Certification Maintenance FAQ

FAQ FOR AICP MEMBERS

Member Requirements

What are my CM requirements?

The first reporting period began January 1, 2008, and ends December 31, 2009. During each reporting period, AICP membersmust earn a total of 32 CM credits (1 hour = 1 CM credit).* A minimum of 1.5 credits must be on the topic of ethics, and another 1.5 credits must be on the topic of current planning law. A member who exceeds the required 32 credits may carry over a total of 16 credits to the next reporting period, but cannot carry over the law and ethics credits.

* AICP members who received a CPD certificate valid to the end of 2009 will begin their reporting period on January 1, 2010.

Is there a grace period if I do not fulfill the CM requirements by December 31?

Yes, at the end of every two-year reporting period members have an automatic four-month grace period through April 30 to fulfill their CM requirements. If all 32 credits are not logged by December 31, the system will automatically grant this four-month extension without penalty.

For example: Members on the 2008-2009 reporting period should fulfill their CM requirements by December 31, 2009. If the 32 required credits have not been completed by this date members should use the grace period to attend and record CM-eligible activities.

What happens if I have lost my AICP certification?

AICP members who have lost their AICP certification and do not comply with CM requirements for four years or more will be obliged to seek recertification, including taking and passing the AICP exam, in order to regain the AICP credential. These members will lose their original AICP certification ID number, their AICP start date, and any AICP membership accrual towards retirement or Life status previously acquired.

May I carry over credits from one reporting period to another?

Yes, members may carry over a maximum of 16 excess CM credits from one reporting period to the next. These cannot include the required law and ethics credits.

For example, a member on the 2008-2009 reporting period earned 40 CM credits prior to the start of the reporting period, then earned an additional 10 CM credits during 2008-2009 for a total of 50 CM credits. The member has satisfied the 32 CM credit requirement for this reporting period and may carry over 16 of the excess credits to the 2010-2011 reporting period.

Must the required (and any other) ethics credits be specifically related to the AICP Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct?

Yes, activities seeking ethics credit must focus on training planners on the standards of ethical behavior according to the AICP Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct. While general ethics courses, local ethics laws, and ethics codes from other professions can introduce relevant issues as well, the AICP Code focuses on a system of moral principles specific to professional planners.

Must the required (and any other) law credits be specifically related to planning law, or can they be general law courses?

Providers must demonstrate that the content of the activity is related to planning law, such as environmental law, land use law, redevelopment law, administrative law, housing law, etc. Activities seeking law credit CM approval must be closely related to recently enacted planning laws or recent case decisions or trends in existing planning laws or case decisions. Please note that activities related to local-level regulations, policies and ordinances (including zoning), political movements, policy recommendations, and policy initiatives are not eligible for law credit. Training on law must constitute a majority of the content of the activity.

What are some ways in which members can meet the CM law requirements?

APA has an annual planning law review audio/web conference in June. A CD-ROM of the program is available from APA's PlanningBooks.com . APA's National Planning Conference several sessions pertaining to planning law; many of these sessions will be approved for CM law credits. In addition, APA is creating an online course on planning law to help meet the CM requirement. Many chapters also offer planning law sessions and workshops.

Click on the "Find Upcoming CM Events" link in the menu on the left-hand side of this page, and log in if you are prompted to view the calendar of events. You may display only law events on the calendar by clicking the search tab at the top and choosing Law as your topic. In addition, APA is creating an online course on planning law to help meet the CM requirement. Many chapters also offer planning law sessions and workshops.

What are some ways in which members can meet the CM ethics requirements?

The Stollman Ethics Symposium at APA's National Planning Conference is dedicated to planning ethics. Many chapters host an ethics session at their chapter conferences. In addition, APA is creating an online course on planning ethics to help meet the CM requirements. Many chapters also offer planning ethics sessions and workshops.

Click on the "Find Upcoming CM Events" link in the menu on the left-hand side of this page, and log in if you are prompted to view the calendar of events. You may display only ethics events on the calendar by clicking the search tab at the top and choosing Ethics as your topic. In addition, APA is creating an online course on planning ethics to help meet the CM requirements. Many chapters also offer planning ethics sessions and workshops.

I'm retired, and my APA membership type is Retired or Life. Do I have to comply with CM requirements?

Retired members are exempt from Certification Maintenance requirements. Retired members are defined as those who have been an APA or AICP member continuously for 10 or more years, who are 65 or older, retired from profession-related employment, and who are not working full-time for any other employer. This excludes part time non-planning or nonprofessional work. If you meet these criteria then you do not need to apply for an exemption. Planners who do not meet the above criteria or who are practicing part time (and who use the AICP credential in their work) will be required to meet the full obligations of Certification Maintenance, unless granted one of the exemptions described here.

Please note: If you are currently paying dues at the life member rate and you meet the criteria above for retired status, then you qualify for this exemption. If you are paying dues at the life member rate and do not meet the criteria, then you must meet CM requirements.

I'm semi-retired or work part time. Do I have to comply with CM requirements?

Yes. If you do not meet all three criteria for APA Retired membership:

  1. 65 or older
  2. retired from profession-related employment and not working full-time for any other employer, excluding part time non-planning or nonprofessional work
  3. an APA member for at least 10 years

then you are not considered an APA Retired member and you must comply with CM requirements.

How do I apply for a temporary exemption from CM requirements, as described in the CM Program Details?

Please read about applying for exemptions and waivers

When can a new AICP member start accruing CM credits?

The CM reporting period for new AICP members will begin the January after AICP exam candidates have officially been granted AICP membership (e.g. once AICP dues payments have been received and processed by APA, AICP members receive an official ID number). AICP members may not apply credits for courses they participated in before they became AICP members to their CM requirements, but they may begin earning credits from the time AICP membership is officially granted.

I have a CPD certificate valid to the end of 2009 but would like to earn new credits in the period between April 14, 2007, and December 31, 2009. May I roll over credits earned from April 14, 2007, to December 31, 2009, and apply them to the CM reporting period that will begin in January 2010?

Yes, members may begin earning CM credits from their "official" AICP start date.

For example, a member on the 2010-2011 reporting period earned 10 CM credits prior to the start of the reporting period, then earned an additional 32 CM credits during the 2010-2011 reporting period for a total of 42 CM credits. The member has satisfied the 32 CM credit requirement for this reporting period and may carry over 10 of the excess credits to the 2012-2013 reporting period.

Please note: Members may carry over from one reporting period to the next up to 16 excess credits excluding the ethics and law minimum requirement.

What are the CM requirements for members with suspended AICP membership?

All members with suspended membership under the former AICP Reinstatement Policy will be assessed under the new CM program. Please contact AICPCM@planning.org for more information.

Eligible Educational Activities

What are some non-qualifying activities?

  • Time spent in business meetings of APA leadership, whether at the national, chapter, or division levels, will not be eligible for CM credits.
  • Time spent in mentoring activity will not be eligible for CM credits.
  • Time spent in volunteer activities will not be eligible for CM credits.
  • Teaching for a salary, fee, or honorarium will not be eligible for CM credits.

How are mobile workshops assessed?

Mobile workshops will be assessed as other activities and therefore must meet eligibility criteria. However, only time dedicated to instruction will be awarded credit. Providers must deduct the time that will be spent in transit from a site or to a site. In-transit workshops will count for something less than the equivalent time in a classroom.

Do keynote speeches qualify for CM credit?

Yes, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria and provided that they meet the minimum time required (one hour). Portions of a keynote that are not related to education (such as the award of honors, promotion, consumption of a meal, etc.) should not be counted in the CM credit allocation. In addition, the content of a keynote that is eligible for CM credit must be non-promotional and non-partisan.

Are facilitated book discussions awarded credit?

Yes, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria and the discussion is facilitated. Credit should not be given for reading the book, only the amount of time spent in the discussion, to a maximum of 2 credits. The facilitator can receive credit for presentation.

Are roundtable sessions eligible for CM credit?

Yes, CM approvable roundtable sessions provide educational content for professional planners through facilitated discussion, guided by an expert or panel of experts. The focus of roundtable content should be specifically delineated to define relevant topics that meet CM eligibility criteria. Roundtable discussions should also be carefully structured to ensure communication of meaningful lessons and minimize tangential discourse. To apply a roundtable session for credit, a provider should specify the following: the topic area, its educational purpose, and how discussion is managed or facilitated.

Are online chat-rooms / discussions awarded credit?

No, online chat-rooms / discussions are not awarded credit.

Are downloadable audio files such as mp3s, podcasts, audio CDs, or other recordings eligible for CM credit?

Yes, as long as they meet the criteria for the content of CM activities. Downloadable audio files of at least one hour in length may be eligible for CM credit as long as the audio recording and the event from which the podcast was recorded have been registered with APA. In addition, CM eligible audio recordings must also include collateral or supportive material that can be downloaded to accompany the audio recording. Such material may include PowerPoint slides, articles that were referenced in the audio recording, and web links to other pertinent information.

Do poster sessions count for CM?

No, poster sessions do not qualify for CM credit.

I taught (or was a speaker at) a continuing education event and want to get CM credits for preparation and teaching time. How do I claim credits for teaching or speaking?

AICP members may receive credit for instructing/speaking at an activity that is registered for CM credit by the educational provider. All activities must meet the CM criteria for approval. AICP members may report credit for activities that occurred since April 14, 2007. Credit may be earned only once for the same instruction or presentation. Members will receive CM credits for the time they attended the activity plus one hour (one CM credit) for preparation, regardless of activity length (e.g., speaking at a four-hour workshop and attending the whole workshop, equals five CM credits). Members are able to log these credits electronically from the live CM calendar by clicking on the "speaker toggle" within an event's pop-up box and following the provided instructions.

Can I receive CM credit by authoring an article?

Yes. Click here for details on credits for authoring a double-blind peer-reviewed article.

Do charrettes or visioning workshops count for CM credit?

Neither charrettes nor visioning workshops shall count for CM credit because training is not the primary objective in these activities. However, an activity that trains members on how to conduct charrettes may count for CM credit if other program criteria are met.

Are facilitated film discussions awarded credit?

Yes, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria and the discussion is facilitated. Credit should not be given for the time spent watching the film, only the amount of time spent in the discussion, with a minimum discussion period of one hour. A maximum of two credits may be earned from this type of activity in any one reporting period. The facilitator may receive credit for presentation.

Do exam prep activities count for CM credit?

No, exam prep activities will not count for CM credit.

Can activities geared towards professional development, but not directly planning related, count for CM?

Per the CM criteria, an activity must be designed to meet a specific planning-related training objective. Examples of courses that may qualify include:

  • Conflict resolution, with a focus on planning
  • Advanced training in GIS
  • Environmental law
  • Management, with a focus on planning
  • Project management, related to planning

Examples of courses that would not qualify for CM include:

  • General project management
  • Advanced Excel training
  • Contract law

Would an introduction to planning course be eligible for CM credit?

No, because a course that provides an introduction to the entire planning field is considered remedial for a certified planner.

Does planning commissioner training count for CM credit?

No, neither activities whose intended audience is planning commissioners nor activities that are clearly marketed to planning commissioners shall count for CM credit.

I can't travel to attend training or conferences, so I'm looking for online, audio conference or CD-formatted continuing education activities. Where are they listed?

APA is currently reviewing many web-based training events. Please check the list of approved CM activities often for new entries.

APA is also expanding its own online educational program to provide members with accessible and affordable educational products. These products include webcasts, CD-ROMs, podcasts, and online courses. Currently, APA and AICP provide audio conferences on a wide variety of planning topics: from affordable housing, green communities, downtown revitalization, community planning, complete streets, planning and public health, and more. We will develop a variety of online courses over the next two years.

