ACVREP's Recertification Policy and Procedures

CERTIFIED LOW VISION THERAPISTS (CVRT®)

CERTIFIED ORIENTATION AND MOBILITY SPECIALISTS (COMS®)

CERTIFIED VISION REHABILITATION THERAPISTS (CVRT®)


ACVREP certificants have the option of retaking the ACVREP certification exam(s) to recertify in lieu of recertifying by points.

ACVREP adheres to the belief that individuals certified as vision rehabilitation and education professionals should continue to expand their knowledge and skills in order to enhance the quality of the services they provide.

The ACVREP recertification program encourages certificants to pursue professional activities in order to achieve the following goals:
  • Obtain information on current trends.
  • Explore new technologies.
  • Develop balanced professional judgment and enhance critical skills.
  • Acquire knowledge in specific focus areas.

Recertification Requirements

The recertification program promotes professional competence in the field of vision rehabilitation and education. If the certificant chooses to submit documentation of professional activity points for recertification (versus retaking the certification exam), all recertification points must be earned during the five-year recertification cycle. No credit is given for points earned prior to or following the end of the recertification cycle. 

It is each certificant's responsibility to collect and maintain all documentation relating to recertification activities over his/her five-year cycle of certification. The recertification points and documentation may now be tracked through the online My Recertification Tracker. As each activity is completed you should long into your online account, click on your Tracker link, list the activity just completed and upload the supporting documentation into your Tracker.

It is also the certificant's responsibility to submit online the recertification application before the end of the five-year recertification cycle. The recertification application and the recertification fee can be completed by logging into your My ACVREP account.

Recertification Procedures

Applicants for recertification must earn 100 points to renew their certification at the end of the five-year cycle.

  • They must submit a minimum of 25 points in Category One - Continuing Education. They may also submit all 100 points in Category One.
  • For the remaining categories (Professional Experience, Publications and Presentations, and Professional Service), applicants are allowed a maximum of 50 points for each of these categories.
  • Early applications for recertification may be accepted and reviewed only within six months prior to the recertification expiration date. However, early applications for recertification will be issued the expiration date of the quarter in which the application was initially approved.
  • The online submission of the application for Recertification is due by 11:59 PM Eastern time on the first day of the month in which your certification expires, for example, March 1 for a March 31 expiry. Any application received later than this time will be assessed a Late Fee in the amount identified on the fee schedule.
  • Recertification will be valid for five (5) years

Reinstatement of Certification Policy

Candidates initially granted certification, but who have not made application for recertification and have allowed their certification and have allowed their recertification to Expire, may be reinstated within one calendar year, ("Grace Period"), following the certification expiration date if they meet the recertification requirements and pay the Recertification Fee and the Late Fee that are applicable at the time they apply for recertification. If they do not recertify the Grace Period, their certification will Lapse and be considered inactive. 

If a candidate has allowed his/her certification to lapse or has been determined to be ineligible for recertification for longer than one year, s/he may only recertify by taking the certification exam. If a certification has been lapsed for 10 years or longer, a candidate must reapply for certification completely including all certification steps.

It is solely the responsibility of the certificant to know his/her certification expiration date and to recertify on time. ACVREP will, as a courtesy to certificants, send 3 and 6 month email reminders of certification expiry dates. It is the responsibility of the certificant to keep his/her email address up to date in his/her online account. 

Refer to the ACVREP website for a current Directory of Certificants.

