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Continuing education guidelines and tips

Continuing education requirements:

  • General course LU’s are for courses on a wide range of topics related to the practice of architecture.
  • Course must be at least one (1) hour in length, consisting of direct learning activity (minimum of 60 minutes).
  • Course content must be unbiased, not promoting or marketing a presenter's products or services. A presenter’s products or services can only be discussed once the credit portion of the Course is completed.
  • Course materials (such as Power Points, handouts, slides, and samples) used during the credit portion of the Course may not include any proprietary information, must be educational, and must serve to reinforce the learning objectives. Only the first and last slide of a Presentation may include a company’s product or service information.
  • Course must have a clear purpose with a minimum of four (4) stated learning objectives.

Health, Safety, and Welfare (HSW):

An HSW learning program must meet all three criteria:

• Content must directly support the HSW definition
• Content must include one of more of the AIA CES acceptable HSW topics
• At least 75 percent of the content must be on HSW topics

HSW definition:

Licensed architects and affiliated design professionals have, in their professional practice, a positive duty to protect the public’s health, safety, and welfare. Learning programs must address knowledge intended to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the occupants of the built environment, as defined below:

Health Those aspects of professional practice that improve the physical, emotional, and social well-being of occupants, users, and any others affected by buildings and sites.
Safety Those aspects of professional practice that protect occupants, users, and any others affected by buildings or sites from harm.
Welfare Those aspects of professional practice that enable equitable access, elevate the human experience, encourage social interaction, and benefit the environment

Acceptable HSW topics

Technical and professional subjects related to the practice of architecture that safeguard the public and that are within the following continuing education subject areas necessary for the proper evaluation, design, construction, and utilization of buildings and the built environment are considered Health, Safety, and Welfare (HSW) subjects.

Learning programs must address one or more of the following HSW topics to be approved for LU|HSW credit:

Practice management This category focuses on areas related to the management of architectural practice and the details of running a business.
Project management This category focuses on areas related to the management of architectural projects through execution.
Programming and analysis This category focuses on areas related to the evaluation of project requirements, constraints, and opportunities.
Project planning and design This category focuses on areas related to the preliminary design of sites and buildings.
Project development and documentation This category focuses on areas related to the integration and documentation of building systems, material selection, and material assemblies into a project.
Construction and evaluation This category focuses on areas related to construction contract administration and post-occupancy evaluation of projects.

HSW Justification is meant to provide the AIA reviewer with additional clarity as to how the learning program addresses the letter and spirit of the HSW criteria. This field is only seen by the provider and the reviewers and will never be displayed publicly. The information provided will help our reviewers better understand how you will be fulfilling the requirements for HSW programs as a supplement to the program title, description, and learning objectives.

Please note that simply falling into one of the topic categories is not sufficient for a learning program receive HSW credit. There needs to be a clear understanding of how the program protects or benefits the occupants of the built environment (not the design professional, firm, owner, or contractor). If the course is not directly about occupant benefits, then it does not qualify for HSW regardless of if the general topic is an qualifying one as defined above.

AIA National has made a commitment to being much stricter in their application of the HSW criteria. The more clearly you can demonstrate and explain why and how a program meets the HSW criteria, the more likely it will be approved.

If you have any questions regarding continuing education credits, please contact [email protected]

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