University Accreditation

Overview of University Planning Degree Program Accreditation Accredited gold certificate

Universities with planning degree programs (under-graduate or graduate) may apply to PSB to have those programs accredited.  Accreditation is for a period of up to five years, and may be conditional or unconditional. Please note that, under the standard, doctoral programs are not eligible for accreditation. The accreditation process is overseen by PSB’s Accreditation Program Committee (APC). Note:  A program, if accredited, is accredited to the end of the last indicated academic year; thus, if a program shows accreditation to 2017, it is accredited to the end of academic 2017-2018 (normally August 31, 2018).

Initial Accreditation

Upon application for accreditation, PSB will send a Site Visit Team to meet with the university and review their suitability for accreditation.  This review looks at the degree program’s curriculum to ensure it covers the identified competencies appropriately, the staffing of the university’s planning department to verify the employment of the requisite number of full (certified) members of a Provincial/Territorial Institute or Association (PTIA) of CIP and/or its Affiliate Planning Institutes at an appropriate level, and a number of other factors.  The Site Visit Team prepares a draft report, which is submitted to the degree program’s management for review and comment.  The Team makes such adjustments to the report as, in its opinion, are required and prepares its final report and recommendation. The Site Visit Team then submits its report, including the recommendation, to APC for approval, and the approved report is then sent to PSB’s Board of Directors for a final decision.  PSB recognizes that some PTIAs are legislatively mandated to accredit programs for their jurisdictions, including those located in other provinces, so additional approval process may take place at those PTIAs.

Annual Reviews

Around the anniversary of the program’s accreditation, PSB will review with the university its status to determine whether the program should continue to be accredited.  This is not an in-depth review, although a serious falling-away from the standard for accreditation may trigger such a review.  If concerns are identified, the university will be asked to take corrective action to address them.

Intensive Review

As noted above, accreditation is for a period of up to five years.  At the end of that time, an intensive review will be undertaken by PSB.  This process is very similar to the initial accreditation in scope.

Accreditation Standard

The accreditation standard applied by PSB is the standard established by the Planning for the Future Accreditation Task Force (adopted in 2010) and modified by the Accreditation Implementation Task Force (adopted 2013).  The criteria for accreditation of a university planning degree programs are:

  1. The university offering the program must be recognized by a government of a province of Canada
  2. The degree must be in the field of planning as defined by the Canadian Institute of Planners:  “the scientific, aesthetic and orderly disposition of land resources, facilities and services with a view to securing the physical, economic and social efficiency, health and well-being of urban and rural communities.”
  3. An undergraduate degree should require the equivalent of four years of full-time study in a normal case.  A graduate degree should require the equivalent of two years of full-time study in a normal case.  Note:  doctoral degree programs are not eligible for accreditation.
  4. The word “Planning” or the French equivalent must appear in the title of the degree or parenthetically to define the discipline of planning within the designated branch of knowledge and shall not be subordinate to another discipline within the branch of knowledge.
  5. The program offering the degree shall be a recognized administrative unit (program, department, school, etc.) within the university, in the direct charge of an individual whose primary area of activity is planning and who is officially designated by the university as the responsible executive academic officer of the unit having authority on academic matters generally equivalent (subject to the constraints and limitations imposed by the university) to that of a department chair.
  6. The administrative unit must have appropriate administrative capacity and academic independence (subject to the constraints and limitations imposed by the university).
  7. The faculty shall include at least four academic members whose major appointments are in the planning program.
  8. A program must have a minimum number of certified members of a PTIA on faculty. Two or more members with part-time teaching appointments in the planning program shall be considered to be one of these full-time equivalents.
    1. For a program with 7 or fewer full-time equivalent faculty, at least three must be certified members of a PTIA;
    2. For a program with 8 or more full-time equivalent faculty, at least four must be certified members of a PTIA.
  9. Faculty members shall have educational and professional backgrounds appropriate for the program level, with a relevant mix of credentials (i.e. degrees in planning (ideally accredited), significant experience in planning, PhDs in planning, degrees and experience in related fields).
  10. The course must provide sufficient coverage of the functional and enabling competencies to allow students to enter the planning profession with a broad base of understanding of the profession and with the ability to continue to develop, gain knowledge, and specialize.

