Education and Certification

The Athletic Therapy certification process is one of the most stringent in the Canadian healthcare system. In addition to completing a Bachelor’s degree, Athletic Therapists must complete the Athletic Therapy program at one of seven CATA accredited institutions in Canada.  Certification Candidates must hold a valid First Responder certificate and complete 1,200 hours of on-field and in-clinic practical training. Once qualified, Candidates attempt the National Certification Examination which includes a comprehensive written exam.

After successful completion of the exam, Candidates receive the title Certified Athletic Therapist, designated by the letters CAT(C).

Becoming a Certification Candidate

To become a Certification Candidate, an individual must:

  1. Be enrolled at a CATA accredited institution
  2. Hold a valid First Aid and CPR-HCP certificate, or CATA approved equivalent
  3. Complete the  Online Application for Certification Candidate Membership


Becoming a Certified Athletic Therapist

To achieve the designation of Certified Athletic Therapist, CAT(C), a Certification Candidate must:

  1. Successfully complete a CATA accredited program and have earned a Bachelor’s degree
  2. Obtain a valid First Responder certificate, or CATA equivalent. First Responder certification is required to attempt the certification exam
  3. Maintain valid CPR-HCP and Standard First Aid certificates, or CATA approved equivalents
  4. Apply for and pass the National Certification Examination. Candidates must attempt the exam within two years of graduating from an accredited institution
  5. Maintain status with CATA and the Regional Chapter and adhere to the Scope of Practice, By-laws, and Codes of Ethics and Professional Conduct
  6. CATA National Certification Examination

The Board of Certification for Athletic Therapy creates and administers the NCE based on CATA’s Scope of Practice and Competencies in Athletic Therapy.  This process ensures that successful Certification Candidates have demonstrated basic competence in Athletic Therapy and ensures the safety and care of the public when providing athletic therapy services to Canadians.

Written Exam
The written exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions. To pass, the certification candidate must achieve a score equal to or higher than the Minimal Passing Level (MPL) calculated for that particular examination.  

The Competencies in Athletic Therapy

The Competencies in Athletic Therapy are divided into five domains:

  1. Prevention
  2. Assessment
  3. Intervention
  4. Practice Management
  5. Professional Responsibility