The Private Career Training Institutions Agency (PCTIA) was created in 2004 to carry out the important role of student protection. PCTIA sets basic education standards for registered private career training institutions in British Columbia and establishes standards of quality which must be met by accredited institutions.
Private career training institutions in BC enroll over 48,000 students each year. Programs range from sound and audio technicians to licensed practical nurses to commercial pilots.
In BC, private career training is regulated. Any institution offering a career training program with tuition of $1,000 or more and 40 hours or more in duration is required to register and adhere to basic education standards.
PCTIA is a Crown Corporation under the Ministry of Advanced Education of British Columbia.
To support quality education in British Columbia's private post-secondary career training sector through regulating standards and providing protection to students.
Protection for Students
PCTIA provides student protection by:
establishing basic education standards for registered institutions
establishing standards of quality for accredited institutions
managing the Student Training Completion Fund (STCF) which is used to refund:
a student's unearned tuition when an institution closes prior to program completion, and
a portion of tuition fees a student has paid a registered institution that, in the opinion of the board, has misled a student.
By applying for and receiving registration, an institution must demonstrate continuous compliance with the basic education standards described in the PCTIA Bylaws.
In addition to mandatory registration, PCTIA has developed a higher standard for private career training institutions - the standard of accreditation. Accreditation means an institution must maintain a quality standard in excess of the basic education standards. PCTIA accreditation is based on important criteria by which private career training institutions in BC may apply for StudentAid BC and the EQA designations.