APR in 3 Steps

Step 1 – Organize + Begin Studying

A. Organize + Begin Studying

  • Form a Study Group to include dates for group meetings and calls.
  • Ask for an APR Advisor from the PRSA Boston Accreditation Co-Chairs.
  • Get PRSA’s Online Study Resources, Follow PRSA’s 2nd Edition Study Guide.
  • Optionally, PRSA National offers an Online Study Course. It’s offered 3X yearly (Jan, May and Sept) and links you to a weekly Online Cohort Study Group. A price break is offered for a group of five. Info HERE.


Step 2 – Complete Your Two-Part Readiness Review

A. Upon UAB Approval, Submit Completed, Proofed Readiness Review Questionnaire:

  • Approach preparation of and all Accreditation documents as you would a job or award application. Content must be complete, responsive, thorough and of top quality, error-free writing.
  • Download and follow the format of the Readiness Review Questionnaire, labeling and numbering all pages.
  • Do not exceed one page per answer, and use 12 pt. Times Roman or equivalent font.
  • The Questionnaire investigates your experience, strategic and tactical knowledge, problem-solving, ethical grounding and program evaluation techniques.
  • Submit your Questionnaire document to the Boston Chapter APR two ways: PDF by email and as hard copy (4 sets) by regular mail, by the specified deadline. This submission requests an original PR Plan that you have authored and which fully represents your experience and KSAs (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities). This document becomes part of the Readiness Review Panel’s evaluation and will not be returned.  The single payment cost is $385 per member applicant.
  • The Questionnaire can be downloaded from the UAB web page index HERE. When submitted, if you split had made arrangements to split your payment, this triggers the second half payment of $205 (a $20 premium is added to the single fee due).

B. Prepare Your Portfolio in Anticipation of your Readiness Review Panel Interview

  • Prior to the date and location being confirmed with the Accreditation Chair, the UAB must again authorize you to proceed after review of your Questionnaire.
  • The Readiness Review Panel is a discussion much like a graduate degree thesis defense: a 3-member panel of APRs from the Boston Chapter will read your Questionnaire as the basis of a discussion about it and your Portfolio. This interview is treated as confidential. Download a Readiness Review Preparation Guide HERE.

The Chapter’s Readiness Review Panel reports to the UAB, which in turn issues a recommendation to advance the applicant to the computer-based Examination, or to redo the Readiness Review steps (imposes a 90-day wait for the Applicant to strengthen their submission and preparation).

Step 3 – Be ‘Advanced’ by UAB to the Computer-Based Written Exam

  • The UAB makes a decision to ‘Advance’ or not. Approved applicants will be issued a Candidate Testing ID and a list of Metro Boston Prometric Testing Centers (or call 800-274-1900 when you have your ID). The test time is 3:45.
  • Advanced to Computer-based Examination: Advanced candidates schedule and take the computer-based Examination. A preliminary pass/fail grade will be immediate upon its conclusion, with the official confirmation from the UAB follows by mail. A practice Online Exam is available HERE.
  • Not Advanced: If the applicant does not Advance from the Readiness Review, they have a 90-day ‘hold’ period during which they should review the comments from the panelists and update their Questionnaire and/or Presentation in response. Thereafter a follow-up Readiness Review panel interview is conducted for the applicant to Advanced to the written Exam.
  • Exam Retake: In the event the applicant does not pass their exam, they must retake it within 6-months and within the one-year window from their application acceptance date. The computer-based Examination retake fee is $200.

Your Passport To This Once In A Career Achievement!

To simplify your planning, here is a list of PRSA’s Online Accreditation resources:

The Journey Well Traveled: What Accreditation Entails

For a half-century, PRSA has adapted the Accreditation learning and testing model to match changes in how we work, and how we live. Preparation for the three-part Accreditation Examination process can be done independently, through self-managed group study sessions, and with questions to the Accreditation Chair or a group of APR Advisors who have offered to discuss credential learning via email or phone.

Congratulations to Our New APRs!

Michael Arnum, APR, Art in Everything PR + Marketing

Erin Callanan, APR, Callanan & Klein

Dan Dent, APR, Benchmark Senior Living