RPF Registration Requirements

There are three main registration requirements for the RPF designation:

  • Six Experience Areas Modules
  • Articling Requirements
  • Core Competency Requirements (ASFITs only)

These requirements are completed once you become a FIT.

Six Experience Areas Modules

Note: The information in this section pertains to the FIT and ASFIT program.

Meeting requirements for independent practice is a module-based approach built upon six experience areas that the profession believes are critical for forest professionals. This process is designed to build knowledge and a professional mind-set from the moment a new registrant is enrolled.

Six Experience Areas Modules:

  1. Regulation and Ethics
  2. Forest Stewardship and Professional Discretion
  3. BC Forest Professionals Working with Indigenous Communities
  4. Forest Legislation and Policy
  5. The Business of Forestry
  6. Communicating Professional Advice and Conflict Management

Read the Six Experience Areas Overview document for details. Modules are not intended to replace or satisfy post-secondary requirements or any core competency requirements necessary for practising registration. While some of the modules may assist with satisfying core competency requirements for allied science trainees, they are not designed for this purpose.

Roadmap to Practising Registration

The modules contained within the experience areas must be completed online via the Learning Management System (LMS). The modules include:

  • learning materials,
  • exams, and
  • professional document submissions.

All items must be successfully completed in successive order laid out in the Roadmap to Practising Registration  during the enrolment period (this information can be found under the articling requirements section).

Orientation Module

Learn more about the registration process by reviewing the Orientation Module. It is the first module on the Roadmap to Practising Registration. 

Articling Requirements

Note: The information in this section pertains to the FIT and ASFIT program.

Articling is gaining relevant work experience under the guidance of a sponsor (practising registrant).

Work experience gained during your enrolment period helps you be better prepared for practising registration and the rights and obligations of a practising professional. Compete details on articling requirements are contained in Articling Procedures.

Articling Timeframe

Trainee registrants are required to complete 24 months of post-enrolment work experience within the enrolment period.

As job markets fluctuate and employment opportunities vary, it may not be possible to complete the requirements within 24 months. Trainee registrants are given the following timeframes to complete all of their registration requirements:

Program Articling/Enrolment Period
FIT 4 years (48 months)
ASFIT 6 years (72 months)*

 

ASFITs are given two additional years in case more time is needed to complete outstanding core competency requirements.

Under extraordinary circumstances, an extension to the enrolment period may be granted, if necessary. Please see the Articling Procedures for more details.

Purposes of Articling Requirements

  • Expose you to a wide range of professional forestry practice.
  • Enable you to develop professional practice skills under the guidance of your sponsor and other practising registrants.
  • Expose you to the rights and obligations of a practicing professional, including those under the Code of Ethical and Professional Conduct and Standards of Professional Practice (which are binding on all registrants).

Work Experience

  • Should cover as many of the areas of practice defined in the Professional Forestry Practice Areas as possible. Your sponsor is expected to assist you in this regard and the Articling Procedures also provides resources that can help.
  • Must be gained after you are admitted into the ABCFP. Qualifying work experience begins to be credited from the date your application is approved. Pre-admission work experience does not count towards this requirement.
  • Must be directly related to professional practice. We will not normally consider work such as wood processing, agriculture, landscape gardening, horticulture, marketing.
  • May include volunteer work, work done outside BC, or forestry-related graduate studies.

Articling on Roadmap to Practising Registration

In the learning management system (LMS), there will be four articling (work experience) checkpoints set at the 6th, 12th, 18th, and 24th months, as noted on the Roadmap to Practising Registration. You will be required to demonstrate that you have satisfied the minimum articling requirements by submitting your work history form to proceed to the six experience areas modules.

As a trainee registrant, you must have a sponsor during your articling period. Among other things, your sponsor agrees to oversee your growth and development as you work towards becoming a registered forest professional.

Who Can Be a Sponsor

  • If you are looking for the FIT or ASFIT program, your sponsor must be an active practising or retired RPF in good standing.
  • Your sponsor can be your supervisor, a co-worker, an employer or someone else in the professional forestry community.
  • A sponsor cannot be related by blood or marriage due to conflict of interest.
  • A trainee registrant must not be in a position of authority over the sponsor.

Find a Sponsor

  • Get recommendations or suggestions from friends and colleagues.
  • Network within your community. Who do you look up to? Who are you comfortable with?
  • Use the Registry of BC Forest Professionals to identify individuals who live or work within your area.
  • Contact the registration department for assistance. Email us a copy of your resume which can be shared and provide details on the geographic area that you are looking in. We will check our list to see if a volunteer is available in your desired area.

