Exam Overview

Physiotherapy Competency Examination (PCE) Overview

The Physiotherapy Competency Examination (PCE) tests whether qualified exam candidates have demonstrated a minimum standard of practice. The PCE ensures that members of the public will be safe when they interact with physiotherapists. It fairly and accurately evaluates the competencies you need to have to practise physiotherapy. Most physiotherapy regulators in Canada include passing the PCE as part of their entry-to-practice process.

The PCE tests the essential competencies of physiotherapy practice – the essential knowledge, skills and abilities. It tests history-taking, physical examination, data interpretation, clinical problem solving, treatment techniques, ethics, safety, interviewing and communication. The exam covers the core clinical practice areas: neuromusculoskeletal, neurological, cardiopulmonary-vascular and multisystem.

The PCE has two components. You must successfully complete the Written Component before you can take the Clinical Component.

Written Component (Qualifying Exam): The Written Component transitioned to a computer-based test format in July 2015. This format allows you to switch between English and French at any time during the exam, regardless of which exam site you choose. You are encouraged to try out the Computer-Based Testing Orientation Tutorial, available on the CAPR website, to experience the language feature.

Clinical Component (Physiotherapy National Exam): This objective structured clinical exam (OSCE) tests your ability to safely and effectively apply the principles and processes of physiotherapy practice.

Registering for an Exam

Follow these steps to register for an exam.

  1. Read the Exam Registration Guide and Exam Policies.
  2. Make sure you are eligible for the exam. Check the Exam Policies for information about eligibility.
  3. Fill in the exam application form for the Written Component and/or Clinical Component. Be sure to mark the exam date you want, and your site choices. Print a copy of your completed form.
  4. Print and complete the Declaration of Identity if you have not already sent one to us. Be sure to read the instructions for the Declaration of Identity and have it notarized by a Notary Public before you send it.
  5. Complete the credit card section of the application OR include a money order or certified cheque with your application.
  6. Read the declaration, then sign and date the form.
  7. Put your completed original application form with payment in the mail. Include your Declaration of Identity with accompanying second identical photo as applicable. You must send this unless you have already sent one to credentialling. Please only include a photo if you are submitting a new Declaration of Identity form.

If your application is not complete, we will send it back to you.

If you want us to verify your exam status with a regulator, print and complete the Verification Request Form. You can send this with your application.