellent
feature that enables you to email any questions you may have directly to them.
Please note that CICIC is purely an information service. CICIC's mission is to foster the dissemination of information about recognition procedures, promotes good and consistent practice in credentials assessment. The CICIC database stores information about hundreds of different agencies from all the provinces and also worldwide.