Credential maintenance

Benefits of credential maintenance

A hand holding a briefcase

Credential maintenance adds value to your credentials and to Editors Canada’s professional certification program.

The credential maintenance program:

  • Assures employers and clients that Editors Canada-certified editors are keeping their skills and knowledge up to date
  • Builds your skills and knowledge through professional development activities
  • Encourages certified editors to contribute to the editing community by sharing their high-level knowledge and skills

Credential maintenance requirements

To maintain your Editors Canada professional certification credential(s), you are required to:

  • Uphold and apply the standards in Editors Canada’s Professional Editorial Standards (2016)
  • Earn 100 professional development points during each five-year period, in at least three of the following categories:
    • Receiving education and training
    • Delivering education and training
    • Volunteering for Editors Canada (members only)
    • Working
    • Other
  • Pay a modest annual fee to cover credential maintenance administration costs

Professional Editorial Standards

As an Editors Canada certification credential holder, you are responsible for knowing the standards in Professional Editorial Standards (2016), upholding these standards in your work and keeping up to date with the standards as they evolve.

Professional development points

To qualify for credential maintenance points, professional development activities must be related to editing and proofreading.

Many of the activities you already engage in will qualify—taking courses, volunteering for Editors Canada, giving presentations, reading and writing books and blogs about editing, and so on.

Professional development activities can be applied to any certification credential, not just the credential(s) you hold. If you’re a certified proofreader, for instance, you can earn points for activities that involve stylistic editing.

Qualifying activities are assigned points that are weighted by time and effort, usually based on the number of hours you spend on them. For example:

  • Taking a 12-hour substantive editing course would earn 36 points (3 points per hour)
  • Spending 5 hours listening to podcasts of Editors Canada branch presentations about editing children’s books and production editing would earn 10 points (2 points per hour)
  • Doing 20 hours of copy editing would earn 20 points (1 point per hour)

Points for writing about editing are based on the length of the published piece. For instance:

  • Writing a 400-word blog about different punctuation systems in the English-speaking world would earn 2 points (1 point for every 200 words)
  • Writing a 1,200-word article about self-publishing would earn 6 points (1 point for every 200 words)

To maintain your credential(s)—no matter how many credentials you hold—you must collect 100 points within the 5-year period following your first certification.

If you earned a credential in 2011 or earlier (i.e., under the old system) and then another in 2012 or later (i.e., under the new system), however, your five-year credential maintenance period begins when you earn your first credential under the new system.

The 100 points must be allocated over at least three of the five professional development categories. There’s a maximum number of points allowed for each category.

The following table outlines the types of activities that can earn points and the number of points you can accumulate in each category.

Activity TypeSupporting Documents (Upon Request)
Category 1—Delivering Education and Training
(maximum of 45 points per reporting period)
Developing or delivering editing-related courses, workshops or presentations (3 points per hour)Course description that lists you as instructor, leader or mentor
Leading editorial study groups; training or mentoring other editors (2 points per hour)Letter signed by study group members or by editor(s) you’ve mentored
Developing material related to editing (1 point per 200 words)Published material that lists you as contributor
Category 2—Receiving Education and Training
(maximum of 45 points per reporting period)
Taking editing-related courses or workshops, in person or online; completing editing-related exercises, online or in hard copy (3 points per hour)Course description and receipt
Attending editing-related presentations or webinars (2 points per hour)Web page describing podcast
Reading about language, grammar, style and other topics related to editing (1 point per hour to a maximum of 5 points)Name of publication
Participating in editorial study groups; being mentored or trained by other editors (2 points per hour)Letter signed by study group members or mentor(s)
Category 3—Volunteering (for Editors Canada members only)
(maximum of 20 points per reporting period)
Serving on Editors Canada committees or volunteering for Editors Canada activities related to the development of editing skills and knowledge (1 point per hour)Document listing committee members (e.g., Editors Canada annual report) Letter from project chair
Category 4—Working
(maximum of 40 points per reporting period)
Working in an editorial capacity, as defined by PES (2016) (1 point per hour)Work sample Memo about project Email from client Published work that lists you as editor
Category 5—Other
(maximum of 30 points per reporting period)
Professional development activities not listed aboveDocumentation to be submitted to Credential Maintenance Subcommittee at least 6 months before end of reporting period, for consideration and point allocation
Must earn a grand total of 100 points per 5-year reporting period

Administration fee

The annual credential maintenance administration fee is:

  • $25 for Editors Canada members
  • $100 for non-members

The fee covers the costs of tracking, auditing and notifying certified editors about credential maintenance requirements.

