Updates to RQAP Re-Registration Requirements, Effective 1 January 2012
In response to the many questions and concerns addressed to CPR on a regular basis, the Council has spent several months revising, simplifying, and clarifying the requirements for re-registration. The SOP governing this process, CP-12, Re-Registration Requirements, has been updated to simplify the method of awarding re-registration credit for courses, seminars, webinars, conferences and other meetings; to revise the units awarded for professional memberships; and to further clarify and make equal the units awarded for any re-registration activity.
These changes are in effect for all activities performed in 2012 and beyond. All activities performed before 2012 may be governed by the previous version of the SOP if it benefits the Registrant. Following are some key changes to the requirements; major changes are in bold italics, and the explanations and/or minor clarifications are in normal text.
- 5.3.1. Attendance at professional meetings, training workshops/courses, seminars, or conferences: 1 hour of classroom time (not including meals or breaks) = 0.25 unit.
- This changed from the previous breakdown of full day = 2 units, ½ day = 1 unit, and ¼ day = 0.5 units awarded.
- A one-day conference (8 hours minus a 1-hour lunch = 7 hours of classroom time) now will be 1.75 re-registration units. While this may sometimes slightly decrease the number of units awarded for a full-day conference, shorter events and web-based education may benefit from additional units. Before, a 3-hour event would earn only 0.5 units; now, a 3-hour event will earn 0.75 units. Quantifying the number of units earned per hour also makes it very clear what every event will be worth.
- 18.104.22.168. If an SQA Chapter or other relevant professional organization wishes to obtain pre-approval of re-registration credit for a scheduled conference or event, then they must use the standardized form available from SQA to make this request.
- Any non-SQA related organization (BARQA, JSQA, ACRP, DIA, SOT, RAPS, etc.) may request re-registration units for its event, but the organization must have something to do with QA, GLP, GCP or related functions.
- 5.3.4. Primary or first author on technical articles for a relevant professional membership association newsletter (SQA, SQA Chapters and other relevant professional organizations) = 0.5 unit.
- This is a new opportunity – writing technical newsletter articles did not previously earn the author any re-registration units.
- Primary or first author means that the number of people receiving units will be limited. Collaborative work will be rewarded only if equal shares of the article can be supported for more than two named authors.
- 5.3.5. Primary or first author for poster presentation: each unique, non-repetitive poster = 1 unit.
- Previously, any participating author on a poster could claim re-registration units, but too often, an entire committee or special interest group is named as the poster author, even if many members of the group had nothing to do with creating the poster. Therefore, only the primary or first author on the poster will receive units. Collaborative work will be rewarded only if equal shares of the article can be supported for more than two named authors.
- 5.3.6. Attendance at relevant university course(s): 1 semester/quarter credit = 1 unit (e.g., one 3-credit university course = 3 units).
- CPR has clarified the meaning of this opportunity with an example.
- 5.3.7. Membership in a relevant professional membership association (SQA, SQA Chapters and other relevant professional organizations) = 0.25 units per year (each), not to exceed 1 unit per year from association memberships.
- This change decreases the units earned by belonging to SQA from 1 unit per year down to 0.25. Being a member of both SQA and one SQA Chapter for three years will net only 1.5 units, not 6 units.
- However, membership in relevant professional organizations outside of SQA, such as BARQA, JSQA, DIA, SOT, ACRP, ALAAS, NAICC, etc., can now also count toward your re-registration units. This is a new opportunity, as membership outside of SQA and SQA Chapters was not previously recognized.
- 5.3.8. Any member of an elected or appointed Committee OR Board-approved Chair or Vice Chair of a volunteer Committee or special interest group (i.e., Specialty Section) in a relevant professional membership organization (SQA, SQA Chapters and other relevant professional organizations) = 1 unit per year (each). A maximum of 3 GLP or GCP discipline specific units may be used from this category. The remainder must be used as non-discipline specific units.
- We have also streamlined the requirements for committee participation. Participants, to receive the units, must be elected or appointed (not voluntary) to the role. General membership in a volunteer committee or special interest group such as an SQA Specialty Section will not garner units. The reason for this is that a registrant can be a member of a volunteer committee or special interest group without ever attending meetings, completing tasks on behalf of the group, or furthering the member's professional education in any way.
- Serving in the Chair or Vice Chair role for a volunteer committee or special interest group will still earn a registrant 1 unit per year.
- Serving on an organization's Board of Directors (or equivalent) is counted as serving on an elected committee.
