The ACP Certification is Back!

By Craig Hawkins, CCP, CxA

The BCxA and the Building Commissioning Certification Board (BCCB) are proud to announce the return of the Associate Certified Provider (ACP) Certification Program. The program has been completely updated to provide a tangible career marker for building professionals and Cx Providers on the path toward our ANSI accredited and Better Buildings recognized Certified Commissioning Professional (CCP) designation.

Anyone who wants to show dedication to this growing and vital profession now has a way to demonstrate knowledge, skills and abilities in New Construction Commissioning by taking and passing the ACP exam, then proudly placing the professional designation “ACP” behind their name.

What is ACP Certification?
The new ACP program is designed as an interim step, testing your working knowledge of the New Construction Commissioning process as recognized by the BCxA’s Best Practices and Essential Attributes, ASHRAE Guideline 0-2013 and Standard 202-2013 as well as the Building Commissioning Handbook 3rd Edition. The ACP program is intended for Cx Providers who are building their field experience toward the CCP, and also for professionals with a stake in building performance – architects, owners, construction managers, code officials, non-commissioning contractors, vendors, educators, and students, for example.

The ACP certification requires passing an exam with 100 questions that cover every aspect of the New Construction Commissioning process, from the predesign phase, to design and construction phases, all the way through occupancy and ongoing commissioning activities.

Why change it, and what’s different?
The original ACP and CCP certifications were based on the same Job Task Analysis, eligibility requirements and set of exam questions. Once the BCxA/BCCB made the decision to earn the first-ever ANSI accredited and Better Buildings recognized commissioning certification for the CCP that meant following rigorous requirements for the CCP program. Needing to reflect a separation between the certifications and appropriate levels of achievement required for each. We stopped offering the ACP until we could generate a new path forward, which is done! We now have completed development of the ACP certification program and subject matter expert review of a new set of qualifications and new exam questions focused specifically for “less seasoned” Cx Providers who may later seek the CCP.

Who Needs the ACP?

The ACP can be a stepping stone to Cx Providers starting their journey in this profession. Once they study for, take and pass the ACP test, they can use their proven knowledge to commission projects, using the profession’s best practices, until they are able to qualify for the CCP.

For other professionals, the ACP is a certification that demonstrates their knowledge of the New Construction Commissioning Process as they interface with Cx Providers and project teams. Potential ACP recipients could include anyone who procures and/or manages commissioning contracts, supports the inclusion of commissioning on portfolio facilities, commissioning educators, operations and maintenance facilities personnel and those who enforce code-required commissioning.

How You Get the ACP?
To earn the honor of the ACP, you must start by completing an ACP Candidate Application. Once approved, they will be given a time period to study and then sit for the test at a local testing center. Test results will be released immediately upon completion of the exam at a local testing facility. ACP recipients will be required to maintain their certification via continuing educational credits.

The ACP exam is a rigorous test of one’s knowledge of the application of the New Construction Commissioning process presented in typical scenarios. Each of the challenging 100 multiple choice questions has been created by a panel of commissioning subject matter experts, CCPs themselves, who have spent decades providing professional commissioning. Every question and set of associated answers has been reviewed and vetted for accuracy and relevance, making the ACP exam a valuable and meaningful certification that anyone would be proud to show.

ACP Certification: A Career Milestone
ACP might be a stepping stone to CCP for some providers, but make no mistake – the ACP stands on its own as a unique commissioning certification. Successfully completing the exam and earning an ACP Certification will be a proud milestone for those who rise to meet the challenge. Demonstrate your knowledge of professional building commissioning by earning your ACP today!