The fee remains the same no matter how many of Editors Canada’s professional certifications you hold.

Pay your credential maintenance fee here.

Credential maintenance reporting form

Keep track of the time you spend on activities that contribute to your professional development.

Download your Credential Maintenance form

As you complete each activity, use Editors Canada’s credential maintenance reporting form to:

  • Briefly describe the activity
  • List documents confirming that you have completed the activity
  • Indicate when you completed the activity
  • Record the number of hours allocated and the number of points you have earned

You must submit a completed form every five years.

Random periodic checks may require that you provide proof of your professional development activities. You must therefore save documents and receipts that confirm your activities.

Some activities may qualify for more than one category. You can receive credit for any activity just once, however, so decide which category best suits your purpose.

If you’re unsure which category an activity falls into, or if you want to report an activity in the “Other” category, please contact the Certification Steering Committee.

Sample credential maintenance reporting form

The following table shows how a fictitious certified editor might fill out part of the form.

Activity TypeBrief DescriptionSupporting DocumentsYearHours or WordsPoints
Category 1—Delivering Education and Training
(maximum of 45 points per reporting period)
Developing or delivering editing-related courses, workshops or presentations (3 points per hour)Central College 3-hour workshop: Beyond the Serial Comma (instructor)College catalogue, invoice201139
Elm Tree High journalism class: What Editors Do (speaker)Thank-you letter from teacher201313
Editors Canada conference 1-hour session: Editing TextbooksConference program201413
Leading editorial study groups
(2 points per hour)
Simcoe Twig Proofreading Study Group; 5 study groups heldLetter signed by study group members2012510
Training and mentoring other editors
(2 points per hour)
Mentor for Toronto Branch Mentor Program; 5 hoursLetter from mentored person2015510
Publishing material related to editing
(1 point per 200 words)
Article (600 words) on copy editing for Ryerson University publishing program newsletterCopy of newsletter20156003
Category 1 Subtotal38

Sample credential maintenance schedule

The table below is a sample schedule for how credential maintenance is implemented over a five-year period.

Your credential year is the one after the administration of your successful exam. If you successfully wrote an exam in 2017, for example, you were awarded the credential in 2018.

The five-year credential maintenance period begins in January of your credential year for your first certification.

If you were awarded a credential in 2018 or earlier and another in 2019 or later, your five-year reporting period begins in January of your first post-2018 credential year.

November 2017Write stylistic editing and copy editing exams
January 2018Begin tracking professional development activities in anticipation of receiving credentials in March
March 2018Receive notice of having passed one or both exams
The credentialing year is 2018
January 2019Pay annual maintenance fee for 2018 (due January 31, 2019) Receive reminder to undertake and record professional development activities for period of January 2018 to December 2023
January 2020Pay annual maintenance fee for 2019 (due January 31, 2020) Receive reminder to undertake and record professional development activities
January 2021Pay annual maintenance fee for 2020 (due January 31, 2021) Receive reminder to undertake and record professional development activities
January 2022Pay annual maintenance fee for 2021 (due January 31, 2022) Receive reminder to undertake and record professional development activities, and that one year remains in reporting period that began in January 2018
January 2023Pay annual maintenance fee for 2022 (due January 31, 2023) Receive notice that completed credential maintenance reporting form for period of January 2018 to December 2023 is due on March 1, 2023
Submit credential maintenance reporting form for review Receive reminder to undertake and record professional development activities for period of January 2024 to December 2029
January 2024Pay annual maintenance fee for 2023 (due January 31, 2024) Receive reminder to undertake and record professional development activities

Credential suspension

Your Editors Canada certification credential(s) remain(s) in good standing as long as you comply with the credential maintenance requirements.

If special circumstances prevent you from earning 100 points during your five-year reporting period, please contact the Certification Steering Committee.

If you fall behind in your credential maintenance obligations, we’ll contact you and offer you the opportunity to comply before we take any action to suspend your credential(s).

If you don’t pay your annual fee, your name will be removed from the online roster of Editors Canada-certified editors. If you haven’t paid all of the annual fees by the end of your five-year reporting period, you’ll lose your credential(s) altogether. The only way to get a credential back is to pass the exam again. If you’ve been removed from the roster and you pay all of your annual fees within your five-year reporting period, we’ll reinstate your name on the roster and you’ll retain your credential(s).

If you choose to opt out of the credential maintenance program (e.g., because you’re retiring or leaving the industry), please notify Editors Canada’s Certification Steering Committee.

Certification quick links

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