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Jonathan Miller, FCSI, SCIP
Senior Member
Username: jmma_specs

Post Number: 7
Registered: 04-2009
Posted on Monday, May 04, 2009 - 08:36 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

On 1 July 2009, NCARB will allow IDP interns—whether employed or not—to earn training units by completing LEED accreditation and by completing specified architecture-related certificate programs offered by the Construction Specifications Institute.

For more information go to http://www.ncarb.org/Experience-Through-Internships/IDP2-Experience-Settings/IDP2-Supplemental-Experience-Core/Certificate-Programs.aspx

[12/12/2014 - link updated]

ps: As a member of the CSI Certification Committee I think this is a HUGE vote of confidence for CSI Certifications !
Intern Architect, CSI, CDT (Unregistered Guest)
Unregistered guest
Posted on Wednesday, December 10, 2014 - 12:46 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Above link is old and broken. Information can currently be found here: http://www.ncarb.org/Experience-Through-Internships/IDP2-Experience-Settings/IDP2-Supplemental-Experience-Core/Certificate-Programs.aspx

I have to say, I applaud the concept but think that in practice it isn't very practical except for select circumstances. Let me explain:

In concept, I think Jonathan is right, this is a big vote of confidence and helps to bring a level of awareness of CSI's certification programs to interns who might not otherwise be aware of them. However, in practice (for an intern looking to get hours to complete IDP) the applicability is close to worthless.

Earning a CDT gets you 40 elective hours. While helpful, this would be a lot more effective if it were for core hours in Construction Documents, still very much applicable, but a category that some interns find hard to fulfill. Furthermore, NCARB is looking at streamlining IDP and one of the things they are proposing to remove is the elective hours (http://blog.ncarb.org/2014/September/IDP-Streamline-FAQs.aspx) so earning a CDT will become less beneficial unless it is changed to fulfill core hours.

Earning a CCS or CCCA will get you core hours; 40 each in Material Selection and Specification and Construction Administration, for each certification respectively. Much better on paper until you consider that CSI requires you to have at least two years experience in these fields before sitting for the exams (http://csinet.org/Main-Menu-Category/Certification/CCCA/Quick-Tasks-CCCA/Certification-FAQs.html#ce5). At that point in any intern's career path, they will already have fulfilled the required hours in those categories.

So in the end, unless you are working in situations where you are unable to earn IDP credit for the hours you are working, I don't feel that the CSI certificates are helping interns out all that much, as far as getting hours is concerned. I do feel that interns will learn and become much more valuable if they have completed the CSI certification regardless of the fact that the hours may not be that beneficial in completing the IDP requirements.

The sad part is that most interns won't realize this. They will only be looking for ways to complete hours, and currently the CSI certificates don't really help them with that if you look at the fine print.
Intern Architect, CSI, CDT (Unregistered Guest)
Unregistered guest
Posted on Monday, April 20, 2015 - 06:54 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

NCARB announced that this summer, they will be streamlining IDP getting rid of elective hours; http://www.ncarb.org/News-and-Events/News/2015/IDP-Streamline.aspx

Some jurisdictions will still require them above and beyond IDP; http://www.ncarb.org/en/Experience-Through-Internships/IDP2-Experience-Categories-Areas/Experience-Requirement-by-State.aspx

Earning your CDT just became that much less appealing to an intern. Especially if you are seeking licensure in a jurisdiction that doesn't require the elective hours.

It would be nice to see CSI petition to get the CDT hours awarded to core hours in the Construction Documents category rather than elective hours.
James Sandoz, AIA, CSI, CCS, CCCA
Senior Member
Username: jsandoz

Post Number: 161
Registered: 06-2005

Posted on Tuesday, April 21, 2015 - 08:52 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

What's really depressing is the allocation by NCARB of the number of hours in certain experience areas. To me it demonstrates lack of awareness of what really goes on in an office. We have a push on in our office to involve interns in material selection, since they will do a lot of that as they move up in the ranks, and construction administration because a large part of our client service is getting their projects built.

Putting so much emphasis on "construction documents" practically assures interns will be stuck behind a monitor with their hands glued to a mouse 'drawing' plan details of gyp furring around columns. This is not the way to become a "total architect." It is a way to create what we used to call (before BIM) 'CAD jockeys.'

In a week I could teach an average intern how to organize a drawing set. In a month or two I could teach him or her how to detail most elements of a building.

Over a cumulative six months "in the field" (construction observation, attending client and contractor meetings, logging and reviewing submittals, responding to RFI's - the latter two require good familiarity with the specifications of course) I could expose that intern to more useful knowledge and experience than he or she would ever attain sitting in the office filling out IDP forms for three years.

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