More information about APA audio/web conferences and AICP CD-ROM training packages

Are activities required to last a minimum amount of time to receive CM credit?

An activity must be at least 1 hour to receive CM credit.

Will extra CM credit be granted for an activity that runs over the scheduled time?

No, APA will not grant extra CM credit for an activity that runs over the timeframe registered with APA.

Additional Questions

How can I get a continuing education provider I know of to participate in the CM program?

E-mail us and we will invite them to participate, or send them this 1-page CM fact sheet that details the benefits of becoming a CM provider. We also encourage you to work with your Chapters to reach out to your favorite providers.

Why can't I find an event on the list of approved CM activities when the provider advertised the event as offering CM credits?

The activity may have been submitted but not yet been approved by APA for CM credits. We are working to review activities as quickly as possible.

We have asked providers not to promote themselves or their activities as being approved for CM credit unless they have been notified explicitly by us that they have been so approved. However, providers are welcome to say that they are seeking CM approval.

How is APA reaching out to potential providers of CM offerings?

APA is tracking requests that come in now and will notify providers who have already contacted us, as well as all APA chapters and divisions. We will contact all other providers from our CPD list and our mailing lists. With the assistance of chapters and divisions, we will reach out to other providers not on our lists to notify them of the online registration process. We will contact providers that are identified by members, partners, and others.

Are activities required to last a minimum amount of time to receive CM credit?

An activity must be at least 1 hour to receive CM credit.

Who manages the CM provider registration system?

APA National manages the web-based registration system. All providers are responsible for submitting information about their organization and their activities into the system.

Will extra CM credit be granted for an activity that runs over the scheduled time?

No, APA will not grant extra CM credit for an activity that runs over the timeframe registered with APA.

Logging CM Credits

Is there a time limit on when I can log credits for an activity that happened in the past?

There is no limit on when you need to log credits for activities, as long as you do so within your CM reporting period. However, we strongly encourage you to do so periodically.

What do I do when my search for activities in which I earned CM credits produces no results?

Please make sure that when searching for activities you do the following: 1. Login using your APA ID# and password; 2. Click on "My Online CM Log"; 3. Enter the event name in the first field.; 4. Skip the next 2 fields and enter the date of the event in the events since field.

Why can't I find a session in the list of approved CM activities?

  1. APA may still be reviewing the particular activity you are looking for. Please check the list of approved CM activities often for new entries.
  2. The conference session or activity may not have met the criteria for CM approval. APA staff will inform providers of sessions and activities that have not been approved for CM credit.
  3. The provider may not have registered the conference session or activity. We encourage all current and potential providers to register their activities with us so that attendees may receive CM credit, but they may not have done so yet. Please contact your provider for more information.

Why can't I find an event on the list of approved CM activities when the provider advertised the event as offering CM credits?

The activity may have been submitted but not yet been approved by APA for CM credits. We are working to review activities as quickly as possible.

We have asked providers not to promote themselves or their activities as being approved for CM credit unless they have been notified explicitly by us that they have been so approved. However, providers are welcome to say that they are seeking CM approval.

I taught (or was a speaker at) a continuing education event and want to get CM credits for preparation and teaching time. How do I claim credits for teaching or speaking?

Volunteer, unpaid planning instruction or presenting a professional paper may qualify when CM officially launches on January 1, 2008. Please note that only activities that earn CM credit for attendees will earn CM credit for the instructor or presenter. Certification Maintenance credit may be earned only once for planning instruction. The amount of credit equals the length of the presentation in hours plus one hour for preparation.

If you taught at an activity after April 14, 2007, and the activity is listed as an approved CM activity, please record it in your personal records. Look for more information about logging your activity into the CM system in January.

How do I transfer post-April 14, 2007, events listed in my CPD log to my CM log?

The CM logging system will not automatically transfer CPD credits to your CM log. We recommend printing the CPD list and using it to choose activities from the list of approved CM activities.

