Chantel & Graeme Franck

HELP - What is vocational? trade? occupational? or professional development qualifications?

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Chantel & Graeme Franck

Hi all,

I'm so lost right now (and highly despondent). I’m hoping that you all can give me some advice, and positive feedback with regards to the below

Long story short (and it’s still a long story J) but here goes: We sent through my Post Secondary Qualifications to World Education Services (WES) for an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) and in the process of this they requested my Secondary Education (Matric) transcripts which we sent through. However once we received the ECA report it was only for my Matric and not for my Post-secondary education which we applied for.

I queried with them (on their website help section as there is no other way to contact them unless you want to be on hold for more than 40 min) as to why we didn’t receive an ECA for my Post secondary and only for my Matric and after another long wait they said that they will "investigate"

They have now come back to me saying that "We do not evaluate occupational, vocational, trade or professional development qualifications"

What is this? As I have a Professional Secretarial Certificate and a Professional Secretarial Diploma that I studied hard for and which included subjects like Financial Accounting, Human resources, Business Management etc.  So it’s not just a "simple course" Its actually an NQF6

But now I’m not sure which of their categories this would fall under. vocational? trade? occupational? or professional development qualifications?

And also not sure as to where I would be able to get my qualifications assessed?

Also on the WES website I see there is an option to have Vocational studies assessed so their mail was not 100% accurate.

Anyway so my question is where to now?  How do I find out what category my qualification falls under? Occupational? Vocational? Trade? Professional development?

And then where would I go to get them evaluated?

I feel like giving up today L because without these ECA’s we only have 65 of the 67 points needed to get into EE.

Help please.

 

Thanks in advance

Edited by Chantel & Graeme Franck

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QueenOfHeartsZA

Why not apply with Utoronto? They take about 11 weeks but better than nothing

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Chantel & Graeme Franck

Sorry to sound naive but what is Utoronto?

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MaryJane

University of Toronto.

7 minutes ago, Chantel & Graeme Franck said:

Sorry to sound naive but what is Utoronto?

 

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Chantel & Graeme Franck

Thanks @MaryJane.

@QueenOfHeartsZA will they asses my Secretarial Certificate and Diploma?  And WES wont?

 

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YolandaB

Hi Chantel & Graeme,

We are in the same boat.... Andre has also a Diploma in Accounting (professional institution) and is also on the NQF6 Level. We have applied for his Credentials to be assessed and we too got an email like yours... we could not believe what we saw !!!

Anyway after some investigation we learned (not entirely sure if we are correct) but it seems they will only asses a qualification if it was offered by a University or a College. In other worlds if you have a CIMA (Chartered institute of management accountants) diploma then that would not get assessed. This does absolutely not make sense to us either....

We are not sure if and how one can get this done and we would like to know this also as its frustrating.

Anyway please don't give up on this as there are many way into Canada !!! 

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Sideline

Ok, 

I'll attempt to help and give insight. Most of these diplomas that you guys are looking to get evaluated might be at an NQF6 level or whatever you think is important. Most of these educational qualifications form part, in one way or another, of the SETA. 

Unfortunately SETA is a South African certification body and hold little if any recognition outside of SA borders. Inside SA they hold huge value and recognition, on an international scale, well not so much. Just because a body (place that you studied through) is registered with SETA, does not mean it is recognized internationally. 

"SETA, or Sector Education and Training Authority, is a vocational skills training organization in South Africa. As of March 2011, there are 21 SETAs . Each SETA is responsible for managing and creating learnerships, internships, unit-based skills programmes, and apprenticeships within its jurisdiction. Every industry and occupation in South Africa is covered by one of the 21 SETAs."

WES etc will ONLY asses degrees and certificates from university  (tertiary studies) and recognized internationally acceptable educational institutions. Most diplomas and courses that are SETA approved won't hold a value more than the paper they are printed on outside of SA.

Please note there are many institutions registered with SETA that will be recognized as well, but often things like you described "Professional Secertarial Certificate/Diploma" will fall outside of the WES ECA (credential assesment).

WES won't touch qualifications or assessments that will fall under trade or vocational/occupational (specific job types). It says so clearly on the website 

  • A completed degree or diploma is required for the ECA application. Please note that WES does not evaluate occupational or trade qualifications.)

You have to realize very early and very fast, Canada is a very different world. It is a country of EXTREME specialists and even more so specialist ways of recognizing and governing many professions. 

To illustrate this I'll deviate slightly with an example outside of education assesment. Take for instance a woman needing to go to a Gynecologist in SA. If they need to be scanned or and internal exam done, the gynecologist will do it right there in the room, because they can and often have the sonar machines in their office or another room.

