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Read our June 2021 News!

Welcome to our June 2021 issue!

Both massage therapy education and practice continue to be challenged by the presence of COVID-19 in our communities. CMTCA has responded by adapting the accreditation process to support programs in achieving their accreditation goals. We are proud of the programs who have completed their virtual site visits this spring. Our survey teams have been inspired by each program's resilience, commitment to quality improvement, and the way they are caring for their student's health, safety and education.

Keep reading for more information including:

  • Congratulations to programs that recently achieved Accreditation after their (virtual) site visits

  • Meet our new Board members and staff

  • Learn more about what to expect during a virtual site review


Congrats to ...

The CMTCA board and staff extend sincere congratulations to the following programs that achieved Accreditation this Spring following virtual site visits:


  • First College - Massage Therapy Program (Kelowna, BC)

  • Vancouver Career College - Massage Therapy Program (Burnaby, BC)

We salute your hard work and your commitment to continuous quality improvement. We know this achievement will help you provide the best learning environment for your students and contribute to their becoming competent, safe and effective professional massage therapists.



CMTCA Welcomes New Board Members

At our April 2021 Annual General Meeting, CMTCA bid farewell to Board members Kathy Davidson, and Brandy John. Kathy served for four years and her depth of experience in education accreditation, standards and policy development, and regulation of health professions was invaluable. Brandy served on the board for five years, and was a planning committee member with CMTCA. Her varied experience and deep knowledge in massage therapy practice and education was a great asset to our Board. Thank you Kathy and Brandy for all of your contributions to CMTCA and massage therapy education accreditation.

CMTCA is honoured to introduce our two new Board members, Janis Leonard, and Robynne Madill. We would also like to congratulate Valerie Browne who was elected for another term.

Janis Leonard recently retired from more than 30 years in the teaching profession, including 15 years with the Ontario College of Teachers supporting their accreditation process. She served three terms with the Joint Accreditation Committee for the Occupational Therapist Assistant & Physiotherapist Assistant Education Accreditation Program, and was an Executive Member of the Association of Accreditation Agencies of Canada. Janis is passionate about accreditation's ability to strengthen education program quality. When not working, Janis enjoys daily hikes with her dog.


Robynne Madill is an RMT educated at CCMH, Cambridge Ontario. She spent eight years as CCMH Faculty leading Professional Development, Law and Ethics and Business. She is now serving as Practical Director and instructs at the Okanagan Valley College of Massage Therapy. She has conducted continuing education courses (CEU's) as well as being a keynote speaker, panelist, and presenting her research at various conferences. Robynne maintains a clinical practice that continues to inspire and challenge her.

A competitive swimmer, Robynne looks forward to representing Canada at Worlds (Masters) in Japan in 2022.

CMTCA staff and Board members are excited to be working with Janis and Robynne. We know their experience and knowledge will be an asset to CMTCA.


CMTCA Welcomes New Board Chair and Vice Chair

Board members and staff would like to express our sincere appreciation to Iain Robertson for his years of service as Board Chair. CMTCA will continue to benefit from his expertise and experience as he continues in his role a member of the Board. We would like thank Gordon Griffith for serving as Vice Chair and welcome him to his new role as Chair. We would also like to thank and congratulate Gabriel Flamminio, who will be Vice Chair for the upcoming year.

For more details about our Board members, you can find their bios here.


New Accreditation Specialist Joins CMTCA

CMTCA warmly welcomes Accreditation Specialist Scott Andrew to our team. Scott will work with CMTCA to support programs during their accreditation cycle.

Scott comes to us with a background in Healthcare and Adult Education. Scott began his career in massage therapy in Ontario in 1999 after attaining a Bachelor of Science (Biology) and quickly entered the field of massage therapy education. Scott has more than 20 years’ experience as an RMT and 12 years of experience in massage therapy education in Ontario and New Brunswick.

Scott also has experience contributing to legislative development, competency and standards review, and has worked as an accreditation surveyor with CMTCA since 2017. Away from work, Scott enjoys exploring Canada’s great outdoors with his wife, their two children, and the family dogs.


Testimonial: Benefits of Preliminary Accreditation

"Feedback from the preliminary accreditation reviews by a panel of experts serve[d] as a stepping stone to improving our College’s policies, infrastructure, and processes to support students to become upstanding massage therapy practitioners."

- Accredited program in Ontario 


Q&A: Questions from our Education Programs

Question 1:

What should I expect as my programs prepares to complete a virtual site visit?

Programs participating in a virtual site visit can expect a few differences in comparison with an in-person review:

  • Your survey team will include an extra CMTCA staff member to ensure things run smoothly (so two surveyors and two staff)

  • You will be asked to submit a number of documents two weeks prior to the visit, evidence surveyors would normally have reviewed while on campus.

  • It is helpful if you set expectations for interviewees, so that they know that meetings with the surveyors are organized by topic. They may be invited to several different conversations with the survey team. For example, a student might expect to attend one conversation about curriculum, and a separate conversation about facilities, or about student services.

  • Faculty, staff, and students will receive virtual meeting invitations prior to the site visit but may be invited to additional conversations during the visit (keep an eye on your inbox!).

  • For 2021, the virtual site visit fee is $5,900 (which covers honoraria for surveyors and administrative costs). The fee for an in-person site visit also includes travel and accommodations, so it is generally higher.

  • Your program may be eligible for a one or three-year accreditation award after the virtual site visit. Five-year accreditation may be awarded only after an in-person site visit (and only following a program's second site visit).


Question 2:

What can I do to prepare for my conversations with CMTCA Surveyors?

CMTCA surveyors use a process called the tracer method to assess compliance with the accreditation standards, and virtual site visits are no exception. In person, tracers tend to be informal, personal and spontaneous. Surveyors have conversations in formal meetings, but also by dropping by an office or classroom to ask a quick question or two.

Obviously, during a virtual site visit, conversations need to be more "scheduled". However, throughout the review, your program's faculty, staff, and students should expect to be invited to additional meetings or phone calls as surveyors follow-up on what they have learned. Ensure you have time in your calendar to accommodate some additional meetings or short conversations, and please be responsive to invitation messages. This will allow the virtual visit to run smoothly.

Your program is asked to prepare an informal presentation about your program as an introductory session to begin the virtual site visit. The presentation should include information about your program size, and history, mission and mandates, organization chart, and recent challenges and successes that the survey team should be aware for this specific visit. This presentation will help to orient the survey team to your program and will also help you to be prepared for their visit.

The survey team may validate what they see and hear during their initial conversations by asking for additional documents. Ensure you have easy access to any documents that are relevant to your work, so that you can provide them in digital format as needed. Obviously, you may also refer the survey team to a colleague who would have the needed information.

The Client Handbook contains many more details about what to expect during a site visit, including a sample schedule. You can review the Client Handbook by logging into CMTCAu.


Your turn. What’s new with you?

Do you have an innovative idea for Massage Therapy education during these trying times? Do you have a question that you would like CMTCA to address?

Send us your comments or questions and we will (with your permission) share your ideas and our answers in future issues. Or follow us and share your thoughts on Twitter.


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