How long do I have to meet all the CERA requirements?
You have twelve years beginning from your first course to finish all your CERA/CERV/CEM requirements.
Can I take renewal courses at the annual conference that I am graduating at?
No. You must wait to take any renewal courses until you have graduated and received your certificate of graduation.
Is all the CERA/CERV program information in one place for me to read?
Yes. All information regarding the Professional Education Program (CERA/CERV/CEM) is in the PEP Manual.
The Application for Graduation is due on June 1st, but I will not meet all requirements until I complete courses taken in July. Can I still graduate in August?
Yes. Submit your application and note which courses are required in July. Approval for graduation is granted provisionally.
I meet all requirements for graduation except one Election Center conference/workshop. I plan to attend the National Conference at which graduation will take place. Can I use this on my Application for Graduation and still graduate?
No. All conference attendance requirements must be completed before submitting your application.
I want to graduate but I am unable to attend the National Conference.
Graduates who attend the graduation ceremony only and not the conference will be assessed an additional $100 to cover pro rata share of the ceremony. Graduates who do not attend the conference or the ceremony will be assessed a shipping handling fee of $100 to cover shipping costs and pro rata share of the ceremony.
How do I apply for graduation?
Access the Application for Graduation or contact The Election Center at 281.396.4309 or e-mail to
Do I need to include a list of the courses I have taken?
No. The Election Center has records of all courses that you have attended.
If I am an elected official, who do I have sign off on my Experience Credit? Can I sign it myself?
You need to obtain a signature from someone within your organization that oversees the County, i.e. Chief Administrative Office or a member of the Board of Supervisors, etc.
I attended an Election Center conference before taking my first PEP course. Can I use this for credit towards graduation?
No. Experience and conference attendance must occur within the time frame of taking courses.
I have just returned to the elections profession; can I use my prior election experience on the Experience Credit portion of the graduation packet?
No. You can only use your experience beginning immediately prior to beginning courses and must meet the requirement for three years and a jurisdiction-wide election.
How do I know when my Application for Graduation has been approved?
You will receive written notification from The Election Center in mid to late July.
What can I do if my Application for Graduation is not approved and I dispute that finding?
A procedure for appealing denied applications is available. For this information contact The Election Center at 281.396.4309 or e-mail to
How do I renew my CERA/CERV status?
Access the Application for Renewal or contact The Election Center at 281.396.4309 or e-mail
How do I know when my CERA/CERV will expire?
You can check your certification status on our website listing. This date is also noted on your CERA/CERV certificate.
How often do I need to renew my CERA/CERV and what is the deadline?
You must renew every three years by December 31. If your graduation date is 8/13/2010, you should renew your status by submitting an Application for Renewal by 12/31/2013.
What happens if I miss the deadline for renewal?
You will not be listed as an active CERA/CERV graduate until your renewal is brought up to date.
What if I am unable to attend a required course or event during the renewal period?
Failure to maintain continuing education and other requirements as specified in the PEP manual or by the Certification Board, will be grounds for losing your CERA/CERV/CEM status. Once the CERA/CERV/CEM status has been lost, you will have to make up courses missed and attendance at events missed in order to be re-certified. No substitutions can be made for required courses.
What happens when my Application for Renewal is approved?
You will receive a letter confirming your renewal status from the CERA Administrator's office. The annual renewal recognition luncheon occurs every April at the Election Center workshop event. Renewal certificates and lapel pins are awarded at that time. If you are not able to attend the recognition luncheon, your certificate and lapel pin will be mailed to you immediately after the April workshop.