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Accredited Purchasing Practitioner (A.P.P.) Reaccreditation FAQs

Common Accreditation Forms

What is the status of the A.P.P. program?

February 28, 2007 is the last day candidates can postmark their A.P.P. Original & Original Lifetime application. Applications postmarked after this date will not be accepted for Original & Original Lifetime Accreditation.

However, ISM will continue to accept A.P.P. reaccreditation applications beyond February 28, 2007. ISM has no plans to discontinue reaccreditation.

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What dates do I need to remember?
Last day to apply for the A.P.P. Designation Last day to register for the C.P.M. Exam Last day to take the C.P.M. Exam Last day C.P.M.s may take Modules 3-4 to Re-certify Last day to apply for the C.P.M. Designation Last day to register for the C.P.M./CPSM Bridge Exam Last day to take the C.P.M./CPSM Bridge Exam
February 28, 2007 December 31, 2008 December 31, 2009 December 31, 2009 December 31, 2013 December 31, 2013 December 31, 2014
A.P.P./C.P.M./CPSM Timeline

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How long is my A.P.P. accreditation valid?

Five years. Unless you have earned a Lifetime A.P.P. - in which case, you would never need to reaccredit.

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How do I reaccredit my A.P.P.?

Individuals seeking reaccreditation must accumulate at least 42 hours of continuing education since the issue date of their current certificate. At least 28 hours must be educational in nature. Up to 14 hours may be earned in the professional contributions category. Please submit your application for reaccreditation no earlier than 120 days prior to the expiration date on your current certificate. Applications must be complete and all documentation must be submitted in English.

Continuing education can be earned in the following categories:

  1. College Courses (Taken or Taught)
  2. Continuing Education (Taken or Taught)
  3. Contributions to the Profession
  4. C.P.M. Exam (any module)

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How do I earn Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)?

There are several ways to earn CEHs. One way is to retake any one of the four modules. Each module successfully passed will be worth 42 CEHs. Please remember that exams taken for CEHs will only be available until 12/31/08.

Other ways you can receive CEHs:

  • Attend and pass college courses:
    • 14 CEHs will be given for each semester hours completed in the following areas: Purchasing, materials management, supply management, management or other business-related subject matter (e.g. accounting, management, marketing, computers, economics, law, engineering, traffic management, communications, finance, statistics, physical sciences and behavioral sciences.
    • 7 CEHs will be given for most other three semester credit hour courses.
  • Attend or present a public seminar or conference
  • Business-related training provided by your employer
  • Correspondence courses
  • Publishing an article in an established purchasing or trade magazine or a refereed journal

    Applicable topics include:
    • Supply management
    • Purchasing
    • Accounting
    • Finance or other business related courses
    • Computer classes
    • Job training

All educational events must be at least one hour in length to qualify toward reaccreditation. ISM does not need to pre-approve your courses. Each candidate is required to track their own continuing education hours earned.

ISM does not require that the continuing education be taken through ISM. However, ISM does offer numerous ways to earn CEHs (ISM-sponsored seminars, conferences, online courses, and more). ISM continues to work to expand continuing education opportunities available for supply management professionals through seminars and online programs. A.P.P.s are encouraged to take advantage of the variety of resources available to earn Continuing Education Hours (CEHs) toward reaccreditation.

ISM seminars are an excellent opportunity for you to earn CEHs. ISM currently offers more than 40 different seminars across the country on various dates throughout the year. Take advantage of ISM's line-up of educational seminars and earn 14 to 21 CEHs per seminar.

ISM's Annual International Supply Management Conference and Educational Exhibit has numerous workshops in which to earn CEHs.

eISM brings supply management education and professional development into the comfort of your own home or office — or even when you’re on the road. Online courses adjust to your lifestyle and schedule. In addition, ISM offers online learning opportunities available anytime, anywhere.

ISM also offers self-study courses for your convenience. These courses are in the form of workbooks, and upon completion of the requirements, candidates receive CEH credit.

ISM affiliates are also an excellent resource for CEHs. Many affiliates offer courses through local colleges and universities. Candidates can also earn CEHs by attending monthly affiliate meetings. Contact the affiliate in your area or visit its Web site to find out what programs are available.

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My A.P.P. has expired – what do I do now?

ISM provides each candidate with a one (1) year grace period to reaccredit their designation without penalty. During this grace period the individual is no longer considered an A.P.P. in good standing. ISM expects that candidates in their grace period will cease using their designation until they are reaccredited by ISM. This grace period does not lengthen your certification period - using this grace period will not change your next expiration date. Your expiration date will remain five years from when you were accredited.

After February 28, 2007, if A.P.P.s lapse beyond their grace period, they will not be able to reinstate their A.P.P. designation. ISM does not make exceptions to this policy.

ISM will attempt to send reminder postcards approximately 1 year and 6 months prior to a candidate’s expiration date. However, it is the responsibility of each candidate to know when their certification expires. The expiration date for your accreditation is clearly printed on the bottom left of the certificate you received when you were accredited, or you may check the ISM Credentials Verification on the ISM Website.

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What are the A.P.P. Lifetime Accreditation requirements?

Current A.P.P.s must document at least 18 years of full time professional (non-clerical, non-support) work experience. Supply management can be a secondary component of the applicant’s job. Résumés do not meet the documentation requirements for experience. Applicants must submit documentation in English and must provide proof of CEHs earned.

A.P.P.s meeting Lifetime accreditation criteria in a current certificate period need only earn the total number of hours through the year in which they meet the requirements for Lifetime accreditation, regardless of when they apply for the designation. Applicants for Lifetime accreditation should apply as soon as they are eligible.

Applicants must submit documentation of Continuing Education Hours earned, determined on a prorated basis, since their last certificate date.

Years Since Accreditation Began CEHs Needed for Lifetime A.P.P.
1 year or less 8 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)
1 but less than 2 years 17 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)
2 but less than 3 years 25 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)
3 but less than 4 years 34 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)
4 but less than 5 years 42 Continuing Education Hours (CEHs)

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How can I verify an A.P.P.s individual status?

Individuals wishing to confirm an A.P.P.s accreditation status can verify through ISM Credentials Verification. Please remember there may be instances where a candidate’s information may not be up-to-date due to the time factor in processing applications and reaccreditations. If you have questions about posted results, please contact the Certification department at

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Where can I find more information?

More information is available on the ISM Web site at Click on Professional Credentials and/or e-mail Or call Customer Service at 480-752-6276, ext. 401 or the Certification department 480-752-6276, ext. 3094.

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Go to Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.) Program and Exam FAQs

Go to Certified Purchasing Manager (C.P.M.) Recertification FAQs

Go to Accredited Purchasing Practitioner (A.P.P.) Program and Exam FAQs

Go to Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM) FAQs

Go to Certified Professional in Supply Management (CPSM) Requalification FAQs

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