Overview of the New Credentialing Process
Candidates for Registered Parliamentarian (RP®) and for Professional Registered Parliamentarian (PRP®) will both go through separate versions of assessment that each consist of three steps. A candidate must successfully complete all three steps.
Step One – Knowledge and Application (Multiple-Choice Quizzes)
As the first step in candidacy for either RP or PRP credentialing, candidates will take online quizzes designed to test how well they know and can apply the rules that have been identified as essential to be able to recall without consulting the current Twelfth Edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (RONR (12th ed.)) for the relevant designation. In the final multiple-choice quiz, candidates will be asked to quickly find in RONR the appropriate answer to questions testing the application of other rules. These quizzes, as well as the assignments in Step Two, will be conducted through an online service called Schoology.
Step Two – Application Primarily in Tasks Performed Outside of Meetings (Written and Multimedia Assignments)
Candidates who have successfully completed Step One will be given a mixture of written assignments and a multi-media teaching demonstration to assess how well they understand and appropriately apply the rules, and display the skills, deemed appropriate for the relevant designation. These will include written assignments assessing parliamentary tasks generally done outside of meetings, as well as means of assessing certain elements of high-order application of rules that might be needed during meetings.
Step Three – Simulation
Having successfully completed Step Two, candidates will sign up for an online simulation of serving as a parliamentarian in meetings.
Difference between RP and PRP Skill Sets
A Registered Parliamentarian will be expected to be qualified to serve as a parliamentarian for most ordinary meetings under usual circumstances and to provide commonly needed parliamentary advice to ordinary organizations.
A Professional Registered Parliamentarian will be expected to be qualified to serve as a parliamentarian for meetings dealing with less common or more complex parliamentary issues, and to provide expert parliamentary advice to organizations dealing with unusual or complex issues.
Application of RONR Rules During Actual Meetings Versus Outside Meetings
The Commission has distinguished those rules potentially needed during actual meetings from those that typically govern tasks undertaken outside meetings. For example, while the rules for considering a bylaws revision are applicable in meetings, the guidance provided in RONR for how to draw up bylaws and for the content of particular articles in them is used primarily when a bylaws committee, or parliamentarian advising it, actually drafts the bylaws proposal. That drafting normally takes place outside a meeting of the assembly, at a time when it is generally possible to consult RONR at one’s leisure.
Under the new process, neither RP nor PRP candidates will be expected to have memorized rules or advice pertinent to the tasks a parliamentarian does outside a meeting, such as drafting bylaws, preparing a meeting script, or writing a parliamentary opinion. Instead, those abilities will be assessed through “open book” written assignments to be completed by the candidate and uploaded for evaluation.
Rules Used in Meetings – Different Levels of Required Knowledge
With respect to those rules that do have application in meetings, the Commission is still not requiring that they all be memorized and that candidates be assessed on how well they can recall them from memory. Instead, such rules have been divided into three categories:
- The first category consists of those rules that come up with a fair degree of frequency in ordinary meetings, which an RP should be able to remember and accurately apply without contemporaneously referring to RONR.
- The second category consists of those rules unlikely to come up in an ordinary meeting but which might well be encountered in a more complex meeting, which a PRP should be able to remember and accurately apply without contemporaneously referring to RONR.
- The third category contains those rules that might apply in meetings but which neither an RP nor a PRP will be required to be able to know and apply without consulting RONR.
PRP candidates will be expected to be able to rapidly research and accurately apply the rules in the third category, as might be necessary if they were serving in an actual meeting. RP candidates will be expected to be able to rapidly research and accurately apply the rules in both categories two and three.
Assessing Unit by Manageable Unit in Steps One and Two
When people are being taught a new skill or body of knowledge, such as when attending classes, normally the process occurs unit-by-unit. A manageable portion is studied, followed by a quiz on it, and that is followed by another manageable portion building on the first. Typically, only at the end of the course is there a final exam that assesses the student’s ability to put everything together. This step-by-step process is how we generally learn.
The new credentialing system breaks down what an RP is expected to master into small portions, each of which is separately assessed in Steps One and Two, before the “final exam” of a meeting simulation in Step Three.
Multiple Opportunities to Succeed on Each Unit
The Commission on Credentialing wants to maximize the ability of candidates to develop the required competencies. Therefore, for each of the 8 quizzes in Step One there will be three opportunities, and for each of the assignments in Step Two there will be multiple opportunities, to acquire mastery of what is being assessed, if needed, before moving on to the next. For Step Three, a candidate who does not successfully complete the first meeting simulation will have at least two more chances (with different meeting scenarios).
Philosophy Animating the New Credentialing System
To understand the basic viewpoint undergirding the new credentialing process, go to: