Devon on February 13th, 2015

ContinuingEducationIt finally happened. 2015 is the first year I have to start my CE (continuing education). I guess it’s true, my profession is always evolving, growing, and changing… but really? I just went through a 5 year program to get my degree, a year internship, and then 3 years of professional licensing exams… only to have two years off before starting my yearly 12 hour CE requirement to renew my license (every year, BTW). It’s just… I guess I understand, it’s just frustrating.

All registrants must complete at least 12 Continuing Education Program Hours (CEPH) per calendar year. All 12 CEPH must include the study of subjects related to your profession and be pertinent to the health, safety, and welfare of the public:

  • At least one of the twelve hours must be related to sustainable or energy-efficient design
  • At least one of the twelve hours must be related to barrier-free design.
  • At least eight of the twelve hours must be structured activities, (classroom/classroom equivalent)
  • A maximum of four hours may be self-directed.

At least 4 of the hours can be self-directed. Such as, reading from books or professional magazines. Even touring and visiting buildings, historic sites or landmarks that incorporate elements of your design profession fall under self-directed study. But some activities that you would think would work, are not approved.

The other 8 hours are required to be structured classes (in a classroom or online course) — which cost money. Not only is my yearly license renewal fee $305, I have to pay for 8 hours of classes. At (a CE provider), they have online classes you pay for packaged or individually. The packaged Landscape Architecture 12 hour class is $377! Or you can pick and choose classes. Selecting the minimum requirements comes to about about 4 classes, totaling $288. With the cheapest option, renewing my license every year comes to about $600.

There is another option. You can go to the National (or State) Landscape Architecture Annual Meeting and EXPO. But if it’s not in the city you live, you have to factor in travel cost, lodging, and the registration fee. The Texas ASLA Meeting and Expo is coming up so I’ll use that as the example. The registration price (for early bird ASLA members) is $265. The event is in Galveston, TX, so we need transportation; flight from DFW to HOU is $220. But that’s only to Houston, so we need to rent a car for 3 days, coming to $180. Did we add the hotel yet? Additional, $226 (and that’s at the Red Roof Inn). Totaling a whopping $891 (not including food, tips, taxes/fees, entertainment, so on). And the national meeting is about double that price.

All in all it’s just expensive to be a Landscape Architect. I guess all this weeds out the people that don’t have a passion for it.

P.S. If you are just starting out like me, the Texas Board of Architectural Examiners offer a 1.5 hour course over CE Practice and Procedures for about $35. It gives a few helpful hints. For instance, 1 CEPH is a Continuing Education Program Hour. One CEPH equals a minimum of fifty (50) minutes of actual course time.

Leave a Reply