Red Seal

The Red Seal Program is an interprovincial standard of excellence for the skilled trades. Through the Program, apprentices who have completed their training and become certified journeypersons are able to obtain a Red Seal endorsement on their provincial or territorial Certificates of Qualification and Apprenticeship by successfully completing an interprovincial Red Seal examination. This means that someone certified as a Red Seal tradesperson is entitled to work in their trade throughout Canada.

The Program encourages harmonization of provincial and territorial apprenticeship training and certification programs by developing and maintaining interprovincial standards of qualification for Red Seal trades, in partnership with apprenticeship and certification stakeholders. To date, there are 52 trades included in the Red Seal Program on a national basis.

Legislation permits provinces and territories to designate trades and develop apprenticeship programs for their own requirements. Thus, in excess of 300 apprenticeship programs are available across Canada. The Ellis Chart, a comparative chart of apprentice training programs across Canada, is produced by HRSDC in collaboration and consultation with the provinces and territories and provides training and certification details for all of these apprentice programs.

Who administers the Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program and how does it work?

The Program is administered in each province and territory under the guidance of the Canadian Council of Directors of Apprenticeship (CCDA). Each province and territory has an appointed Director of Apprenticeship for this purpose.

A national occupational analysis, developed for each Red Seal trade, identifies all the tasks performed in the trade and is used as a base document for the development of interprovincial standard examinations and is encouraged to be used by the provinces and territories for curriculum development.

How to obtain a Red Seal?

In certain trades, holders of provincial and territorial Certificates of Qualification can apply to write an Interprovincial Examination; if successful, they receive a distinctive Red Seal, which is affixed to their Certificate of Qualification.

An Interprovincial Standards Red Seal can be obtained in the trades designated as Red Seal by:

1. a) graduating from a recognized provincial or territorial apprenticeship training program; or

b) meeting requirements established by the provincial or territorial apprenticeship authority; or

c) having the time and experience working in a Red Seal trade assessed to qualify to write the Red Seal examination.

2. Passing the interprovincial standards Red Seal examination for that trade.

The Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Examinations are administered through the provincial and territorial certification and apprenticeship offices.

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