Professional Certification: Program Details


Once admitted into the Certification Program, participants must complete it within 3 years. In extenuating circumstances individuals may petition for a one-time extension in order to complete the Program, provided that at least 70% of the Program has already been successfully completed.


Successful completion of the Program results in a professional credential that certifies that an individual has demonstrated that he or she can articulate and apply The Forum Standards of Good Practice for Education Abroad and is a Certified Professional in education abroad.

Revision and Resubmission

Upon submission, Standards Assignments will be reviewed for completeness and attention to detail.  If the assignment is deemed insufficient it will be returned to the participant for resubmission before being sent to the Forum Certification Assessors. Participants who do not complete Assignments successfully will be given specific feedback to assist them to revise their responses to the Standards Assignments. These revised assignments will be resubmitted and evaluated by Forum Certification Assessors, and this process will continue until the participant achieves a successful result on all of the Standards Assignments.

Certification Maintenance

Once certified, individuals maintain certification by demonstrating continuing professional development related to education abroad and the Standards of Good Practice for Education Abroad. This entails accumulating at least 5 points (see chart below) over a two-year period through participating in a wide range of possible activities, including continuing education, professional development, service, scholarship, and program development and assessment.


Points Awarded Examples of Certification Maintenance Activities**
0.5 Attend a Forum webinar
1 Attend a Forum Conference or an equivalent professional conference or event
Attend a Forum Standards Institute
Attend a Forum Workshop
Attend a Critical Dialogue
Contribute a resource to The Forum’s Standards Toolbox
Contribute to The Forum’s Curriculum Toolbox
Contribute an assessment case study to The Forum’s Outcomes Assessment Toolbox
Contribute to the Education Abroad Digital Resource Center
Apply the Standards professional work (example: document a new policy implementation based upon one of more Standards)
2 Present at a Forum Conference or an equivalent professional conference or event
Serve on a Forum Committee or Working Group
Serve as a Professional Certification Mentor
Present at a Forum Standards Institute
Apply the Standards in professional work
3 Publish a scholarly article in Frontiers or other peer-reviewed publication
Facilitate a Forum Standards Workshop
Serve as a Certification Assessor
Serve as a QUIP Peer Reviewer

**Additional options may be proposed by the certified individual and approved by The Forum.

An individual maintains certification by engaging in a combination of activities that equals or surpasses a total of 5 points over a two-year period. For example:

  • Attend two webinars (1pt), attend The Forum annual conference and another professional conference (2pts) and present a session (2pts) at a conference.
  • Attend a Critical Dialogue (1pt), attend The Forum Annual Conference (1pt), and publish a scholarly article (3pts).
  • Serve as a QUIP Peer Reviewer (3pts) and give a presentation at a NAFSA Conference (2pts).
  • Apply an aspect of the Standards in the development of an education abroad program (2pts), attend a Standards Workshop (1pt), and present about education abroad at a professional conference (2pts).

Individuals will have to provide appropriate documentation of their activities, which will be reviewed by The Forum.

Code of Ethics

Participants must understand and agree to abide by The Forum’s Code of Ethics for Education Abroad. They must agree also to exemplify high standards of honesty and integrity by maintaining the confidentiality of the contents of the Standards Assignments, including the questions and responses.


Logo of Sara's Wish Foundation, which includes the name of the organization and a photo of Sara Schewe smilingScholarship support for the Professional Certification Program is provided by membership and a generous donation from Sara’s Wish Foundation.