Are You Eligible?

AICP Certification Resources

Use these resources to prepare for each step on the path to earning your AICP Certification.

AICP Certification Guides

Guide 1: Certification Application

Guide 2: Certification Experience Essays

Guide 3: Registering and Taking the Exam

Employer Support

Does your employer support their employees' professional advancement by paying for some or all of the costs associated with earning certification? When asking your employer for assistance, use this helpful flyer with information to support your request.

Certification Diversity Scholarship

The Certification Diversity Scholarship offers assistance to individuals who have delayed certification. Each APA chapter offers at least one scholarship.

AICP Certification Eligibility Requirements

Applicants must meet the following eligibility requirements before applying for AICP Certification:

  1. Be a current member of the American Planning Association (APA).
  2. Be engaged in professional planning, either currently or in the past, as defined by AICP.
  3. Have completed, at the time of application submission, one of the combinations of education and corresponding years of professional planning experience listed in the chart below:
Level of Education* Total Years of Professional Planning Experience Required**
Graduate degree in Planning from a program accredited by the PAB 2 years
Bachelor's degree in Planning from a program accredited by the PAB 3 years
Graduate degree in Planning from a program not accredited by the PAB 3 years
Any other post-graduate, graduate, or undergraduate degree 4 years
No college degree 8 years

*Education Details

  1. The education may be obtained before, during, or after the experience.
  2. Accredited degrees have been determined by the Planning Accreditation Board to meet standards approved by the American Institute of Certified Planners and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning or accredited by the Professional Standards Board (PSB) for Planning in Canada. AICP gives educational credit to applicants holding these degrees if the degree was received (1) during the period the university has been accredited (or previously recognized), and (2) by the time that an application for membership is filed. If you are unsure about the status of your planning degree, consult the Planning Accreditation Board's list or contact AICP.
  3. Other degrees include non-accredited undergraduate planning degrees and degrees in related and other disciplines (i.e. Geography, Architecture, History, Music, etc.) at undergraduate and post-graduate levels.

**Experience Details

  1. Internships, part-time positions, and volunteer work may count toward your professional experience. See the AICP Certification Application tips and AICP Certification Guide for more details.

AICP Candidate Pilot Program

If you are currently enrolled in or have graduated from a degree program accredited by the PAB, you are eligible to participate in the AICP Candidate Pilot Program. This program allows you to take the AICP Certification Exam upon graduation, prior to completing your professional planning experience.

Learn more about the AICP Candidate Pilot Program