Continuing education activities that were approved for the CPD program — which officially ended on April 13, 2007 — had to be reviewed and approved again to be eligible for CM credits. Some activities that were approved for CPD credit may not be approved for CM credit. Also, the CM program requires providers of professional development to submit activities to be reviewed for CM credit. If a provider has not registered with us, or if the activity was not submitted or approved, you will not be able to claim CM credits.

I earned a CPD certificate in the last two years, but my CM reporting period posted online does not reflect this, what should I do?

All AICP members who have CPD certificates that earn them the right to begin the CM program later than January 1, 2008, received an e-mail from AICP at the end of October 2007 that specified their CPD certificate end date and their CM reporting period start date. Please rely on the dates in that e-mail. All AICP members who earned CPD certificates should have received them by September 1, 2007. AICP members who received a CPD certificate valid to the end of 2009 will begin their reporting period on January 1, 2010. You may begin earning CM credits prior to January 1, 2010, however please note you may roll over a maximum of 16 CM credits. If you earned at least 60 CPD credits, met the required split between APA– and non–APA sponsored events, and believe you should have received a CPD certificate but did not, please e-mail us at AICPCM@planning.org.

Why are continuing education activities I attended prior to April 14, 2007, that were in my CPD log not on the list of approved CM activities?

Only activities that took place on or after April 14, 2007, were added to the CM listing in your CPD log. AICP members had the opportunity to log their CPD credits online until May 22, 2007. Members who logged 60 or more CPD credits were issued a CPD certificate. If no certificate was issued, credits earned prior to April 14, 2007, were lost and cannot be logged into the CM system.

Why can't I find an event on the list of approved CM activities when the provider advertised the event as offering CM credits?

The activity may have been submitted but not yet been approved by APA for CM credits. We are working to review activities as quickly as possible.

We have asked providers not to promote themselves or their activities as being approved for CM credit unless they have been notified explicitly by us that they have been so approved. However, providers are welcome to say that they are seeking CM approval.

I earned a CPD certificate in the last two years, but my CM reporting period posted online does not reflect this.

This will be corrected online in time for the official start of the CM program in January.

All AICP members who have CPD certificates that earn them the right to begin the CM program later than January 1, 2008, received an e-mail from AICP at the end of October that specified their CPD certificate end date and their CM reporting period start date. Please rely on the dates in that e-mail.

All AICP members who earned CPD certificates should have received them by September 1, 2007. If you earned at least 60 CPD credits, met the required split between APA– and non–APA sponsored events, and believe you should have received a CPD certificate but did not, please e-mail us.

Why do sessions at APA's 2007 National Planning Conference in Philadelphia give only 1.25 CM credits when they were listed for 1.5 CPD credits in the conference program and the online CPD log?

The CM standard assigns credit based on actual contact hours, rounded to the closest one-quarter hour increment. CPD credits were rounded up to the nearest half credit. APA national planning conference sessions are one hour and a quarter in duration, which equates to 1.25 CM credits.

Technical Questions

What happens if I have problems with logging on or get an error message?

Check the following:

Browsers: We recommend Internet Explorer 6.0+ or Mozilla Firefox 1.0+ because they allow for use of 128-bit encryption. You may download these browsers from their websites: www.microsoft.com or www.mozilla.com.

Configuration: If you are at work, check with your network administrator to about the configuration of your firewall. It might be preventing you from accessing certain parts of our site.

Computer: Check to see that your computer allows cookies and that Javascript is enabled. You might also try deleting your temporary Internet files.

How can I get help with a technical problem I encounter when I use the member log?

Please e-mail AICP and include the following information in your message:

  1. Approximate date and time the problem occurred.
  2. The web page address (URL) where the problem occurred (copy from your web browser and past into the message.
  3. APA ID, which may be found on your Planning label, and at the top of each issue of APA Interact.
  4. A detailed description of the problem, including, if possible, the text of the error message (if you got one).
  5. If possible, copy and paste a screenshot of the page where you are experiencing the problem. The more information you provide, the better we will be able to help.

