Mediation Certification in Canada: What Steps Are Involved?

Posted by Kompass Professional Development on Nov 30, 2020 2:35:37 PM
Kompass Professional Development

If you are considering a career in mediation, your first priority is to understand the types of mediation certification available in your region and at the national level in Canada. 

With the exception of family mediation, all mediation certifications are administered by the Alternative Dispute Resolution Institute of Canada (ADRIC). 

ADRIC is the national certifying body and sets clear standards and guidelines for mediation training, certification, and professional practice.

ADRIC also has regional affiliates, some of which have special or different requirements for certification, in addition to the national criteria.

Family mediators have their own professional association, separate from ADRIC, called Family Mediation Canada (FMC). 

Depending on the type of mediations you want to perform, you may need to get certified by both ADRIC and FMC. 

So where do you begin? What are the steps involved in becoming a certified mediator in Canada, and which type of certification is right for you?

Here is a simple guide to the process and some expert advice on how to get started.


Mediation Certification Step #1: explore Available Designations 

ADRIC offers two types of professional designations for mediators. The first is an entry-level designation, called the Qualified Mediator (Q. Med) designation. This is the natural starting point for newcomers to the field. 

The second is a more advanced credential, called the Chartered Mediator (C. Med) designation. Applicants need considerable professional mediation experience to qualify for this designation. 

If you want to conduct family mediations, you will need to complete the Family Mediator Certification program. This program prepares candidates for the Family Relations Mediator and Comprehensive Family Mediator certifications. 

Here’s a quick comparison of requirements for all 3 credentials. 

Requirements to become a Qualified Mediator (Q.Med)

☑️ 40 hours of basic mediation training 

☑️ 40 hours of specialized mediation and related training 

☑️ Completion of 2 mediations (can be actual or supervised practice mediations, or co-mediations) 

☑️ Pledge to comply with ADRIC’s Code of Ethics and Code of Conduct 

☑️ Become a full member in good standing with ADRIC and your provincial affiliate 

☑️ Commit to continuing education 

☑️ Provide proof of Errors and Omissions Insurance with a limit of at least $1 million aggregate 


Requirements to become a Chartered Mediator (C. Med)

☑️ 80 hours of mediation theory and skills training  

☑️ 100 hours of specialized and related training 

☑️ Completion of at least 15 paid mediations as the sole mediator or mediation chairperson 

☑️ Completion of a skills assessment (your performance as mediator is assessed by 3 approved Chartered Mediators) 

☑️ Pledge to comply with ADRIC’s Code of Ethics and Code of Conduct 

☑️ Become a full member in good standing with ADRIC and your provincial affiliate 

☑️ Commit to continuing education 

☑️ Provide proof of Errors and Omissions Insurance with a limit of at least $1 million aggregate 


Requirements to become a Certified Family Mediator 

☑️ 80 hours of basic conflict resolution and mediation training 

☑️ 100 hours of further education and training in specific areas of family issues 

☑️ Completion of an approved 30-hour mediation practicum or two positive peer evaluations from experienced family mediators 

☑️ Videotaped role-play assessment along with a skills assessment 

☑️ Written final examination 

☑️ Mandatory continuing education 

☑️ Become a member in good standing of FMC 


For complete details on ADRIC certification requirements please click here. 

To learn more about becoming a certified family mediator, please click here. 


Mediation Certification Step #2Complete an Approved Mediation Course 

Once you know which mediation certification you want to pursue, the next step is to select an approved training course. 

Each certification requires a certain number of hours of in-class training. There are many organizations that provide mediation training, which can be applied toward your certification. 

There are online mediation courses, ground programs, full-time and part-time options. What should you look for in a quality program? 

It's important to choose a mediation course that is recognized and approved by ADRIC. Graduating from an approved program will streamline your application for the Q. Med or C. Med designation. 

If you complete a program that is not approved, ADRIC will have to independently assess the course. This could delay the approval process or result in the rejection of your application. 

A recognized mediation course is taught by a certified mediator, includes role-plays and mock mediations, and meets ADRIC’s basic educational requirements for certification. 

Click below to see an example of an approved  Mediation and Dispute Resolution course. This training is approved by ADRIC and meets educational requirements for the Q. Med designation. 

See an Accredited Mediation Course


Mediation Certification Step #3: Submit Your Application & Become a Member

After you complete an approved mediation course, you can apply for your chosen designation or certification. Both ADRIC and FMC require you to become a member and pay membership dues as part of the qualification process. 

ADRIC requires members to join at both the national and regional level, which means you’ll be paying dues to both associations. 

Learn more about your local ADRIC chapter: List of ADRIC regional affiliates 

Also, you can take a moment to check out the benefits of membership with ADRIC or FMC. Membership is not simply a mandatory prerequisite for earning your mediation certification. It offers several advantages to new and existing mediators. 

For example, membership with ADRIC includes the following: 

☑️ A professional profile and listing on the online ADR directory 

☑️ Member discounts for Zoom conferencing, liability insurance, hotels, ADRIC events and training, etc.

☑️ Marketing support 

☑️ Access to industry news, updates and resources 

☑️ Publishing opportunities in mediation and arbitration journals 


It's important to know your rights and privileges as a member, so you can fully leverage those benefits as you launch your mediation career.


Have questions?

If you have questions about mediation certification, or how to get started with training, we suggest reading this interview with certified mediator and instructor, Mary Joseph. 

Mary is a retired lawyer, Chartered Mediator and Accredited Family Mediator. She has over 30 years combined experience in law and mediation, and is an excellent guide to training and careers.

Accredited Mediation and Dispute Resolution Course: Meet the Instructor

Prefer to speak with Admissions? A Kompass Admissions Advisor can walk you through certification requirements, what to expect in class, the cost of tuition, and how to enrol.

Click below to chat live with an Advisor now and explore the Mediation and Dispute Resolution course in more detail. 

Learn More About the Mediation & Dispute Resolution Certificate


Topics: mediation training, Kompass Professional Development, dispute resolution, mediation

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