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The Professional Administrator Program

Responsible and ethical administrative stewardship is crucial to the success of any organization. Professional Administrators are the individuals who possess the knowledge and skills necessary to fulfill this important role.

The P.Adm. program and designation confirms your knowledge, experience, dedication to the field and your commitment to continuing education and development.  

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Click here for the registration form (fillable word format).


Becoming a certified Professional Administrator will:
  • Enhance your value to clients and employers
  • Demonstrate your commitment to excellence in administrative practices
  • Increase your credibility in the marketplace
  • Expand your career potential
The designation is affordable to maintain on an annual basis and demonstrates your commitment to professional growth. 

Click here for the registration form (fillable word format). 

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To qualify for the right to use the P.Adm designation, candidates must satisfy the following criteria and be prepared to provide acceptable supporting evidence that they:

  • Are currently working as an administrative practitioner in an appropriate professional position.
  • Have a minimum of 3 years’ experience as an administrative practitioner with competencies in a cross-section of administrative functions and activities, including the area in which they currently work.
  • Have successfully completed the examination.

All candidates complete a membership application form and submit documentary proof of current and previous experience as an administrative practitioner. This should be in the form of a current C.V. and more information may be requested.

A Review Panel will evaluate each application to determine if the candidate has successfully completed the four program modules and has the appropriate work experience.

Successful candidates will agree to abide by Professional Administrators’ Code of Ethics
and maintain membership in ICSA Canada.

To maintain the Professional Administrator designation, individuals are required to maintain their affiliation with ICSA Canada as a Student, Graduate, Associate, Fellow or member of the Affiliate Group. Click here for membership rate information. 

Click here for the registration form (fillable word format).

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ICSA Canada has identified core competencies that are and will be essential for professional administrators. The competencies are the knowledge and skills that have been identified as critical for a professional administrator to provide efficient and effective administration support.

The P.Adm. competencies have been grouped into four core domains of knowledge and skills. The four core competency domains have been further expanded into key-sub domains to reflect the professional administrator’s role and responsibilities. They are:

1. Corporation Operations
  • By-Laws, Regulations & Policy
  • Knowledge and Records Management
  • Administration & Meetings
  • Risk Management & Insurance
  • Business Continuity Planning
  • Technology
2. Legal
  • Contract  Law
  • Corporate Compliance
  • Governance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Taxation
3. Finance
  • Financial Statements
  • Accounting & Budgeting
  • Reporting & Accountability
  • Audit
4. Management
  • Understanding Change
  • Problem Solving & Decision Making
  • Working with People
  • Managing Time
  • Ethics
  • Negotiations
  • Communications
  • Human Resources
  • Benchmarking and Best Practices
  • Strategic Planning
  • Project Management

Candidates for the P.Adm. designation are expected to have a basic knowledge in each of the core competencies. While candidates will have access to a variety of on-line resources that will help them prepare for the exam, questions have not necessarily been developed from that material.

Click here for the registration form (fillable word format).

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How does the program work?

The program is delivered in a self study format. Upon registration and acceptance into the program, candidates receive a study manual by email. The study manual contains information on the 4 competencies as well as online readings that support the domains.

Once the manual and readings have been sufficiently reviewed, the candidate requests an exam.

The exam:

  • Is delivered in multiple choice format consisting of 100 questions
  • May be completed while referencing the course materials (open book)
  • Must be completed within 24 hours of receipt
  • Must be requested and completed within 12 months of registering for the program

A mark of 65% or higher is required to pass the program, the exam may be attempted a maximum of 3 times.

Exam requests must be received at least 7 days in advance of the desired writing date to allow for processing. Click here to access the exam request form.

Please note you must be registered in the Professional Administrator program prior to requesting an exam.

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P.Adm. Fee and Registration

The registration fee is $875.00 (provincial taxes apply). This fee includes:

  • Access to the study guide
  • Membership for the remainder of the year in the ICSA Canada Affiliate Group (if not already a Student, Graduate, Associate, Fellow)
  • The exam process

The annual membership fee to maintain your P.Adm. designation is $260.00 (subject to provincial taxes and branch fees).

Full-Time Students:

If you are currently a full time student, not currently employed and with no relevant experience, there is a reduced program rate available. Once you complete the exam you will have 5 years to complete the 3 years of mandatory experience. Please click here to access the full time student form.

Click here for the registration form (fillable word format).

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The Professional Administrators Code of Ethics

The Professional Administrator:

  • Is honest and impartial, loyal to associates, employers, clients, subordinates and the public, and is respectful of the personal dignity of all;
  • Applies knowledge and skill to maintain high standards of professional integrity in responsible actions;
  • Promotes competence and accountability in the interest of professionalism and the public interest;
  • Remains consistently supportive of innovative ideas and open communication;
  • Promotes the principle of recognition for those whose performance make a worthwhile contribution;
  • Supports the principle of fair and impartial judgment;
  • Exhibits leadership in continuous learning;
  • Treats every individual with courtesy, respect and dignity; and
  • Acknowledges that subscribing to this code imposes a shared obligation with other Professional Administrators to maintain these standards.

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Logging in? Please read first:

To update your account information or renew your membership: ICSA Canada is migrating to a new database, please click here to access the new system. 

To access Board and Students materials: please use the login on the left of this screen.

Director's Education coming to Toronto April 9-11, click here for more information.

Looking for your feedback on the Corporate Governance Quarterly (CGQ)! Click here to access the 5 minute survey, thank you for your thoughts! 

Post your employment opportunities with ICSA! Click here to learn more. 

Attention Members: Click here to learn more about your TD Insurance discount.

Have you met your CPD hours for the year? Click here to learn more about ICSA CPD requirements for Associates and Fellows.