Process / Exam / Technical Image Evaluation
All CPPs and CPP Candidates are required to be PPA members. Remember there is no annual charge for Certification for PPA members. For more information about PPA Membership click here!
Once you've achieved the CPP designation, you will need to recertify every three years. CPPs eligible for recertification will receive two email notices on the year they are due to recertify, an email six (6) months and one (1) month prior to expiration.
To recertify, 15 Continuing Education Units (CEUs)* are required or re-examination, along with a payment of $100. The $100 recertification fee is waived if any of the following requirements are met:
The CEU system involved in the CPP recertification process is there to encourage CPPs to continue their journey in photography education and professional development. By participating in continuing education, CPPs help to raise the bar of our industry.
To learn how to how to earn credits or if you're not sure how many CEUs you have under your belt, please visit the recertification page.
*Please note CEUs are only use for purposes of the Certification program and have no correlation to the PPA merit. For additional information on this please email [email protected].
The Certification Committee follows the standards for certification established by the Institute of Credentialing Excellence. ICE sets the guidelines for creating the written test for certification, ensuring the questions are relevant to professional photography today. The Institute of Credentialing Excellence also provides support and information for maintaining the certification process to the certification Committee.
The Certification Committee meets on a regular basis to make sure the certification process always reflects the new advances in the photography industry.
The CPP designation is international, there are CPPs all over the world!
International CPP Candidates may register and take the exam online via remote proctor for a nominal fee of $25. For more information on taking the exam online please visit the Exam Registration section. Please note the CPP Exam is only offered in English and Spanish. Candidates must be able to read and answer questions written in one of those languages. To request a CPP exam in Spanish please contact [email protected].
All Technical Image Evaluation materials are submitted online. Your Technical Image Evaluation kit will be ordered online from BlickU. Please use the Ordering Guide to help you through the process. Please allow between 5-10 business days for kit delivery (pending location). For additional assistance for international candidates please email [email protected].
You will receive your CPP certificate in the mail approximately three weeks after the date that you received your passing email notification.
If your candidacy has expired and you have not successfully completed the exam requirement, you will be required to restart the process by re-declaring your candidacy. Please contact [email protected] for assistance.
If you have successfully completed the exam requirement, but not the Technical Image Evaluation requirement, please contact [email protected] for next steps.
Candidates or CPPs who are up for renewal can take the online. Visit the Exam Registration page for instructions.
You must be a declared and active CPP Candidate or a CPP up for renewal within the current calendar year to take the CPP Exam.
Each exam is comprised of 100 multiple choice questions each worth one point. The material is pulled from the CPP test specifications and all exam questions are referenced in a readily available photography book. You will have two hours to complete the exam and must answer at least 70% correctly to pass.
CPP Exams are not associated by specialty (Portrait, Sports, or Commercial).
You can take the exam online in as soon as 72 hours (3 days), visit the Exam Registration page for more information.
For exams taken at Imaging USA, you will receive your results via email approximately two to three weeks after your exam date.
For exams taken online, you will receive your results via email approximately 5-7 business days after your exam date.
You may take the exam once every 30 days as many times as you need during your two-year candidacy period. After that initial two year period, you will need to start the process again, but there are no limits as to how many times you might be allowed to do this again.
For the in-person exam at Imaging USA, there is no fee associated with retaking the exam.
For online exams, there is the $25 fee paid to ProctorU to proctor the exam.
You may take the exam as many times as needed within your candidacy period as long as there are at least 30 days between exam dates.
All rescheduling and cancelation matters are handled through ProctorU.
CPP exam accommodations
The CPP examination program provides reasonable and appropriate accommodations for individuals with documented disabilities within the meaning of the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended (ADA). Under ADA, a disability is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits an individual's ability to perform one or more major life activities, as compared with most people in the general population.
Types of accommodations provided
Available accommodations include but are not limited to the following:
PPA will make reasonable efforts to accommodate eligible candidates, who provide documented evidence of their disability or need for special arrangements that do not present an undue burden to the proctor and do not fundamentally alter the measurement of the knowledge the assessment is intended to test. If you require special testing arrangements, you must inform PPA of your needs via email at least four weeks prior to the scheduled test date. Please email [email protected] for special accommodation requests.
We recommend allocating about three hours from your schedule for the CPP Exam to allow time for set-up and proctor instructions prior to actually starting the test.
