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LEED Continuing Education Requirements

posted Apr 26, 2011, 12:05 PM by Skylight Education   [ updated Apr 26, 2011, 12:18 PM ]
April 26th, 2011
by Brian Wennersten, LEED AP+
NEW YORK, NY - Now that you have passed the Green Associate and/or AP+ with Specialty exams, or you have just opted in to the AP+ credential, you have by default agreed to a Credential Maintenance Program (CMP).  That means it’s time to continue your education relevant to green building through the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI).  This program is very similar to many other Continuing Education (CE) programs out there for other certifications and accreditations.  In fact, since GBCI CE is self-reporting, you may and will find that many of the CE hours that you already participate in will qualify for your LEED CMP.  That being said, it can be fairly easy to earn the appropriate amount of hours for your designation within each two year reporting period.  There are many CMP activities that you can pursue to earn hours including: live presentations, continuing education, self-study, college courses, volunteer work, authorship, and LEED project participation.

Let’s start with the basics of LEED CMP.  If you are a LEED Green Associate, you will have to complete 15 hours of CMP with 3 hours focusing on LEED Specific hours.  On the other hand, LEED AP’s with specialty must complete 30 hours of CMP with 6 of those hours being LEED Specific.  What defines LEED Specific?  GBCI defines LEED Specific “as an activity that has an explicit connection to processes, procedures or concepts (i.e. intents, requirements and strategies) found in any of the current LEED rating systems.” 

Where it starts to get confusing is for legacy LEED APs, those that took the exam without specialty prior to the LEED tiered credential updates were implemented in 2009.  Current LEED APs still have an opportunity to opt-in to the LEED AP with specialty program.  The staggered window to opt-in is fast closing starting in August 2011, however, there are still many out there who are still deliberating whether or not to do so.  For those that have or are going to opt-in, there are two paths to choose from.  The first is through prescriptive maintenance and the second is through testing. 

For LEED APs that opt-in to a specialty, which closely relates to the original exam that they passed, the prescriptive path for complying with CMP will have no enrollment fee for your first renewal period.  The prescriptive path is similar to those that newly become a LEED AP+ by passing the exam in that you will have to complete 30 hours of CMP, with 6 hours being LEED Specific.  The difference is that those 30 hours have to be broken down into a certain amount of hours in each the following categories depending on your specialty: 

·         Project site factors

·         Water management

·         Project systems & energy impacts

·         Acquisition, installation, and management of project materials

·         Improvements to the indoor environment

·         Stakeholder involvement in innovation

·         Project surrounding & public outreach 
 

For more information on the prescriptive path, please visit Appendix E of the CMP Guide. 

 

Yes, this can be complicated, but GBCI is doing their best to make the process easier.  There is a handy excel spreadsheet (see attached document) that you can use to keep track of your prescriptive hours.  There are guides and online wizards to help you navigate the process.   If all else fails; contact GBCI for more information, their customer service is excellent.

 

Of course, if this all seems like too much of a process to go through, legacy LEED APs, over 100,000 of them don’t have to opt-in at all and will always have their LEED AP credential, only without a specialty.  Keep in mind though; it is the specialty that will notify people that you are keeping up with the quickly evolving green building environment.

 


CMP Navigations Resources are linked below.  Make sure that guides linked here are still valid if you are using them well after this article was written.  As of April 26th, 2011 all links and attachments are currently valid.

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Skylight Education,
Apr 26, 2011, 12:16 PM
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Skylight Education,
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Skylight Education,
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Skylight Education,
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