We know that during these unique and quickly evolving times a number of challenges continue to impact many facets of our professional lives. AASP's Certification Council recognizes that the current circumstances involving the COVID-19 pandemic impact both current and future CMPCs. Over the past several weeks, the Certification Council has been hard at work reviewing how the changing restrictions on contact and proximity with others continues to influence the professional services we provide. It is quite clear that much of what we do has become increasingly difficult, if not impossible, to continue given the risk to the health and safety of our members and clients we serve. With this in mind, the Certification Council wanted to share some temporary changes to the CMPC® program during these challenging times.
First, we understand that the current pandemic may delay the completion of the required mentored hours for the CMPC®. On pages 9-10 of the CMPC® Program Candidate Handbook, you will find information regarding the Mentored Experience requirements which states that a minimum of 200 hours spent in direct client contact is required for Certification. Previously, teleconsultations (distance consultations) were not eligible formats in which to accrue these direct contact hours. However, with the current COVID-19 pandemic and in accordance with health and safety recommendations, the Certification Council is pleased to now count direct client contact hours that includes sessions “either in-person or from a distance via synchronous video and audio technology (e.g., Skype, FaceTime, Zoom) that approximates in-person contact (e.g., client and consultant/trainee are able to attend to verbal and non-verbal behavior).” This temporary measure will be considered effective as of February 15, 2020 and will continue until November 1, 2020, unless otherwise extended by the Certification Council. We will continue to monitor these ever-changing times and provide additional updates as necessary.
The Certification Council is also aware that some universities have either mandated or provided an optional Pass/Fail or Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grading system for certain courses this semester as a result of this pandemic. If a university has mandated that all courses be graded as Pass/Fail due to the pandemic, it is the applicant's responsibility to provide specific documentation of that university mandate. In cases in which appropriate documentation is provided, Pass/Fail courses will be accepted as meeting certification requirements on a one-time only basis.
We also want to assure our CMPCs scheduled to recertify this year (2020) that we are following current National Commission for Certifying Agencies’ (NCCA) guidance to monitor the situation as the pandemic unfolds. If, as the landscape continues to change, the Certification Council identifies a need to make adjustments to the recertification process, requirements, or timeline, we will notify CMPCs immediately. At present, we would recommend you approach your recertification as though there would be no change to the requirements or timeline. Please see pages 38-48 in the Candidate Handbook for information regarding recertification requirements, timeline, and prorated continuing education requirements.
The upcoming AASP webinar and virtual conference are being offered free of charge to AASP members and non-members. Both are worth general CE credits toward recertification.
Finally, for those who provide services from a distance, we highly encourage both mentors and trainees to review some of the materials below regarding best practice recommendations for distance consulting in an effort to ensure competent, ethical, and effective services continue to be provided to our communities:
All the best,
Brandonn Harris, PhD, CMPC
Chair, Certification Council