The Canadian Academy of Psychologists in Disability Assessment (CAPDA) promotes expertise in psychological disability assessment through stringent membership requirements, educational opportunities, and specific expectations for continuing education. Acceptance as a member of CAPDA indicates significant expertise in disability assessment. CAPDA also provides opportunities for validation of advanced expertise in psychological disability assessment beyond membership requirements, through a Board certification process.
Duly qualified applicants are encouraged to strive for Board certification but should be aware that the process is designed to elicit demonstration of the breadth and depth of professional knowledge and clinical expertise. While the certification process involves supportive feedback, the onus is on each applicant to provide evidence the Board of Examiners considers to be necessary and sufficient to merit Diplomate status.
Applicants must provide, to the satisfaction of the CAPDA Board of Directors:
- Evidence of three years of full membership in CAPDA, OR; Evidence of 10 year of post-Doctoral experience in disability assessment and Full CAPDA Membership
- Three letters of support from sponsors who had been CAPDA members for a minimum of 5 years and have at least 10 years of experience of disability assessors. Relevant experience includes pedagogical, academic and/or advocacy experience relevant to disability assessment. Sponsors should have breadth and depth of relevant experience sufficient to assess the applicant’s appropriateness as a candidate for Board Certification. Letters of Sponsorship are expected to be thorough and of a quality acceptable to the CAPDA Diplomate Committee. Sponsors will speak to a candidate’s competence, knowledge base, professional ethics and integrity, and contributions to the field of psychological and disability assessment.
- A current detailed curriculum vitae
- A fully completed application form
- Payment of all applicable fees.
For 2014, the initial application fee is $250.00. Once your application has been accepted, there is a $750.00 fee for review of your written samples, and a $2,500.00 fee for your participation in the oral examination process. CAPDA Diplomates will be asked to pay a yearly maintenance fee of $100.00 to retain their diplomate status. Please note that CAPDA is a non-profit organization and that the fee is determined on a cost-recovery basis. To pay for the initial application fee, please go to Diplomate-Application-Payment-Page
Payment of fees and submission of all components of the application will be completed on-line, using the CAPDA Diplomate portal as described below.
Processes of Evaluation
Once a completed application package has been received (as described above), the office administrator will send it to the CAPDA Diplomate Committee who will ensure that all eligibility criteria have been met. In the event that the CAPDA Diplomate committee deems the application to not meet the required criteria, the application package will be brought to the CAPDA Board of Directors who will have final say as to whether the candidate can continue to further phases of the evaluation process.
Candidates meeting criteria can proceed to the subsequent phases of the evaluation process:
- Review of three sample reports – Candidates will be asked to submit three de-identified sample reports. These reports must provide evidence of expertise with respect to data collection and evaluation and illustrate the bases for determinations regarding diagnosis, prognosis, treatment recommendations, impairment and disability, as appropriate. Reports should include a complete list of reviewed documents, all test scores and raw test protocols and full copies of clinical notes completed by the candidate and any other clinical staff contributing to the report. The Chair of the Board of Examiners will review all three sample reports and choose one report about which the applicant will be questioned during the oral examination process. Applicants will be informed at the time of the oral examination which of the three submitted reports will be discussed. It should be noted however, that the entire Board of Examiners will review and utilize all three sample reports as part of their overall evaluations.
- Oral examination process – The oral examination process is an opportunity to demonstrate expertise through direct evaluation by three members of the Board of Examiners. The oral examination will be comprised of two components:
Discussion of one of the applicant’s submitted disability assessment reports – As noted above, at the time of examination, applicants will be informed which of the three submitted reports will be discussed. Board of Examiners may ask for additional information, request explanations and/or pose questions.
Candidates will be given 60 minutes to review a medical brief and psychometric test results (note-taking permitted) following by up to 120 minutes to conduct an interview with a simulated examinee (an actor) – observed via live video feed by the Board of Examiners). Candidates’ interviews will be audiotaped and accessible only by the Board of Examiners. Tapes will be destroyed immediately after the examination. Subsequently, candidates will be asked to respond orally to questions concerning but not limited to case conceptualization, information synthesis, differential diagnosis, causality, impairment, credibility, and disability. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate critical thinking and a sophisticated understanding of psychological disability and its assessment.
Methodology of Evaluation
The candidate’s performance during the clinical interview and responses during the oral examination, coupled with their three sample reports, will be rated by the examiners to arrive at an overall examination score. Candidates will be rated on eight dimensions (on a scale from 0 to 5) which have been deemed by the CAPDA Diplomate Committee to be indicative of exceptional expertise in the assessment of psychological disability. Each of the three Examiners will independently rate the applicant’s performance. A candidate will be granted Diplomate status / Board certification if at least two of the three examiners arrive at a passing score. Applicants will be provided with an official Board of Examiner feedback form with a Pass or Fail determination and specific feedback regarding the Board of Examiner’s decision. If a candidate is unsuccessful, re-application will require completion of all necessary forms and payment of all associated fees. Candidates who re-apply will be required to re-take all sections of the oral examination and may choose or may be asked to submit additional sample reports.
Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact any of the CAPDA Diplomate Committee (i.e., Dr. Ivan Kiss – firstname.lastname@example.org, Dr. Jeremy Frank – email@example.com, Dr. Brian Levitt – firstname.lastname@example.org or Dr. Annette Lorenz – email@example.com. For website issues, please e-mail Dr. David Kurzman – firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to apply, please send an email to Dr. Jeremy Frank (email@example.com) who will reply with instructions for the online application.
Payments for any phase of the application process can be done here.
A copy of the application for is available here: Diplomate Application Form
Please complete and send by email to the Office Administrator