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Membership Guidelines
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AIPG Membership: Guidelines

Required and Recommended Courses for Degree in Geological Sciences

AIPG recognizes a core of required courses common to most curricula and essential to the training of geologists. If you have not taken these courses, annotate your application to explain how these areas of geology have been covered elsewhere in your coursework.

  • Physical Geology - 4 semester hours or equivalent
  • Historical Geology - 4 semester hours
  • Rocks & Minerals - 4 semester hour
  • Structural Geology - 3 semester hours
  • Stratigraphy - 3 semester hours
  • Field Geology - 6 semester hours

Some programs recommend or require courses that reflect regional differences. The remaining hours required for CPG and Professional Member could come from the following (or equivalent) courses.

  • Applied Geophysics
  • Economic Geology
  • Environmental/Engineering
  • Problems
  • Geomorphology
  • Groundwater Hydrology, or Hydrogeology or Hydrogeochemistry
  • Invertebrate Paleontology
  • Petroleum Geology
  • Petrology, or Petrography, or Sedimentary Petrology, or Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology, or Optical Mineralogy
  • Sedimentology

Other courses will be reviewed and considered by the screening committees.

Screening Policy for Certified Professional Geologist Applicants

(Click here for a flow chart representation of the application process)

The American Institute of Professional Geologists has, as its unifying purpose, the goal to strengthen geology as a profession. Each Certified Professional Geologist must qualify for Certification on the basis of sound education and a record of experience performed in accord with high standards of competence and integrity. The Institute establishes qualifications for granting the title "Certified Professional Geologist" and certifies to the public that those geologists who hold this title have undergone peer review and have met the qualifications.

In order to assure that the maximum information is obtained for this review, the Institute publishes the name, address, and sponsors for each applicant in its quarterly publication The Professional Geologist (TPG). The Institute invites Members with knowledge of the applicant to contact Headquarters in writing with such information. Comments received are then added to the application package and considered during the review process.

Applicant information received by AIPG will be considered confidential. Application materials will be divulged only to those directly involved in review of that particular application.

The ultimate responsibility for acceptance or denial of an application lies solely with the National Executive Committee of AIPG. However, in order to expedite the conduct of the Institute's business affairs, the AIPG National Executive Committee delegates authority to its Section and National Screening Committees, as described below.

Screening Committee Guidelines

Each AIPG Section shall have a Screening Committee whose Chairman is appointed by the Section President. Committee members are usually recruited by the Chairman in consultation with the President. Like all other Section committee chairmen, he or she reports to the Section President.

The purpose of screening at the Section level is to investigate the qualifications of the applicant, to confirm the accuracy and ensure the sufficiency of the documents submitted by the applicant. Although the recommendation of the Section Screening Committee will be considered by the National Screening Committee, the decision to accept or reject an applicant will be made at the National level.

The National Screening Committee is empowered to accept those applicants whose documentation clearly indicates that they meet the requirements set forth for AIPG certification. The National Screening Committee is further empowered to reject applicants who do not provide satisfactory evidence that they have fulfilled the requirements set forth in the Institute Bylaws, Screening Procedures, and this Screening Policy.

Should one or two national reviewers question an applicant's qualifications for certification, the application will be referred to the National Executive Committee for a final decision.