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College Council approves new credentialing standards for the RPBio category

College Council approved new credentialing standards for the Registered Professional Biologist (RPBio) category at the November Council meeting. The official new standards will be set out in Schedule 3 of the College Rules and will take effect on January 1, 2020.

The following details will be part of the new standard:

New streams of entry: In the new standards, knowledge, skills, and abilities will be assessed in one of four streams to meet the credentialing requirements for RPBio. (see following table for details)

  1. Stream 1 - Accredited programs
  2. Stream 2 - Non-accredited programs
  3. Stream 3 - Applicants with >15 years applied biology work experience
  4. Stream 4 - Applicants with Masters or PhD degree plus applied biology work experience

Work experience and references: Applicants will be assessed based on their ability to demonstrate specific competencies including:

  1. Scientific Concepts and Knowledge – e.g. Knowledge of and have experience of scientific concepts, knowledge and associated implementation
  2. Laws, Regulations & Policies - e.g. Comprehension of and have the capability to interpret the intent and application of legally binding requirements and policy
  3. Standards and Practices - e.g. Knowledge of and/or have the capability to implement technical and professional standards and practices (not limited to applied biology)
  4. Project and/or Work Product Management - e.g. Experienced in the discipline of planning, organizing and managing resources and work products to bring about the successful completion of a project or work product
  5. Records (data) Management and Informatics - e.g. Comprehension of and/or demonstrate the systematic control of creating, distributing, using, maintaining and disposing of recorded information maintained as evidence of business activities and transactions
  6. Professional Accountability - e.g. Comprehension of being a regulated professional and performing the duties of one's profession generally (or performing a particular professional task) with skill of an acceptable quality in a professional manner and by adhering to all applicable legal requirements
  7. Communication - e.g. Convey information, expresses thoughts and facts and displays openness to other people’s ideas and thoughts in an effective manner

Examples of professional work (all streams)

  • Scientific reports – at least one scientific report or risk assessment report that meets College criteria
  • Public communication – at least one example that demonstrates an ability to convey scientific information to a public audience (e.g. annotated presentations, briefing notes, or interpretation documents for the public)

Professional ethics (all streams)

  • Successful completion of the College course and exam in professional ethics

For more details or questions, please contact Derek Marcoux, RPBio, Registrar ([email protected])

Revised streams of entry – Registered Professional Biologist


Stream 1

Stream 2

Stream 3

Stream 4

Applicant type

  • Graduate from an accredited program
  • Graduate from a non-accredited program
  • <15 years work experience
  • Degree plus 15 or more years of work experience
  • Master’s degree plus 13 years experience or
  • PhD plus 11 years experience

Education requirements

  • Graduation with a degree and combined course work with 25 science courses; 13 must be in biology.
  • Specific course requirements[1] must be met
  • Graduation with a degree and combined course work with 25 science courses; 13 must be in biology.
  • No specific course requirements need to be demonstrated

Work Experience requirements

  • 3 years of work experience in the last 10 years post graduation.
  • Specific competencies must be demonstrated
  • 15 years work experience prior to applying
  • Specific competencies must be demonstrated
  • Master’s degree applicant must have 13 years work experience* in applied biology
  • PhD degree applicant must have 11 years work experience* in applied biology
  • [*Master’s or PhD applicants that do not meet work experience requirements above need to apply through Stream 1 or Stream 2]

Reference requirements

  • 3 references that attest to the applicant’s good character
  • Specific competencies must be demonstrated by reference evaluation

Professional work examples

  • Scientific report or risk assessment
  • Example of public communication

Courses & Exams

  • College course in professional ethics plus exam passed

[1] Stream 2 Course requirements:

  • One course each in communications, chemistry, applied biology+, and ecology+
  • Two courses in numeracy (two statistics courses or one statistics course+ plus one mathematics course)
  • Three courses+ from the following areas: genetics, cellular biology, physiology, systematics, or evolution
  • Master’s degree applicants will be awarded one general biology course and PhD degree applicants will be awarded 2 general biology courses

+ Indicates courses need to be at a 2nd year or equivalent