Recognition of skills acquired abroad
Having skills acquired abroad recognized if your trade or profession is regulated in Québec
If the profession you want to practise is regulated in Québec, you will need to have your training recognized with the body that oversees that profession.
In Québec, some professions are regulated by regulatory bodies.
These bodies protect the public by overseeing and controlling the practice of a trade or profession throughout Québec.
Here are a few examples:
- Professional orders (engineer, nurse, etc.)
- Ministère de l’Éducation (pre-school, elementary or secondary school teachers)
- Autorité des marchés financiers (insurance agent, financial planner, mortgage broker, etc.)
- Commission de la construction du Québec (for work on construction sites: electrician, plumber, etc.)
- Emploi-Québec (pressure vessel inspector, stationary machinery mechanic, electrician or plumber not on construction sites, etc.)
- Certain joint committees (automobile services sector, security agents)
The regulatory body may recognize part or all of your studies and work experience acquired abroad.
You can check Qualifications Québec to find out whether the profession you want to practise is regulated in Québec.
Reserved title and exclusive practice in professional orders
Some professions governed by a professional order have reserved titles and the exclusive right to practise. For example, if you want to be a nurse, you must be a member of the order of nursing to be able to do this job in Québec.
Other professions have only a title reserved for members of the professional order. For example, if you want to be a translator, you can work in your field, but you cannot call yourself a certified translator unless you are a member of the professional order.
Right to practise
You must legally obtain the right to practise in the field or the right to use the reserved title from the organization that governs your trade or profession.
Steps for having your competencies recognized by a regulatory body
Contact the body that oversees your profession or trade to learn the steps to take to obtain the right to practise in Québec.
Most regulatory bodies have a section on their website for candidates trained outside of Canada. It will tell you:
- Their requirements
- The steps to take to have your competencies recognized
- Whether you will have to undertake further studies
You will have to go through the organization’s equivalence process. It will determine whether the knowledge and skills associated with the training and diploma you received outside Québec are equivalent to those of a graduate in Québec.
Some regulatory bodies may also require:
- Refresher training
- An internship
Some regulatory bodies may ask for a Comparative evaluation of studies taken outside Québec as part of your admission process.
Find out from your regulatory body before you embark on this process.
Requesting a review of your file
If, after submitting an admission application to a regulated profession, you are not satisfied with the decision from the professional order, you can ask them to review your file. You must ensure that you meet the deadlines provided on the website of the order that governs your trade or profession.
Last update: June 26, 2023