The competencies against which programs seeking accreditation are measured are:

Functional Competencies

Human Settlements History & Principles of Planning Government and Law Issues in Planning and Policy-Making Processes of Planning and Policy-Making Plan and Policy Implementation
Forms, scales and settings of human settlements History of planning in Canada and other countries Political and institutional frameworks of planning Environmental, social and economic sustainability Visioning, goal-setting and problem-framing Regulatory tools
Processes and factors of change in human settlements Planning theories, principles and practices Planning laws Equity, diversity and inclusiveness Information gathering and analysis Fiscal/financial tools
Planning ethics Public finance and economics Public consultation and deliberation Design and management of public projects
New developments in planning Land use, design and infrastructure Monitoring and evaluation

Enabling Competencies

Critical and Creative Thinking Social Interaction and Leadership Communication Professionalism
Gathering and analysing quantitative and qualitative data Mediation, facilitation, negotiation, and conflict resolution Written communication Managing complexity, uncertainty and change
Identifying patterns and trends Inclusion of diverse people and values Oral communication Learning from practice
Thinking at various geographic scales Team-work and team-building Graphic communication Handling ethical dilemmas
Designing scenarios and plans Relations to bosses, officials and the public Use of information technology

Preliminary Accreditation

The Planning for the Future report on accreditation, as drafted, provided that newly-accredited programs could date their accreditation from the beginning of the academic year in which accreditation was granted, and that only students who first began attending classes in that year could be considered to have graduated with an accredited degree.  It also provided that an application for accreditation could not be submitted until the program had graduated a cohort.  As a result of our experience, PSB identified this as a concern – a program would be evaluated in part on the work done by the first graduating cohort, but that group could not be considered to have graduated with an accredited degree.  In response to this, PSB drafted an amendment to the Planning for the Future standard that would permit preliminary accreditation of new and existing planning degree programs.  This amendment was reviewed and recommended by the Professional Standards Committee (PSC – the body within the Institute charged with reviewing and amending the various standards) and adopted by the Institute and the participating PTIAs in late 2014.  As a result, PSB is now able to offer preliminary accreditation. Under the amendment, a new planning degree program submits an application to PSB before the program’s first classes commence.  The APC appoints a Program Review Team (PRT) to consider whether, based on the application, the program appears to meet the standard.  If the PRT recommends that preliminary accreditation be granted, and that recommendation is accepted by APC and the PSB Board of Directors, the program is granted preliminary accreditation from the beginning of the academic year in which classes begin.  The program must then submit annual reports satisfactory to APC, undergo an intensive site visit resulting in a recommendation for accreditation, and that recommendation must be accepted by APC and the PSB Board.  If, as a result of this process, the program is ultimately granted accreditation, all those who enrolled in the program since the start of first classes will be considered to have graduated with an accredited degree. The process for first-time accreditation of existing planning degree programs is similar, but retroactivity cannot be granted to such programs.  All programs applying for preliminary accreditation must meet the 2010 standard as amended in 2013; the 2014 amendment regarding preliminary accreditation does not vary the 2010/2013 criteria other than to allow preliminary accreditation.

Accreditation Timelines

The process below includes indicates the maximum time allowed for an individual step.

