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General information on the accreditation process

Why is accreditation important?

Accreditation is the public recognition that an education program has met national standards.

The goal is to ensure that programs enable their students to acquire the knowledge, skills and attitudes they need to function as competent health practitioners for the benefit of all Canadians.

Who benefits?

Better training means better care for all Canadians.

  • The public benefits from quality health care provided by competent professionals.
  • All physicians and employers benefit from the assurance that diagnostic and therapeutic services are provided by personnel who have attained the competencies required for high-quality patient care.
  • Students, prospective students and graduates benefit from the assurance that their education has met national standards.
  • Education programs and their parent institutions benefit from the external stimulus accreditation provides for critical self-assessment and continuous quality improvement. They also benefit from the public recognition that results from achieving accreditation status at a national level.
  • Faculty benefit from access to expertise of their peers in clinical and educational settings across the country. Accreditation also provides faculty with an opportunity for professional development through participation in accreditation surveys of other programs.
  • Accreditation benefits certification and licensing bodies by providing them with a reliable basis for decisions about the eligibility of candidates for their examination or other processes for entry to the profession.

How the accreditation process works

TimelineMilestoneTools and templates
Unaccredited programs
14-36 months before the program visit Application for accreditation - An unaccredited program applies for accreditation and becomes a registered program. Application for accreditation

Program assessment procedures
Registered and accredited programs
Up to 7 months before scheduled assessment visit Program self-assessment report - A program prepares and submits the program's own assessment of its compliance with the requirements.Requirements for accreditation

Request for accreditation form

Template for submission of self-assessment report

Templates for the presentation of evidence
5-6 months before the scheduled assessment visit Phase I document review - A survey team assesses whether the program self-assessment report has sufficient evidence of compliance to warrant a phase II program visit. The phase I program assessment report is sent to the program.
Up to the scheduled assessment visitThe program prepares for the accreditation visit, answers questions in the report, gathers additional evidence requested, prepares the visit schedule, schedules and briefs interviewees. Phase I program assessment report documenting the team's assessment

Accreditation visit sample schedule

Sample interview questions
Assessment visit dates Phase II program visit - The team reviews additional documents and interviews key program participants.
Up to 1 month after the assessment visit Phase II program assessment report - The survey team records its final assessment including the team's recommendation for the program accreditation status. The report is provided to the program for comments.
Up to 2 months after the assessment visitProgram provides comments.
Approximately 90 days after the assessment visit Accreditation status - The survey team submits the assessment report and accreditation recommendation to the Committee on Program Assessment (COPA). The Committee ratifies the report and accords the accreditation status. The accreditation status is effective the date COPA ratifies the report. The status is posted on the Conjoint Accreditation Services website.
Annually in November Annual report - The program updates Conjoint Accreditation Services on requested program data. Annual report form