How do Internationally Education Nurses (IENs) become Nurses in Canada (British Columbia)?

Here's a 7-Step Guide how to become a Registered Nurse in British Columbia Canada as an Internationally Educated Nurses.


How do Internationally Education Nurses (IENs) become Nurses in Canada (British Columbia)?


  1. Apply to the National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS). You can complete the the entire NNAS process from outside Canada. Start early as the process can take up to 1 year. This process will basically evaluate your Nursing Education, Nursing Practice and Language Proficiency. www.nnas.ca
  2. Apply to British Columbia College of Nursing Professionals (BCCNP). You will need the NNAS Application Number and NNAS Advisory Report in order to apply to BCCNP. There is great chance that you will be directed by BCCNP to Nursing Community Assessment Service (NCAS) to measure your entry-level competencies to as compared to a new Canadian graduate. www.bccnp.ca
  3. Competence Assessment. Competency assessment for BCCNP are completed through the NCAS and it involves three components: Computer-based assessment, Simulation lab assessment and Oral assessment. Simulation lab assessment and oral assessment must be taken in-person in Vancouver, BC.
  4. Assessment of your application for registration. Your NCAS competency assessment result will be received by BCCNP. Your application will be evaluated if you have any competency gaps. If gap exists, you will may be required to to complete transitional education. www.ncasbc.ca
  5. Transitional Coursework for Internationally Educated Nurses. Your BCCNP Assessment will identify which courses or program you need to complete at a BCCNP-recognized institutions. Transitional coursework includes a re-entry to practice program or Bachelor of Nursing, Individual Courses or Qualifying Courses. There are entrance requirements that you need to meet before you will be accepted to the program.
  6. NCLEX-RN. Upon successful completion of your Transitional Coursework, the next step if to write and pass the National Council Licensure Examination for RNs (NCLEX-RN).
  7. Eligibility for Registration. Once you have completed all BCCNP registration requirements, including any required transitional education and passing the NCLEX-RN, you must ensure your practicing RN Registration is approved before you start practicing as a Registered Nurse in BC.
While you can start the process while still outside Canada, you will need to be in Canada in order to complete the process.

Now, how about while waiting to complete the process, you are already working in Canada as a Registered Health Care Assistant?  

Income Potentials:
  • Health Care Assistant - $17-23/hr
  • Licensed Practical Nurse - $ 27-31/hr
  • Registered Nurse - 34-55/hr
Interested? 

Start by taking the FREE Online Assessment or Attend one of our seminar schedules