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Registration Examination


Entry-level registered massage therapists are prepared as generalists to enter into practice safely, competently, and ethically:

  • in situations of health and illness,
  • with people of all genders across the lifespan, and
  • in diverse practice settings.

The following two types of applicants must complete all three components of CMTBC’s registration examination in order to be eligible to register with the College:

RMTs from Regulated Provinces – Ontario, Newfoundland & Labrador, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island (PEI) – complete one of the three components of CMTBC’s registration examination. These applicants will be enrolled in CMTBC’s online Law, Ethics and Professionalism (LEP) course, and must successfully complete a proctored online exam based on the course material. For more information, see RMTs from Regulated Provinces.

After successfully completing the registration examination and meeting all other entry-to-practice requirements, individuals may register with CMTBC and become registered massage therapists (RMTs) in British Columbia.

Application for registration examination

Applicants for registration must apply to write the registration examination by logging in to the Applicant Portal and completing the application for registration. Applicants will be directed within the portal to identify themselves as graduates of recognized education programs or as applicants who completed the Prior Learning Assessment process and are eligible to sit the examination.

Applicants who require accommodation of the standard exam environment due to disability or a temporary condition may apply under terms set by the College’s Registration Committee Accommodation Policy for the Registration Examination (PDF)

Examination fees

The following fees apply for Fall 2023 and onwards:

  • Examination fee: $1,600
  • Re-examination (Clinical Knowledge and Theory Exam): $400
  • Re-examination (practical): $850
  • Re-examination (Law, Ethics and Professionalism): $350
  • Conditions to receive a refund of examination fees are set out in the CMTBC Bylaws, section 58(2)*

* Applicants may be eligible for a refund of examination fees, less any administrative fees, if written notice of cancellation is received by [email protected] no later than 15 calendar days prior to the date of the first exam component of the Registration Examination.

Dress code for examinations

Exam candidates are asked not to wear clothing with school logos.

Written and online examinations are held in air-conditioned facilities. Layered clothing is recommended. Bulky clothing that may conceal notes is not permitted.

Candidates are expected to present themselves in professional clinical attire for the performance-based assessment (PBA).

In consideration of others who may have allergies, candidates are asked to refrain from wearing scented products at all exam components.

Supplies and personal effects

Candidates at the written exams are to bring two HB pencils, an eraser, and a pencil sharpener. Candidates at the online examination require no supplies. A pen is required at the PBA for charting purposes, and candidates are invited to bring a holder for lotion/oil bottles. Lotion and oil will be provided at the PBA; candidates are not permitted to use their own, to avoid allergic reactions by standardized patient-examiners.

Government-issued photo identification is required in all exam settings. Candidates will not be permitted to sit a scheduled exam if they lack government-issued photo identification (e.g. passport, driver’s license).

Water is permitted, in a clear bottle.

No personal effects are permitted on or near exam writing tables. All books, backpacks, purses, wallets, and personal items including electronic devices are stored at the exam facility. CMTBC is not responsible for personal effects. Candidates are advised to limit the personal items they bring to exams. Anyone found with an electronic device during any exam component will be immediately disqualified.

Examiners and Invigilators

The examiners at the performance-based assessment are RMTs who have had no less than five years of practical clinical experience and extensive postgraduate education. Examiners have a variety of backgrounds and comprehensive clinical practice experience.

Invigilators at the written and online exams are responsible for signing in candidates, assigning seating, and overseeing the exams. They will neither interpret nor clarify questions for candidates. The invigilators will assist if there is information missing in an exam package, to oversee washroom facilities, and to ensure quiet space. The invigilators maintain exam security and supervise to prevent cheating.


Candidates caught cheating will receive an automatic failure and not be permitted to sit the examination again without permission from CMTBC’s Registration Committee.

Grading and notification of results

Candidates must achieve at least 70% on the online LEP exam, and achieve competency standards in the online theory exam and in the performance-based assessment. There is no averaging of marks over the three components of the registration examination. A successful grade must be achieved in each component for a candidate to qualify for registration.

In the performance-based assessment, candidates who demonstrate injurious treatment methods or are deemed to have harmed the patient-examiner will be considered to be at risk of harm and given a failing grade.

Candidates will receive official notification of results by email approximately six weeks after scheduled components of the examinations are complete, following comprehensive review of the results by psychometric analysts. Results will not be given over the phone.

