Thursday, 24 March 2016

More PSB News!

Successful University Site Visits

PSB's Accreditation Program Committee (APC) has organized two successful site visits so far this year.  The first, to Queen's University, took place January 27-29.  The Site Visit Team (SVT) turned the report around extremely quickly:  the draft went to Queen's for comment February 5, which is extremely rapid, considering the work that goes into developing the report!  Thanks to SVT members Dennis Jacobs (Chair and in-PTIA representative), Lloyd Talbot (out-of-PTIA representative) and Dr. Sandeep Agrawal (ACUPP representative) for their hard work.

 Queen's University program Chair Dr. Dave Gordon quickly provided comments back to the SVT and they finalized the report.  APC dealt with it at their meeting March 21, and their recommendation will now go to the PSB Board for a final decision.

The University of Saskatchewan site visit was March 7-9, and the SVT is working on the draft report.  Thanks to Ramona Mattix (Chair, out-of-PTIA representative), Doug Daniels (in-PTIA representative) and Dr. Andrew Seidel (ACUPP representative) for their work to date.

APC is now working on the schedule for the 2016-17 academic year.  University planning programs up for re-accreditation are Dalhousie University, University of British Columbia, and University of Northern British Columbia.  In addition, the University of Alberta's undergraduate degree program will be undergoing its final accreditation visit in the fall.

March 2016 Professional Examination Sitting

The March sitting of the Professional Examination was held this past Monday (March 21), with a record-breaking 91 Candidates and OPPI Candidate (Provisional) members registered.  At the Toronto Examination centre, we had a full house.  The new software, adopted in the wake of the software failure we suffered in September, performed well, with very few problems reported.  For those who wrote on computer, your papers must be uploaded by Friday, March 25 at 5 pm ET.  Long-hand papers for those who wrote remotely are coming in now and all papers will be going out to Examiners on Monday for the first round of marking.  As a reminder to those who wrote, each paper is marked at least twice; where the first two Examiners disagree on the pass/fail status of a paper, it goes for a third and decisive marking.

PSB Annual General Meeting

PSB will be holding its Annual General Meeting at the CIP/OUQ Conference in Québec City in July.  Staff are currently making the arrangements.  Four Directors' terms have expired:  André Daigle (CIP), Bruce Curtis (OPPI), Chris Leach (MPPI) and Finlay Sinclair (PIBC).  All are eligible for re-election.
  
PSC News

PSB works closely with the Professional Standards Committee, which is made up of representatives of all the PTIAs except OUQ (a PSB representative participates in PSC meetings as an invited guest; OUQ and ACUPP have observer status).  PSC sets and reviews the standards developed through Planning for the Future - important work for the profession.  At the end of December 2015, the term of PSC Chair Charles Lanktree (OPPI) came to an end.  All of us at PSB wish to express our thanks to Charles for the cooperation and courtesy he has extended us over the past three years.  At their January 2016 meeting, PSC elected Elaine Mitchell (API) as their new Chair - congratulations Elaine!

Volunteers

PSB also wishes to thank all those who have volunteered their time and expertise to help us deliver on our mandate:  Board and Committee members, Site Visit Teams, Examiners, PLAR Assessors, Mentors and Sponsors.  Without your willingness to give back to the profession, PSB could not exist.  We deeply appreciate all you do for us.

If you are interested in being part of PSB's volunteer corps, you can find information about our various volunteer roles at http://www.psb-planningcanada.ca/VOLUNTEERS/orientation.php and, if you'd like to sign up as a volunteer, please visit http://www.psb-planningcanada.ca/volunteer/, our enrollment tool.  Thank you for your interest!

Coming Attractions

PSB will have some exciting news in the next couple of months - be sure to check back here for updates! 

Thursday, 10 March 2016

PSB News - March 2016

Accreditation Program Committee

In the interests of greater transparency for our colleagues at ACUPP, the Accreditation Program Committee (APC) has been posting updates on Committee activity.  These posts are roughly semi-annual, and are posted on the "University Accreditation" page (http://www.psb-planningcanada.ca/UNIVERSTYACCREDITATION/index.php).  If you are interested in APC's activities or in the accreditation of university planning degree programs in general, we encourage you to take a look at this page.  In addition to APC updates, we have also posted information relating to the accreditation process.

Thanks to Tracey Ehl (OPPI member of APC) for developing these posts!

As of this writing, two re-accreditation site visits - Queen's University and University of Saskatchewan - have been completed, and the final visit of the 2015-16 academic year - Simon Fraser University - is on track to start March 21. Our thanks to the Site Visit Teams for being so giving of their time to support this important function.

Professional Examination - March 2016 Sitting

After a serious software issue prevented us from allowing Candidates to write the September 2015 sitting on their computers, we are pleased to announce that we have arranged for a new software provider for the March 21, 2016 sitting.  Feedback from Candidates who have downloaded the software and completed the practice exam (a test to ensure the software works correctly on their computers) has been positive so far.  If you are registered for this sitting, you will have received information on the software already; new registrants will be sent the information upon registration.

New Professional Examination Format

The Professional Examination Sub-committee has been working hard on development of a multiple-choice Examination.  Since our last update, the Sub-committee has met three times and is working on the question bank.  They will be reporting to PSB's Board of Directors on their progress at the March 18 Board meeting.  On behalf of PSB, we extend our deepest appreciation to the members of the Sub-committee:
  • Bruce Singbush, Chair (OPPI)
  •  Janice Harper (API)
  • Autumn Dawson (SPPI)
  • Wayne Caldwell (OPPI, University of Guelph)
  • Ron Keeble (OPPI, Ryerson University)
  • Chris Leach (MPPI, PEEC Chair (ex-officio)
  • Brian Brophey (OPPI Registrar - Committee Resource)
PSB's Interim Executive Director also provides support to the Sub-committee.