Professional Development

Professional Development


Take your skills and your confidence to the next level with the Certified Professional Photographer program.

Consumers understand and value credentials. Earning the Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) designation shows them that you have a strong understanding of yourCPP Logo craft and that you take your profession seriously.

While consumers may not know a lot about professional photography, they DO know that certification should ensure professional-quality goods and services.

Certification also gives you a competitive edge in the market. After all, you will be one of approximately 2,000 professional photographers around the world who have attained certification. That's certainly something to help leverage yourself above the rest of the crowd.

What does it take?
Below are the steps required to become a Certified Professional Photographer. They are designed to help you polish your technical and artistic skills.

1. Pass a comprehensive written exam measuring your technical expertise
2. Successfully submit your work to a panel of judges for review & approval
3. Renewing credentials every 3 years with continuing education units or retaking the CPP Exam.

For full details, visit

Merit & Degree Program

Since 1937, PPA degrees have served as a sign of professional development. In fact, these degrees carry some serious weight—both with consumers and your peers. Along with being a symbol of your accomplishment, PPA degrees can also help you:

  1. Continue learning and growing.
  2. Market yourself.
  3. Justify & explain your prices.
  4. Demonstrate your commitment & expertise.

What does it take?
For starters, you've got to be a PPA member to even participate in the Merit & Degree program. And to get a degree, you need to accumulate 25 merits (or points). You can earn those merits through things you might already be doing to grow your skills and network, like competition, education and teaching!

Intrigued? Want to know more about earning these degrees and making use of them? We created a special place just for you! Visit the degree section for the juicy tidbits.

International Photographic Competition

Our International Photographic Competition (IPC) is a great way to improve your skills and earn merits towards a PPA Master of Photography degree. This oh-so-prestigious PPA competition receives thousands of image entries annually.

Watch for the IPC rules released each year in the spring.

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