APA National Planning Conferences

When can I log my credits for APA National Planning Conference 2008?

AICP members had the opportunity to earn Certification Maintenance (CM) credits for many activities at the 2008 National Planning Conference. APA provided an optional scanning service at the conference to make it easier for AICP members to log the CM credits they earned there. Earlier this month, AICP members received an e-mail with instructions for claiming the CM credits they earned at the conference.

Why can't I find a session or mobile workshop from APA's 2007 National Planning Conference in Philadelphia in the list of approved CM activities?

All the eligible activities from APA's 2007 APA National Planning Conference were listed as of November 7, 2007. If you don't see a session or workshop from the national conference in the list of approved CM activities, it means the event was not approved for CM credit.

Why do sessions at APA's 2007 National Planning Conference in Philadelphia give only 1.25 CM credits when they were listed for 1.5 CPD credits in the conference program and the online CPD log?

The CM standard assigns credit based on actual contact hours, rounded to the closest one-quarter hour increment. CPD credits were rounded up to the nearest half credit. APA National Planning Conference sessions are one hour and a quarter in duration, which equates to 1.25 CM credits.

FAQ FOR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT PROVIDERS

Provider Registration and Activity Approval

What are the changes that have been made to the CM program?

A full listing of provider registration packages approved by the AICP Commission

Would writing a planning-related book count towards CM credit?

No, CM credits are not awarded for writing books. Please note: We are collecting such suggestions for possible future implementation into the CM program.

If I select the in-house training registration package, may I offer training to non-employees?

No, the in-house training package is exclusively for use for in-house training only. If you would like to invite non-employees, you may do so but must select another appropriate registration package.

Can providers charge AICP members extra for attending their event?

No, providers may not charge AICP members more than non-AICP members.

Am I required to register all sessions or activities of my multi-part event (e.g. conference)?

No, you are not required to register all sessions or activities. We hope that you will only consider registering those events that are appropriate for AICP members and meet our eligibility criteria. Please note that you may also register a portion of an activity or session (e.g. if you have a 1-day workshop but only 4 hours are appropriate for this program, you may register those 4 hours only). You should also discount non-instructional activities, such as breaks, (non-working) lunch, etc., from the total CM credits requested.

How long will credit review take?

We will do our best to guarantee a response within three weeks of submission of complete information. Please contact us if you have not received a response within three weeks.

How will I know when my activity is approved or denied?

AICP will contact you via email when your activity has been approved, denied or if we need more information to make a determination. If your activity has been approved, it will be posted on our calendar of events and available for members on the CM log. Please note that we are currently working on an automated system that will help smooth the notification process. This should be ready in Spring 2008.

Must the CM event receive credit approval ahead of time, or can it be approved after the fact?

It is in your best interest to receive CM approval before the event in order to market it and have it placed in the APA events calendar with the CM designation. However, you can still receive CM approval after the event so long as the request is made no more than 90 days after the event took place.

Who manages the CM provider registration system?

APA National manages the web-based registration system. All providers are responsible for submitting information about their organization and their activities into the system.

How is APA reaching out to potential providers of CM offerings?

APA is tracking requests that come in now and will notify providers who have already contacted us, as well as all APA chapters and divisions. We will contact all other providers from our CPD list and our mailing lists. With the assistance of chapters and divisions, we will reach out to other providers not on our lists to notify them of the online registration process. We will contact providers that are identified by members, partners, and others.

Are activities required to last a minimum amount of time to receive CM credit?

An activity must be at least 1 hour to receive CM credit.

Are minor changes to an already-approved activity acceptable?

Yes, but only minor changes are allowed. Examples of minor changes would be a secondary speaker, the date, the time (so long as the same number of hours is maintained), and the meeting room location. Within the course, examples illustrating particular trends, policies, or concepts may be changed to better suit the region or city in which the activity is held. Please note that providers are required to re-register any activity that is held on more than one occasion.

What is meant by "activities must include a mechanism of recording attendance of each AICP member"?

