Common Questions about ISA Credentials

The following are frequently asked questions about our credentialing program. Click a question to read the answer.

There are no practice exams available at this time. To help you study, we do offer exam outlines within the application guide. We also offer suggested study materials within the ISA Store. Both of these resources will provide details about the content of the exams.

Computer-based exams provide result notification immediately upon completion of the exam. Your formal results will be sent approximately six weeks after your exam date. You will be notified of your pass/fail result; percentage scores will be provided for each domain for your information. Those who pass will receive a congratulatory letter, score sheet, certificate, identification card, hard-hat decal, and patch. Your results are confidential. Please note that results cannot be obtained over the phone or by fax. Your pass/fail result may also be viewed by logging into your online account and selecting My Dashboard.

Please refer to the appropriate application guide for information regarding requirements for completion.

The number of correct responses determines the overall score. Each of the areas are scored individually and since they do not have the same number of questions, you cannot add them all up and divide by the number of areas of knowledge.

If you have questions concerning your exam results, please email us. Because of the need to maintain test security, exam booklets cannot be made available for review of the questions and answers, and ISA does not provide a list of questions that were answered correctly or incorrectly. The only information available regarding your performance on the exam is provided on your score report.

If you do not pass the exam, you will receive a failure notification and details for retaking the exam.

You are allowed one free retake up to one year from the original date that you took the exam. If you do not pass the exam using your free retake, you may retake the exam again within one year of the original exam date for an additional fee. If you do not attain a passing score within one year of the original exam date, you will be required to pay the full fee amount. Each time a computer-based exam is selected, an administrative fee will apply. Please note that the Board Certified Master Arborist certification does not offer free exam retakes.

 Please refer to the appropriate application guide to determine exam retake fees.

If you believe that an error was made in the grading of your exam, you may request to have your exam regraded for an additional fee. Requests for regrading may take up to six weeks for completion. If you request to have your exam regraded, you may not schedule another exam until after you receive the regrading results. If you wish to have your exam regraded after receiving your initial score report, please contact us.

Your local ISA chapter or associate organization may have prep classes or trainings available prior to the exam. You will need to contact your local ISA chapter or associate organization directly for more information about availability and cost.

As a self-study option, ISA offers study material that you may purchase to help prepare for the exams.

Exam applications can be completed online and immediately sent to ISA through our online application system.

After submitting your online application, you will receive a confirmation notice that your application has been received. This notification is sent to the e-mail address provided on your application. If you do not receive an e-mail after you submit your application online, contact us to verify receipt of your application.

Candidates who are members of ISA and their local chapter or associate organization receive an exam discount.

In addition to the exam fee, there is a computer-based testing administrative fee for those who elect the computer-based option. The administrative fee applies each time a computer-based exam is scheduled.

If circumstances change after you have applied for the examination, you must request in writing to have the exam rescheduled or request an additional 90-day computer-based authorization period. An additional fee applies to both types of requests.

Please refer to the appropriate application guide to determine your rescheduling fee.

Go to the Exam Dates and Locations page to determine upcoming paper-based exams in your local area. If no paper-based exams are offered in your area, you may choose to take a computer-based exam at a Pearson VUE testing facility.

Yes, all certification exams are available as computer-based exams. Visit the Pearson VUE site to learn more about testing locations in your area.