AICP Candidate Pilot Program

Program Details

Who Is Eligible to Participate?

Sample Timeline

Put Your Career on the Fast Track

Distinguish yourself from your peers through the AICP Candidate Pilot Program. Demonstrate to potential employers a commitment to mastering planning skills and maintaining the highest standard of ethical practice.

Students and graduates of PAB accredited programs can:

  • Enroll in the program at any time, starting in November 2017
  • Register for the AICP Certification Exam in December or June after you graduate
  • Use the payment program for exam fees
  • Take the exam prior to earning professional planning experience

Enroll in the Program

Realize the Benefits

Paths to AICP

The AICP Candidate Pilot Program provides you with a path to start earlier — the criteria to become AICP are the same.

AICP Candidate Pilot Program Details

Step One: Enroll in the AICP Candidate Pilot Program

Starting in November 2017, qualified APA members may enroll in the program at any time during the year by:

  • Submitting education verification documents;
  • Committing to the AICP Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct;
  • Paying a $20 fee; and
  • Beginning to track Certification Maintenance credits — 16 CM credits must be completed and tracked before applying for certification.

APA will verify program enrollment no later than six weeks after an enrollee completes these steps. Accepted enrollees will receive an exam-preparation tip sheet. They also may begin earning Certification Maintenance credits and select mentors.

IMPORTANT: Although eligible members may enroll in the AICP Candidate Pilot Program at any time, since graduation is required to register for the exam, when you enroll may affect when you can take the AICP Certification Exam. Members who join the program as graduates must enroll by a deadline set for each exam cycle. Specific dates are posted below.

Step Two: Take the AICP Certification Exam and Become an AICP Candidate

Requirements for Step Two depend on whether the AICP Candidate Pilot Program participant was a student or a graduate at the time he or she enrolled in the program.

Program participants must graduate to register for the exam. It could take APA up to six weeks to examine graduation verification documents. Participants should refer to the specific deadlines shown below.

Registering for the exam:

  1. Register for the exam by paying a $100 exam fee in December–March (for the May exam) or in June–September (for the November exam);
  2. Submit graduation verification documents (if applicable) and
  3. Schedule an exam date with Prometric up to two days before the exam administration window opens.
November 2018 Exam
Enrollment Window Year-round (deadlines apply for exam registration)
Exam Registration Window Opens June 1, 2018, 9 a.m. (CT)

Graduation Documentation Deadline (for participants who enrolled as students and have graduated)

September 3, 2018, 5 p.m. (CT)
Program Enrollment Deadline (for graduates) September 3, 2018, 5 p.m. (CT)
Exam Registration Deadline October 31, 2018, 5 p.m. (CT)
Testing Window November 5–19, 2018

Step Three — Earn the AICP Credential

Program participants who have passed the AICP Certification Exam are eligible to join AICP and use the AICP credential when they have:

Who Is Eligible to Participate in the Pilot?

Students and graduates of PAB-accredited programs may enroll in the program.


AICP Candidate Pilot Program participants have five years to earn the AICP credential. That period begins when the participant applies to the program (Step 1) and ends when their essays are approved, they pay AICP dues, and they join AICP (Step 3). Five years allow sufficient time for participants who begin as students in undergraduate-level PAB programs to complete the program.

Enroll Now

Qualified members may enroll in the program at any time during the year. Beginning in December 2017, graduates of PAB-accredited programs may register to sit for the May 2018 AICP Certification Exam.

Enroll in the Program


For complete details, including enrolling in the program, signing up for a mentor, and registering for and taking the AICP Certification Exam, download the AICP Candidate Pilot Program Guide.

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