6 Best EHS Certifications for EHS Professionals

Best EHS Certifications

1. Certified Safety Professional (CSP) – Board of Certified Safety Professionals (BCSP)

The Certified Safety Professional Certification is the most well-known EHS Certification. It is considered the gold standard and is the highest professional certification that an EHS Professional can receive. Requirements for the CSP include:

  • A minimum of a bachelor’s degree in any field
  • Four (4) years of safety experience, where safety is at least 50% preventative, at the professional level with breadth and depth of safety duties
  • One of the following Qualified Credentials: Associate Safety Professional (ASP), Graduate Safety Professional (GSP), Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH), and others not listed here
  • Passing the Certified Safety Professional (CSP) Exam
  • Meeting recertification requirements

2. Associate Safety Professional (ASP) – BCSP

The Associate Safety Professional Certification is well-known in the EHS Profession. Many individuals obtain the ASP certification as their prerequisite for the CSP. Requirements for the ASP include:

 

  • A minimum of a bachelor’s degree in any field or an associate degree in safety, health, or the environment
  • One (1) year of safety experience, where safety is at least 50% preventative, at the professional level with breadth and depth of safety duties
  • Passing the ASP examination
  • Meeting recertification requirements

3. Occupational Hygiene and Safety Technician (OHST) – BCSP

The Occupational Hygiene and Safety Technician Certification is a recognized certification for those individuals who perform occupational hygiene and safety activities on a full-time or part-time basis as part of their job duties. Requirements for the OHST include:

  • Working part-time or full-time in occupational health or safety (35% is the minimum) and have duties that require technical skills and knowledge in occupational health or safety
  • Three (3) years of experience in occupational health or safety
  • Passing the OHST examination
  • Meeting recertification requirements

4. Construction Health and Safety Technician (CHST) – BCSP

The Construction Health and Safety Technician Certification is a certification designed for individuals who demonstrate competency and work part-time or full-time in health and safety activities devoted to the prevention of construction illnesses and injuries.

The CHST certification meets national standards for certifications. Individuals who sit for the CHST certification are usually employed as Environmental, Health, and Safety Specialists on construction job sites. Requirements for CHST include:

 

  • Working part-time or full-time in construction safety (35% is the minimum) and have duties that require technical skills and knowledge in health and safety
  • Three (3) years of experience in construction health or safety
  • Passing the CHST examination
  • Meeting recertification requirements

5. Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) – American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH)

The Certified Industrial Hygienist Certification is a certification for individuals who have the knowledge and skills in Industrial Hygiene topics. Requirements for the CIH include:

  • Bachelor’s Degree in biology, chemistry, engineering, physics or an ABET-accredited program in industrial hygiene or safety
  • Several years of broad, professional experience
  • Passing the CIH Exam
  • Meeting recertification requirements

6. Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM) – Institution of Hazardous Materials Management (IHMM)

The Certified Hazardous Materials Manager Certification is for individuals who have experience and knowledge in identifying and handling hazardous materials and planning, preparing, and responding to hazardous materials emergencies. Requirements for the CHMM include:

  • Bachelor’s degree (or higher) from an accredited college or university
  • Four (4) years of relevant experience in the field of hazardous materials management or a related field.
  • Passing the CHMM Exam
  • Meeting recertification requirements

There are many more certifications that are valuable for an EHS Professional’s career that is not listed above. However, the certifications listed above are ANSI Accredited and are some of the best certifications that an EHS Professional can earn.

EHS Professionals

Other factors to consider

When determining which certification is right for you, be sure to choose a certification that is from an accredited organization. Certifications from an accredited organization ensure the validity of the certification and protect the integrity of the certification program.

Keep in mind that there is a difference between a certification and a certificate. Below is a summary of the differences between a certification and a certificate.

 

Certification  Certificate 
Results from an Assessment Process  Results from an Educational Process 
Requires some professional experience  For both novice and experienced professionals 
Awarded by a 3rd party, standard setting organization  Awarded by a training or educational program 
Indicates Competency usually by an exam  Indicates completion of a course 
Usually results in designation to use after one’s name  Usually listed on one’s resume in the education section 
Has on-going requirements to maintain such as recertification or continuing education  Is the end result. Individuals may or may not need to demonstrate knowledge after a period of time 
EHS & HSE Training

The most common reasons Environmental, Health, and Safety Professionals obtain certifications are:

  • For increased opportunities for career advancement
  • For personal satisfaction
  • For the potential for increased salary

Receiving an EHS certification has many benefits for your career. Certifications are important because they:

Demonstrate Competency

  • Individuals with certifications are recognized as having met the professional challenge of illustrating expertise in their respective field
  • Individuals with certifications are among the most highly trained, educated, and experienced individuals in the EHS profession

Have a Competitive Advantage

  • Individuals with certification are more likely to earn more money and receive more promotions than their peers without certifications
  • According to the Board of Certified Safety Professionals, Certified EHS professionals earn $20,000 more per year than those with no certification. They also found that those with a Certified Safety Professional (CSP) Certification earn even more, with $30,000 more per year.
  • Individuals with a designation after their name are found to be more trusted in their knowledge and expertise within their respective field

Earning a certification can increase the opportunity for career advancement, has the potential for an increased salary, and is a way to be recognized by peers as a competent and credible EHS professional.

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