The Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals (BCRSP) is committed to the highest standards of performance while protecting and promoting occupational health, safety and public safety through the registration of qualified professionals committed to a Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct.
We shall achieve this by continual improvement of processes, products, services and systems, designed to meet the expectations of stakeholders.
Quality standards for certification programs include fairness to candidates, valid and reliable examinations, high quality questions, passing scores, security of examination materials, open governance and financial practices, and recertification.
The BCRSP Governing Board will ensure that the necessary support and resources are available to meet this policy, the requirements of ISO 17024 and ISO 9001 and to continually improve the effectiveness of its Management System.
Fairness to Candidates. This includes non-discrimination in applications and testing admission. It also means eligibility is independent of memberships in organizations.
Reference: Non-Discriminatory Statement, BCRSP 0105, General Appeals, Complaints, Disputes
Valid and Reliable Examination. A valid examination is one which follows acceptable procedures to identify what subjects should be included on the examination. Certification examinations should cover only those subjects which are relevant, important or critical in the practice for which the certification is issued. The acceptable procedures use job analysis and validation surveys to define the examination blueprint.
Reference: Competency Survey, Examination Blueprints, Technical Reports
High Quality Questions. Writing questions for a certification examination is a complicated process. Generally, those in practice are a major source of draft examination questions. Then, the questions go through a sequence of edits. In multiple choice questions, all choices must be valid and the questions must have a recognized reference for the correct answer. Every question has to contribute to the examination goal of deciding whether a candidate has the minimum knowledge and skill applicable to the practice covered by the certification.
Reference: Candidate Handbook, Technical Reports
Passing Scores. Passing scores on certification examinations must be fair for all candidates. Certification examination scores are pass-fail scores. The goal is to determine whether a candidate meets a minimum level of competence as determined by the passing score. Certification examinations cannot use arbitrary (academic-style) or normative (achievement test-style) scoring methods, because they do not ensure all candidates have an equal chance to pass the examination. A common procedure used to set the passing score for certification examinations is the Angoff Method.
Each member of a panel of experts rates each question on the examination in terms of what portion of the candidates who are just good enough to practice in the area covered by the examination will know the answer. This process weights such things as difficulty and universal application in various job settings. The rater will expect fewer candidates to get difficult questions right and many to answer the easy questions correctly. A mean across all questions and all raters determines the passing score.
Reference: Candidate Handbook, Technical Reports, BCRSP Website
Security of Examination Materials. Proper security of examination materials, whether questions are in draft form, included on an examination, on paper or in electronic format, is critical to the credibility of a certification. Compromise of examination security can destroy the value of the certification.
Reference: Security Agreements, Candidate Agreement
Open Governance and Financial Reports. Open governance ensures those controlling qualifications, examinations, and candidate evaluations represent those in practice. Open governance includes public representation and the impact of the practice for the public.
Open financial practices ensure there is a clear accounting of fees, income and expenditures, so individuals involved with the certification are not benefiting personally and the certification has sufficient resources to exist. Reserve funds are needed to carry the cost of periodic validation studies and to keep up with and invest in technology needed for administration.
Reference: Management System Manual, Policies, Procedures. Annual Report, Public Member Participation, BCRSP Bylaws
Recertification. The objective is to ensure that certificate holders keep up with the practice through continuing education and related activities. Accreditation standards typically require certificate holders to recertify at least every five years.
Reference: BCRSP Bylaws, Continuous Professional Development Program