Contribution from CBSA

For more than twenty years, the Canadian Society of Customs Brokers (CSCB) has provided educational programs to those already employed, or seeking employment, in the customs and international trade fields. CSCB offers courses to those with varying levels of customs knowledge and experience, including newcomers to the field.


The CCS course is a one-year online course offered in English and French. Enrolment takes place in September of each year with a supervised examination at the end of the academic year. Those who successfully complete the course are awarded the CCS designation.

The CCS designation is the recognized standard in the customs marketplace, demanded by those who use brokerage services in Canada.

The following are some of the topics covered in the CCS course:

• Reporting and Release of Goods
• Accounting for Goods and Payment of Duties and Taxes
• Customs Brokers Licensing Requirements and Agency Agreements
• Harmonized System of Tariff Classification
• Tariff Treatments and Trade Agreements
• Valuation of Goods and Calculation of Duty
• Application of Federal Taxes
• Refunds, Drawbacks, Self-corrections
• Import and Export Permits
• Export Documentation
• U.S. Customs Procedures
• AMPS, Compliance and Security

The CCS course is designed for individuals who already have a solid foundation of customs knowledge and who are ready for recognition of their Canadian customs expertise.

CCS students typically:

• are employed by customs brokerage, transportation, freight forwarding, importing and exporting companies; and
• manage their own customs processes or their relationships with customs brokerage firms.


For those who are new to the field of Customs, CSCB offers a six-month distance education, paper-based course providing core knowledge on importing, exporting and the role of the customs broker in Canada. The Introduction to Customs course can be enrolled in at any time and covers Customs terminology and basic Customs-related activities such as:

• Reporting and Release of Goods
• Accounting for Goods and Payment of Duties and Taxes
• Temporary Importations
• Requirements of Other Federal Government Departments (OGDs)

This course, offered in English and French, is for individuals who require a basic knowledge of importing and exporting.

Introduction to Customs students typically

• are employed by transportation, freight forwarding, importing or exporting companies; they do not have primary responsibility for Customs activities but they interact with those who do; or
• work in entry level positions in customs brokerage firms; or
• are considering a career in a customs-related field.


The Certified Trade Compliance Specialist (CTCS) Program of Study is suitable for international trade compliance professionals with five (5) years of work experience in the trade compliance environment. Upon successful completion of 8 mandatory and 2 elective modules within 5 years, the student is awarded the CTCS designation. For those who are not interested in earning the CTCS designation, individual CTCS modules may be taken without enrolment in the CTCS Program of Study.

Currently the following modules are open for enrolment:

1. Valuation and Transfer Pricing
2. Harmonized System of Tariff Classification
3. Rules of Origin and Trade Agreements
4. GST/HST/PST/Excise Tax
5. Importing Food

Other mandatory modules that will be open for enrolment over the next 12 months include the following:

1. Compliance Verification and Audit
2. Appeals, Redress and Voluntary Disclosure
3. Export Controls and Documentation
4. Freight and Documentation

Other elective modules that will be open for enrolment over the next 12 months include the following:

1. Customs Brokerage Management and Client Relations
2. Trusted Traders
3. Sourcing
4. Financial Management and Risk Assessment

The CTCS modules are suitable for international trade professionals seeking in-depth knowledge of specific customs and trade compliance topics.

CTCS students typically

• are employed in senior management or operational positions within customs brokerage, transportation, freight forwarding, importing or exporting companies; or
• act as customs or compliance consultants; or
• are CCSs looking to acquire more detailed knowledge on a particular subject of interest

Over the years, CSCB has trained thousands of individuals in the field of Customs. Past students have ranked the courses very highly in terms of its relevance to the workplace. In the words of one student, “I would strongly recommend this [CCS] course to many people, besides those involved in the customs industry” ,and from another, “Everything was good! I actually learned more! Thought I knew a lot already being in the business for more than 8 years.”

CSCB relies on its direct access to the latest Customs legislation, regulations, policies and procedures, its network of Customs experts as well as student evaluations to continually update and improve the content of its courses and their delivery. The delivery of Customs knowledge to adult learners is both a pillar and an example of CSCB’s commitment to Canadian trade compliance and facilitation.

For more information, please visit the CSCB website at: