TRU is a public post-secondary institution, funded by the Province of British Columbia through the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training.
Thompson Rivers University was established by an act of the British Columbia Provincial Legislature, the Thompson Rivers University Act, in 2005. Leadership and degree-granting powers of the university are also legislated by British Columbia's University Act.
Individual degree programs are approved by the Minister of Advanced Education, Innovation and Technology. The BC Council on Admissions and Transfer relies on these quality assurance mechanisms of legislation and ministry approval as a basis on which to grant membership to the BC Transfer System.
See the Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials for an explanation of Quality Assurance Practices for Post-secondary Institutions in Canada (Fact Sheet No. 5). Canada does not have a federal ministry of education or national accreditation system for post-secondary institutions. Post-secondary education is under provincial, rather than national, jurisdiction. See also Quality Assurance Practices for Postsecondary Institutions in British Columbia.
Many trades, technology and professional programs at TRU are accredited by their respective professional associations or regulatory bodies.
TRU is currently seeking institutional accreditation with the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
TRU’s academic courses and programs are also regularly assessed through an internal Academic Program Review.
TRU is a full member of the Universities Canada, which represents public and private not-for-profit universities and university degree-level colleges nationally.
TRU is a member of the Research Universities’ Council of BC, which represents the interests of the six major universities in British Columbia. Its mandate is to identify issues facing the universities, provide system wide leadership in the development of relevant public policy and communicate on behalf of the university system. RUCBC also provides a coordinating forum for its member universities and acts as a provincial focal point for dealing with the government of British Columbia and provincial or national bodies associated with universities.