About CAP

Who We Are

The College of Alberta Psychologists (CAP) is the regulatory (licensing) body for registered psychologists and registered provisional psychologists in accordance with provincial legislation, the Health Professions Act and the Psychologists Profession Regulation. CAP is not a university, school or community college; its mandate is to serve the interests of the public and guide the profession of psychology. 

The HPA defines the requirements that self-regulated health processions in Alberta need to follow to provide safe and competent care to the public. The HPA provides a framework for:

  • governance
  • registration 
  • setting standards for professional practice
  • restricted activities
  • professional conduct and discipline
  • continuing professional development

Our regulatory responsibilities include:

  • establishing entrance requirements for the profession, including academic preparation, supervised practice hours and examinations
  • registration and licensing of psychologists in the province of Alberta
  • maintaining a register of regulated members
  • developing, administering and enforcing the bylaws, policies and procedures necessary to fulfill the requirements of governing legislation
  • adopting a code of ethics for the profession
  • establishing and enforcing standards of practice for the profession
  • developing professional practice guidance documents
  • developing, implementing and monitoring a Continuing Competence Program for the profession
  • investigating and adjudicating complaints from clients, members of the public, other regulated members and organizations
  • liaising with government regarding the Health Professions Act and other relevant legislation as it applies to the profession of psychology
  • liaising with other psychology regulating bodies, and
  • liaising with other professional regulating bodies

Annual Reports

Every year, as mandated in the HPA, CAP Council submits an annual report to the Minister of Health, who then tables it in the Legislature. Click here to view our Annual Reports. 

Our Mission

CAP is the regulator for the profession of psychology in Alberta within a diverse, dynamic ad increasingly complex discipline. We protect the public by determining entry-to-practice requirements, enhancing psychologists' ethical awareness, establishing standards of practice and ensuring the profession holds the welfare of the people they serve as their highest duty. We are the regulatory voice for Alberta psychology locally, nationally and globally. Our goal is to create compassionate, caring and competent psychologists. 

Our Vision

Ensuring the interests of the public are protected by enhancing the practice of psychology an engaging psychologists to excel. 

 

Our Goal

Our goal is to create compassionate, caring and competent psychologists. 

What is self-regulation and why is it so important?

Self-regulation is a privilege, not a right, granted by the provincial government. Self-regulation is commonly used in technically specialized and complex areas, like healthcare, because the professions, not the government, have the specific knowledge and expertise needed to set education, competence, license and practice requirements/standards. The granting of self-regulation acknowledges a profession’s members are capable of governing themselves under certain conditions that include graduation from a recognized school and successfully completing a rigorous examination process before being granted the privilege to practice. Health professionals must also complete criminal record checks, provide proof of good character, renew their registration each year and keep their skills and knowledge up to date. This is done on the condition that the profession’s college regulates in the best interests of the public. 

Without registration with a college, Albertans have no way of knowing if the person providing service has had appropriate training, education, skills or is subject to standards that ensure safe care. All complaints are investigated by CAP, and may lead to remedial, or in some cases, disciplinary action. While members of the public can bring concerns about a regulated psychologist directly to the college, complaints about unregulated care providers are much more difficult to deal with and sometimes may only be dealt with by an employer or through the courts.

Self-regulation is often identified as one essential aspect of a true profession. Other characteristics include:

  • the protection of the public
  • a defined scope of practice
  • a specialized body of knowledge based on research and practice
  • a need to engage in thoughtful and independent professional decision-making
  • a statutory (legal) self-regulatory foundation
  • a code of ethics
  • standards of practice
  • practice guidance, and
  • a process to address alleged unprofessional conduct in a manner that adheres to the principles of natural justice

The role of the Psychologists' Association of Alberta

Our fraternal association, the Psychologists’ Association of Alberta (PAA) is the voice of, and for, psychology in Alberta. PAA is a voluntary body that advocates for psychology in Alberta, informs the public and the media, and advocates for consumers of psychotherapy, psychological, and mental health services.  It is a separate organization from CAP. 

PAA operates a province-wide referral service to find a psychologist practicing in a specific area. The service can be accessed by the public by contacting PAA directly by telephone or online. 

PAA also provides professional development and networking opportunities for their members and has an active communications strategy. They support many initiatives that seek to enhance psychological health and wellness in the province of Alberta.  

To learn more about PAA, the benefits of membership and its referral service, click here

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Our People

View our Council and Staff lists and learn about their mandated roles and responsibilities. 

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CAP Departments and Committees

Learn about CAP, it's mandated responsibilities and our volunteer committees.

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What is Psychology?

Learn about the profession of psychology and what psychologists do.

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Related Sites

View external organizations and websites which may be useful in your search for information on the practice and regulation of psychology.

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Copyright 2021 by College of Alberta Psychologists

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Registration and Renewal

This section provides information and resources regarding registration requirements, fees and renewing a practice permit.

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Concerns About a Psychologist

This section provides information and resources to address concerns about the conduct of a psychologist. 

 

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Professional Guidance

CAP communicates with members, providing regulatory information and guidance. Regulated members are welcome to contact CAP for professional guidance related to regulatory information.

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About CAP

Learn more about CAP and its mandated responsibiliites under the Health Professions Act. 

Resources & Regulatory Information

A number of documents govern the regulation of the profession of psychology and documents and resources are developed in order to promote competent and ethical practice and to guide its members. 

Sexual Abuse/Misconduct

Addressing and Preventing Sexual Abuse and Misconduct for Psychologists