Education Philosophy and the Marketplace

With the passing of the Real Estate Amendment Act 2020, the Government of Alberta tasked RECA with divesting itself of pre-licensing education and creating a framework where pre-licensing education is delivered by third-party course providers. Course providers interested in becoming recognized by RECA to deliver pre-licensing education should understand the pre-licensing marketplace as well as RECA’s role in setting the credentialing framework, including RECA’s Pre-Licensing Education Philosophy.

RECA’s Board of Directors and Industry Councils are committed to providing a credentialing framework that achieves:

  • course providers having all the information necessary to make informed decisions about becoming a course provider
  • all course providers being able to offer pre-licensing education provided they meet RECA’s Course and Course Provider Requirements
  • a fair and competitive pre-licensing education marketplace. Course providers can compete in this marketplace on the basis of:
    • course quality—provided Course and Course Provider Requirements are met
    • education offerings—course providers are free to decide on course modality (physical classroom, virtual classroom, eLearning or hybrid course offerings). The course offerings can be synchronous or asynchronous
    • course cost—providers are free to set the cost of each course
    • course terms—such as the length of time learners have to complete the course
    • course supports—such as tutors and tutorials
  • course providers having freedom to structure and organize their courses as best works for their institutional or instruction needs, provided they adhere to the Fundamental and Practice Model when required
  • learners having the information necessary to make decisions in a competitive education marketplace. Learners will have access to links to all recognized course providers, average exam pass rates, and average grades by course provider
  • RECA following examination best practices
  • a collaborative relationship between course providers and RECA. With RECA treating all course providers equally, and sharing examinations and learner survey results

Learn more about the pre-licensing education opportunities available and Course and Course Provider Recognition Requirements and the process for applying for recognition.

RECA will notify recognized course providers directly of any changes as they occur.


RECA’s Pre-Licensing Education Philosophy guides the credentialing of pre-licensing education. Under this philosophy, RECA is committed to:

  • ensuring courses prepare prospective licensees in providing competent service to protect the public
  • effective and reliable examinations that adequately test learner competencies
  • empowering learners to make informed pre-licensing education choices
  • course structures that facilitate learner education options when completing multiple licensing education requirements
  • requiring course providers to adhere to the Course and Course Provider Requirements
  • timely enhancement of course content upon changes to legislation or standards of practice
  • objective and impartial engagement with course providers
  • constructive and collaborative relationships with course providers

RECA will employ the following strategies to meet its commitment:

  1. Follow examinations best practices (see RECA’s Education Blueprint)
    Examinations are developed and weighted based on objective criteria for assessing specific knowledge, skills, and abilities required for competent practice. Examinations are constantly reviewed to ensure they are effective and reliable at determining learner competence.
  2. Publish examination results
    Monitoring examination results provides information on whether the recognized courses continue to meet course requirements. It also empowers learners to make informed pre-licensing education choices and it provides information that is essential for an informed, competitive education market among course providers. RECA will publish individual course provider and aggregate:
    completion and pass rates
    average and median exam scores
  3. Conduct learner surveys
    Course and program evaluations provide valuable feedback from learners regarding the overall effectiveness of the course. Courses help prepare practice ready licensees. Feedback has the potential to alert RECA of any possible competency profile or course deficiencies. Understanding these deficiencies allows RECA to update the competencies or work collaboratively with course providers to keep recognized courses aligned with the established requirements.RECA will survey learners immediately after course completion and 10 months after licensing. This will ensure Industry Councils can determine whether these requirements and education are effective at providing licensees with the competencies necessary to provide competent service. RECA will employ a constructive process for communicating individualized feedback to course providers to assist them in enhancing their individual offerings. RECA will publish aggregate survey reports.
  4. Prescribe course structure
    RECA will communicate course structure by prescribing Foundation and Practice courses to facilitate learner education options when completing multiple licensing education requirements.
  5. Communicate learner outcome changes
    Industry Councils will update Competency Profiles in response to legislative changes, changes to the standards of practice, and changes to the mortgage brokerage, property management, and real estate marketplaces. Course providers will need to make updates and RECA will provide the timelines required based on the difficulty of the update and urgency of the circumstance. RECA will communicate to learners if course updates have been completed or are pending to enable them to make informed choices.
  6. Require adherence to Course and Course Provider Requirements
    Course and course provider adherence to requirements will result in licensees who are competent to protect the public. This will result in a competitive level playing field for course providers. RECA will pursue all options to seek course providers compliance with requirements including removal of course or course provider recognition.
  7. Collaborate with course providers to meet Course and Course Provider Requirements
    Industry Councils will employ a constructive and collaborative process to establish compliance with Course and Course Provider Requirements.

Course providers must ensure that a learner has met RECA’s eligibility requirements before enroling the learner in their courses.

As learners must meet the basic eligibility requirements for obtaining their licence and may choose to register with different course providers from one course to the next, RECA will process and track each learner’s eligibility for enrolment into pre-licensing courses, including whether the learner has completed pre-requisite courses and exams.

Recognized course providers will have secure access to view information related to a learner’s eligibility for their courses.

Fundamentals Course Eligibility

Learners can register for a fundamentals course through the third-party course provider, but before accessing the course, they must prove they meet RECA’s initial licence eligibility requirements.

RECA will process initial learner eligibility based on:

  • proof of identity, including age
  • ability to study and work in Canada
  • completion of high school education or equivalent
  • English language proficiency

Learners will submit an Education Eligibility Application through their myRECA account, uploading supporting documents as necessary. Once the learner has been deemed eligible, they will be able to access in their desired course with their desired course provider.

Practice and Broker Courses

Beyond a learner’s initial eligibility, course providers will need to verify a learner has completed the pre-requisite courses before enroling the learner in subsequent licensing courses. Course providers must ensure that a learner has successfully completed:

  • a fundamentals course, and the corresponding examination, before enroling the learner in a practice course
  • all applicable practice courses and corresponding exams, before enroling the learner in a broker course

Course providers are responsible for reviewing extension requests if the learner is in progress in the course.

However, once the course provider has informed RECA the learner has completed the course and is ready to take their exam, extensions must be processed and approved by RECA. In these cases, learners should be directed to contact RECA’s Credentialing Support Services by emailing education@reca.ca.


In order to successfully complete each course, learners they must write the corresponding exam through RECA’s exam provider within three months of completing the course, based on the course completion date provided to RECA by the course provider.

RECA is committed to ensuring its examination process follows examination best practices and is continuously updating the pre-licensing and practice exam questions to provide increased variety of questions that match the Industry Council approved exam blueprints.

RECA’s Examination Blueprint is based on the NCCA and ISO 17024 standards.

Optional Practice Exams

Learners can access optional practice exams through their myRECA account for a nominal fee and at their convenience. These practice exams will provide different, but similar, questions than those on the final exam and will provide the same interface learners will use during a pre-licensing exam.

For more information related to RECA’s practice exams, see the article on practice exams for Condominium Management, which offers a snapshot of what can be expected for practice exams for other industries.

Pre-licensing Exams

Once a learner has completed their course and RECA has received notice from the course provider, learners will be able to book their pre-licensing exam through their myRECA account to be taken at a test centre of their selection across Alberta. As learners have 3 months to write their exam once RECA has been notified by a course provider of their completion of the course, it is important learners build in the time to book their exam.

Learners are encouraged to note and report to RECA any questions during the exam that they feel there is an issue with. This helps RECA resolve any issues between the exam and course. Refer them to RECA’s Exam Preparation Guide.

RECA will automatically review any unsuccessful exam attempts where the grade is within 2% of the passing grade (i.e., exam results between 68-70%).



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