Accreditation FAQ

What is Green Roof Professional (GRP) accreditation and why is it necessary?

GRP accreditation is an indicator that an individual has achieved a specific knowledge level with regard to green roof design, project management, installation and maintenance.

Passing the exam indicates that you have demonstrated knowledge and skills deemed important by the green roof industry at a given point in time. It is not a form of licensure, and is not an indication of professional competency in the field. For example, an individual may become a LEED Accredited Professional under the US or CA Green Building Councils. However this does not mean they are ‘competent’ to design a green building.

What benefits are there to being an accredited Green Roof Professional (GRP)?

Accredited Green Roof Professionals will be ideally positioned to be the professional of choice on green roof projects. Their roles will likely be to:

  • identify and pull everyone on the team together;
  • function as a team leader for the green roof portion of a project;
  • understand the different options for green roof design and implementation;
  • maximize the benefits of green roofs during the design process (e.g. by identifying multiple design and implementation opportunities);
  • understand the major challenges with implementation of green roofs and the best practices associated with design, management, installation and maintenance.

Where is the exam offered?

Click here for a list of exam dates and locations.

Do I have to take all of the GRP training courses in order to take the exam?

The GRP training course - Green Roof Design and Installation, Green Roof Waterproofing and Drainage, and Green Roof Plants and Growing Media - are highly recommended It is highly recommended that you take all three of the GRP training courses - Green Roof Design and Installation, Green Roof Waterproofing and Drainage, and Green Roof Plants and Growing Media - since the exam questions are based on the content contained therein. At a minimum you should purchase all of the course manuals and study them. Manuals are available from the Green Infrastructure Store.

Who can become an accredited Green Roof Professional (GRP)? Is this only for architects and landscape architects, i.e. those on the design side?

Anyone can take the exam. Those on the installation and maintenance side will also benefit from having the designation. They may also require additional training associated with the installation of specific systems provided by manufacturers.

What material will be on the exam i.e. is it everything in the course manuals?

The exam covers all of the material contained in the three GRP training courses.

How much does it cost to write the exam?

The exam registration fee is $495 US.

How can I reduce the costs of becoming a Green Roof Professional (GRP)?

There are several ways to save money.
  1. Take advantage of early-bird registration rates on courses.
  2. Purchase one or more of the course manuals from the Green Infrastructure Store in lieu of attending the courses in class.

How soon after I complete the exam will I know if I have passed?

Results are usually made available within 2 to 3 weeks of the exam date.

How long is the designation good for? Do I have to rewrite the exam at some point in the future or do I maintain my standing through continuing education credits?

Standing in the program will be maintained by obtaining a minimum of 16 continuing education credits every two years. Eight of these credits will be for GRHC related activities including our conference and courses. Please click here for Accreditation Maintenance and Renewal Guidelines. A renewal fee of $95 US will also be required. GRPs are also required to hold a GRHC Individual or Individual Affiliate membership in good standing.

Can I take the courses and the exam on line?

Currently the answer is "no", but we are continually working on new and better ways to improve exam delivery and availability. At this point in time the exam must be written by paper and pencil.

Is this designation relevant to any other professional designation? i.e. will this help me get my LEED AP?

The knowledge gained by taking the green roof courses is beneficial to understanding how they can be used to maximize LEED credits for your clients’ projects. The GRP designation is a further indication of expertise in green building, but will not assist with obtaining the LEED AP designation.

Which organizations are endorsing/supporting your program?

Our courses are officially endorsed by the AIA, ASLA, APLD, RCI, USGBC and a number of state/provincial associations such as the Ontario Association of Architects. Other organizations allow continuing education credits for our courses on a self-reporting basis (meaning course registrants submit for credits after the course and the organization decides if they will allow the credits). We are continually working on broadening support from key organizations.

Is the exam open book?

No.

Is there a study guide for the exam?

A Green Roof Professional Accreditation Exam Guidebook is available on our web site here.

What accommodation is made for people with disabilities – learning disability or physical disability?

Anyone with a disability must make this detail known when applying to write the exam and all reasonable efforts will be made to accommodate him or her.

Is there a cost to re-take the exam if I fail?

Yes, the cost is $495 US.

How long after I fail the exam can I take it again?

You can write the exam again at the next available opportunity. Exam locations and dates are listed on our web site.

Do I have to be a member of GRHC to write the exam?

While both members and non-members can write the exam, all GRPs are required to be GRHC Individual Members in good standing. Thus, you may wait to receive your exam results before deciding whether or not to join GRHC as a member.

Do I have to be a GRHC member to renew my GRP status at the 2 year renewal date?

Yes. As of January 1, 2011, all GRPs are required to be GRHC Individual Members in good standing.

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About Green Roofs

by Steven Peck
GRHC founder/president

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