Credentialing Process:

 1) Applicant pays application fee and submits completed application through online database

2) COPA directed staff determine whether the application is complete and sufficient for review

3) Credentialing Board evaluates the application and determines whether applicant is eligible for exam

4) Staff works with applicant to schedule exam

5) Applicant takes exam and either passes or fails

6) If exam passed, applicant will be certified

Information about retaking exam from IC&RC Candidate Guide: Candidates interested in retaking an exam must wait 90 days after the original test date.

Preparing for the Application

Formal Education Information – High School degree/GED or higher

  • Name of institution

  • Date of graduation

  • Electronic copy of diploma to upload

60 training hours specific to the attached IC&RC domains, including peer/family specialist specific trainings.

  • Name of training (s)

  • Name of organization providing the training (this will be your source)

  • Dates of training

  • Hours completed

  • Hours applied to each IC&RC domain

  • For each training you will need to upload the following: Certificate of completion with name of training and dates attended, there are other methods of proving that you have attended a training if you don’t have the certificate

500 hours of volunteer or paid work experience specific to the IC&RC domains over at least 6 months

  • Name of Organization (s) for each timeframe

  • Number of hours completed in each domain

  • These hours will be verified in the supervision section of the application

25 hours of supervision specific to the domains

  • Name of Organization (s) for each timeframe – should correspond to work experience

  • Number of hours of group and /or hours of individual supervision completed for each domain

  • Name of supervisor, email, phone # for each timeframe , once you have entered an email address, an email will be sent to your supervisor to verify both your experience and supervision

Please provide a brief explanation of your Lived Experience, that has prepared you for you role as a Peer and Family Specialist, in the following manner:

  • Please describe in a general way your historical experience, without graphic or excessive explanation regarding the details of those experiences.

  • Please share what you do to manage your own personal recovery.

  • Please explain how you use your Lived Experience to assist others in your Peer role.

  • Please limit your Lived Experience narrative to 250 words or less.

Review and sign the Code of Ethics within the application system.  A copy of the Code of Ethics can be found here.

Lived Experience is Defined As:

The applicant has a personal history of drug or alcohol addiction and recovery, and/or

The applicant has a personal diagnosis (experience) of a mental health condition and recovery, or

The applicant has personally provided care or services to a child, youth or adolescent with a drug or alcohol addiction or mental health condition

Please provide a brief explanation of your Lived Experience, that has prepared you for your role as a Peer and Family Specialist, in the following manner:

  • Please describe in a general way your historical experience, without graphic or excessive explanation regarding the details of those experiences.

  • Please share what you do to manage you own personal recovery.

  • Please explain how you use your Lived Experience to assist others in your Peer role.

  • Please limit your Lived Experience narrative to 250 words or less.

IC&RC Exam Information

  • Applicant schedules exam after Board authorization

  • 6 month test window after authorization

  • Computer-based exam administered around the state

  • Fees paid by Board for initial exam, subsequent exams will have to be paid for by the applicant

  • 75 questions + 10 pre-test questions

  • 2 hours to complete

  • Special accommodations may be available

Re-Certification Process

CPFS credentials are valid for two years, and individuals are able to apply for renewal in the months prior to their certification expiration date.

What is required for renewal?

In order to renew the CPFS credential, individuals must:

  • Complete 30 hours of continuing education in the last two years*

  • 6 hours of ethics training must be taken, and can be included within the overall 30 hours of continuing education hours

  • Document continuing education hours and verification documentation in the online application system

  • Pay the $200 renewal fee through the online application system

*Please note, all continuing education hours must have occurred within the two years between the certification date (or previous renewal date) and the date of expiration.  For example, if the CPFS certificate was earned in June 2017, then all continuing education hours must have been earned before June 2019.

What is the re-certification process?

  1. Add trainings and verification documentation to the online application system https://app.certemy.com

  2. Pay the renewal fee through the online application system

  3. The CPFS Certification Board will review the continuing education hours to ensure they represent the IC&RC domains

    1. If training hours are approved, the certification date will be extended for two additional years and an updated electronic certificate will be emailed.

    2. If training hours are not approved, the CPFS Certification Board will be in contact with additional information.

When can the re-certification process be started?

Individuals can add continuing education trainings to the online application system at any time within the two years the certification is valid.

If the re-certification requirements are met prior to the expiration date, the candidate can undergo the re-certification review by the CPFS Certification Board.  Renewal dates will be based on the initial certification date, and will be extended for two years.  Being reviewed by the CPFS Certification Board 3 months prior to the expiration date will not impact or shorten the certification period, as renewal will be based on the original certification date.