CALL FOR PARTICIPATION: Psychological Health & Safety for Post-Secondary Students

CSA Group is currently recruiting expert volunteers to participate on a Technical Committee that will be accountable for developing the content of a new national standard on Psychological Health and Safety for Post-Secondary Students.


The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) is championing the development of a standard for Psychological Health and Safety for Post-Secondary Students working collaboratively with CSA Group, as the standards development organization.

It is well recognized and understood that post-secondary students face a significantly increased risk of exposure to psychological stress.  Acute and chronic stressors affecting post-secondary students put them at risk for a wide range of mental health issues, including, but not limited to, acute stress disorder, depression, anxiety, anger, and burnout.  Such problems can lead to, or be coincident with, other negative outcomes such as substance misuse, relationship difficulties, absenteeism / drop-out, addictive behaviours, and suicide.

The intent in developing this proposed standard is to provide systematic support for Canadian post-secondary institutions that will enable them to develop and continuously improve psychologically safe and healthy environments for their students.

Scope of the Standard

The scope of the standard is currently planned to include the identification, assessment, and abatement of modifiable risks to mental health for post-secondary students. Development of this standard for the psychological health and safety for post‐secondary students is also intended to include guidance for universities and colleges on strategies, processes, policies, and shared responsibilities of various players throughout the tenure of a student’s post‐secondary institution career.

CSA Group Technical Committee

Members of the CSA Group Technical Committee (TC) for the Psychological Health and Safety for Post-Secondary Students will be accountable for the development of the technical content of the standard.  Individuals with appropriate technical expertise, who are able to represent various stakeholder interests associated with this proposed standard, will be invited to participate on the TC.  Stakeholder interest categories may include user interests associated with students and their families, organizational interests focused on all post-secondary oriented institutions, government agencies with mandates related to mental health and public safety, and service providers working both internally and externally to post-secondary environments.

Accomplishing the TC’s responsibilities will require establishing and maintaining supporting liaisons and additional consultations with affected stakeholders.  These activities will be conducted in compliance with CSA Policy and Directives, and respecting CSA Group commitments as an accredited standards development organization.

Call for Participation

CSA Group is seeking interested experts to actively participate and contribute to the development of this proposed standard.  Requirements and responsibilities of TC Members include:
•    knowledge and experience relevant to the psychological health and safety of post-secondary students;
•    ability to work in a multi-stakeholder environment, following the principles of consensus;
•    commitment to participate in committee work and content development, both remotely and in-person; and
•    commitment to collaborate and network with other stakeholders.

Candidates should have full support and sponsorship from their affiliate organization / employer to enable their active participation throughout the development of the standard. Where there is a demonstrated need, funding to provide for meeting oriented expenses may be available; relative to this standard, this may specifically apply to candidates directly representing the interests of students.  Accepted members may be assigned voting or non-voting responsibilities for this TC.  There are no dues associated with CSA membership.

If you are interested in participating as a CSA Group Technical Committee member, please submit your resume and a statement (maximum one page) outlining your interest and demonstrating your ability to contribute to the development of this important proposed standard.  If you know of a colleague who may interested in participating, feel free to share this call for participation with them. 

Please send required documents to Karyn Ferguson at:  Expressions of interest will be accepted until September 15, 2018.  CSA will review applications and notify all applicants on the outcome.

On Becoming a CSA Group Member
All accepted members will be required to review and sign an onboarding agreement that provides details on CSA Group’s privacy policy and the protection of personal information, a copyright assignment, and a description of committee member roles and responsibilities.

CSA Committee Members make a commitment to attend meetings consistently, read and respond to committee materials, return ballots promptly, and work constructively and collaboratively towards the committee’s goals. 

Technical Committee Meetings (Planned)

Meetings may be attended in person and/or remotely via teleconference/webinar.  Details will be confirmed with accepted members.  Development of the proposed standard is expected to require 8 Technical Committee meetings, many of which will be two-days in duration.  Locations will include CSA Toronto Offices, as well as Montreal, Ottawa, and potentially a major city in Western Canada.  Tentative schedule for meetings:
Orientation:    Late September / early October 2018 , Toronto
Development:   November 2018 ,  Toronto
Development:    December 2018,    Montreal
Development/Outreach feedback:     February 2019,  Toronto
Development:   April 2019,  TBD
Development/Outreach feedback:   June 2019,  Ottawa
Public Review Comments:  November, 2019,  TBD
Approval and Publication:    First quarter 2020,  TBD

Thank you for your interest!  We look forward to the opportunity of working with you on this exciting initiative.


Karyn Ferguson,  CSA Group,   email: 
Acting Project Manager, 178 Rexdale Blvd.   Tel:    416-747-4236, Member Services, Toronto, ON   M9W 1R3