Accreditation in Public Relations (APR)

Earning the APR demonstrates your mastery of today’s strategic communications practice and your commitment to lifelong learning and ethical standards. Attaining this valuable distinction is a personal and professional achievement that can lead you to the next level in your career.

All FPRA members in good standing are eligible for the APR; however, candidates are strongly recommended to have at least five years of full-time public relations experience.

The Exam & Process
The APR exam consists of two parts: a panel presentation and a computer-based examination. Before sitting for the computer-based examination, candidates must schedule a panel presentation to ensure they have the knowledge and experience needed to advance to it. Candidates are encouraged to take advantage of the Capital Chapter’s complimentary study group and summer boot camp sessions.

The panel of judges will determine if a candidate can be advanced to the computer-based examination, which concludes after the panel presentation. Once approved, the candidate is able to schedule the computer-based examination at their convenience.

IMPORTANT: Candidates have 12 months from the acceptance of their application to complete the panel presentation and computer-based examination. A candidate will be provided additional instructions if they do not pass a portion of their oral or written exam. 

Certified Public Relations Counselor (CPRC)

The CPRC certification is designed to recognize professional growth and achievements of senior-level public relations practitioners, enabling them to challenge their advanced principles, skills and The CPRC certification is designed to recognize the professional growth and achievements of senior-level public relations practitioners, enabling them to challenge their advanced principles, skills, and knowledge while demonstrating proven expertise in the profession.

Candidates must have earned their APR, have a minimum of 10 years’ experience in public relations, and be an FPRA member in good standing.

The Exam & Process
The CPRC exam process consists of two parts – an oral presentation and a written examination.

The oral presentation evaluates a candidate’s persuasive skills and verbal application of the Research, Planning, Implementation, Evaluation (RPIE) method. Candidates will choose one of three offered scenarios to present seven days before the scheduled presentation. Items evaluated include the specific steps of RPIE, whether the candidate was persuasive and effective, and the candidate’s overall impression. Each item is scored between one and five for a total of 50 points. To pass the written exam, a candidate must score a minimum of 35 points (70%).

The CPRC written exam is subjective, requiring candidates to draw from their 10+ years of solid public relations experience in applying the RPIE method to solve problems and present solutions. The exam consists of 14 case studies with an estimated length of time for answering each question, ranging from 15 to 60 minutes per case study. It’s important to note that the length of each time estimate also represents the number of possible points a candidate can earn. For example, a 15-minute case study is worth a maximum score of 15 points. The total points possible for the exam is 300, and a candidate must score a minimum of 210 points (70%) to pass. Six hours (including a 1-hour lunch break) is allotted for the exam, which will be graded by two FPRA professionals who have earned the CPRC credential. If there is no agreement on pass or fail, a third CPRC will serve as a tie breaker.

When a candidate is ready to take the written exam, the Chapter’s Director of Credentialing, with the support of the FPRA’s VP Of Credentialing from the State Office, will arrange a location, date and time that is convenient for both the candidate and the CPRC proctor. The proctor will prepare the workspace, have the exam materials ready, review instructions and return the candidate’s completed exam to the State Office.

IMPORTANT: Candidates are identified on the written exam by a number, not by name, to protect their privacy.

We Are Here to Help You

The Capital Chapter regularly holds study group sessions throughout the year, provides copies of study course materials, and serves as an additional resource for candidates. At any point during this process you need assistance, please contact contact Lauren Helm, APR,CPRC at [email protected].