The province has moved to create the College of Kinesiologists of Ontario (CKO), a regulatory body to oversee the profession, but that’s no problem for York’s School of Kinesiology & Health Science – it’s program already meets expectations.
As of April 1, a person must be registered with the college to practice kinesiology in Ontario. Registration permits the member to use the protected title “kinesiologist” and the designation “R.Kin.”
This is a critical decision that will require professionals in the field to adhere to a common set of professional standards, a code of ethics, as well as participate in ongoing professional development. The list of competencies that will be tested include knowledge, kinesiology practical experience, professionalism/professional practice and professional development.
“The academic competencies identified by the College of Kinesiologists of Ontario are all contained with the program’s core or mandatory courses – it will not be necessary for students to take any additional courses than those already aligned within the school’s major regardless of degree,” says Angelo Belcastro, chair of the School of Kinesiology & Health Science at York.
Currently, the province has associations for many health-care professionals, including the College of Nurses of Ontario and the College of Psychologists of Ontario that correspond to York’s programs in the Faculty of Health.
“The graduates of York University’s BA and/or BSc degree programs in kinesiology are looking forward to entering the newest health regulated profession in Ontario – a certified kinesiologist,” says Belcastro.
The goal of the CKO is to maintain a registry of kinesiologists in Ontario and to provide government-sanctioned, self-regulated profession in accordance with the Regulated Health Professions Act (1991) and The Kinesiology Act (2007).
“The extensive requirement for practical experience fits very well with the school’s philosophy and practice of expanding our student’s opportunities for hands-on experiential learning. A good many of the school’s courses offer formal and informal practical skills aligned with the practice competencies required by the CKO,” says Belcastro. “The extensive focus on having our students practice all aspects of kinesiology places York’s Kinesiology & Health Science program above other programs,” says Belcastro.
The new CKO is mandated to protect the public by holding its members accountable and by investigating any complaints. This new certification, combined with how well-positioned York’s School of Kinesiology & Health Science is to meet the regulations, will help York students succeed as health-care professionals.