  1. Six to 12 months ahead of scheduled site visit:  APC works with universities to set dates of upcoming accreditation visits (possibly universities will offer 3 sets of dates for APC to choose from)
  2. Three to six months ahead of scheduled site visit:  APC appoints Site Visit Team (SVT) members
  3. Six months ahead of scheduled site visit:  staff advises university of mandatory/optional parts of site visit (interviews, etc.)
  4. Two months ahead of scheduled site visit:  APC informs university of the names of SVT members; if university identifies a conflict, APC takes steps to remedy it (e.g. appoints a replacement member)
  5. Two months ahead of scheduled site visit:  APC holds meeting with each SVT to conduct orientation if necessary
  6. Six weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  application from university due
  7. Six weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  APC formally appoints SVT
  8. Six weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  application from university distributed to SVT members (large files, so it is usually necessary to distribute by DropBox)
  9. Six weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  university prepares draft site visit schedule
  10. Four weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  SVT travel and accommodation booked
  11. Two-four weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  SVT teleconference to discuss university application, set visit strategy (if any), etc.
  12. Two weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  staff prepares the “factual” part of the SVT report (name of university, degree, faculty, etc. – this information can be drawn from the application)
  13. Two weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  university prepares final site visit schedule (showing names of interview participants, etc.)
  14. Two weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  second SVT teleconference, if necessary
  15. Two weeks ahead of scheduled site visit:  confirm with SVT members they are still willing and available to conduct the site visit (maybe this should be 4 weeks out?)
  16. Site visit
  17. 60 days after site visit:  draft SVT report due.  Draft submitted to university for review
  18. 90 days after site visit:  university to submit comments on draft report.  If university disputes findings, it must submit evidence substantiating its position.  University can also make factual corrections (spellings, etc.)
  19. 105 days after site visit:  SVT prepares final report to APC
  20. 135 days after site visit:  APC makes recommendation to accept or not to accept SVT report and sends recommendation to PSB Board
  21. 165 days after site visit:  PSB Board votes to accept or not to accept APC recommendation
  22. 15 days after PSB Board vote:  university to lodge an appeal
  23. 15 days after notice of university appeal:  PSB Board to appoint an appeal panel to hear the appeal
  24. Seven days after PSB Board vote or 7 days after appeal panel presents its report:  staff notifies university, university’s “home PTIA”, other PTIAs, PSC and CIP of result of vote.  Staff updates website listing of accredited programs

More questions?

Contact Larissa Johnston, Executive Director (By Email: executivedirector@psb-planningcanada.ca or By Phone: 647-317-6924/1-844-202-9002)

Accredited Degree Programs

Important Note Regarding Accreditation Expiration Dates

There has been some confusion regarding the end date for the accreditation period of university planning degree programs.  Please note that a program on our list below that shows an end date for accreditation of 2015, for example, is considered to be accredited to the end of academic 2015 – this means August 31, 2016.  We also wish to reassure students who are applying to, or already enrolled in, an accredited program, that, as long as their classes begin within the accreditation period, they will be considered to have graduated with an accredited degree provided they complete that degree within the period allowed by the university (7 years for undergraduate programs and 5 years for graduate programs).

Preliminary Accreditations

SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Simon Fraser University’s Bachelor of Environment (Planning) was granted preliminary accreditation by the PSB Board of Directors in July 2020. Provided the University files acceptable annual reports with PSB and undergoes a successful site visit resulting in accreditation, all those who have graduated from the program during the years of accreditation will be considered to hold an accredited degree and will be eligible for entry to PSB’s process through the Accredited Degree route. Our congratulations to the University, Dr. Tom Gunton, head of the program, and the program’s faculty on achieving this important step!

University of Alberta

School of Urban and Regional Planning, Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

1-26 Earth Science Building Edmonton, AB T6G 2E3 Director: Dr. Sandeep Agrawal (PhD, RPP, MCIP, AICP) Tel: (780) 492-1230 E-mail: sagrawal@ualberta.ca Program Tel: (780) 492-3265 Fax: (780) 492-2030 Website: https://www.ualberta.ca/earth-sciences/urban-regional-planning For Admissions contact eas@ualberta.ca

  • B.A./B.Sc. (Planning) (Sept. 1, 2012 – Aug. 31, 2026), 
  • M.Sc. (Urban and Regional Planning) (Sept. 1, 2018 – Aug. 31, 2026)

University of British Columbia

School of Community and Regional Planning

Room 433, Frederick Lasserre Building 6333 Memorial Road Vancouver BC V6T 1Z2 Director: Heather Campbell, PhD Tel: (604) 827-2342 E-mail: info.scarp@ubc.ca Office: Lasserre 434 Program Tel: (604)822-3276 Fax: (604) 822-3787 Website: www.scarp.ubc.ca For Master’s Admissions contact admissions@scarp.ubc.ca For PhD Admissions contact grad.scarp@ubc.ca