- However, as above, being a member of an elected or appointed committee (or Chair or Vice Chair for a volunteer committee or special interest group) in relevant professional organizations outside of SQA, such as BARQA, JSQA, DIA, SOT, ACRP, ALAAS, NAICC, etc., can now also count toward your re-registration units. This is a new opportunity, as committee participation outside of SQA was not previously recognized.
- 5.3.9. Submission of solicited questions for the RQAP-GLP or RQAP-GCP examination: every 10 questions submitted = 1 unit. (Attendance at item writing workshops will be granted units under section 5.3.1 above for training workshops.)
- This is a clarification that item writing workshops can be counted as training for re-registration purposes in addition to the units awarded for the submission of test questions.
- 5.3.10. SQA, SQA Chapter and other relevant professional organizations’ Mentoring Programs (Mentors, Mentees, and Peer Partners): per mentoring partnership = 2 units; maximum per year = 4 units.
- The requirement was expanded to include any mentoring programs run by SQA Chapters or other relevant professional organizations.
- The requirement was also expanded to include Mentees who receive professional development through a mentoring program. Previously, only Mentors and Peer Partners received units.
- 5.8. The completed application for re-registration must be submitted (by e-mail, fax or mail) to SQA Headquarters on or before 31 October of the re-registration year; if the application is submitted by mail, the application must be postmarked on or before the due date. Late applications shall be accepted within a 31-day window following the due date. Example applications are attached to this Policy (Attachments 1 and 2); an application form may be obtained from the SQA website.
- This was revised to note that e-mail and fax application submissions are accepted. CPR also added a provision for late applications.
- 5.10. If a Registrant submits documentation of a professional development activity that is not accepted by the Council for re-registration, leaving the Registrant short of the re-registration requirements, an opportunity shall be provided for the Registrant to supplement his or her application with additional activities to meet the minimum requirements for re-registration by the deadline stated in the notification.
- This is not really a new provision, but due to the large number of questions the Council receives, we felt it would be best to specify what happens when we encounter this situation. The Council will work with you to allow you submit additional units to meet the 12-unit requirement should any of your original activities or documentation be deemed insufficient or unacceptable as submitted. The Council will notify you of the number of units not accepted, and the steps you would need to take in order to re-submit units for consideration.
Council on Professional Registration Conducts Survey
In November 2009, the Council on Professional Registration (CPR) surveyed SQA members and other QA professionals regarding the Registered Quality Assurance Professional (RQAP) Program and the examination required for registration. This is first opportunity SQA members have had to provide feedback directly to CPR. The survey consisted of fifteen (15) questions, seven (7) pertaining to members who have not taken the RQAP examination and seven (7) for members who have taken the examination. There were 422 respondents who completed the survey. Industry professionals from the US (316), Canada (34), UK and EU (18), India (14), Korea (11), China (11) and Japan (8) responded. Other countries represented were Singapore, Thailand, Amman-Jordan, Cameroon, Brazil, and Argentina. Quality Professionals in Good Laboratory Practices (GLP) and Good Clinical Practices (GCP) were equally represented. Over half (55%) of the responders have obtained RQAP status. Less than half (44%) of the remaining 210 SQA members are uncertain if they will take the examination in the future. CPR is interested in ways in which the RQAP Program can be improved. The responses to the survey are extremely valuable, and CPR is in the process of implementing some of the suggestions provided by the survey responders. This is a very exciting time for the RQAP Program. After a long selection process, a new testing services vendor, Professional Testing, Inc., has been contracted and will assist SQA in advancing the RQAP Program. This can only be accomplished with your help. If you are not a RQAP, we urge you to consider the value the registration will bring to your career, your profession and your personal sense of success. Your peers will acknowledge your commitment and experience, and you can be proud of your accomplishment. The RQAP Program needs senior QA Professionals to assist the RQAP Examination Subcommittees with the development of examinations. Please contact the Chair of CPR, the Chair of the GLP Examination Subcommittee, the Chair of the GCP Examination Subcommittee or SQA Headquarters to learn more about the RQAP Program and how you can become an active member of the RQAP Program.
Chair, CPR – Jacqueline Bushong RQAP-GCP (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Chair, GLP Examination Subcommittee – Judith C McDowall MS, RQAP-GLP (email@example.com)
Chair, GCP Examination Subcommittee – Melissa A Meyer-Ely RQAP-GCP (firstname.lastname@example.org)