Foreign Qualifications Recognition

The Foreign Qualifications Recognition initiative aims to develop effective and consistent processes for evaluating trade qualifications and work experience obtained outside of Canada. This provincial, territorial and federal initiative was launched by the Canadian Council of Directors of Apprenticeship (CCDA) in 2013.


To design and implement an optimal process and standards framework that is timely, fair, transparent and consistent across all jurisdictions for assessing the eligibility of internationally trained workers to become certified in all Red Seal trades.

Current Processes

Assessing the trades experience and skills obtained outside Canada can be a challenging task.

Currently, all provinces and territories assess applicants for the Red Seal trades who have been trained outside of Canada. They review an applicant’s work experience to ensure that it matches the requirements of the Red Seal trade. If similar, the applicant is invited to write the Red Seal examination and, once successful, can become certified.

Although the assessment processes are similar across Canada, each jurisdiction uses slightly different approaches to authenticate work experience. There are also differences in terms of documentation requirements and exact examination eligibility and certification requirements.

Project Outline

To meet the CCDA’s project objectives, a task team was formed to bring together expertise from across the country. Their tasks are as follows:

In 2013, the task team developed an “Optimal Assessment Process model”. This model lays out the main elements of an effective and consistent foreign qualifications recognition process.

The task team is now developing and testing various components of the optimal assessment process.

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