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What do you need to know about the CVA certification?

The top 7 things to know about becoming Certified in Volunteer Administration

Getting certified offers credibility to your position. 

  • CVA is an international credential – thousands of people from various countries have earned their CVA designation. 
  • The CVA credential is based on your ability to apply competencies in your job and meets current Canadian standards for the profession.
  • When you earn the credential, you become certified. This means that your knowledge, skills, and competencies have been assessed and that you meet a professional standard.

 The Certification process is simple and easy to navigate.

  • If you meet the professional experience requirements, getting certified is as simple as applying for and taking the exam. There is no requirement for extra courses, essays, or a portfolio.
  • There are two intake periods for the Spring exam in April and the Fall exam in October. VMPC members receive a 10% discount on their certification application (and re-application) fees.

 Support is available.

  • Start with a self-assessment available on the CCVA website to see where you’re already strong and where you have some work to do. 
  • Join the VMPC study group page on Facebook .
  • Connect with other VMPC and provincial affiliate members who are working towards their CVA and form a local study group.
  • Read through the textbook chapters for areas where your self-assessment showed that you need to do some work

Taking the exam is straightforward.

  • There are testing centres all over the country; there is at least one close to most communities.
  • The exam is accessible and asks you to apply your practical knowledge (but it’s only available in English right now).
  • Questions are multiple choice and are practical. The questions ask you to use the CVA competencies to solve a real world volunteer management problem.

 You get some neat stuff after you pass the exam.

  • You get a certificate for your office wall or professional portfolio and a lapel pin to show the world that you are certified in your profession.
  • You receive press releases and letters to your employer so that you can share your good news with your community and your organization.
  • Best of all, you get to put the letters "CVA" after your name on your business cards, correspondence, resume, and LinkedIn profile.

 Certification is valid for five years and recertifying is simple.

  • Once you pass the exam, your name goes on to the registry on the CCVA website together with your certification date and the year that your certification expires.
  • In order to renew, you need to earn 35 Professional Development Units (PDUs) and write a short personal reflection essay.
  • There are many ways to earn PDUs including: attending workshops, writing articles, serving as a volunteer, independent reading, and leading training. Participating in VMPC’s professional development activities are great ways to earn PDUs. Check out our events calendar.

Becoming a CVA means becoming part of an amazing peer group dedicated to advancing the profession.

  • Your organization and your volunteers will have a bigger impact on your community.
  • To connect with your new peers, you can:

Need more information?

You can reach out to the VMPC certification lead at   or Chair of Professional Development at  with any questions you may have.

The Council for Certification in Volunteer Administration will also answer your questions about your application, the exam, and renewing your certification. You can contact the CCVA office here .

To learn a lot more about CVA Certification, or to apply, please check out the CCVA website here: www.cvacert.org/