AICP members are required to use the honor system and guidance from the AICP Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct to verify attendance at CM educational events. However, from time to time APA will audit member and provider records to verify records. The CM program calls for a mechanism of recording attendance of AICP members at CM activities. Examples of such attendance mechanisms include a registration list of attendees at a conference, program evaluations, or sign-in sheets. Such verification should be maintained by the provider for three years should the provider be audited.

How will the provider registration function for a university course? For example, how much will CM registration for a university course worth 30 credits cost?

The CM provider must pay a  $95 annual registration fee that includes two CM credits. A provider then may select a credit registration package that best suits its training needs; for a university, the CM credit annual registration package specifically for universities is $1,900. Education must be offered directly by the university registering the activities and not by a partner or through a partner meeting this definition.

Eligible Educational Activities

What are some non-qualifying activities?

  • Time spent in business meetings of APA leadership, whether at the national, chapter, or division levels, will not be eligible for CM credits.
  • Time spent in mentoring activity will not be eligible for CM credits.
  • Time spent in volunteer activities will not be eligible for CM credits.
  • Teaching for a salary, fee, or honorarium will not be eligible for CM credits.

How are mobile workshops assessed?

Mobile workshops will be assessed as other activities and therefore must meet eligibility criteria. However, only time dedicated to instruction will be awarded credit. Providers must deduct the time that will be spent in transit from a site or to a site. In-transit workshops will count for something less than the equivalent time in a classroom.

Do keynote speeches qualify for CM credit?

Yes, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria and provided that they meet the minimum time required (one hour). Portions of a keynote that are not related to education (such as the award of honors, promotion, consumption of a meal, etc.) should not be counted in the CM credit allocation. In addition, the content of a keynote that is eligible for CM credit must be non-promotional and non-partisan.

Are facilitated book discussions awarded credit?

Yes, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria and the discussion is facilitated. Credit should not be given for reading the book, only the amount of time spent in the discussion, to a maximum of 2 credits. The facilitator can receive credit for presentation.

Is participation in a roundtable exchange awarded credits?

Yes, roundtable discussions are eligible for CM credit. The focus of roundtable content should be specifically delineated to define relevant topics that meet CM eligibility criteria. Providers should specify the following: the topic area, its educational purpose, and how the discussion is facilitated. Roundtable discussions should also be carefully structured to ensure communication of meaningful lessons and minimize tangential discourse.

Are online chat-rooms / discussions awarded credit?

No, online chat-rooms / discussions are not awarded credit.

Are downloadable audio files such as mp3s, podcasts, audio CDs, or other recordings eligible for CM credit?

Yes, as long as they meet the criteria for the content of CM activities. Downloadable audio files of at least one hour in length may be eligible for CM credit as long as the audio recording and the event from which the podcast was recorded have been registered with APA. In addition, CM eligible audio recordings must also include collateral or supportive material that can be downloaded to accompany the audio recording. Such material may include PowerPoint slides, articles that were referenced in the audio recording, and web links to other pertinent information.

Do poster sessions count for CM?

No, poster sessions do not qualify for CM credit.

Do charrettes or visioning workshops count for CM credit?

Neither charrettes nor visioning workshops shall count for CM credit because training is not the primary objective in these activities. However, an activity that trains members on how to conduct charrettes may count for CM credit if other program criteria are met.

Are facilitated film discussions awarded credit?

Yes, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria and the discussion is facilitated. Credit should not be given for the time spent watching the film, only the amount of time spent in the discussion, with a minimum discussion period of one hour. A maximum of two credits may be earned from this type of activity in any one reporting period. The facilitator may receive credit for presentation.

Do exam prep activities count for CM credit?

No, exam prep activities will not count for CM credit.

Can activities geared towards professional development, but not directly planning related, count for CM?

Per the CM criteria, an activity must be designed to meet a specific planning-related training objective. Examples of courses that may qualify include:

  • Conflict resolution, with a focus on planning
  • Advanced training in GIS
  • Environmental law
  • Management, with a focus on planning
  • Project management, related to planning

Examples of courses that would not qualify for CM include:

  • General project management
  • Advanced Excel training
  • Contract law

Would an introduction to planning course be eligible for CM credit?

