A.C.S.B. Designation Program - Frequently Asked Questions


What courses do I have to take through the A.C.S.B. Designation Program?

Students are required to complete four (4) core courses and two (2) electives. Please refer to the list of courses found here.


Who should take this program?

The program examines surety bonds and the suretyship process in some detail and was designed as a learning vehicle for students who plan on embarking on a career in the surety industry.

While it’s not intended for individuals in other disciplines or industries, students from outside the surety world are free to take these courses if they wish.


I am a new student interested in taking the A.C.S.B. Designation Program, how do I register?

First, students should download and complete the A.C.S.B. Application Form and mail their completed form to SAC’s head office along with a one‐time, non‐refundable program application fee. The form and details on the application fee can be found here.

An application form and payment can be mailed to: Surety Association of Canada, 6299 Airport Road, Suite 709, Mississauga, ON L4V 1N3.

Once received, students will then receive a confirmation email, at which time they will be required to register through SAC for the first core course: SAC 101 – Principles of Suretyship.


How much does the program cost?

Program registrants are required to pay a one-time, non-refundable program application fee. Employees of full member firms pay $200, and employees of affiliate member firms pay $400. Non-member firm employees pay $1,000 to enroll in the program.

Once enrolled in the program, students will be responsible for submitting payment for each of the six (6) courses separately from the program fee to be considered for the designation.


How are the courses offered?

The SAC courses are offered through an online/distance learning platform.

Course materials for the SAC 101 and SAC 102 courses are available through SAC for an additional cost. The SAC 103 course material is available directly from the publisher, details will be provided upon confirmation of registration in the course.

The Introductory Financial Accounting and elective courses can be taken through any accredited Canadian university. Students will be required to submit a course outline to SAC for approval to ensure that it meets the program requirement prior to enrollment in the course. Course outlines can be sent to program [at] suretycanada.com.

Elective courses must be taken independently from any other degree or designation and cannot be carried over from other programs. Only elective courses that are begun and completed subsequent to the student’s registration in the SAC A.C.S.B. Designation program will be considered for credit.


Are exemptions available?

Yes. Students can apply for an exemption from the Introductory Financial Accounting course.

To be granted an exemption, students must submit a certified transcript from an accredited university where they successfully completed an equivalent course. This should be submitted to SAC at the time of registration in the program.

If students are granted an exemption, they are still required to complete five (5) courses; three (3) SAC core courses and two (2) elective courses.


Are any other exemptions allowed?

No other exemptions will be allowed. Please note that work experience cannot be used toward exemptions from any of the courses.


What is the passing grade required for courses?

All courses require a passing grade of 50% (D-) to be eligible for the A.C.S.B. Designation.


How long do I have to take all 6 courses?

In order to receive the designation, students are required to complete the required course work within eight (8) calendar years from the time of registration in the program.


I am a previous student at the University of Toronto and/or McMaster Continuing Education, how can I continue taking courses to complete the program?

For any remaining SAC courses, you would register directly with SAC. Course registration for the upcoming Fall 2022 term will open in July 2022.

For the Introductory Financial Accounting and elective courses, these can be taken through any accredited Canadian university. Students will be required to submit a course outline to SAC for approval to ensure that it meets the program requirement prior to enrollment in the course. Course outlines can be sent to program [at] suretycanada.com.

Elective courses must be taken independently from any other degree or designation and cannot be carried over from other programs. Only elective courses that are begun and completed subsequent to the student’s registration in the SAC A.C.S.B. Designation program will be considered for credit.


I finished the 6 courses – can I start using the designation?

No. After successful completion of the six (6) courses, students must provide an “official” transcript, not copies, to be sent to the SAC head office.

  • For courses taken after September 1, 2022:
    • SAC course grades will be pulled from a student’s file within the SAC on-line Learning Management System.
    • The Introductory Financial Accounting and elective courses taken after September 1, 2022, will require students to contact the Canadian university that they have completed the course(s) at to request an official transcript to be sent to SAC directly.

Once all transcripts have been received, they will be reviewed by SAC and those meeting the requirements will be submitted to the SAC Board of Directors for approval. The designation only becomes “official” once the board has given formal approval.


I changed employers during the program – does that matter?

No. Just let SAC know so that we can update your student file at SAC’s head office.


Can I take this program in French?

Yes. SAC is pleased to announce that a French version of the A.C.S.B. Designation Program will be launching in Fall 2022. Stay tuned for more details.


I am a student of McMaster Continuing Education, am I still eligible to also receive their Academic Certificate?

Students who are interested in also pursing the Associateship in Canadian Bonding Academic Certificate, which is bestowed by McMaster University, there will be a transition period until April 2023.

Please note that students must obtain the A.C.S.B. Designation, bestowed by SAC, prior to applying to receive the MCE Academic Certificate. For questions regarding the MCE Academic Certificate, students should contact MCE directly at surety [at] mcmaster.ca.


I have more specific questions, who can I speak to?

Please feel free to contact the Surety Association of Canada directly at (905) 677‐1353 or by email at program [at] suretycanada.com.