Missed Deadline

Connect with us to avoid suspension

Alberta’s mandatory registration of regulated health professionals means that we need to take registration deadlines very seriously.

You worked hard to earn your title and gain the ability to work in your profession, and we protect that right by ensuring that opticians register on time.

We offer prizes as an incentive to register early, and unfortunately, we also sometimes have to penalize those who fail to register. There may be many valid reasons you may have not been able to meet the registration deadline.

We urge you to contact us as soon as you can before the deadline, so that we can try to work with you to find a solution, rather than letting your registration lapse.

To reinstate your license with the ACAO please complete the 2021 Reinstatement Registration Package.


On January 1st, our computer system automatically updates all unpaid accounts as “Suspended”.

This action is legally required for all outstanding accounts, regardless of your reason for not registering. In order to regain your status as a Registered Optician or Registered Contact Lens Practitioner, you must reapply with the College and pay an additional fee.

Additional Fees

The reinstatement fee depends on when you return after being suspended. These fees are steep! It is meant to deter you from letting your registration lapse; as mentioned above, Alberta health professionals legally must register with their colleges.



Consider temporarily registering as non-practicing

If you know that you will not be working in the field for a while, a better alternative to letting your registration lapse is to register as non-practicing.

The fees are lower and because you must keep up with your Continuing Education, we can be sure that when you return, you will still be competent to practice.

If you decide to return part way through the year, we prorate registration fees quarterly. Remember that those registered as non-practicing cannot work as opticians; however, it is still a better option to take on this status temporarily and avoid a reinstatement fee.

Reinstating After More than 5 Years?

If you are reinstating after five years, you are required to complete the prior learning and recognition program (PLAR).

This program includes an online test called the competency gap analysis (CGA) and an interview where you will be asked case-based questions about practicing as an Optician. The CGA and interview combined will determine if there are any gaps in your knowledge that you need to improve on.


Fees Total Cost (including GST)
Document Assessment $236.25
Eyeglass: Competency Gap Analysis & Interview $682.50
Contact Lens: Competency Gap Analysis & Interview $682.50

More Information

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How Long Does It Take?

After you submit you application, it will be reviewed by NACOR to determine if you are eligible.

If you are eligible, you will be contacted with available times and dates to complete your CGA and interview.

The Competency Gap Analysis (CGA)

It is important to note that the CGA is not a test; you do not simply pass or fail. The CGA is a way for us to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses according to the NACOR list of National Competencies. Because of this, the CGA is divided into three sections:

  • Core
  • Eyeglasses
  • Contact Lenses

Each section will provide you with a series of multiple choice questions. You will have 5 hours to complete the three sections, and an optional short break after each section. You do not have to complete the contact lens portion of the CGA if you are not interested in becoming a contact lens fitter.

The Interview

The interview is divided into the same three categories as the CGA. The interviewers will ask you about your own personal experience dispensing eyeglasses and fitting contact lenses (if applicable). The interviewers will also provide you with hypothetical scenarios where you will provide proposed courses of action.