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Recognition of Acquired Competencies (RAC),
opens doors

Recognition of Acquired Competencies (RAC) is a simple and personalized process. It can be completed at your own pace and, most importantly, it spares you from having to relearn what you already know. It is designed to assess the skills that an adult has developed outside the classroom, either through professional (work) or personal (life) experience. However, these skills must match up with the competencies targeted by a program of study since the objective of the process is for you to obtain a recognized diploma, either a Diploma of College Studies (DCS) or an Attestation of College Studies (ACS).

My CEGEP journey

Not sure where to start? In a few easy steps we can steer you towards courses and training programs as part of the RAC process that match your situation and interests.

Steps involved in the RAC process

The Recognition of Acquired Competencies (RAC) process involves the steps listed below, which must be followed in the sequence indicated. At the heart of the process is the support offered to individuals at each of these stages by expert CEGEP staff.


Information about the process

Candidates are provided with comprehensive information about the RAC process, often through a free in-person or remote information session. General information is provided by the CEGEP, either individually or in a group setting.

Submitting the application

Applicants submit the documents required to open and analyze their application file to the CEGEP. At this stage, the applicant will need to conduct a competency self-assessment.

Validating your competencies

Validation includes an analysis of the application and an individual validation interview. This allows us to judge the relevance of the application to a given program of study. At this stage, the process may be stopped, e.g., if the applicant withdraws or is not fully able to demonstrate the required competencies.

Competency assessment

Each of the competencies in the curriculum is assessed; sometimes, competencies are grouped together to reflect how they are applied in real-life situations.

Filling in training gaps if needed

If necessary, training is provided after the assessment and is aimed at mastering the competency elements that are initially missing with regard to a program of study. Training can take various forms: small-group training modules, targeted readings, research, supervision, tutoring, etc.

College diploma or attestation

The awarding of a Diploma of College Studies (DCS) or an Attestation of College Studies (ACS) constitutes and confirms the purpose of the RAC process, unless an exception is validated by the ministère de l'Enseignement supérieur.

Did you know that...

There is no failure in the RAC process! If you are required to complete a missing course, the process will continue until an assessment certifies that the competency being measured has been achieved. We will support you until you are able to successfully complete this step.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

This FAQ will provide you with a wealth of useful information on the RAC process. Take a moment to check it out before contacting a CEGEP; you will be better informed if you do.

Is there a minimum number of years of experience required?

No. That said, relevant experience of fewer than two years is generally not considered sufficient to demonstrate all the competencies of a program of study. However, there are exceptions. The information meeting at the beginning of the process clearly sets out the requirements for relevant and significant experience.

Can my experience outside Quebec be considered?

Yes. Any relevant and meaningful experience is valid, regardless of where the learning took place.

I started a DCS a long time ago and have been working in my field ever since. Will I be able to complete it via the RAC process?

Yes. It will be easier if you go to the college where you began the DCS, but it is possible to do so at any CEGEP that still offers this DCS or another related DCS.

Will my skills be automatically recognized if I fill in my training gaps?

No. According to the framework provided by the ministère de l’Enseignement supérieur, the applicant must be reassessed, but only on those competency elements that were deemed to be missing with regard to the curriculum.