Are my qualifications recognised in Canada?

If you’re hoping to live and work in Canada, you’ll need to consider whether your qualifications are officially recognised.

Unfortunately there’s not an easy answer as it depends on whether you’re planning to work in a regulated or a non-regulated occupation and there are different requirements in the different province or territory that you wish to live in.

What’s a regulated occupation?

About 20% of jobs in Canada require you to have a licence before you can begin work – and require your foreign credentials to be assessed.

Generally, two main types of occupations count as regulated:
  • Regulated professions (for example, doctors, nurses and lawyers); and
  • Apprenticeable (skilled) trades (for example, plumbers and electricians).

What’s a non-regulated occupation?

Non-regulated occupations account for about 80% of jobs in Canada and do not require a licence to work. Canadian employers may be interested in knowing the Canadian equivalent of your overseas qualification.

They range from occupations that require years of education and training (like computer analysts and biologists) to those that require not very much formal training (like food and beverage servers or housekeepers). They can range from entry to management level.

Who assesses foreign qualifications in each province or territory?

Please note: foreign qualification assessments incur fees – check with a regulatory body before paying for assessments that are not recognised or required.

What do I need to do to work in my occupation in Canada?

There is information available for certain skilled occupations, including nurses, dentists and engineers, that tells you what you need to do to practice in Canada. See here for more information.


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