Calling all Senior Level Counselors…Take the Certification Challenge

Become a Certified Public Relations Counselor (CPRC) and Earn FPRA’s Highest Credential

What is Certification?
The certification process was developed to recognize professional growth and achievement of senior members who have already earned the APR designation. Candidates for Certified Public Relations Counselor (CPRC) must be a member of FPRA and have a minimum of 10 years of professional practice in public relations.

Though it is a second tier credential, it is not APR 2.0. This exam is a subjective exam that requires candidates to draw from their experience to solve problems and present solutions. Earning the CPRC credential involves passing a written exam (16 essay questions) and an oral exam (presentation of a public relations program or project).

CPRC is now required for new members joining FPRA’s Counselor’s Network and will be required for current members of the Counselor’s Network by November 2011.

If you’re thinking about sitting for the CPRC exam, you might be wondering if you’re ready…The answer is YES … if you can say yes to the following questions:

  • Am I Accredited in Public Relations?
  • Do I have a minimum of 10 years experience in the field of public relations?
  • Do I have proven experience in developing and implementing successful, comprehensive public relations programs?
  • Do I have the ability to use my experience and knowledge to develop case study responses?
  • Do I have the skills to make a 30-minute presentation demonstrating the ability to present a public relations plan and gain acceptance and support from decision makers?

What is involved in becoming a Certified Public Relations Counselor?
Preparation for this exam comes from practice – ten or more years worth. You might say you have been preparing for this certification all along. It is not required or recommended that individuals spend long periods of time studying for this test. All questions on the written exam are case related and require practitioners to draw on their own professional experiences. A review of your professional experiences and some classic public relations case studies as well as preparation of a 30-minute presentation for the oral part of the exam is all that is required.

For the oral portion of the exam, candidates are encouraged to use an actual presentation they have made to an employer, a client or the media. The goal of the 30-minute presentation is to “sell” an idea or a course of action, rather than to demonstrate extemporaneous speaking skills.

What is the first step in becoming a Certified Public Relations Practitioner?
Contact VP Accreditation and Certification, Stefanie Macfarlane, APR at smacfarlane@cfl.rr.com or (321) 578-1722 and submit your application along with the $150 exam fee to the State Office.

Once your application is approved, Stefanie Macfarlane, APR, with the support of the Staff Office and State VP of Accreditation & Certification will arrange locations, dates and times that are convenient for you, the CPRC proctor and panelists.  You have one year after your application is approved to complete the process, though it is recommended you set a goal of 2-3 months.

For more information about CPRC, visit http://www.fpra.org/Professional_Development/CPRC.aspx for a Fact Sheet, FAQs, sample questions and answers.

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