Approved Continuing Education Content Areas

Continuing education activities for recertification credit must focus on increasing the knowledge and/or skills of the individual, in the practice of vision rehabilitation and education, in one or more of the following areas:

  1. The Visual System and Vision Loss: visual system and visual functioning, the etiology of visual impairments and the effects of these impairments on visual functioning, the pathology and effect of systemic health conditions on vision, basic optics of the eyes, basic optics of refractive lenses, and basic optics of low vision devices.
  2. The Auditory System and Hearing Loss: auditory system and functioning; effects of hearing loss and impairment; communication systems used by persons with auditory impairments; loss of hearing so severe that it is nonfunctional for the ordinary activities of daily living; and concomitant hearing and visual impairments, the combination of which may present unique communication, learning, developmental, orientation and mobility, and social needs.
  3. Psychosocial Aspects of Visual Impairment: cultural and psychosocial factors affecting adjustment to visual loss; the resources for addressing student, family, and community responses to visual impairment; and systems and professionals in counseling.
  4. Professionalism in Vision Education and Rehabilitation: professional roles and functions, professional goals and objectives, professional organizations and associations, professional history and trends, ethical and legal standards, professional preparation standards, and professional credentialing.
  5. Professional Information: sources of professional literature and new information related to the practice of vision rehabilitation and education professionals, evolving practice developments, legislation, public policy, research findings, current issues, and trends and public policy that affect the quality of life for consumers.
  6. Individuals Who are Visually Impaired With Additional Disabilities: including sensory, sensorimotor, and physical impairments; mobility impairments not related to visual impairment; developmental disabilities; learning disabilities; diabetes; organic brain damage; and challenging behaviors.
  7. Aging and Vision Loss: normal age-related changes in vision and visual functioning, other prevalent age-related health changes, prevalent visual impairments associated with aging and their functional consequences, service delivery systems in aging, geriatric and gerontological health practices and professionals, and service delivery in visual rehabilitation relevant to older persons.
  8. Sensory and Motor Functioning: sensory and motor systems, the manner in which these systems affect orientation and locomotion and other daily activities and functions, and the effects of visual impairment on sensory and motor functioning.
  9. Human Growth and Development over the Lifespan: the effects of visual impairments and multiple impairments on affective, psychomotor, and cognitive development and processes; and characteristic and atypical developmental patterns of persons with visual and/or multiple impairments.
  10. Assessment of Persons with Visual Impairment and their Environments: strategies and methods used to conduct assessments of persons who have a visual impairment and their environment, and the development of individualized education and rehabilitation plans.
  11. Instructional Methods: teaching and therapeutic strategies and interventions to promote independence and coping skills, including instruction in the use of visual and non-visual techniques, Braille and other tactual systems, auditory systems, environmental modifications, computer technology, adaptive mobility devices, low vision devices and innovative technology for use by individuals who are visually impaired.
  12. Development, Administration, and Supervision of Programs Serving Persons with Visual Impairment: service delivery systems; strategies for organizing and administering programs; quality indicators of services; the role of the vision rehabilitation and education profession and other personnel in the provision of quality educational, rehabilitation, public and private services to persons who are visually impaired; major legislation and policies affecting services for persons who are visually impaired; and local, state and national resources for the provision of services.
  13. Communication, Team-Building, Consumerism, Cultural Diversity, And Working With Families: developing strategies for effective communications (spoken and written); fostering and supporting consumers in self-advocacy; and principles and strategies for effective teamwork among professionals, consumers, and significant others in vision rehabilitation and education, including issues related to cultural diversity and working with families.

Recertification Activities and Point Values

Applicants for recertification must earn 100 points to renew their certification at the end of the five-year cycle. They must submit a minimum of 25 points from Category One - Continuing Education. They may also submit all 100 points from Category One. 

For the remaining categories (Professional Experience, Publications and Presentations, and Professional Service), applicants are allowed a maximum of 50 points for each of these categories.


Category One: Continuing Education

(A minimum of 25 points is required from this area)

Continuing education (CE) activities may include workshops, seminars, conferences, independent studies, and in-service programs. CE hours obtained after July 1, 2004 must be ACVREP approved.

One hour of CE is equivalent to 60 minutes of instruction or participation. Clock hour credit is not given for social hours, coffee breaks, or meals during which instruction is not provided. 1 CE = 1 point.

Documentation Needed:

Official documentation of continuing education credits must include the candidate's name, attendance dates, title of course or program, and contact hours. This can be documented through a certificate of attendance or written certification by the instructor.

College and university courses, including distance learning courses, independent studies, and university courses.