  • M.A./M.Sc. (Community and Regional Planning) (Sept. 1, 1952 – Aug. 31, 2016), 
  • Master of Community and Regional Planning (MCRP) (Sept. 1, 2017 – Aug. 31, 2026) 
  • Master of Community and Regional Planning – Indigenous Community Planning (MCRP-ICP) (Sept. 1, 2017 – Aug. 31, 2026) 

University of Calgary

School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape

Room 2182, Professional Faculties Building 2500 University Drive NW Calgary, AB T2N 1N4
Dean: John Brown Tel: (403) 220-6606 E-mail: dean@sapl.ucalgary.ca

Associate Dean:
ADPlanLa@sapl.ucalgary.ca

Admissions and inquiries e-mail: admissions@sapl.ucalgary.ca
Program Tel: (403) 220-7070

Fax:  (403) 284-4399 Website:  sapl.ucalgary.ca

  • Master of Planning (Sept. 1, 2011 – Aug. 31, 2028)

Dalhousie University

School of Planning

5410 Spring Garden Road, Box 15000 Halifax, NS, Canada B3H 4R2 Director:  Ahsan Habib, PhD, MURP, MASc Tel: (902)-494-3209 Fax: (902) 423-6672 E-mail:  ahsan.habib@dal.ca Program Tel: (902) 494-3260  Fax: (902) 423-6672 Web site: www.dal.ca/planning For Admissions, contact: planning@dal.ca

  • Master of Planning (Sept. 1, 2003 – Aug. 31, 2026)
  • Bachelor of Community Design, Honours, with the following Majors (various accredited Minors are available – please consult the University):
    • Major in Environmental Planning (Sept. 1, 2003 – Aug. 31, 2026)
    • Major in Urban Design and Planning (formerly Urban Design Studies) (Sept. 1, 2003 – Aug. 31, 2026)
    • Double Major Community Design (Urban Design Studies) and Sustainability (Sept. 1, 2012 – Aug. 31, 2026)
    • Double Major Community Design (Environmental Planning) and Sustainability (Sept. 1, 2012 – Aug. 31, 2026)

University of Guelph

Rural Planning & Development Program School of Environmental Design and Rural Development

Landscape Architecture Building 50 Stone Road East Guelph ON N1G 2W1 Associate Professor & Director: Sean Kelly Tel: (519) 824-4120 x56870 Email: sean.kelly@uoguelph.ca  Graduate Program Coordinator: Ryan Gibson, Ph.D. Tel: (519) 824-4120 x56785 E-mail: gibsonr@uoguelph.ca Program Tel: (519) 824-4120 Ext. 56784 Fax: (519) 767-1686 Web site: https://www.uoguelph.ca/programs/msc-in-rural-planning-development/

  • M.Sc. (Rural Planning & Development, Canadian Stream) (Sept. 1, 1983 – Aug. 31, 2023)
  • M.Sc. (Rural Planning & Development, International Stream) (Sept. 1, 2008 – Aug. 31, 2023)

University of Manitoba

Faculty of Architecture Department of City Planning

84 Curry Place Winnipeg MB R3M 2M6 Head: Richard Milgrom, PhD, MCIP, B.E.S., M.Arch., MAA Tel: (204) 474-6868 E-mail: Richard.Milgrom@umanitoba.ca Program Tel: (204) 474-6578 Fax: (204) 474-7532 cityplanning@umanitoba.ca Web site: http://umanitoba.ca/architecture/

  • Master of City Planning (Sept. 1, 1952 – Aug. 31, 2025)

McGill University

School of Urban Planning

Macdonald-Harrington Building 815 Sherbrooke Street West, Room 400 Montréal QC H3A 0C2 Director: Lisa Bornstein E-mail: Lisa.bornstein@mcgill.ca Program Tel: (514) 398-4075 Fax: (514) 398-8376 Web site: www.mcgill.ca/urbanplanning For Admissions, contact: admissions.planning@mcgill.ca

  • Master of Urban Planning (Sept. 1, 1974  – Aug. 31, 2026)