Responsibilities During Articling

  1. Maintain frequent contact with your sponsor.
  2. Create a Professional Development Plan.
  3. Maintain a Professional Practice Diary showing a record of your work experience and your exposure to the necessary practice areas.

See the Articling Procedures for complete details about all of your responsibilities.

Sponsor's Responsibilities During Articling Period

  1. Oversees your growth and development.
  2. Periodically reviews your Practice Diary and Professional Development Plan.

See the Articling Procedures for complete details about a sponsor's responsibilities.

Changing Your Sponsor

There are a variety of reasons why you may need to change your sponsor at some point during your articling period, such as: relocation, incompatibility, employment change, your sponsor can no longer maintain the commitment, or your sponsor ceases to be a member in good standing. 

If you need to change your sponsor, you must:

  1. Read the applicable section in the Articling Procedures for full details on requirements when changing sponsors or enrolled members.
  2. Discuss any changes with your old sponsor.
  3. Have your outgoing and new sponsors discuss your professional development and experience to date.
    • Ensure that your old/outgoing sponsor has signed-off on any work history, professional development plan (re competency gap-filling) that were completed during his/her term.
    • Your new sponsor will be signing off your work experience for your work history submissions moving forward.
  4. E-mail the completed Change of Sponsor form, which will be signed by you, your new sponsor, and your old sponsor to admissions@abcfp.ca.

Remember, as a trainee registrant, you must have a sponsor at all times. 

Core Competency Requirements (ASFITs only)

Note: The information in this section pertains to only the ASFIT program. The Forest Professional Regulators of Canada (FPRC), of which ABCFP is a member, adopted the 2017 certification standards for professional forestry practice and a new online system for the Credential Assessment Process (CAP) in 2021.  If you are an ASFIT and have not applied for CAP and would like to to get registered and familiarized with the new CAP system, please contact the registration department.

The Certification Standards for the Profession of Forestry in Canada are the minimum

RPF Core Competency Standards needed to practice professional forestry across Canada. These standards are used to accredit university programs and to evaluate the competency of Registered Professional Forester (RPF) candidates.

The standards describe how much a candidate must know about:

  1. Foundational studies
  2. Communications, critical reasoning and leadership
  3. Professionalism and ethics
  4. Trees and stands
  5. Forested landscapes
  6. Information acquisition and analysis
  7. Planning and administration
  8. Practice that aligns with education and experience in one of the following areas: 
  • Forest management
  • Natural resources and ecosystem management 
  • Urban forestry
  • Forest operations
  • Ecological restoration and management

All trainee registrants working towards the RPF designation must meet RPF Core Competency Requirements.

Do I have the Core Competencies to Become an RPF?

  • FIT program - Graduated from an accredited forestry degree program. If you graduated from a CFAB accredited forestry degree program within the last 10 years, you have already met the core competency requirements through the completion of your program and will generally not be required to complete additional competency requirements during your enrolment period.
  • ASFIT program - Graduated from a non-accredited forestry or foreign program. If you have not graduated from a CFAB accredited forestry program, you will need to complete the Forest Professional Regulators of Canada's (FPRC) credential assessment process (CAP) once you have been accepted as an ASFIT.  This process will determine whether you meet the RPF core competency standards or if you have any outstanding competencies which you will need to complete during your articling period.

This video provides an overview of the Credential Assessment Process (CAP):


When Do I Get My Credential Assessed?

Once you are a trainee registrant, we strongly advise you get started right away on preparing your CAP application portfolio.

Competency on Roadmap to Practising Registration

CAP is integrated into the Roadmap to Practising Registration. Progressing through the roadmap in a timely way is dependent upon submitting a completed CAP assessment portfolio within the early months of the enrolment period. Delaying the CAP submission slows access to the experience area learning modules and may significantly hinder completing the training program within the permitted timeframe.
If the assessment determines that you have outstanding competency requirements to satisfy, such as post-secondary course work, they will all need to be completed before the enrolment period expires. See the core competency checkpoints in the Roadmap to Practising Registration .

How Do I Get My Credentials Assessed?

ASFITs must prepare and submit a comprehensive credentials assessment portfolio to have their competencies evaluated through CAP.

The assessment process is evidence-based and takes into consideration both education and work experience.  It is a rigorous process; as an ASFIT the onus is on you to provide the necessary proof to demonstrate how and why you believe you meet the RPF core competency requirements.

