Expert Level Certification (LEVEL III)


The CPTC Expert Level certification (Level III) assessment process involves the comprehensive review and scoring of candidate application submissions and interview presentations by a qualified assessment team, overseen by the Chief Examiner and the STC Certification Commission. The document below provides details on the composition and responsibilities of the assessment team and rubrics, which will score materials in each of the four specialization areas (Project Planning and Analysis, Visual Communication, Content Development & Organization, Reviewing and Editing Strategies), encompassing the nine core competencies of technical communication.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Candidates must have successfully passed CPTC Practitioner level certification and provide proof when submitting their application.
  • Candidates should have significant expertise in producing technical documents and projects using established technical communication theories and practices. Candidates should provide proof of at least ten years of professional experience and/or education and training related to technical communication.
Certified Professional Technical Communicator Logo Expert

Registration Fee and Assessment Process

  • $475 USD for current STC members
  • $850 USD for nonmembers

The CPTC Expert Level candidate assessment process is described below.  Candidate Portal refers to the online website through which candidates can submit their portfolio for evaluation.

  • Candidate submits payment to register for the Expert Level online.
  • Candidate receives confirmation and is sent necessary details via email on submitting their portfolio.
  • Candidate prepares and submits their completed submission portfolio to the Candidate Portal online.
  • Once received, certification staff checks submission portfolios, payment, and certification status and notifies candidates via email of any discrepancies.
  • Validated (or fully complete) submission portfolios are assigned to two members of the assessment team for review. This assessment typically takes two to three weeks.
  • The assessment team contacts the candidate to schedule an interview on a mutually convenient day, time, and modality. The interview should be scheduled within two to four weeks of the completed assessor portfolio review.
  • Candidate completes the interview session, which includes a candidate presentation and question period, with the assessment team on a mutually convenient day and time.
  • The assessment team confers and files their recommendation and report, which is reviewed by the Chief Examiner to ensure they assessment team’s evidence supports the recommended result. Any discrepancies are report back to the assessment team for revision.
  • Candidate is informed via email with the formal results and feedback, typically within two weeks. Successful candidates will receive certificates and digital badges to document their achievement.

Candidate Application Requirements

After confirmed payment and eligibility, the candidate will submit a portfolio of materials for Expert Level review by the assessment team, which includes the following:

  • Application form (serves as title page).
  • A current professional resume (no more than five pages).
  • An executive summary (no more than four pages).
  • A professional work sample (between 10 and 20 pages).
  • A presentation (20-30 minutes) with slides (10-20 slides) to be presented live to the assessment team.
  • Two professional reference letters that provide supporting evidence of the candidate’s knowledge, skills, and abilities in technical communication.
  • Candidate Instructions
  • Register for the assessment
  • Candidate Portal (document submission)

Continuing Education Requirements

Continuing education units (CEUs) for CPTC Certification are point-based. Certifications will be considered current if a technical communicator achieves 12 CEU points over a two-year period from the date of certification. At the end of the two-year period, point accumulation begins again.

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