Register with the College

There are many reasons why practitioners consider registering with the Nova Scotia College of Counselling Therapists, the regulatory body that oversees the practice of Counselling Therapy in Nova Scotia. Have you earned your master’s level counselling degree in Nova Scotia or another Canadian province? Or, have you have earned your Counselling degree outside of Canada? You might be thinking about moving to Nova Scotia, after having earned your Master’s degree in Counselling and having worked in the field for a while. Maybe you’ve expressed a desire to become a Registrant or an Affiliate with the College.

We recommend you become familiar with current policies, which can be found here.

How to Apply

Becoming a registrant with NSCCT means you’ll be part of an accountable community of counselling therapists.

Registered Counselling Therapist-Candidates (RCT-Cs) are licensed mental health practitioners who offer counselling therapy – support for people working through mental health, emotional, and interpersonal issues – as they finish a 2- to 5-year supervision time with NSCCT. When their supervision time ends, RCT-Cs can apply to the college to become Registered Counselling Therapists (RCTs).

Here’s how to prepare your Registered Counselling Therapist-Candidate application. Make sure to read the guidelines carefully and fill out all areas of the forms as you prepare your application. Read the instructions below to determine which of these forms will make up your application and print and fill them out.

Memberships and Annual Fees

Licensed Members
RCT — $460
RCT-C — $350

Affiliate Members
Associate — $110
Retired — $55
Student — $55

Licensed, or registered, members are active and practicing members of NSCCT. Affiliate members are not registered. There are different affiliate members: associate members support the college’s objectives and activities; retired members are former RCTs who no longer practice and who continue to support the college’s objectives and activities; and student members are engaged in a master’s level counselling therapy education program. Please contact the Registrar for more information on applying as an affiliate member.

Resources and Forms

  • Registered Counselling Therapist-Candidate Application Form 1 (PDF)

  • Practicum Description for RCT-Candidacy Application Form 2 (PDF)

  • Professional Reference Form Form 3 (PDF)

  • Graduate Degrees Obtained In Canada Form 4 (PDF)

  • Graduate Degrees Obtained Outside Canada Form 5 (PDF)

  • Canadian Fair Trade Agreement (CFTA) Transfer of Licensure as Registered Counselling Therapist (PDF)

  • NSCCT Affiliate Membership Application (PDF)

Registered Counselling Therapist-Candidate Application Form (Form 1)
This form is the foundation of your application. It will take time to finish the tasks and order the documents needed. Remember to:

  • Order and pay for a criminal record check with a vulnerable sector check through the Halifax Regional Police or the Nova Scotia RCMP.
  • Find a qualified supervisor who agrees to supervise you during your candidacy. Your proposed supervisor must provide their information and a signature on the form. See the guidelines below for finding a qualified supervisor.
  • Read the Graduate Course Descriptions document to determine how to note your graduate level courses on the form.
  • Read the instructions on the form and include, if necessary, an official copy of your English language proficiency test.
  • Send a $110 non-refundable fee with your application using a cheque or money order.

If you earned your counselling degree outside of Canada, read Applicants Coming from a Licensure Jurisdiction Outside of Canada and contact the NSCCT Registrar, making sure to mention the name of the degree you earned, and the location and country of the academic institution you attended. The Registrar will be able to tell you what other steps you might need to take to apply to the College to become a registered member.

Practicum Description for RCT-C Application Form (Form 2)
This form helps NSCCT determine if, during your master’s level counselling degree, you took part in a practicum that meets the 120 hours of Counselling Therapy practice needed to become a candidate with the college. If you didn’t take part in a practicum or if your practicum hours are less than 120 hours, read Applicants Who Need to Supplement Their Placement Hours. Remember to:

  • Ask your professor or practicum supervisor to review, sign the form, and send it themselves to NSCCT.
  • Follow the instructions for finishing the form if your professor or practicum supervisor is not available.

Professional Reference Form (Form 3)
This form provides NSCCT with an account of your counselling skills and competencies, based on the professional opinion of two references. Clinical supervisors or counsellor educators who know you and who are in a non-compliant relationship with you can fill out the form. Remember to:

  • Ask two references to print and fill out the form and send it themselves to NSCCT. The College needs to receive two references to process your application.

Graduate Degrees Obtained in Canada Form (Form 4)
If you hold a license in another regulated province or territory, add this form to your application. This form helps NSCCT determine whether your education and background meet the licensing criteria to become a registered member with the college.

Graduate Degrees Obtained Outside of Canada (Form 5)
If you earned your master’s level degree in counselling outside of Canada, fill out the form and add it to your application. Remember to:

  • Check the instructions on the form to see if you need to contact World Education Services (WES). WES provides a service for applicants to gauge the equivalency their academic degree with other academic degrees in Canada that NSCCT accepts. If you need to take this step, you will need to pay a fee for WES to send an ICAP report to the college.

Application for Transfer of License to Nova Scotia under the Canadian Fair Trade Agreement Form
If you hold a licence in another regulated province or territory, add this form to your application. This form helps NSCCT determine whether your education and background meet the licensing criteria to become a registered member with the college. Remember to:

  • Gather or order the documents needed
  • Send a $110 non-refundable fee with your application using a cheque or money order

Finding a Qualified Supervisor

As part of your application to become a RCT-C, you must find and propose a qualified supervisor to oversee your candidacy. Finding a qualified supervisor takes place as you put together your application. The proposed supervisor’s name, qualifications, and signature must be included in your application. NSCCT approves proposed supervisors on a case-by-case basis using these criteria:

A supervisor can be a Registered Counselling Therapist registered with NSCCT, a Registered Psychologist registered with the Nova Scotia Board of Examiners in Psychology (NSBEP), or a Registered Social Worker (RSW) registered with the Nova Scotia College of Social Workers. Supervisors must:

  • Have their master’s degree (as a minimum level of education)
  • Hold registration with their regulatory body in Nova Scotia
  • Have been an active practicing member of their profession for at least three years in Nova Scotia (three years after having earned a professional registration or licence)
  • Hold an active practicing status with their regulatory body
  • Hold adequate professional liability insurance
  • Have finished training in supervision. NSCCT offers introductory supervision training and intermediate supervision training. Proposed supervisors must show they:
    –have finished NSCCT’s introductory supervision training, or
    –have finished training in supervision at the graduate level through coursework or a supervision certification, or
    –have taken supervision training that is an acceptable alternative.

The NSCCT Registrar and the Registration Committee make decisions on a case-by-case basis about a proposed supervisor’s supervision training experience.

The relationship between you and your supervisor is professional and must be ‘at arm’s length.’ This means your supervisor cannot be:

  • Your on site practicum supervisor from your master’s degree
  • A peer who is equivalent to you in qualifications, status, and experience
  • A current or former family member, or anyone else with whom you have a personal relationship, that could conflict with forming a professional supervision relationship
  • A person who is in an administrative relationship with you, whose position involves evaluating your job performance or overseeing your case assessment. For example, your workplace supervisor cannot be your candidacy supervisor.