Skip Navigation LinksDurham Portal > Learning > Bridging Programs

Bridging Programs

Credential Evaluation

Before you begin your job search, you need to determine whether your formal training, education and credentials from your native country are recognized here in Ontario.  Just because you were employed in a specific occupation back home doesn’t mean that you are automatically qualified to practice here.   You may have to take more training or write licensing exams before you can begin to work in your chosen career.

There are a few things to consider:

The Government of Canada has created the Working in Canada Tool which provides useful information on the labour market in Canada, as well as job descriptions, salary information, training qualifications and work experience for wide range of occupations.

Professional Licensing Requirements in Ontario

Certain occupations are governed by regulatory bodies.  Regulatory bodies are external organizations that oversee the educational process by setting entry requirements and standards of practice for specific careers.  They are responsible for licensing qualified applicants, and provide guidelines and standards on how work is performed in that occupation.

Examples of regulated professions include engineers, nurses, lawyers, and accountants, just to name a few. 

Examples of regulated trades include plumbers, electricians, and steamfitters.

If your occupation is regulated, you will have to contact the organization to find out about their licensing requirements and determine what you may need to do before you can practice in Ontario.  This may include performing:

  • Written technical examinations
  • Supervised Canadian work experience
  • Language assessments

If your job is non-regulated, there are no legal requirements regarding who is allowed to practice. 

Academic Credential Assessments

Countries may have different standards for training and education for the same job.  That’s why it’s important to have your foreign academic credentials evaluated before you begin searching for employment.  You need to make sure that your educational certifications and diplomas meet Ontario’s standards.

What are credentials?

Credentials refer to your academic or educational background.  They are any formal training that you have completed (e.g. courses, certificates, diplomas or degrees).

Your work experience and professional certifications also make up your credentials. 

Do I need to have my credentials evaluated?

If your occupation is regulated, you will need to have your credentials evaluated.

If your occupation is non-regulated, it is not necessary to have your academic credentials assessed, although it is a good idea.  This may assist you in your search for employment as you will be able to provide documentation to employers demonstrating that you have the equivalent level of training and education required for the job. 

How do I get my credentials evaluated?

Although some educational institutions and regulatory bodies have their own credential assessment processes, some use the services of a Credential Assessment Service.

The following organizations can assess your foreign academic credentials:

What documentation do I need to have my credentials assessed?

To be able to assess your credentials, you will need to provide documentation to support your educational background and work experience.  Original records will be required.

  • Education:
    • Certificates, diplomas or degrees
    • Official transcripts
    • Detailed course outlines
    • Secondary school, college and university records
  • Experience:
    • Resume
    • Employment record
    • Job descriptions
    • Letters from employers
    • Performance evaluations

Bridging Programs

Bridging Programs can help you get the licensing or certifications you require to work in your profession here in Ontario.  Any existing training and experience that you have gained in your home country are recognized.  They first look at your current skills set and compare them to Ontario employer expectations.  This helps to identify any skills gap and determine what other training or experience may be needed to meet the job requirements and qualifications in our Province. 

For more information on Bridging Programs:



Copyright © 2010 Durham Region