We recommend using Google Chrome.
No, the exams are not different. The only difference is the setting in which you take the exam!
Once you pass the CPP Exam, you are eligible to participate in the Technical Image Evaluation. There are five Evaluation periods per year. Eligible candidates will receive an email notification at NOON EST on the date that the Technical Image Evaluation period opens notifying you that the evaluation is now open. You will have two weeks to upload your three images, giving you ample time to submit your images.
Once you have passed the exam, eligible candidates will receive an email notification that the evaluation is now open. Candidates can access the evaluation upload platform by logging into your MyPPA dashboard and navigating to the myAchievements tab. You will select "Certifications" to expand the selection where you can view the option to “Upload Evaluation”.
Each candidate is required to submit THREE (3) images that depict key photographic techniques.
Please visit the Technical Evaluation Resources page to prepare!
The review process takes two weeks. Technical Image Evaluations results will be sent via email approximately three weeks after the evaluation deadline.
If your evaluation did not pass, it means that either one or more of your images did not meet the elements listed on the Technical Image Evaluation Checklist. You will be able to log in and review your Image Evaluation and you may resubmit your images during any future evaluation periods.
With the new Technical Image Evaluation process you can submit images as many times as needed within your TWO (2) year candidacy period. Evaluation cycles occur 5 times per year. If you do not pass within your two year candidacy period, you will be asked to reapply for candidacy for a $100 fee. Payment of the fee will allow you one more year to submit.
If that's what you do best—go for it! You need to show what you do on a daily basis, and show that you know how to skillfully use natural light, how to manipulate it, and how to get proper ratios. The Technical Image Evaluation offers candidates THREE (3) lighting scenario options to choose from to complete the evaluation process.
Candidates are required to identify and select only ONE lighting scenario to complete their evaluation.
You will receive your CPP certificate in the mail approximately three weeks after the date that you have received your passing email notification.
Images taken in a workshop environment or under direct supervision of an instructor are not allowed for image evaluation. All images submitted must be self-directed and individually set up. For additional questions about this topic please email [email protected].
You can order the Blick Art Materials Supply List here. For more detailed instructions and information on how to place your order, you can review the How to order your Blick Art Materials Supply guide.
In order to participate in the Technical Image Evaluation, candidates must pass the CPP Exam to be eligible to partake in the evaluation. However, you can purchase your Blick Art Materials Supply List at any given time before or during your two-year CPP Candidacy. Review evaluation periods and deadlines in advance and place orders accordingly, please allow 5-10 days for shipping.
To keep evaluations uniformed and impartial, candidates are required to use items listed on the Blick Art Materials Supply List.
Please contact [email protected] and we’ll be happy to assist you.
When purchasing your Technical Image Evaluation kit, at times a(n) item(s) may be Out of Stock please check the alternative materials list on the Ordering Guide to view alternate item(s). Please note that alternative items at times will be added to the kit list so items you receive can vary. Please email [email protected] if an item on the list is out of stock.
As some items may be out of stock at time of purchase, alternative variations are used in place of out-of-stock items. Please be aware use of alternative items will differ from sample images that are currently posted online (you might find this specifically with different gray paper variations). If you have concerns please reach out to [email protected] for additional information!
Images and placement of items should closely resemble the sample images that have been provided to you here.
Unfortunately if one (1) of your three (3) images fails, you must re-submit the rejected images in the next Technical Image Evaluation you decide to participate in.
Any previously ACCEPTED images from a previous evaluation will be carried over and you will not be required to re-upload. If previously ACCEPTED images do not appear in your evaluation please contact [email protected] prior to evaluation deadline.
Images must be shot and submitted in the smallest RAW format available on your camera.
Recertification signifies that you are continuously learning and evolving in your craft. By maintaining your CPP designation, you distinguish yourself as an accomplished professional photographer committed to the continuous improvement of your skills and knowledge. CPPs can enhance their standing in the photographic profession and in the eyes of the clients. Recertification is a process that enables you to become not only more competitive, but more proficient in your photographic career. It builds upon your expertise through a wide range of continuing education and work experience. Recertification also provides you with the opportunity to reaffirm your commitment to your profession and quality of work you provide to your clients.