Deadline for successful completion of all components of registration examination

Candidates must successfully complete all four components of the registration examination within three years of their first attempt at the registration examination. 


Candidates must pass each component of the registration examination to be eligible to register with CMTBC. Candidates who receive a “fail” grade on any component will need to repeat that component.

The conditions of additional attempts at failed components are set out in the College Bylaws, section 56.

Second Attempt

Candidates are entitled to retake any failed component of the registration examination once (a second attempt), within three years from the date of the candidate’s first attempt. 

Third Attempt

Candidates may be allowed to make a third attempt if they demonstrate that they have successfully completed one or more courses or a program of study, acceptable to the Registration Committee, on the subjects contained in the failed component(s) of the examination.

The candidate will be required to complete a Supplementary Education Plan (PDF) and submit it to CMTBC for approval. Instructions for submission of the completed form are on the first page of the form.

The Registration Committee has the sole discretion to grant or refuse a request for a third attempt at the registration examination. As with any other repeat attempts, the third attempt must be made within three years from the date of the candidate’s first attempt.

Fourth Attempt

Candidates may be allowed to make a fourth attempt if they meet the following criteria:

  • the requested fourth attempt falls within three years from the candidate’s first attempt at the Registration Examination,
  • if the candidate has failed the Clinical Science, Knowledge and Theory of Sciences and/or Performance Based Assessment portions of the Registration Examination, they request and pay for a written analysis of those failed portions of the Registration Examination,
  • submitted satisfactory evidence from an educational institution acceptable to the Registration Committee (e.g. massage therapy education program, university, or public college) that the candidate is enrolled in course work related to the content that they failed,
  • the candidate submits, as soon as practicable and prior to admission to a sitting of the Registration Examination or portion thereof, satisfactory evidence from an educational institution acceptable to the Registration Committee that the applicant successfully completed the course work related to the exam component that the applicant failed, and
  • the applicant has demonstrated that their remedial studies substantially or wholly incorporate CMTBC’s Recommended Resources for Exams (PDF).

Additional Education Required prior to further attempts

There are two situations that will result in candidates needing to complete additional or remedial education prior to their next attempt at the registration examination:

  • The candidate has exceeded the three years permitted by College Bylaw section 56(11) to successfully complete all components of the registration examination,
  • The candidate failed a fourth attempt at the registration examination.

In these cases, the candidate must complete, or repeat completion of a Recognized Education Program or complete other further education or training acceptable to the Registration Committee. Specifically:

  • If the candidate was admitted to the registration examination via CMTBC’s Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) process or the College’s former Credential and Prior Learning Assessment (CPLA) process, that candidate must complete a full diploma program at a Recognized Education Program listed in Schedule “A” of the CMTBC Bylaws to become eligible to apply for CMTBC’s Registration Examination a second time.
  • Alternately, if the candidate was a graduate of a Recognized Education Program, that candidate must either:
    • Enrol in and complete a Recognized Education Program in its entirety and earn a new diploma, or
    • Arrange with a Recognized Education Program to earn advanced placement at the program director’s discretion, and successfully complete the final term of summative exams, including written exams in foundational knowledge, and hands-on massage treatments of a standardized patient with varied complaints for which massage therapy is indicated.
  • In both cases (PLA/CPLA or graduate of a Recognized Education Program), the remedial education must make use of CMTBC’s Recommended Resources for Exams (PDF).

Reapplication Required

After demonstrating successful completion of either a recognized education program or additional education approved by CMTBC’s Registration Committee, the applicant may re-apply for eligibility to take the Registration Examination. This is a new application. There is no opportunity for carry-over of previously-passed exam components.

Analysis of failed examinations

Candidates can request a detailed written analysis of failed registration examination component(s) in two areas: Clinical Knowledge and Theory, and the Performance Based Assessment. 

The deadline to request exam analysis is set up by the college for each Registration Examination sitting.

The cost of the analysis is $125 per component.

The analysis will identify areas of weakness in the failed components of the registration examination to help candidates focus their studies on those areas, prior to any subsequent attempts to re-take the examination. Requests for an analysis must be made in writing and delivered to the College by the deadline indicated in the letter sent to candidates with grades. Candidates who fail the Law, Ethics and Professionalism online examination must repeat the course and re-take the online exam.

If you have any questions regarding the above, please email [email protected] or call 604-736-3404 ext. 102 (toll free in North America at 1-877-321-3404 ext. 102).

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