University of Northern British Columbia

School of Planning and Sustainability

3333 University Way Dr. Prince George BC V2N 4Z9 Chair: Tara-Lynne Clapp, PhD Tel: 250-960-6012 E-mail: Tara.Clapp@unbc.ca Program Tel:(250) 960-6173 Fax: (250) 960-6764 enpl@unbc.ca Web site: www.unbc.ca/planning

  • Bachelor of Planning (BPL) (Sept. 1, 2005 – Aug. 31, 2026), 

Université du Québec a Montréal

Module d’urbanisme, C.P. 8888

Montréal (Québec) H3C 3P8 Directeur: Bruno Sarrasin Tel: (514) 987-3000 x7075 E-mail: sarrasin.bruni@uqam.ca Program Tel: (514) 987-4121 Fax: (514) 987-7827 deut@uqam.ca Web site: www.deut.esg.uqam.ca/

  • Baccalauréat ès sciences spécialisé en urbanisme (1 sept. 1984 – 31 aout 2016)

Queen’s University

School of Urban & Regional Planning

Mackintosh-Corry Hall, Room E208 Kingston, Ontario, Canada K7L 3N6 Director: Dr. John Meligrana, PhD, MCIP, RPP Tel: (613) 533-6000 x 77145 E-mail: john.meligrana@queensu.ca Office Contact: Kathy Hoover Tel: (613) 533-6000 x 77214 Program Tel: (613) 533-6030 Fax: (613) 545-6905 Web site: http://www.queensu.ca/geographyandplanning/surp/

  • Master of Urban & Regional Planning (Sept. 1, 1973 – Aug. 31, 2026)

Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University)

School of Urban & Regional Planning

350 Victoria Street (SBB-400) Toronto, ON M5B 2K3 Director: Dr. Raktim Mitra PhD E-mail:  raktim.mitra@torontomu.ca Program Tel: (416) 979-5165 Fax: (416) 979-5357 surp@torontomu.ca Web site: www.torontomu.ca/surp

  • Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning (PLAN) (Sept. 1, 1973 – Aug. 31, 2025)
  • Post Degree Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning (PLAB) (Sept. 1, 2006 – Aug. 31, 2025)
  • Post Diploma Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning (PLAD) (Sept. 1, 2006 – Aug. 31, 2025)
  • Master of Planning in Urban Development (Sept. 1, 2009 – Aug. 31, 2025)

University of Saskatchewan

Regional and Urban Planning Program

Department of Geography and Planning 117 Science Place Saskatoon, SK S7N 5C8 Chair: Dr. Bob Patrick RPP, MCIP E-mail: robert.patrick@usask.ca Tel: 306-966-6653 Fax: 306-966-5680 Web sitehttp://artsandscience.usask.ca/geography/undergraduates/regional-and-urban-planning.php

  • B.A. in Regional and Urban Planning (Sept. 1, 2009 – Aug. 31, 2026)

Simon Fraser University

School of Resource and Environmental Management Resource & Environmental Planning Program

TASC 1 – Room #8405 8888 University Drive, Burnaby, B.C. V5A 1S6 Program Director: Dr. Andréanne Doyon E-mail: andreanne_doyon@sfu.ca Program Tel: (778) 782-4659 Fax: (778) 782-4968 reminfo@sfu.ca Web site: www.rem.sfu.ca/

  • Master of Resource Management (Planning) (Sept. 1, 2004 – Aug. 31, 2024)

University of Toronto

Program in Planning, Department of Geography

Sidney Smith Hall 100 St. George Street, Room 5047 Toronto ON M5S 1A1 Director: Katharine Rankin, Ph.D., M.R.P., B.A. Anthropology E-mail: k.rankin@utoronto.ca  Tel: 416-978- 1592  Program Administrator: Marija Wright E-mail: wright@geog.utoronto.ca Tel: 416-946-0269 Program Tel: (416) 978-3375 Fax: (416) 946-3886 Web site: www.geog.utoronto.ca

  • M.Sc. (Planning) (Sept. 1, 1963 – Aug. 31, 2027)