Foundation courses for credit:
1 semester credit = 15 CE hours =15 points.
1 trimester credit = 14 CE hours = 14 points.
1 quarter credit = 10 CE hours = 10 points.

ACVREP approved Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are translated into points as follows:
1 contact hour = 0.1 CEU = 1 point.
10 contact hours = 1.0 CEU = 10 points.

Documentation Needed:

Official transcripts or grade report. If the course title does not appear to be related to the approved content areas, a course outline should be submitted.


Category Two: Professional Experience

If this category is selected for recertification, 50 points can be earned with a minimum of 360 hours of vision professional experience completed within the five-year recertification cycle. Points cannot be pro rata for less than 360 hours. If you do not have 360 hours then your points in this category would be zero.

The hours can be accumulated through the performance of one or several of the following professional roles:

Direct Service Provider - delivers service directly to consumers/students as a vision rehabilitation/education professional by performing assessments, developing and implementing individual programs and treatment plans, documenting assessments and interventions, and working on an interdisciplinary team.

Department, Distance Learning or Internship Supervisor - supervises vision rehabilitation/education personnel and/or students in the direct delivery of service to persons with visual impairments.

Administrator - administers a department or a division that includes vision rehabilitation/education services.

Consultant - performs consulting services in vision rehabilitation/education for organizations, educational institutions, agencies or corporations.

Volunteer - volunteers services performed in any of the various roles described above.

Documentation Needed:

Applicants must verify professional experience hours through the employing agency personnel department or their immediate supervisor. The applicant's hours can be verified through a written letter signed by his/her immediate supervisor or a representative from the personnel office/human resources department. For a sample of the Employer Verification Letter, please download it here.


Category Three: Publications and Presentations

(A maximum of 50 points is allowed from this area)

A certificant may request credit for professional publications and presentations. Credit will not be given for repeat or multiple presentations of the same seminar, in-service, conference, papers or poster presentation.

Type of Publication Points
Editorials 2
Journal Articles: peer-reviewed, original research 25
Journal Articles: peer-reviewed, publication on practice 20
Journal Articles: not peer-reviewed 5
Journal Article Peer Reviewer 1 per review
Textbook Peer Reviewer 5 per review
Newsletter: Editing 2 per issue
Newsletter: Article 1
Published editor of a textbook 25
Textbook chapter 20
Textbook 50
Contributing author: ACVREP sanctioned Certification Examination Study Guide 30
Published journal or book reviews 10
Published research abstract 2
Unpublished completed masters or doctoral thesis 50
Lecturing for college and university courses earns 2 points for each 60 minutes of lecture. 2 points for each hour
Presentation at a professional conference or CE program earns 2 points for each 60 minutes of lecture. 2 points for each hour

Documentation Needed:

Copy of the publication or a copy of the title page, table of contents, and publication date. If the publication is in the process of being published, a publisher's notice of acceptance is permissible. For presentations, submit evidence of the presentation (e.g., program announcement, brochure) as well as the presentation date, exact number of contact hours, and a letter confirming that the presentation was completed (e.g., a thank you letter.). For peer review, submit a letter of verification from the publisher or journal editor.


Category Four: Professional Service

(A maximum of 50 points is allowed from this area)

Paid or volunteer: includes professional activities such as service on professional boards, councils, legislative work, standards development, and curriculum development related to vision rehabilitation/education for a professional organization, university program or facility in the field of vision rehabilitation and education.

International, national or local chapter board chair, committee chair or officer. 10 points per year of service. Participation in a minimum of two meetings, in person or by conference call, per year is required.
International, national or local board member or committee member. Five points per year of service.
Service on any committee in a facility. Minimum of five meetings per year required. Two points per year of service.
Practicum, internship, work experience or supervisor programs for students or entry level professionals. 1 clock hour = 0.25 point.

Documentation Needed:

Letters of verification of service provided by the university personnel or by the employer. Letters of verification documenting the office held and dates held from the board chair, the chair of the committee or the secretary.