Those holding a current GISP certification have been invited by the GIS Certification Institute (GISCI) to participate in developing a new exam based GIS Professional (GISP) certification process. First proposed back in January of 2011, this effort to introduce an exam to the qualification process moves away from the purely portfolio-based certification that has been in place since the inception of the GISP. To help develop the exam, the GISCI needs participants. To qualify, you have to current hold a GISP, be actively employed in a GIS position, and exhibit an “enthusiasm for working with your colleagues on this important development”. There are numberous ways ways to be involved in the GISP exam development. From the GISCI press release:
- Exam development online web conference meetings. These activities will include team discussions as well as independent review. They are tentatively scheduled for September 2013, and will require 2-4 days per participant. Most of the meetings will be 3-4 hour periods, with one longer meeting.
- Contribution to exam development via online survey. The survey is tentatively scheduled for October-November 2013 and will require about two hours of time.
- Exam development workshops. The workshops will be on-site meetings involving instruction, independent activity, and group discussion. They are tentatively scheduled for the first half of 2014. One workshop will be a 3 day event; the other will be a 1 day event.
- Pilot exam. The pilot exam is tentatively scheduled for spring 2014 and will be provided at multiple testing centers. It will require about 4 hours.
The deadline for applying to be part of the exam development project is August 2, 2013. Those interested can apply via the GIS Professional Participant Invitation Reply page. The finalized GIS exam is expected to be in place by early 2015. Those applying for GISP status will continue to be exaluated by the current peer-reviewed portfolio process. According to GISCI, there are currently more than 5,000 GIS professionals who hold a GISP. The addition of a GIS competency exam would complement the portfolio-based evaluation.