Overview of the Application Process for Graduates of a Canadian Teacher Education Program Outside of BC

The information in this section applies to you if you are completing or have completed a teacher education program at a Canadian university outside of BC.

If you have a valid teaching certificate from another Canadian province or territory, you will probably qualify for a BC teaching certificate. However, before you can teach in BC, you must apply for a BC Ministry of Education teaching certificate through the Teacher Regulation Branch and show that you meet the Ministry's standards of fitness.

Paths to teacher certification are different from one province to another. While you may qualify for a Basic Certificate, you may choose to upgrade to a Professional Certificate by completing additional coursework. Learn more about the types of certificates issued by the Teacher Regulation Branch.

How to apply for a Ministry of Education teaching certificate through the Teacher Regulation Branch

  1. Create a login in the Applicants' Area.

  2. Complete and submit your online application through the Applicants' Area, where you can review a checklist of documents required for your application.

  3. Ask the applicable institutions and individuals to complete and send the relevant documents directly to us. For example, your post-secondary institutions must send us your official university transcripts and your character references must send us the Confidential Character Reference Forms. If these documents arrive at the Branch before your application, we will keep them and add them to your file when we receive your application.

  4. Once we receive your application, we will create a file for you and place it in a queue based on the date we received it. We will email you within five to seven business days to confirm that we have received your application and tell you your file number.

  5. Documents will arrive for your file at different times from different sources. We will add each document to your file as it arrives (as long as it is properly identified with your full name).

  6. Please be patient as we review all files according to the date we receive them. Once an evaluator has reviewed your file, we will send you an email listing any documents we are missing. You will be able to track in the Applicants' Area which documents are outstanding.

  7. Once we receive all of the required documents, we will complete the evaluation.
    • If you are eligible for a certificate, we will send you an email directing you to pay your annual fee. We will mail you your certificate and letter of evaluation once we receive your payment.
    • If you are not eligible for a certificate, we will send you an evaluation letter explaining why you are not eligible and what you need to do to qualify.

Teacher Qualification Service (TQS)

If you are eligible for a certificate, you also need to apply to the Teacher Qualification Service (TQS) for your TQS category. Public school boards use this category as one element in determining your salary level. When we send you your Ministry of Education teaching certificate, we will also send a copy of your certificate to the TQS as they will need this as part of your application to them. Please see the TQS website for more information.

How long will the evaluation process take?

Once we have received all of the necessary documents for your application, it generally takes us two to four weeks to review your application. For this reason, we recommend that you start the application process before you arrive in BC.

Remember that not all applicants qualify for certification. If you are moving to BC because you intend to teach here, you will want to receive the results of our evaluation as soon as possible. If you must meet some additional requirements to be eligible for a certificate, you will then be able to start on these requirements without delay.

How to find out the status of your application

We cannot tell you what documents are missing from your application until you receive an email that will list these items for you. You may contact us to ask whether or not we have received specific documents. We will respond to you within one to two business days. At this point, you will be able to track in the Applicants' Area which documents are outstanding.

  • Email us at trb.certification@gov.bc.ca. Please quote your file number in the subject line.
  • Phone us at 604 660-6060 or toll-free within Canada and the United States at 1 800 555-3684.

What are the possible outcomes of our evaluation?

There are three possible outcomes of our evaluation. You may be:

  • Eligible for certification. This means that you meet all our requirements and that you qualify for a permanent professional certificate.
  • Eligible for certification with requirements. This means that you meet enough of our requirements to qualify for a temporary conditional certificate. You will have to complete some additional academic courses to upgrade your temporary conditional certificate to a permanent professional certificate.
  • Ineligible for certification. This means that you currently do not qualify for a certificate. Our evaluation letter will tell you the specific requirements you must meet to qualify for a certificate.

Our policy regarding your documents

All documents you send us as part of your application become the property of the Teacher Regulation Branch. We will not release the original documents or return any documents to you. We do not send documents to employers. In exceptional circumstances, we will forward verified copies of diplomas and transcripts to a limited range of educational bodies. You can find more information on the "Forwarding Documents to a Third Party Request Form" on the Forms and Publications page.

The application fee is non-refundable and you must complete your application within one year. If you do not complete your application within one year, you will be asked to submit a new application and fee with updated documents and information.