How would you describe the target audience for the CMP certification level? How many years of communications experience is required?

For the CMP, the minimum requirement is 6 years’ experience plus 2 years’ education OR 8 years’ experience; both with 40 hours of training. This is set out in the application and Candidate Handbook. The target audience for CMP certification is likely to be an experienced generalist or specialist with a desire for formal recognition of their professional practice relative to an established global standard. The Communication Management Professional certification program follows the Global Standard of six essential guiding principles for the communication profession developed by IABC. Candidates can orient themselves within the four career levels and define their career purpose as an additional way of determining whether they should apply for CMP certification.

If someone takes this initial CMP examination, would they have to pay another US$500 for a level 3/4 examination again or the fee to take another higher level exam once they are offered?

For both certification levels, there is a US$400 fee for each exam registration. The certifications are separate, so separate fees will be required. Earning the lower level certification is not a requirement for applying for the upper level certification.

When will the other examination levels be available for the taking?

The certification levels available are CMP and SCMP. Achieving ISO accreditation is the next priority afterwards. Market research will help to determine if there is demand for the other proposed levels.

How would you explain the examination preparation need to an interested, potential CMP examination candidate? Are there particular communications reference books/articles that one should recommend candidates read as preparation? Are there ‘sample examination questions’ available for review before taking the examination? If so, how does one access those? Is it advisable to encourage to set up study groups?

The application is the first step in demonstrating the knowledge and experience required to successfully apply for and take the exam. The Job Task Analysis, contained in the Candidate Handbook, contains specific domains to focus on. There are sample questions available in the Candidate Handbook, which is available on the GCCC webpage. There is not set study guide as the application demonstrates a candidate has the knowledge and skillset to sit for an exam.

Are the certification examinations a pass/fail only or are grades given? Is this be the same for all examination levels?

All exams are a pass/fail. If a candidate fails the exam, they do receive feedback with their grade and the domains in which they were deficient. Successful candidates will not receive a detailed score.

Are all examinations be multiple choice only?

The certification exams are multiple choice, 100 questions each.

What are the key steps communicators interested in certification should take?

Interested communicators should: Read what is on the GCCC website about certification including the graduate profile section. Read the Candidate Handbook to ensure that they are able to meet the requirements for application. Check the GCCC website for upcoming exam dates. If they do not see a site accessible to them, they may wish to contact GCCC first for more information. Keep in mind new sites/dates are set regularly. Be prepared to describe their education, training and experience and provide the required supporting documentation. Apply to the certification program here. Having completed the application, upload it and pay the application fee.

In the event of an exam fail (assuming a 50% pass mark), is there any pathway for a review/resit? Do they pay again?

The exam result is reported as “pass” or “fail,” not with a percentage or numerical grade. Candidates who fail the exam will receive a report showing how they performed in each category to help them prepare to attempt the exam again. Candidates who fail the exam are eligible to retake it for an additional exam registration fee. Candidates who fail a second attempt must wait a minimum of six months before a third and final attempt. Candidates who fail may ask to have the result checked (this is called manual verification). This request must be received, along with required fees within 60 days of receipt of exam results.

When will the certification be ISO certified?

The ISO accreditation process can take several months after the application is submitted. A program must be in operation for two years before application to ISO can be made. Based on the program launch, April 2017 is the earliest date to apply. However, application will most likely occur after the SCMP exam performance data is available.

When will the strategic level be launched?

The Strategic Communication Management Professional (SCMP) level was launched April 2017. It is on level with the Strategic Advisor level on the career road map. For Strategic Communication Management Professional certification, candidates must demonstrate: • Eleven years of experience and 20 hours of training AND • Provide a letter of recommendation from mentees or an organization for which the candidate has done pro bono work addressing senior level contributions to communications.

Will there be a discount for the application fee for SCMP if someone has already completed the CMP?

There is a small discount for current CMPs who are moving up to SCMP.

What is the pass mark?

The program and exam are designed to achieve a passing rate of 75%. Thus, the cut score for the exam is determined using the modified Angoff Method. This method employs a panel of subject matter experts to determine the difficulty level of the questions and the exam for each version of the test. If the experts deem the questions to be difficult the cut score would be higher. If difficult, the cut score could be lower. This is somewhat similar to professional golf tournaments and the cut score to continue in a tournament after the first two days. The number of participants, the condition of the course, the weather, and other variable factors are used to determine the cut score. The Council does not publicize the cut score as it is possible a different version of the exam will be developed on an annual basis.

What is the value of completing CMP for ABCs?

The CMP program is developed for those within a 6 to 10 years of experience, education, and training. The ABC program was designed for those with over 10 years’ experience. Senior communicators interested in their continuing professional development could, however, also benefit from taking the certification exam. It is widely recognised that professional practice benefits from practitioners maintaining and updating their professional knowledge as the working environment changes and technology advances. The SCMP level is geared more toward the an ABC's experience.