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Teacher Qualification Service (TQS)

What is the TQS?

Established in 1969, the British Columbia Teacher Qualification Service (TQS) is an entity jointly supported by the BC School Trustees Association and the BC Teachers' Federation.  The primary function of the TQS is to assist teachers and their employing school boards in establishing the qualifications of teachers for salary purposes.  The TQS only administers cards for current or prospective teachers of the public school system. 

Could you be missing out on salary? 

The Teacher Qualification Service (TQS) has made some changes in its policies. Click here for more information to make sure you don’t miss out on salary.

Recent Policy Changes

If you feel that these changes could affect your category placement, apply on the TQS website ( for an upgrade or a Director’s review of your file.  If you would like further details about TQS matters please visit the website. 

  1. Policy 5.15 – Type of Capstone

    This policy applies to capstones in a graduate degree.  A capstone is usually a culminating activity in a degree such as a thesis, major paper, major project or comprehensive examination.  With this change in policy, the TQS will no longer scrutinize the type of capstone acceptable in a graduate degree; all capstones will be acceptable.  This change in policy could affect any applicants currently in category five plus (5+), who completed a graduate degree that contained a capstone but did not contain an initial teacher education program.  This change in policy could also affect the upgrading requirements of any applicant in category five (5) or lower who holds a graduate degree that contained a capstone but did not contain an initial teacher education program.

    If your file fits either situation above, you are encouraged to apply to the TQS (

  2. Policy 5.5 – Credit Count

    This policy applies to the number of credits that a thesis represents in a Master’s degree.

    Previous Version

    A thesis was worth what the university awarded or where no credit was awarded, 12 semester credits.

    New Version

    A thesis is worth a minimum of 12 semester credits, or more if the university awards more than 12 credits.

  3. Additional Qualification (AQ) courses:

    The TQS is drafting a new policy that will reflect the following change:

    The Teacher Qualification Service will consider Ontario AQ courses taken from an accredited university provided that they fit into the requirements of an Integrated Program (see Regulation 4.05).  AQ courses will be generally allotted six semester credits.  If you believe that this could affect your category placement, please apply to the TQS via the website ( for either an upgrade or Director’s review of your file.


When you decide to work towards an upgrade of category in order to have an increase of salary, we suggest you follow the steps below:  

  • Choose a university program relevant to the BC public K-12 education system.
  • Send the details of the program to the TQS to make sure it qualifies you for a category upgrade.  Use the Program and Course Approval link on the TQS website (
  • Complete the program.
  • Apply for an upgrade through the TQS website (
  • Provide your new TQS category card to your school district to affect your upgrade.
  • Enjoy your pay raise!

Salary categorization (Teacher Qualification Service)

Upgrading your TQS category

French version

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