Pre-Approved Continuing Education Units (CEUs)

Earning Pre-approved CEUs

CEUs are offered through workshops, and seminars presented by ISA and our network of chapters, professional associations, allied partners, academic institutions, and other organizations that have sought pre-approval through ISA.

Benefits of attending a pre-approved event are:

  • Attendees know how many CEUs they will earn for attending the event before the event
  • Faster processing times since the content has already been reviewed
  • Less paperwork for attendees

Examples of pre-approved sources include:

  • Events. Workshops, conferences, webinars and chapter events held by your local ISA Chapter or Affiliate Organization. To view a list of pre-approved events, visit the ISA Calendar and search for events offering CEU opportunities near you!
  • Quizzes. Online quizzes are available through Arborist News, Arboriculture & Urban Forestry, Arborpod podcasts, and ISA’s Online Learning Center. Simply complete and submit the online quiz. Results are immediately generated and your CEU totals will be applied to your account within 48 hours.
  • ISA Publications and Quizzes. CEUs for articles and quizzes in Arborist News and other ISA publications may only be earned once per issue or edition. Completed paper quizzes must be returned to ISA Headquarters for grading before credits will be applied to your account.
  • ISA Workbooks, CDs, Podcasts, DVDs, and Videos. The ISA provides a variety of publications worth CEUs. Browse the ISA webstore for CEU products.
  • College Courses. College courses based on arboriculture are now worth 12 CEUs per credit hour. For example, a 3-credit hour college course is worth 36 CEUs. Proof of passing grade is required.
  • Assessment-Based Courses. Diploma or certificate-based courses based on arboriculture are now worth 12 CEUs per credit hour. For example, a 3-credit hour course is worth 36 CEUs. Proof of passing grade is required. If the course does not have credit hour designation then CEUs would be awarded based on seat time. 
  • Instructors and Presenters. Instructors and presenters of arboriculture-related education such as seminars, conferences, webinars, and workshops can be awarded the same number of CEUs the attendees would receive at those events.
  • Participation in Tree Climbing Championship Events. Climbers, judges, and technicians can be awarded up to 3 CEUs at ITCC and Chapter TCC events.
  • First Aid or CPR class. A CPR and First Aid class, or renewal, is each worth 4 CEUs. A copy of your card is needed to earn the CEUs. Also, CEUs for CPR and First Aid will only be awarded once per certification period.
  • In-House Training. Many companies and government agencies offer in-house training. Any course pertaining to tree care and safety is eligible for CEUs. This may include safety meetings, CPR/First Aid, chainsaw safety, etc. Please contact the ISA to find out if your in-house training opportunities qualify for CEUs.

How can you tell if an event has been pre-approved? Depending on the format of the event, there will either be pre-coded attendance sheets or CEU codes available for attendees to verify attendance. The event coordinator will provide information about the method of obtaining CEU credit.

How to request pre-approval for an event

If you are organizing or instructing an event that you believe may be eligible for CEU credit, you may submit a request to have it pre-approved. To be eligible for CEU credit, an event:

  1. Must directly relate to the field of arboriculture and one of the topics found on the certification exam outline.
  2. Must have an educational focus and a form of measureable learning.
  3. Must be at least 30 minutes in length or have several eligible sessions that add up to at least 30 minutes.

To request pre-approval for a local event, you may submit a pre-approval form and a detailed agenda or outline that shows how the training time will be used to your local ISA chapter office. If your event will be available in more than one chapter or will be an online course, you may submit your request to ISA Headquarters for processing.

Please note: Non-educational events and activities are not available for CEUs and are not to be treated as a commodity to compensate volunteers. There must be a formal educational component to receive CEUs, and they cannot be traded for service projects, board meetings, or participation in other non-education focused programs. CEUs also cannot be awarded for preparation time when researching and preparing an educational event.

Tracking Your CEUs

ISA will track how many CEUs you have and how many you need for renewal. You may also check your CEUs status by logging into your account.