In Canada? No way! You get an appointment at a dedicated facility, with a qualified lab technician, who's ONLY job is to scan and sonar your 'plumbing'. It's extremely professional and if it's a male technician, a female worker/college will be in the room with you to ensure it stays professional. These result then get sent to your doctor or if you under the care of a gynecologist they get the results, you then go for another appointment to discuss any issues etc. so you can see two different jobs, two different appointments in Canada. Stupid you might think right? Well no, because Canada is a country of EXTREME specialists.

So back to your diploma assesment. Your career/profession might actually fall under a very regulated and dedicated and specific professional (vocational) body in a province (yes every province has its own professional bodies). THESE ARE THE ONLY places that will be allowed to asses your qualifications, because they are the regulated and registered body who you WILL be a member of if you want to work in that field. You will need to find these bodies and submit your education to them for assesment to see what shortfalls or bridging courses you will need to work in Canada. You claim to be a Professional Secertary, it's a HUGE thing here because you will be a SPECIALIST and not just an admin assistant, or office manager etc.

The same hold true for the  diploma in Accounting, it's an ACCOUNTNG body in the province that will govern your work life and professional development this side of the ocean.

In short, you need to understand how Canada works and what educational assesment will fall under WES and what will be under a professional regulated body in the province you choose to go to. Think of it a little like SETA in SA, just in Canada it's provincial and sometimes even federal regulation.

I hope this helps!

 

 

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Chantel & Graeme Franck

WOW - Thanks @Sideline you certainly don't mince your words :) But I guess honesty is the best policy and is what we need here.

So what you are saying is that if I am interested in Alberta I would need to get a professional regulated body in Alberta to asses my qualifications?

But my question is would this organisations assessment of my qualifications be accepted by CIC for the Express entry pool? As they show on the CIC website that the below are the ones that we should use?

Or am I understanding it incorrectly? Are these purely suggested places to use?

Sorry for all the questions, but I've had so many wrong turns already in this process and just want this to be a right turn for once :) 

Also again I might sound naive but just to confirm my "Processional Secretarial Certificate and Diploma" is considered to be Vocational studies?

Thanks again

 

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Chantel & Graeme Franck
19 hours ago, QueenOfHeartsZA said:

Why not apply with Utoronto? They take about 11 weeks but better than nothing

Will this assessment be accepted throughout Canada or only on Toronto?

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MaryJane
6 hours ago, Chantel & Graeme Franck said:

Will this assessment be accepted throughout Canada or only on Toronto?

It should be acceptable to CIC. It's the first option on your earlier post. The one that notes Comparative Education Service.

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Chantel & Graeme Franck
11 minutes ago, MaryJane said:

It should be acceptable to CIC. It's the first option on your earlier post. The one that notes Comparative Education Service.

Thanks @MaryJane - I had a look on their website and see that they also do not do vocational (which is what i guess my qualification falls under) :(

 

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Chantel & Graeme Franck

Hi All,

Just an update here - I still have no clue whom can evaluate my Post Secondary Secretarial qualifications :angry: but I have asked my Aunt in Alberta to give IQAS a call to find out if they will evaluate my studies and I also asked her to call CIC, if she doesn't come right with IQAS, and find out from them as to whom I can use.

Will update thread once we have an answer for reference for others in the same boat as me, because i know how frustrating it is when you have no idea where to turn to ;)

Cheers for now 

Edited by Chantel & Graeme Franck

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MissFrowz

@Chantel & Graeme Franck IQAS does not assess vocational/professional training (see their website under "Before you apply"): "The ECA can be issued for completed credentials from formal academic / technical education from a recognized institution (see information about institution recognition in How IQAS reviews applications section). IQAS doesn’t evaluate trades training or vocational / professional training."

Maybe try contacting ICAS as they seem to be the only organization that doesn't explicitly say they don't assess vocational training.

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Sideline
On February 6, 2017 at 11:39 PM, Chantel & Graeme Franck said:

WOW - Thanks @Sideline you certainly don't mince your words :) But I guess honesty is the best policy and is what we need here.

So what you are saying is that if I am interested in Alberta I would need to get a professional regulated body in Alberta to asses my qualifications?

But my question is would this organisations assessment of my qualifications be accepted by CIC for the Express entry pool? As they show on the CIC website that the below are the ones that we should use?

Or am I understanding it incorrectly? Are these purely suggested places to use?

