How to Become a Dermatologist in Canada

How to Become a Dermatologist in Canada is exactly what this article is focused on and you will learn every requirement necessary that will aid your dream of becoming a licensed Canadian practicing dermatologist.

Dermatology is a medical field that any gender can comfortably seek a life-time career in and earn attractively too. It is basically concerned with the care/treatment, maintenance, and enhancement of the human skin and hair.

So as long as people will always be in need of skin care, treatment as well as their hair maintaining beauty as an essential part of their personality, then you can be certain a dermatologist will always be a lucrative career due to the ton of high demand for skin and hair care as well as their maintenance.

Are you fascinated about helping people have a perfectly glowing skin or an healthy hair? If your answer is yes, then you are skimming through the right article.

This article is keen on helping you figure out how to become a dermatologist in Canada, what you need to know and do, as well how you can equip yourself properly with the necessary skills for this career path, before becoming one yourself.

Who is a Dermatologist?

A dermatologist is a medical personnel that his or her core duty involves the treatment of any medical condition that is skin, hair, and nails related.

A dermatologist also renders healthcare solutions to patients with mucous membranes, such as the soft lining beneath a person’s eyelids or in their nostrils.

Dermatology also have subfields of specialties and having a good knowledge on the available specializations in dermatology will appropriately inform you on how to become a dermatologist in Canada.

These branches of dermatology include:

Pediatric dermatology: This branch of dermatology specializes in skin and hair treatment for kids as the name suggests and also treat skin conditions that affect bodily functions, like alopecia areata which is a condition that attacks hair follicles (and make hair fall out in small, round patches.)

Dermatopathology: This specialty involves the laboratory diagnosis of skin diseases by investigating skin samples under a microscope and other scientific observations, create reports of their findings and contribute to treatment plans.

Mohs Surgery: is a type of dermatology that specialize in offering skin treatment to cancer patients. A Mohs surgeon conducts surgery to patients through the removal of cancerous tissues and examines the skins to ensure only healthy cells remain.

What is a Dermatologist Duty?

One aspect of learning how to become a dermatologist in Canada is by understanding the responsibilities and duties of one.

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Dermatologists duties rallies round skin treatment from minor cosmetic surgeries like scar removals to major surgeries that involve removing cancerous skin tissue.

Dermatologists also carry out researches for skin conditions and skincare issues. They make meaningful contribution towards improving skin treatment and producing skincare and hair-care products.

Also Read: Top 20 Best Medical Schools In Canada

Skills a dermatologist should have

Also, skills are powerful tools in knowing how to become a dermatologist in Canada and as such any one looking to become one should possess a good number of these below.

Good Communication skills

Communication skills are very important assets and almost compulsory if you wish to be fully equipped on how to become a dermatologist in Canada and perhaps very crucial for any medical profession.

Since, dermatologist are no different and will need to deal with people all the time both patients and colleagues, they have to possess and build better communication skills as much as possible to help them deliver necessary information when necessary.

With good communication skills comes good listening ability, as a dermatologist, you must know how to pay attention to your patients to help you understand their needs and proffer the best medical care, and treatment possible.

This involves asking effective questions that can give you a more insightful understanding of a patient’s situation. You also need to communicate your diagnosis and treatment plan in an easy-to-understand way.

Critical-thinking skills

A Dermatologist should possess a critical-thinking and decision skills based on patients feedback and tests conducted.

Critical-thinking and quick accurate decision making skills helps in formulating the most effective treatment plan for each patient’s diagnosis.

Also, timely treatment plan can mean saving a patient’s life more quickly.

Technical skills

Dermatologists use a lot of equipment and tools while performing their duties. You can expect to perform minor cosmetic surgeries using laser equipment.

This includes the removal of moles, dark spots, or wrinkles. Major surgeries involving the removal of damaged or infected skin cells are also one of the core responsibilities of a dermatologist. You need outstanding technical skills to improve the chances of success during such procedures.

Interpersonal skills

Interpersonal skills are very useful to patients as many may feel too aware about needing medical treatment, especially when the health problem relates to their appearance.

Interpersonal skills can help make your patients feel safe making them more share more information during their consultation, and making your work much easier.

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Also Read: Top 20 Best Medical Schools In Canada

How to become a Dermatologist in Canada Professionally

To truly know how to become a dermatologist you need to be professionally equipped which will secure you a license.

1. Get a bachelor’s degree

This is one of the most important criteria for becoming a dermatologist in Canada, get a bachelor’s degree as this field is medical and not just cosmetics which means you need to be accepted into medical school.

You must have all medical school requirements in any course like biology or biochemistry, etc and ensure you obtain high grades to help you be successful with your medical school application.

2. Obtain all requirements

Obtaining all requirements is certainly necessary on how to become a dermatologist in Canada and you also need to have good grades and pass your Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) for acceptance.

There are about 20 medical schools with accredited courses of study from the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada. It i best to research each school to help make the best choice for you.

It helps to do this before applying for a bachelor’s degree to align your courses with the school’s requirements. Studying in medical school for four years earns you a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree or a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree.

Most medical schools have rigorous application processes. So, confirm their requirements and prepare all necessary documents,  personal statement, a description of your extracurricular engagements and references just incase they are required.

All provinces and territories have requirements before you can become a resident dermatologist and so does the province of British Columbia which requires you to complete the UBC Clinical Assessment Program and National Assessment Collaboration exam. It is best to research the requirements for the province where you intend to practice.

3. Complete your residency

Medical schools are a necessity and very competitive, but so is your residency which is vital in this article on how to become a dermatologist in Canada.

Your residency program is a real-life training you undergo while working under a fully licensed dermatologist or dermatology facility and gaining all the necessary exposure and experience that will enable you qualified to practice independently.

The residency program may take as long as five years to complete and needs approval from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC).

4. Pass your certification exam

After your residency program, you need to get certification from the RCPSC. To qualify for certification, you must complete your residency program, and present a letter from your program director that you were part of an academic dermatology-related project and pass the dermatology certification exam held by the RCPSC.

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The certification exam evaluates your overall professional strengths and weaknesses through a written component on general dermatology, relevant literature, common rare disease, and therapeutics.

As well as an oral exam and clinical component which students usually complete physically. This section tests your ability to apply dermatologic knowledge to clinical situations as well as your communication, diagnosis, and patient management skills.

If the body is satisfied at your performance, you get your certification approved.

5. Apply for a job

Now that you’re certified, you can begin your independent practice as a dermatologist which is the final stage of how to become a dermatologist in Canada.

Get to apply for a job or opt to start an independent practice or work in an established hospital. Ensure you update your resume to reflect your skills and current qualifications. Places you can work as a dermatologist include:

Research laboratory: Many dermatologists opt to work in clinical research, studying skin conditions, infections, and diseases. Dermatologist researchers apply their work to the treatment and development of skin products.

Medical school: You can opt to become an academic and train the next generation of dermatologists. Many medical schools need experienced dermatologists to offer comprehensive training to students.

Hospital: Most hospitals have a dermatology specialist among their staff. In this role, you can expect to have consultation sessions and provide treatment to patients.

Private practice: As a dermatologist, you can choose to start a private practice. You can offer cosmetic or plastic surgery or focus on treating specific diseases.

Outpatient centres: You can also render your services in outpatient centres. You can expect to provide skin treatment for cancer patients, accident victims, and patients with other terminal illnesses.


The above are basically all you need to now on how to become a dermatologist in Canada and a successful one at that.

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