Never Registered in Canada and Educated Outside Canada

The information in this section is for you if:

  • Your education that qualified you as a physical therapist was outside of Canada, and
  • You have not yet registered to practise in Canada

Before applying for registration in BC, you must first complete credentialling and entry-to-practice assessments in this order:

  1. Credentialling: submit your documents for review by the Canadian Alliance for Physiotherapy Regulators (CAPR) and complete a course about the Canadian health care system.

Credentialling takes several months and can be completed before arrival in Canada.

You may be eligible for a BC government bursary to assist with the cost of becoming registered in BC. See the Allied Health Jobs in British Columbia website for more information.
  1. Pass the Physiotherapy Competency Examination Written Component – administered by CAPR: https://alliancept.org/competency-exam/

The exam takes place 10 times per year and can be completed before arrival in Canada. From registering for the exam to receiving the result, this step takes at least 3 months to complete.

  1. Pass a Canadian entry-to-practice clinical assessment. READ CAREFULLY – you have TWO (2) options:

a. Alternate Clinical Evaluation BC (ACEBC) – administered by UBC, Department of Physical Therapy.

If you pass the ACEBC you are ready to apply for full registration in BC (see requirements and steps to apply below)

*OR*

b. An entry-to-practice clinical assessment in another Canadian province.

If you pass you must first register in that province and then you can apply for full registration in BC (see instructions here: Registered elsewhere in Canada right now)

Application Process (after passing the ACEBC)

Timeline to registration:

  • Depends on date of receipt of documents.
  • Some documents have to come from “third parties”, not from you directly. Sometimes it takes time for them to send us what is required.

Once we have all required documents, approval of your application can take as little as 3 business days but it could take more than 30 days if the Registration Committee must review your application. We have to receive everything from you and third parties within 90 days of the day you submit your application; i.e., documents cannot be more than 90 days old.

  1. Arrange for these documents to be sent directly to us by email to registration@cptbc.org
    • Regulatory History Form if you were registered as a physical therapist outside of Canada, or as another regulated professional anywhere in Canada or outside of Canada, in the last 10 years.
      • Complete section 1 of the Regulatory History Form (PDF).
      • Send the form to the applicable regulatory agency(ies).
      • The regulatory agency(ies) must send the completed form directly to the CPTBC.
      • View instructions (PDF) if the regulatory agency is: Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), CORU, the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (Ahpra), Gujarat State Council for Physiotherapy (GSCPT), or Delhi Council for Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy (DCPTOT).
  2. Select two pieces of accepted identification from the list below and have them notarized.
  3. Purchase individual professional liability insurance if you don’t have it already. Policies with a future start date will not be accepted. See requirements of coverage below.
  4. Now you are ready to start your application:
    • Complete the online application form on the CPTBC Registrant Portal
    • Upload your notarized identification
    • Upload your certificate of professional liability insurance
    • Upload your ACEBC result letter
  5. Submit your application.
  6. Registration staff will review your application while we wait for all documents from third parties to arrive. Once we have received them, registration staff may ask for further information.
  7. When we have no further questions, registration staff will send you the link to the jurisprudence exam.
  8. When you have passed the jurisprudence exam we will send you the link to pay the application and registration fees. Once you have paid the fees, your registration is complete. Congratulations!

Details of Application Requirements

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You must provide proof of having passed the Alternate Clinical Evaluation BC.

You must submit two (2) pieces of identification that meet the requirements AND are on the list of accepted identification. Identification must:

  • Be valid and unexpired
  • Be notarized and verified in their original form by a notary public or lawyer; other professionals will not be accepted. Notary’s stamp and the date must be visible.
  • Include at least one primary identification from the list below
  • Include your legal name that matches the name on the application form
  • Include at least one with your date of birth and signature

Primary Identification

  • BC driver’s licence or learner’s licence (must have photo)
  • BC Identity card (BCID)
  • BC Services card (must have photo)
  • Canadian passport
  • Canadian citizenship card
  • Permanent resident card
  • Canadian record of landing/Canadian immigration identification record
  • Secure certificate of Indian status

Secondary Identification

  • School identification card (student card)
  • Birth certificate (a baptismal certificate is not acceptable)
  • Canadian or US driver’s licence
  • Secure certificate of Indian status
  • Canadian forces identification
  • Picture employee ID card
  • BC Services card (with or without photo)
  • Student, work, visitor, or temporary resident permit
  • NEXUS card
  • Foreign passport
  • Foreign Affairs Canada or consular identification
  • Bank card
  • Credit card

You must be considered “of good character”. This means there is no evidence of past or present conduct that would put the BC public at risk. We gather evidence of your good character through your self-declarations in the application form, your criminal record check (CRC), and your regulatory history in the Regulatory History Form(s) that are submitted.

Criminal Record Check (CRC)

  • All applicants are required to complete a BC Criminal Record Check (CRC) at the time of initial application and every 5 years while they are registered with CPTBC. This is required by the BC Criminal Records Review Act. CPTBC requests the CRC on your behalf after you submit your application, which includes acknowledgment of consent to this check.
  • To learn more, please click here: Criminal Record Check for Physical Therapists.
  • You may be required to complete a fingerprinting process. This is a secondary process administered by local municipalities and federal or local law enforcement agencies and not something that CPTBC is involved in. The Criminal Records Review Program will contact you directly if they require you to provide fingerprints. There are fees associated with fingerprinting, and you must pay them locally to the agency collecting your fingerprints.

Regulatory History Form

  • Applicants who have been registered with any regulatory (health and/or non-health) agency in the past 10 years must complete section 1 of the Regulatory History Form and send to each agency. The agency(ies) will send the form directly to CPTBC.
  • Regulatory history forms sent by the applicant to the CPTBC will not be accepted.
  • Applicants who have worked in other jurisdictions (this might be a country or a state/ province) in the past 10 years that have mandatory registration for physical therapists are expected to complete a regulatory history form. This is a fundamental expectation of a regulated professional, and it is the applicant’s responsibility to account for any lack of such registration.

You must hold individual (i.e. not your employer’s) professional liability insurance at all times in the amount of at least $3 million (CAD) per occurrence to ensure coverage wherever you practise as a physical therapist in BC. Even if you are not employed or are on leave – but are still a registrant of the College – you are required to comply with this requirement.

See Registrant FAQs for a list of some insurers.

You are require to pass CPTBC’s jurisprudence examination, which assesses your understanding of the rules and expectations you are expected to follow when you practice in BC and how to apply them. The examination is open book. Once your application is complete, we will send you further instructions about how to access the exam. There is no additional fee for this.

Fees include a one-time application fee and an annual registration fee. The registration cycle runs from June 1 to May 31. Registration is renewed annually. All fees are non-refundable, not pro-rated, and are subject to change.

Full Registration Fee Application Fee Total Fee
$500 $200 $700