University of Waterloo

School of Planning

Faculty of Environment, EV3 – Third Floor 200 University Avenue West Waterloo ON N2L 3G1 Director: Mark Seasons, PhD, FCIP, RPP Email: mark.seasons@uwaterloo.ca Program Tel: (519) 888-4567 ext. 46564 Fax: (519) 725-2827 Web site: www.uwaterloo.ca/planning For Graduate Studies inquiries, contact: env-plan@uwaterloo.ca For Undergraduate Studies inquiries, contact: plan.undergradadvisor@uwaterloo.ca

  • Bachelor of Environmental Studies Honours Planning and Honours Co-op Planning (Sept. 1, 1968 – Aug. 31, 2024)
  • Master of Arts (Planning) (Sept. 1, 1968 – Aug. 31, 2024)
  • Master of Environmental Studies (Planning) (Sept. 1, 1998 – Aug. 31, 2024)

Vancouver Island University

Community Planning Department, Faculty of Social Sciences

Vancouver Island University 900 Fifth Street Nanaimo, BC V9R 5S5 Director: Dr. Pamela Shaw (PhD RPP FCIP FRCGS) Email: Pam.Shaw@viu.ca Phone: (250) 753-3245 extension 2620 Toll-Free: 1-888-920-2221 Website: https://socialsciences.viu.ca/social-sciences/mcp

  • Master of Community Planning (Sept. 1, 2015 – Aug. 31, 2026)

York University

Faculty of Environmental & Urban Change

4700 Keele Street, HNES Building Toronto, ON M3J 1P3 Professor, & Planning Coordinator : Dr. Laura E Taylor PhD MCIP RPP E-mail: taylorl9@yorku.ca EUC Planning Program Coordinator E-mail: eucplan@yorku.ca Program Tel: (416) 736-5252 Fax: (416) 736-5679 Web site: euc.yorku.ca

  • Master in Environmental Studies (Planning) (Sept. 1, 1970 – Aug. 31, 2027)

Formerly Accredited Planning Degree Programs

Accredited degree programs change from time-to-time, for a variety of reasons.  If you enrolled in one of the following programs during the time it was accredited and were granted that degree within seven years of enrollment, you can still apply via the Accredited Degree route:

University of British Columbia

  • Ph.D. (Community and Regional Planning) (Sept. 1, 1973 – Aug. 31, 2010)

University of Calgary

  • Master of Environmental Design (Planning) (Sept. 1, 1976 – Aug. 31, 2008)
  • PhD Environmental Design (Sept. 1, 1998 – Aug. 31, 2005)

Dalhousie University

  • Master of Engineering/Master of Planning (Sept. 1, 2003 – Aug. 31, 2011)
  • Master of Applied Science/Master of Planning (Sept. 1, 2003 – Aug. 31, 2011)
  • Master of Urban and Rural Planning (Sept. 1, 1981 – Aug. 31, 2011)
  • Master of Engineering/Master of Urban and Rural Planning (Sept. 1, 1981 – Aug. 31, 2011)
  • Master of Applied Science/Master of Urban and Rural Planning (Sept. 1, 1981 – Aug. 31, 2011)
  • Bachelor of Community Design; Honours (Environmental Planning) (Sept. 1, 2003 – Aug. 31, 2011)
  • Bachelor of Community Design; Honours (Urban Design Studies) (Sept. 1, 2003 – Aug. 31, 2011)

University of Northern British Columbia

  • Bachelor of Science, Environmental Planning (Sept. 1, 1996 – Aug. 31, 2004)

Nova Scotia College of Art and Design

  • Bachelor of Design in Environmental Planning

Université Laval

  • Maîtrise en aménagement du territoire et développement régional ( 1 sept. 1984 – 31 aout 2016)

Université du Québec a Montréal

  • Baccalauréat ès sciences spécialisé en urbanisme (1 sept. 1984 – 31 aout 2016)

University of Ottawa

  • Master of Planning (Sept. 1, 1977 – Aug. 31, 1983)

University of Saskatchewan

  • B.A. in Regional and Urban Development (Sept. 1, 1968 – Aug. 31, 2008)