Briefly, competencies completed through:

  • Post-secondary education must be supported with an official school transcripts and course outlines which contain detailed information on course content. See the applicant’s manual (available on the FPRC website) for examples of course outlines.
  • Work experience must be presented in a detailed  curriculum vitae (CV), which contains information on specific duties and responsibilities performed. This is a separate requirement from the resume/work history submitted as part of your registration application or articling requirements.

The BC assessment is done in English. Documents that are in other languages will need to be translated into English at your expense. Transcript translations must be done by an official translator. For all other supporting documentation, we permit trainee registrants to do their own translations only if they can get an RPF or RFT to verify the translations. Note, this may not always be possible, check with us to see if we know a registrant who may be able to assist you.

Application Deadlines for CAP

FPRC reviews CAP submissions four times a year. To ensure that your portfolio is complete and its quality is acceptable to the standard set by FPRC, you must finalize and upload your submission following the ABCFP deadline (see chart below). These deadlines are firm.

ABCFP Submission Deadline* FPRC Deadline
December 8 January 1 - winter
March 8 April 1 - spring
June 8 July 1 - summer
September 8 October 1 - fall


If the date falls on the weekend, the deadline is the next business day.

It takes time to gather the materials needed, select a target submission deadline and starting preparing your portfolio as soon as possible. Keep in mind that portfolios must meet the submission requirements outlined in the Credential Assessment Process Manual (available on the FPRC website) and Users Guide (once logged in to the Applicant’s Portal) before they are forwarded to the FPRC assessors for review.

Preparing Your Portfolio

Go to the credential assessment process page on the FPRC website for information needed to prepare your portfolio.

  1. Read the RPF Certification Standards, which outlines the competency standards.
  2. Read the Credential Assessment Manual, which provides information on preparing your competency assessment portfolio.
  3. E-mail the registration department that you are preparing for your submission, with your target submission date, and we will set-up your login credentials to the FPRC CAP portal.
  4. Preliminary review - once you have started building your portfolio in the FPRC CAP portal, e-mail the registration department so we can periodically review your file and confirm if you are building your portfolio correctly. The preliminary review process leading to final acceptance of an application might take weeks, depending on the number of submissions received. ABCFP sets an internal cut-off date for each assessment round to ensure that applications are complete and are up to standard. This cut-off date is usually weeks ahead of the FPRC submission deadline.
  5. FPRC will notify you, through the registration department, once your application has been formally accepted and is scheduled for review.

Each regulatory body accepts applications from prospective candidates on behalf of the FPRC. The ABCFP registration department will be your contact during CAP.

The FPRC assessment fee has increased to $1,000 as of January 1, 2022 and must be paid directly to the FPRC upon submission of a complete application.

Transcripts: We will upload a copy of the transcripts you submitted to us at the time of your Allied Science Forester in Training (ASFIT) enrolment application. You do not need to request a second transcript for the CAP. Check with us to ensure we have all the correct copies. If there is any outstanding or missing information, let us know and have your education institution mail your official transcripts directly to us.

Credential Assessment Results

Results will be communicated to you after assessments are completed, usually within 10 weeks after the submission deadline. If all of the competency requirements are met, you can continue completing your ABCFP registration requirements (i.e., articling and Six Experience Areas Modules). 
 
If all of the competency requirements have not been met, you will be required to meet with the Credentials Committee‘s Competency Working Group to develop a competency gap-filling plan to address outstanding requirements.
 
As an ASFIT who has not completed an accredited forestry program, it is normal to have some gaps or outstanding competencies. It is important to note that the farther off you are from meeting the core competency requirements, the greater the chance that additional gap-filling will be required.
 
Competency gaps or deficiencies are typically addressed by completing ABCFP-approved, university-level courses. On occasion, workshops, seminars, on-the-job training, or qualifying exams set by the association may be used to address competency deficiencies. However, ABCFP-approved courses are the standard expectation to ensure consistency, fairness, and transparency in the CAP process.
 
Note: the manner in which an outstanding competencies must be completed will depend on the results of assessments as a whole and will be subject to the recommendation and approval of the Competency Working Group. We have collaborated with various post-secondary institutions to make online course options available for some subject areas. Please note that online or distance education options may not be permanently available and are dependent on the schools. Be prepared to take in person courses if online or distance education options are not available.
 
Questions: Contact the registration department.
  

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