Clinical Exam Options and Information

Ontario Clinical Exam (OCE)

Information and Eligibility Requirements

Pathways to Independent Practice in Ontario 

On January 12, 2022, the Canadian Alliance of Physiotherapy Regulators (CAPR) announced that they would be discontinuing the administration of the clinical component of the Physiotherapy Competency Exam (PCE). 

What does this mean for Physiotherapy Residents, Physiotherapy Students, and other candidates who want to practice in Ontario?  

Anyone who has not yet completed the written component of the Physiotherapy Competency Exam (PCE) should plan to complete it as they normally would. Once you successfully complete the written exam, you can apply for a Provisional Practice Certificate with the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario, and work under the supervision of a registered physiotherapist. 

In 2022, the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario introduced the Ontario Clinical Exam. All candidates must successfully completed the Ontario Clinical Exam to apply for Independent Practice with the College. 

Important: the temporary Exam Exemption Policy was phased out on March 31, 2023. Candidates can no longer pursue the Exam Exemption Policy as a pathway to Independent Practice. Candidates must successfully complete the Ontario Clinical Exam. 

Registration Committee Review

Anyone who does not meet the eligibility requirements for the exam exemption, including people who previously attempted the clinical component of the Physiotherapy Competency Exam (PCE) one or two times and were unsuccessful, can choose to apply for an Independent Practice Certificate of Registration. As you will not meet the requirements, your application will be submitted to the Registration Committee for review. 

It is important to note that the responsibility is on the applicant to demonstrate to the Committee that they should be issued a certificate of registration without having successfully completed the clinical exam. The Committee’s primary consideration is patient safety and quality care. The Committee carefully considers each application, including submissions from the applicant, before deciding to grant a certificate of registration or not grant a certificate of registration.

Potential applicants should be aware that in most cases, should the Committee decide to issue a certificate, it is granted with terms, conditions, and limitations, which include a period of direct supervision by a College-approved Practice Supervisor. You will also be required to successfully complete the Ontario Clinical Exam when it is available. 

If you have questions about this process, please contact with the subject line "Inquiry about Going to the Registration Committee."

Exam Exemption Policy Metrics: As of May 23

Applications received:
Applications in progress:
Certificates Issued  1031

Exam Exemption Screening Interview Metrics: As of October 27, 2023

Screening Interviews in Progress  0
Interviews Completed  1029
Successful  97.5%
Unsuccessful  2.5%
Awaiting Results  0

Current Provisional Practice Certificate Holders

If you currently hold a Provisional Practice Certificate of Registration, your certificate will be extended until 12 weeks after your Ontario Clinical Exam date. All PT Residents are permitted to practice with supervision during this time. 

The College will notify you when your certificate has been extended. You do not need to apply for an extension or a second certificate.