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The College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) academic certification program assists Canadian faculties of medicine and universities in the recruitment and retention of family medicine specialists as full-time clinical faculty at the rank of full or associate professor. This program aims to facilitate the recruitment of clinician scientists and clinician educators.

Eligibility criteria

The Board of Examiners will consider an application for academic certification for a full-time medical faculty member under the following conditions:

  1. The department of family medicine, to which the candidate is being recruited, submits the application for consideration, with the support of the dean of the faculty of medicine
  2. At the time of application, the candidate:
    1. Is an academic physician
    2. Holds the rank of associate professor or higher
    3. Has been at least five years in a full-time academic position
    4. Holds a full-time academic faculty position (i.e., is engaged primarily in academic duties)
  3. Applications for candidates recruited at the rank of assistant professor may be considered for academic certification if the candidate satisfies all conditions and criteria stated in these guidelines and:
    1. Has been promoted or is being promoted to the rank of associate professor
    2. Has registered in and is compliant with the requirements of the CFPC’s Maintenance of Certification Program

Application process

Candidates seeking academic certification must either be members of the CFPC at the time of application or apply for membership at the time of application for academic certification.

Become a member

  • Request from the chair of family medicine

    A request from the chair of the department of family medicine must include:

    • A description of the candidate’s planned position(s) within the faculty and the teaching hospitals, as attested by the letter(s) of employment/contract
    • Confirmation that the candidate fulfills the faculty’s criteria for the rank to which the candidate is being appointed
  • Curriculum vitae and supporting documentation

    The curriculum vitae and supporting documentation must include:

    • An up-to-date curriculum vitae providing a detailed description of training, past and current clinical activities, and a complete list of publications, awards, grants, etc.
    • Authenticated copies of degrees, diplomas and certificates
    • Attestation(s) of academic appointment from the applicant’s originating (foreign) institution(s) describing the type of appointment
    • A letter of support from the dean of medicine

Approval process

  • Administrative review

    The Certification and Assessment Department reviews applications, ensuring all criteria and requirements are met.

  • Recommendation

    The Board of Examiners (decision-making authority for academic certification) reviews completed applications and makes a recommendation to the Director of Certification and Examinations. The applicant is notified.

  • Applicability

    Academic certification will remain in effect only as long as the certificant maintains the full-time academic and hospital posts to which the certificant was appointed, the licence to practise, annual CFPC membership, and Mainpro+® compliance.

  • Accountability

    The sponsoring chair of family medicine will be responsible for informing the CFPC of any significant change in the academic certificant’s status or conditions of appointment.

  • Certification options

    After completing the practice-eligible criteria, those with academic certification may choose to sit the Certification Examination in Family Medicine in order to achieve permanent certification.

    Read more

Conditions of academic certification

  1. Academic certification remains in effect only if the certificant maintains a full-time academic appointment in the department of family medicine at the medical school from which the application was made or any of its affiliated institutions. In addition, the certificant must maintain CFPC membership.
  2. If an academic certificant moves to another Canadian medical school, academic certification may be transferred at the request of the department of family medicine at that medical school, provided that all the criteria for academic certification are met.
  3. Academic certification comes into effect on the date such certification is granted by the Board of Examiners, or on the date upon which the candidate takes up the faculty position, whichever is later.
  4. Approval of academic certification will lapse if the academic appointment, on which it is based, is not accepted within two years of having been granted by the CFPC, unless the sponsoring department of family medicine requests an extension of a specified time.
Contact the CFPC about certification


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