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Continuing Education Hours (CEHs) Information

Continuing Education Hours (CEHs) are needed to recertify ISM issued certifications. ISM will accept CEHs related to business, computers, your job, your company, or your product. ISM will NOT accept any courses related to Safety, First Aid, or Driver's Ed.

At least two-thirds of the CEHs must be educational in nature. One-third may be earned in the professional contributions category. ISM does not pre-approve CEHs for recertification.

Categories for earning CEHs are:

  1. College Courses (Taken or Taught)
  2. Continuing Education (Taken or Taught)
  3. Contributions to the Profession
  4. CPSM® or CPSD™ Exams (20 CEHs per exam, this option is only available during the last year of the certification period or during the grace period)

CEH credit will only be allowed for programs that are educational in content and are at least one hour in length. Networking sessions and exhibits are considered informational and not educational. When calculating CEHs, do not include lunch or break times in the total number of hours being claimed.

Written documentation must be submitted for each CEH. The documentation should consist of the program name, program date, number of actual seminar/classroom hours, and appropriate signature from supervisor or instructor. Submit the form(s) with your Recertification Application.

Hours not used for the current recertification period, and earned within 120 days of the current certificate expiration date, may be applied toward the next Recertification period.

College Courses

Semester-long university courses in purchasing, materials management, supply management, management or other business-related subject matter (accounting, marketing, computers, economics, law, engineering, traffic management, communications, finance, statistics, physical sciences and behavioral sciences) are worth 14 CEHs per credit hour. Most other semester-long university courses are worth 7 CEHs per course. Quarter hours are 2/3 of a semester hour. Other units of time need to be carefully documented and explained (by the institution) so ISM can determine the equivalent number of CEHs for each course.

The applicant must document coursework using a transcript or grade report issued by the educational institution from which the course was taken. Please make sure transcripts include an explanation of the unit (e.g., semester hours, trimester hours, quarter hours).

If claiming courses taught, obtain a letter, signed by your supervisor from the appropriate institution, which includes all of the information necessary to determine CEHs.

Continuing Education

Public seminars (e.g., AMA, APICS, etc.), ISM seminars, seminars offered by your organization, conferences and other educational programs are eligible for CEHs.

Educational events are eligible for consideration if (a) the subject matter was purchasing, materials management, supply management, management or other business-related subject matter; and (b) the event was at least one hour in length. Documentation for each continuing educational event submitted by the applicant must include: (1) applicant's name, (2) title of program, (3) date(s) of program, (4) name of sponsoring institution, (5) length of event in educational contact hours, and (6) signature of program director/instructor, or supervisor.

If credit is being sought for teaching a course, obtain a letter, which includes all of the pertinent information as described, from your supervisor at the institution. Lunch and break periods may not be used as part of the educational content hours claimed.

Articles in refereed journals are eligible for 14 CEHs. Substantive, well-developed articles published in established purchasing or trade magazines (those that have an editorial review board identified in the magazine), exceeding one page in length, as well as articles published in conference proceedings, are eligible for 7 CEHs per article. Include a copy of each article being claimed and a copy of the editorial review board page when applicable.

Earning an ISM Allied Association certification is worth 7 CEHs.

Contributions to the Profession

Individuals who hold office in ISM may claim CEHs in this section. Each annual job assignment as an officer, director, group chair or chair of a committee, other than social or recreational, for an ISM affiliate earns 7 CEHs. At the discretion of the ISM affiliate leadership, CEHs may be awarded to all deserving volunteers, whether or not they are chairpersons, officers or directors. Documentation consists of a completed Service Award form or a letter from an appropriate officer certifying the organization, position and dates the office was held.

ISM Membership is eligible for 3 CEHs per each year of active ISM Membership during the current certification period.

CPSM® or CPSD™ Exams

You may retake a CPSM® or CPSD™ Exam to obtain CEHs only during the last year of certification or in the one year grace period following certification expiration. Passing any of CPSM® or CPSD™ Exams is worth 20 CEHs. You are responsible for providing the official score report received after testing.

If you have attended or will attend a class, seminar, conference, or some other form of continuing education session where no proof of attendance is given, you can use the following forms to document the hours.

Request a Program Number (not required)

There is no requirement to apply for or receive an ISM program number in order to claim credit for Continuing Education Hours (CEHs).

ISM does not approve, endorse, certify, or sponsor programs by providing a program number.

Program sponsors may note in their literature that program participants can earn CEHs that may be applied toward ISM's CPSM recertification, CPSD recertification, C.P.M. recertification, and/or A.P.P. reaccreditation program requirements. Please use the following wording including the note: Participants who successfully complete this program will receive (insert number) hours of continuing education. They may be applied toward ISM CPSM recertification, CPSD recertification, C.P.M. recertification, and/or A.P.P. reaccreditation program requirements. Note: ISM does not endorse, certify or sponsor this program or its content.

If you would like a program number issued, please select one of the following options:

Search online for ISM seminars and other programs that offer continuing education hours.

If you have any questions, please contact the Professional Credentials Department via e-mail at