Recertification entails the submission of 15 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and a $100 recertification fee. Continuing Education Units may come from any face-to-face education (PPA affiliated or Non-Affiliated) that a CPP has attended and can be combined with CEUs earned from PPA Affiliated teaching or speaking at seminars, workshops and events.
Please review the chart below to learn how to earn CEUs or what your CEUs may fall under the CEU point structure.
Continuing Education Unit Options
• Imaging USA
• International Convention (hosted outside of the U.S of at least 3 days)
• Any face-to-face professional photographic development program lasting 5 days
• Teaching or speaking any PPA affiliated seminar/workshop lasting 5 days
• Any face-to-face professional photographic development program lasting 4 days
• Teaching or speaking any PPA affiliated seminar/workshop lasting 4 days
• Any face-to-face professional photographic development program lasting 3 days
• Teaching or speaking any PPA affiliated seminar/workshop lasting 3 days
• Any face-to-face professional photographic development program lasting 1.5 - 2 days
• Teaching or speaking any PPA affiliated seminar/workshop lasting 1.5 - 2 days
• Any face-to-face professional photographic development program lasting 1 day (6+ hrs)
• Teaching or speaking any PPA affiliated seminar/workshop lasting 1 day (6+ hrs)
• Any face-to-face professional photographic development program lasting ½ day (3+ hrs)
• Teaching or speaking any PPA affiliated seminar/workshop lasting ½ day (3+ hrs)
• Any face-to-face professional photographic development program lasting 1 – 2.5 hrs
• Teaching or speaking any PPA affiliated seminar/workshop lasting 1 – 2.5 hrs
• PPA or PPA affiliate online content - 1 hour of content = 0.25*
(videos, webinars, Facebook Live)
*Maximum of 10 CEUs may be submitted for online education
Recertify every 3 years!
What do I submit?
I have attended THREE consecutive Imaging USA’s
Submit CPP Recertification Form
$0 – fee waived
I have accumulated 15 CEUs
Submit CPP Recertification Form
I do not have enough CEUs
I do not have ANY CEUs
*If you currently hold Elite/Elite Status, you $100 recertification fee will be waived.
Unfortunately if you are unable to complete the recertification requirements, your certification will be discontinued. You will need to reapply as a candidate and complete the candidacy requirements to re-obtain your credential.
You simply have to fill out and submit the CPP Recertification Form with a list of your accrued continuing education units that you have accumulated during your certification cycle. The cost for recertification is a $100 fee. The fee can be waived if you have attended THREE consecutive Imaging USA’s during your certification cycle or if you currently hold the Elite/Elite Plus status.
Log into your MyPPA dashboard, navigate to the “myAchievements” tab and select “Certifications” to view your Certification status and expiration date.
Great question! You can document any continuing education units you may have accumulated or plan on attending during your certification cycle by creating a word doc or spreadsheet to maintain records of your attendance.
“Title of event/class/workshop – Date(s) Attended – Instructor/Presenter = (please refer to continuing education chart for CEU conversion)”
Once you have received your exam results please submit the CPP Recertification Form indicating you have completed and passed the exam.
Once you have submitted your CPP Recertification Form (all forms are processed manually, so please give 1-3 days for processing time) you will receive an email confirmation that your recertification has been processed and accepted. You will receive your recertification packet and certificate in the mail within 3-4 weeks.
We hope you enjoy your retirement! Unfortunately maintaining a CPP Certification means to continue accumulating continuing education units for your certification. If you are nearing retirement please notify us at [email protected], we want to make sure we keep you from getting recertification reminders.
As of January 1, 2018 CPPs may submit a maximum of ten (10) CEUs from the 15 CEUs required to recertify from online education. This online education can come from PPA webinars, PPAedu, PhotoVision videos and PPA Affiliate web content will count for 0.25 CEUs per hour of video watched (any combination of videos that will equate to 60 minutes of video will equal to 0.25 CEUs). Please provide “Title – Date Watched – Instructor/Presenter - Platform - Length of Program” when entering information on the CPP Recertification Form.
Yes, continuing education units pertaining to maintaining your photography business does count towards your recertification.
Merits can be used towards your recertification if they fall within any of the categories listed in the CPP Continuing Education Unit chart (please refer to continuing education chart for CEU conversion). For example, attending Imaging USA will earn you 1 service merit towards a degree at the same time it can earn you 8 continuing education units towards your recertification.