Sorry for all the questions, but I've had so many wrong turns already in this process and just want this to be a right turn for once :) 

Also again I might sound naive but just to confirm my "Processional Secretarial Certificate and Diploma" is considered to be Vocational studies?

Thanks again

 

Hi, yes I'm not known for sugar coating things that need to be dealt with honestly. Just look at my signature :P 

as I said above your SETA certifications won't hold much weight nor importance to the academic education evaluation process through the mentioned accreditation places. These guys ONLY assess ACADEMIC qualifications from TERTIARY (or your HIGHEST ACADEMIC) education. So WES etc won't touch trade and vocational stuff, as they need to then dig into the standards against international education institutions and how the courses are laid out again in relation to the international institutions and the whole academic studies vs skills or trade requirements.

Bluntly put your professional Secertary diploma is an occupational or vocational professional development certification, needed to further and gain credibility in your field as a professional secretary in SA and put you outside of the general pool of secretaries. This would be NOC 1241 I'm guessing in Canada. Sorry no offense meant but I know nothing about secretarial or professional secretarial job certifications, I'm going off of Canadian equivalence that you would get here, and even a then very high level understanding. So at a career level your diploma etc is a much needed thing, but on an international level it isn't recognized as an Academic education for assesment purposes. Hope this make sense to you.

Where did you do the certificate/diploma? If it is with a recognized tertiary body then it might, and I do say might very deliberately, hold weight. The deliberate part is that many of the SETA guys 'affiliate' with the big institutions to gain 'credibility' (well in SA circles anyway) to offer a 'recognized' course, but in reality what you have from the SETA (NQF) standpoint is a trade or skills (vocational) certification/qualification and not a full academic recognized course through that institution. We did a lot of work with and in the SETAs before we left so I know many of these very sought after and much needed courses inside of SA are useless outside of SA. The intention of the national frameworks are noble, but don't really hold up outside of SA borders. 

Your qualifications are however NOT useless, they just fall under the bodies in charge of certification, professional development etc here in Canada. These skills (your diploma and certificate) help in finding jobs if you get them assessed through these bodies, but these assessments still MIGHT NOT count toward any CIC points you might need. See examples below and how the credential are used (directly from CIC web pages).

 

a quick search on google for "Professional Secertary certification Canada" yielded these and many more,

https://www.icsacanada.org

http://www.cscs.org

http://www.iaap-hq.org/?page=cert_home

Ultimately I believe you have paid money to have your Matric results evaluated as your highest academic education on record, and now you will hit the brick wall of professional development recognition in Canada (not an EE requirement unfortunately)

Example

 

  1. you are applying:
    • as a specialist physician (NOC 3111) or general practitioner/family physician (NOC 3112), the Medical Council of Canada (MCC) must do an ECA for your primary medical diploma,
    • as a pharmacist (NOC 3131):
      • if you need a license to practice (for example, providing patient care in a community pharmacy, hospital pharmacy, long term care facility or other practice settings) the Pharmacy Examining Board of Canada (PEBC) mustdo your ECA,
      • if you are in a position where you do not need a license (organizations such as the pharmaceutical industry and government which require a pharmacy degree because of the education or skill set, but may not require a licence to practice pharmacy), you can have your credentials assessed by one of the other designated ECA organizations. Contact the regulatory authority in the province where you plan to live to find out if you need a licence to practice your intended occupation.
    • under any other occupation, check the websites of the other CIC-designated organizations or contact them directly to find which one best suits your needs. Consider:
      • Some designated organizations partner with certain regulatory bodies or large employers. In that case, the ECA you get for applying to CIC might also help you later on.
      • For each one, you should check to find out what other organizations recognize their assessments.
  2. Find out what documents you need.
  3. Find out how much it will cost. Costs may vary by organization.
  4. Find out how long an assessment will take.

Note: CIC uses assessments done by the MCC or the PEBC for immigration purposes. They are also used in the process of licensing for those professions. Please contact the regulatory authority in the province where you plan to live for more information about getting a licence.

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Nettie

I Googled "Professional Secretary Alberta" and these are two links that came up. It doesn't appear that this job is regulated by a professional body. I posted the links for in case you want to email them for more information. Hope this can help you out.

https://www.norquest.ca/cal/2016-2017/program/administrative-professional-certificate/

http://occinfo.alis.alberta.ca/occinfopreview/info/browse-occupations/occupation-profile.html?id=71003244

It is quite common that there isn't a comparable qualification in Canada for what you have studied. For example, you may only get credit for a certificate if you have a diploma, if that is what is required to do the job here. However, see this as a speed bump rather than a road block. It is all part of getting to know how things work here. Once you have permission to work here and you can get interviews, part of the interview is usually "tell us more about your education". At this point you can set yourself apart from the minimum requirements, that is required for the job.

