Steps to Earning the CFSP Designation

Step 1 - Become a Member of APFSP

Click HERE to learn more and apply!



Step 2 - Complete the Application for Career Review (Category CR)

Tell us what you've done since licensure. The Career Review grants credit for your experience from the time you earned your license to the time you join the Academy. Category CR - Career Review provides the opportunity to receive credits for experience prior to joining the Academy. Assignment of credits generally follows the guidelines for Categories A, B, D.
Note: Up to a maximum of 54 hours/CEUs may be earned toward initial certification through Career Review, although additional credits in other categories may also result for activities that occurred within 2 years of becoming a member of the Academy.

  • Upon submission of the Career Review Form and proper documentation to the Academy, up to 54 Hours/CEUs may be awarded for activities carried out between the time of licensure in funeral service and the time of joining the Academy.
  • The Career Review is evaluated only once, please take your time and be thorough when completing your Career Review Application. 
  • Career Review entries which reflect ongoing activities, or those which took place since the member joined the Academy, will be evaluated for credit in either Categories A, B, or D.
  • If the Career Review analysis results in a potential award of more than the maximum of 54 Hours/CEUs, additional credits earned within two years of joining the Academy will be allowed, and will be credited to Categories A, B, or D according to the nature of the extra credits earned.

Ready to complete your Career Review Form? Click HERE!

Step 3 - Report Your Activities

Tell us what you do as you do it. The Academy believes that personal as well as professional development, together, combine to help insure a better funeral service professional. Because of this certification credits are allowed for involvement in both types of programs (i.e., those directly related to funeral service as well as those directly related to improving the professional as an individual).

Using Online Activity Reporting, you let us know about activities completed. The Academy evaluates these activities and, where appropriate, awards credit in the form of Hours or Continuing Education Units (CEUs). Credit is awarded in one of three categories: Academic, Professional Funeral Service, and Public Education and Service.

Category A: Academic Activity

Category A includes those more intensive learning experiences such as higher education-level instruction. Also, professional effort demonstrated by writing, speaking, and research are credited here as are home study and on-line learning programs accredited by the Academy. (Up to a maximum of 108 Hours/CEUs may be earned toward initial certification in this category.)

  • Program must contain educational content covering one theme only, and lasting at least 3 hours including no more than a total of 30 minutes of break time (i.e., 9 a.m. - noon program will count .3 hours in Category A, if no more than a total of 30 minutes is allowed for breaks).
  • Scholarly articles published in professional journals receive credit based on the number of words and the nature of the content. More significant publications, including books, are evaluated on a case by case basis.
  • Professional speeches, lectures, etc. are evaluated based on the length of the program and the preparation required for effective presentation.
  • Completion of home study courses by approved providers. See Home Study Providers.
  • Deployment in a disaster recovery effort will receive 1 Hour in Category A per deployment.
  • College courses will normally receive full CEU credit (i.e., 45 Hours/CEUs for a 3-semester hour course).

Category B: Professional Activities

Category B includes activities related directly to the funeral service profession. Attendance at conventions, short workshops or seminars, and service in funeral service organizations count in this category. (Up to a maximum of 72 Hours/CEUs may be earned toward initial certification in this category.)

  • Attendance at any funeral service organization meeting or convention which has been accredited by the Academy.
  • Attendance at any single-theme workshop or seminar lasting less than three hours.
  • Service as on the Board of Directors, as an officer, or service on a committee of a funeral service organization will count for a total of 10 hours per year. In addition, the member can receive a maximum of 2 hours for each meeting attended.

Category D: Public Education and Service

Category D acknowledges civic and community activities and leadership. Service in community or religious organizations, including officer status, are included. Short talks to community groups, funeral home tours, and similar activities count in this category. (Up to a maximum of 18 Hours/CEUs may be earned toward initial certification in this category.)

  • Credit will be awarded for service in civic or church organizations, including offices held and specific programming activities carried out.
  • CEUs will be assigned to include preparation time in addition to program presentation time as appropriate.
  • Civic-related activities sponsored by the funeral home will count in Category D. This includes such things as funeral home tours for civic or school groups, meetings with civic or school groups, and services of remembrance.

Credit toward professional certification shall be granted in terms of clock hours. 

Step 4 - Earn the CFSP Designation!

Once 180 hours of activities (18.0 CEUs) across the four categories has been achieved, you are eligible for certification, and the designation of Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) may be awarded upon proof of licensure.

**When you have reached 180 hours of activity, you will submit a Designation Review Form.** 

Maintaining Certification

Once certified as a CFSP, you must earn 20 hours of activity per year, and pay the annual renewal fee, to remain an active CFSP. Excess hours on your record at the end of each year may be carried over into the next year up to a maximum of 40 hours. Credits are earned prospectively, with those earned in one year providing re-certification credit toward the next.

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