Geoscience is a regulated profession in virtually all of Canada. In eleven of the thirteen provinces and territories, legislative acts restrict the practice of geoscience to individuals who are registered members of (and therefore licensed by) self-governing professional associations. APGNS is the licensing body which fulfils this mandate by ensuring high standards of geoscience practice and education in Nova Scotia, by setting high standards for admission into the profession, by disciplining geoscientists who fail to uphold the profession's practice and ethical standards, and by preventing the misuse of the title "geoscientist" by individuals who are not licensed members of the professions.

APGNS also takes appropriate action to prevent the illegal practice of geoscience by unlicensed individuals. Our mandate and obligation to undertake this role is laid out in The Geoscience Professions Act. The Act defines a scope of practice for geoscientists and specifically restricts the use of the title geoscientist to individuals who have been licensed by APGNS.