Good luck with the rest of the process.

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Chantel & Graeme Franck

Thank you for this @Nettie

I have definitely been seeing this as a road block and losing all hope.

But I will try all avenues to have my Diploma evaluated (Surely I'm not the first person to apply with a Secretarial Diploma?) and take it from there, if that is not possible maybe a year or two of studying in Canada (but this would be my last resort - As long as my Hubby and 11 month old can come with obviously, and as long as we can survive financially as well) would do the trick as this would up my point as well. Better do this before i drop 5 points for age though!

But i will fight for my daughter to have a future in Canada! I will not give up and I will preserve!

Watch this space :rolleyes::D:P 

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MissFrowz

@Chantel & Graeme Franck maybe you could try apply with your husband as the primary applicant. What academic credentials does he have?

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Chantel & Graeme Franck

Unfortunately he only has matric :wacko:

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YolandaB

Hi @Chantel & Graeme Franck,

I feel what you are going through... I would suggest NOT looking at Federal express entry alone....

What is hubby doing ? Maybe he has a skilled job in demand and hell get a "job offer", that way you can go to Canada and apply on the "paper based" PNP instead ??? I feel this is a way easier route in than express entry (federal) especially if you don't have 450 points (don't know what you'll sit on).

You mentioned you have an aunt in Alberta.... maybe she can help with the Job offer from someone she knows?

Here is a link about Alberta PNP (look under candidate criteria)

Candidate criteria

As a Candidate, you must:

  • Clearly show in the application that you are able to and intend to live permanently in Alberta.
  • Have related education, training, previous work experience, and any Alberta licensing needed for the position and to meet AINP criteria.
  • Provide a copy of your valid work permit if you are already working in Alberta.
  • Provide proof of your legal status in your country of residence only if you are not currently working in Alberta (you are living abroad).
  • Meet additional criteria if your occupation is in Early childhood educators and child care staff

Meeting the criteria listed above does not guarantee a nomination or permanent residence.

 

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Chantel & Graeme Franck

@YolandaB thanks for your encouragement!

Graeme is a Sales and Marketing manager/GM with over 12 years experience in sales! But how do we get him a job offer, I have this cloud over my head thinking it's impossible if you're not in Canada...

I will also ask my my aunt if she knows of any jobs we can apply for, haven't thoughts about that! 

But at this stage I'm a little discouraged at the moment :(

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Sideline

Being discouraged is like sitting in a rocking chair (paraphrased from a good friend).

It gives you something to do, but doesn't get you anywhere!

why not do a distance online course/degree IN CANADIAN standards. This gives you the edge in both studies and also local knowledge etc.

http://www.cvu-uvc.ca/index.php

 

this is a great place to look at and start. It might be pricier to start out, but the real cost is a lot cheaper than failed immigration, and the time spent waiting for an opportunity may as well be spent learning something useful for your future life :)

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YolandaB

@Chantel & Graeme Franck  Hi there, well... I guess immigration is a stressful thing,... believe me we two had our ups and downs.

My suggestion is go have a look at the NOC codes ... you'll be surprised to see that you both might be on the skills lists (Noc A,B, O) read up and understand them well. My next step would be to book a consultation with a immigration agent (money well spend) and im sure you'll see a way in. Model of the story...if you want in you will get in ...theres a very big possibility..especially with a Managerial position !!! Look at (NOC codes 0621) managers are in HIGH demand.

:)

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San

Hi @Chantel & Graeme Franck

I trust you are well.

Have you had any luck in finding an institute to evaluate your trade certification? My friend is going through the same problem as you and I was wondering if there has been any progress?

 

 

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JaQ

Hi all,

I have a similar case where WES only accredited my degree.  I have a second qualification from GIBS but WES views it as a Professional development qualification. I did some reading and I found the below on the BCIT website where they list what that they do not evaluate.

The one line reads: - Non-credit professional development courses

ICES does not evaluate:

  • Trade qualifications
  • Military training
  • Second language training
  • Professional licenses
  • Apprenticeships
  • Work or life experience
  • Continuing education courses taken at non-recognized institutions
  • Non-credit professional development courses
  • Incomplete or provisional academic credentials

 

Does this mean that they do evaluate Professional development qualifications if that qualification has credits?  Mine is a 120 credit qualification and in SA its a NQF8.

Has anyone been in a similar situation and used BCIT for a Professional development programme evaluation or am I wasting my time?

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