No, because a course that provides an introduction to the entire planning field is considered remedial for a certified planner.

Would an introduction to arts and culture in planning course be eligible for CM credit?

Depending on the participating planner, such a course may count toward CM. In general, introductory courses may be eligible for CM credit when they are not remedial for the participating planner. Two such instances could be an introductory course on an emerging specialty or trend within planning, or an introductory course in a specialty outside of the planner's expertise or training, such as an introduction to arts and culture in planning course for a transportation planner.

Are other activities that are peripheral to planning eligible for credits?

Yes, as long as they are related to planning and meet the criteria.

Does planning commissioner training count for CM credit?

No, neither activities whose intended audience is planning commissioners nor activities that are clearly marketed to planning commissioners shall count for CM credit.

Does APA provide refunds for activities that are not approved for CM credit?

If an activity is not approved for CM credit, APA will issue credits to the credit bank and a provider may use those credits for future activities. Providers may also request that the refund be credited back to the card used at the time of payment. Please note that there are no refunds given for the annual registration fee.

Licensing Agreement for APA and AICP Education Products

Are APA and AICP education products (CD-ROM training packages) subject to a licensing agreement? 

Yes. All training products sold through APA's PlanningBooks.com that have CM credit are now subject to a licensing agreement.

For those purchasing products online, this is an automated system. It is critical that purchasers read the agreement before checking the agreement box as the license affects how purchasers may use the product.   

For those purchasing products using the bookstore order form or other paper order forms, they must download the attached licensing agreement, complete the information it, sign it, and return it to APA with the order form.

No one will be permitted to purchase products with CM credit unless they have either checked the online box or returned the signed agreement with their paper order.

Training products without CM credit are not subject to the licensing agreement.

What is required by the licensing agreement?

Please read the agreement to gain a complete understanding.

How do AICP members claim CM credit for viewing an APA or AICP education product (CD-ROM training package)?

To claim credit, an AICP member must report the use of the training product in the AICP online CM log. In addition, the AICP member must complete the online sign-in and evaluation at http://survey.planning.org/cdeval.htm. Chapters or entities using the training products for CM credit must instruct their AICP members to use the online log as well as the online sign-in and evaluation form. Chapter officers have been sent a copy of the licensing agreement to sign on behalf of Chapter-purchased education products.

How do I determine what education products (CD-ROM training packages) are eligible for CM?

All education products with CM are listed in the CM provider directory. In addition, all products with credit have the CM logo and number of credits on the cover of the product, in the description of the product in the online bookstore and in promotional material, such as the bookstore catalog.   

The list of CM accredited education products is updated annually in January. Products will be added and removed from this list annually. AICP members may not claim CM credit for an education product that is not listed for credit on that year's CM credit list.


Appealing Denied Activities

What is the process for appealing denied activities?

Providers may appeal the decision of APA or an APA component denying credit for any submitted activity using a two-level appeal process:

The first level of appeal shall be directed to the Executive Director and CEO of APA or a designee. A provider is afforded one opportunity to submit additional materials supporting its appeal request. Additional materials supporting denial may also be submitted. APA staff may reverse the initial denial if the determination can be made that the additional supporting materials submitted by the provider: (1) clearly demonstrate how the activity meets CM criteria, and (2) clearly and accurately refute the initial denial. Otherwise, the appeal will proceed directly to the Executive Director and CEO of APA or a designee.

Any second-level appeal of the Executive Director's decision will be based entirely on the record submitted and will be based on a decision of a three-person panel of AICP members: one member shall be appointed by the Executive Director; one member shall be appointed by the provider; and one member shall be selected by the other two. The meeting will be held via teleconference with only the three panel members participating, and their decision shall be based on application of CM criteria and the written materials submitted to the Executive Director as part of the first level appeal. The panel's decision is final.