University of Toronto

  • Diploma in Town and Regional Planning (Sept. 1, 1952 – Aug. 31, 1975)
  • Ph.D. Urban and Regional Planning (Sept. 1, 1976 – Aug. 31, 1982)

University of Waterloo

  • Doctor of Philosophy (Planning) (Sept. 1, 1968 – Aug. 31, 2014)

University of Windsor

  • Honours Bachelor of Arts (Planning) (Sept. 1, 1990 – Aug. 31, 2004)

5 key things to know about the work of the Accreditation Program Committee (APC): Update #1

We are learning and evolving.  The APC, through Site Visit Teams (SVTs) has carried out a number of accreditation processes using the methodology envisioned at PSB inception.  With these experiences and a desire for continuous improvement, APC is taking steps to ensure that an efficient, transparent and trust engendering accreditation process evolves.  Here’s what you can look forward to:

  1. Scheduling site visits with universities up to a year in advance, at times that are most appropriate to those universities.  Pre-visit conversations are taking place to increase preparedness of all parties.
  2. During site visits, an open meeting will take place with all interested students, in addition to the meeting with a preselected subset of the student body.  This way, we can hear the voices of many.
  3. A step-by-step process with timelines is being refined and will be circulated and posted so that process expectations are clear.
  4. A transparent and proactive process to recruit site visit team members, so that we have a roster of diverse, knowledgeable planning leaders to proactively draw from.
  5. Ongoing and regular review of issues as they arise to develop pragmatic solutions.  One example of this is giving consideration to retroactive accreditation for particular University Planning Programs.

We commit to providing regular updates.  Upcoming updates will include information about site visit team recruitment and the process they follow, together with universities.

5 key things to know about the work of the Accreditation Program Committee (APC) Update #2

It’s fitting that the Accreditation Program Committee is learning!  APC is taking steps to ensure that an efficient, transparent and trust building accreditation process continues to evolve.  Here’s an update on our activities.

  1. Site Visits Complete!  As of the end of 2015, site visit teams have carried out accreditation visits to 6 universities, resulting in some first time preliminary accreditations, one new accreditation and a number of re-accreditations.  So far in 2016, we’ve already completed one accreditation visit.
  2. Site Visits Planned! For 2016, there are two more scheduled visits in March, and another two scheduled to be completed by the end of the year.  Congratulations to the staff and students of these programs for sharing your research, structure and vision, and thanks to all our volunteer Site Visit and Program Review Team members – all of you together are making a major contribution to the profession.
  3. Proactive Timelines in Place!  Site visits with universities are now booked up to a year in advance, at times that are most appropriate to those universities.  Similarly, we aim to establish Site Visit Teams well in advance.  Pre-visit preparation is taking place to increase preparedness of all parties.   The process timeline is now posted on this page – please scroll down to “Accreditation Timelines” and click/tap the button “Expand Details”.
  4. Considering Depth and Diversity!  Volunteers are critical to the success of the accreditation program.  Recognizing that Planning is a diverse profession, and planners have many specialties and backgrounds, we are looking at ways we can achieve a diverse and deep pool for Site Visit Teams.   A review of various professional “Colleges of Reviewers” approaches will give a base on which to create a national volunteer call.  Stay tuned!
  5. Planning, planners and planning schools don’t stand still!  The Committee undertakes ongoing and regular review of issues and opportunities as they arise to develop pragmatic solutions that meet the needs of the profession and our academic partners, and help us deliver on our mandate.

We commit to providing regular updates and welcome suggestions about areas that we should cover.  Our aim is to ensure that the processes we develop and implement are robust, transparent and sustainable.

For further information on the accreditation process, please contact PSB’s Executive Director, Larissa Johnston, by e-mail at executivedirector@psb-planningcanada.ca or by telephone at 647-317-6924 or toll-free 1-844-202-9002. A list of accredited Canadian university planning degree programs can be found on the Accredited Planning Programs page of the website. Please note that PSB also recognizes programs accredited by the American Planning Accreditation Board (PAB) and the Planning Institute of Australia –links to those programs is provided from our Accredited Planning Programs page.