Mission and Mandate of the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA)

The CPA was organized in 1939 and incorporated under the Canada Corporations Act, Part II, in May 1950.

Its objectives are:

  • To improve the health and welfare of all Canadians;
  • To promote excellence and innovation in psychological research, education, and practice;
  • To promote the advancement, development, dissemination, and application of psychological knowledge; and
  • To provide high-quality services to members.

CPA's Strategic Plan for 2013-2018

To ensure CPA is meeting its mission, objectives and responsibilities, CPA is guided by a strategic plan that sets out clear goals and strategies for 2013-2018. CPA's strategic plan is founded on a vision that the science and practice of psychology has broad and deep relevance to public policy and the public good. CPA’s intent is to realize this vision through all its principles, policies and activities. It is in its role as psychology’s national voice, that CPA as an organization helps ensure that the discipline and profession contribute to the health and well-being of Canadians. CPA’s strategic priorities target the activities that will help us hone this contribution. The impact of our contribution will be measured by the focus and success of our activities, organized to support education and training in psychology, the development and application of research, and the accessibility of psychological practice. Click here to view the 2013-2018 strategic plan.

Note: The 2013-2018 CPA Strategic Plan is currently only available in English. A French version of this document will be released shortly.

Message from CPA's President,
2014-2015: Dr. Kerry Mothersill

Dr. Kerry Mothersill, President

As President, I welcome you to the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) website. Whether you are a psychologist, psychology student, a member of another profession or a member of the public with an interest in psychological research, health and well-being, I invite you to explore all of the varied information that the site presents. I hope that it will enhance your wonder about the fascinating world of human functioning, energize your desire for knowledge and mobilize all to enhance wellness.

Message from the President continued...

Message from CPA's Chief Executive Officer: Dr. Karen Cohen

Dr. Karen Cohen, CEO

As CPA's CEO, it is a pleasure to be charged with responsibility for CPA's activities and operations and for representing CPA at the many tables and coalitions on which we sit. Please use the website to familiarize yourself with CPA’s many activities and follow Psynopsis, CPA’s quarterly magazine, available online to any member of the public.

Message from the CEO continued...

How CPA Works and Who to Contact for What at Head Office

The Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) is the national association for the science, practice and education of psychology in Canada. With over 7,000 members and affiliates, CPA is Canada's largest association for psychology.

The vision and policy for CPA is established by its Board of Directors. Presidential Officers and Board members are elected from among the CPA membership with two seats held by representatives from CPA partner organizations and one held by a representative from CPA’s Student Section. A listing of the names and portfolios of CPA's 2014/15 Board of Directors can be found, by clicking here.  

Responsibility for the operations of CPA rests with its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and through the CEO, with CPA’s Head Office staff. A listing of CPA staff, their titles and coordinates can be found on our Contact Us page.

  • Get in touch with Dr. Karen Cohen for any queries, concerns or suggestions about psychology in Canada. In general, contact her about anything having to do with CPA’s operations, its representation on national alliances and coalitions (e.g. Health Action Lobby, Canadian Alliance of Mental Illness and Mental Health, Canadian Consortium for Research) in addition to anything related to health and healthcare and the professional practice of psychology across Canada.
  • Contact Dr. Lisa Votta-Bleeker on matters pertaining to psychological research and its funding in Canada.
  • Correspondence related to the provincial or territorial practice of psychology can be directed to Ms. Amy Barnard.
  • Any questions related to the accreditation of programmes that train psychologists for practice can be directed to Dr. Melissa Tiessen.
  • Any queries about CPA’s annual convention should be directed to Ms. Kathy Lachapelle-Petrin
  • Membership questions go to Mr. Tyler Stacey-Holmes. Inquiries about the status of your membership can also be directed to Céline McCorkell.
  • Any queries related to communications (media) and public affairs can be directed to Ms. Stephanie Miksik.

Members of the public commonly contact CPA with questions about psychological disorders (see Psychology Works Fact Sheets), the study, practice and licensing of psychologists, how to get a referral to a psychologist, and what to expect when seeing a psychologist. Answers to these questions are often answered by information found on the public pages of our website. If your question is not answered there, please contact Ms. Sarah Fletcher for further assistance.