Activity 2: Evidence-based practice and CCSA competency standards

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It is important to stay connected to the purpose of learning the skill of evidence-based decision making (EBDM). This activity is aimed at revisiting the behavioural and technical competencies identified by CCSA for the substance use workforce, and recognizing how EBDM skills are essential for achieving many of these competencies. This activity will help you to continue to assess your own current level of competency and to recognize the value of EBDM in developing CCSA competencies.

An underlying assumption of the CCSA competency profiles is that to develop the majority of the prescribed behavioural competencies, the first step is to develop competency in EBDM. In other words, EBDM is a foundational competency on which other competencies are built.

This activity asks you to review the competency profiles, levels of proficiency, and lists of behavioural indicators that describe examples of successful performance for each of the prescribed behavioural and technical competencies. Then, for the behavioural competencies, you are asked to make a list of the behavioural indicators that you believe require prior skill in EBDM to be demonstrated.

This activity will comprise one component of Assignment 4 and will be revisited in Lesson 12.


  1. Read: Murphy, M., MacCarthy, M. J., McAllister, L., & Gilbert, R. (2014). Application of the principles of evidence-based practice in decision making among senior management in Nova Scotia’s addiction services agencies. Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, and Policy, 9, 47.
  2. Go to: “Workforce Competencies” on the CCSA web site and review the available documents:
  3. Go specifically to “Section I: Behavioural Competencies Report” and “Section VII: Technical Competencies Report.”

    These sections were current when this course was developed, but they may have changed, since the competency documents are being updated on a continuous basis to reflect new contexts and understandings.

  4. Identify and note the type and level of behavioural and technical competencies that are underpinned by EBDM principles.

    EBDM may not be in the description, but the principle is inherent in the competency.

  5. Develop a template that identifies these competencies and the competencies that you have or are working on. This template will be helpful in this course and in subsequent ones. You may want to use the performance management tools provided on the CCSA site at:

    This document could be very useful when you are undertaking performance evaluations at your workplace and/or preparing for interviews.