ABA Tier 1 Continuing Education Hours FAQs
What Are Tier 1 Continuing Education Hours?
Tier 1 continuing education hours are continuing education activities with a minimum duration of three (3) hours followed by the administration of a learner assessment that gauges the learner’s understanding of the presented material. Tier 1 continuing education activities are of a high-level focused on one subject area or various aspects of one subject.
Additionally, one may earn Tier 1 continuing education hours by authoring or co-authoring a peer-reviewed article for a major journal or by authoring a book or a chapter of a book. Three (3) Tier 1 hours will be awarded for each peer-reviewed article authored and published in a major journal or for each chapter of a book. Six Tier 1 hours will be awarded for authoring or co-authoring a book in a professional area of practice.
To qualify for authorship, a contributor must have fulfilled each of the following criteria: 1) substantial contributions to conception and design, or acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data; 2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; and 3) final approval of the version to be published. All persons designated as authors should qualify for authorship, and all those who qualify should be listed. Each author should have participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for its content.
Does the ABA Offer Tier 1 Continuing Education Hours?
No. ABA does not offer continuing education hours as it is not a continuing education provider. ABA requires continuing education hours, including Tier 1 continuing education, for recertification. Typically, associations or private entities provide continuing education through conventions, focused conferences, journals or distance learning programs. The ABA is a certification body that encourages lifelong learning by requiring its certificants to pursue continuing education — but is not a continuing education provider. The ABA office does, however, provide information regarding Tier 1 providers.
How Many Tier 1 Continuing Education Hours Will I Need Per Three-Year Certification Period?
An ABA certificant will need to earn 1.5 Tier 1 continuing education hours, or 15 clock hours of continuing education, during each three-year certification period. Certificants must also earn 4.5 Tier 2 continuing education hours, or 45 clock hours of continuing education during a three-year certification period. Tier 2 continuing education hours are typical continuing education hours and are activities that need not be a minimum of three hours’ duration, and do not necessarily have outcome measures. Three clock hours of the required 60 (total) clock hours earned in each three-year period must be in professional ethics. These 3 clock hours in professional ethics may be Tier 1 or Tier 2.
Why Does the ABA Now Require That ABA Certificants Obtain Tier 1 Continuing Education Hours, in Addition to Typical Continuing Education Hours, for Recertification?
One of the hallmarks of the ABA certification program is a quest for excellence through lifelong learning. These more stringent recertification requirements encourage participants in ABA’s voluntary certification program to continually enhance their knowledge base and stay abreast of cutting-edge developments in audiology and related fields. Additionally, Tier 1 activities are more intensive and encourage active, rather than passive, learning and involvement in the educational activity.
Under the ABA’s Previous Requirements, a Certificant Had to Earn 4.5 Continuing Education Hours, or 45 Clock Hours, During a Three-Year Certification Period. Now the Requirement is 6.0 Continuing Education Hours, with 1.5 hours of the 6.0 Continuing Education Hours Tier 1 Activities. When Do the New Requirements Go Into Effect?
The new requirements go into effect for all recertifications after January 1, 2008. The new requirements will be tied to one’s certification expiration date. For example, if your current certification period ends June 30, 2007, you will be under the previous requirements (45 clock hours of typical continuing education hours, three of which must be in professional ethics). However, at the time of your next recertification, or 2010, you will be required to meet the new requirements.
I have the ABA’s Cochlear Implant Specialty Certification in Addition to Board Certification in Audiology. How Does the Two-Tier System Work in Relationship to the CI Specialty Certification?
All ABA certificants will have to meet the new continuing education requirements, as outlined above, for recertifications after January 1, 2008. The only additional requirement for those holding the CI specialty is that 3.0 continuing education hours (or 30 clock hours) of the total 6.0 continuing education hours (or 60 clock hours) must pertain to cochlear implants. These 3.0 continuing education hours pertaining to CIs, can be either at the Tier 1 or Tier 2 level.
How Do I Earn Tier 1 Continuing Education Hours for Recertification? Where Are Tier 1 Activities Available? Won’t It Be Expensive to Earn These Continuing Education Hours?
There are currently several continuing education activities through which one can earn Tier 1 continuing education hours. Many, listed below, are cost effective. Additionally, ABA is disseminating information to CE providers to encourage them to make Tier 1 continuing education hours widely available. These more rigorous activities will enable ABA certificants to earn continuing education hours for recertification while enhancing the profession as a whole. Currently, ABA certificants can earn Tier 1 continuing education hours from the following educational activities:
- The annual convention of the American Academy of Audiology AudiologyNOW!, offers Tier 1 continuing education hours.
- Seminars in Hearing by Thieme Publishing. (see further information regarding this publication below).
- Ethics in Audiology, or “The Green Book” published by the American Academy of Audiology. (Note—you must complete at least 3 hours of continuing education hours for this activity to count towards ABA Tier 1 continuing education hours).
Additionally, the American Academy of Audiology plans to make available within the next 12 months distance education offerings that meet Tier 1 Guidelines.
How Do I Know If a Particular Course at AudiologyNOW is a Tier 1 Activity?
The program book will indicate those educational offerings that are approved Tier 1 activities. To earn credit for Tier 1 continuing education hours, you must participate in the activity, take the learner assessment/outcome measure, submit the same to the American Academy of Audiology and receive a passing score of >80% on the activity.
How Do I Demonstrate That I Attended and Passed a Tier 1 Activity at AudiologyNOW!?
If you are on the Academy Continuing Education Registry, that activity will be listed on your continuing education transcript. This is the verification you should submit if you are selected for a random audit at the time of your recertification.
How Do I Earn Tier 1 Continuing Education Hours Through the Publications Listed Above?
Each of these publications includes reading selections accompanied by assessment measures. Again, if you submit the outcome assessment per the publications’ instructions, receive a passing score of 80% or better, these activities will appear on your Academy CE transcript and will apply, at least in part, to Tier 1 requirements.
How Many Hours Can I Earn By Reading These Publications and Taking the Accompanying Learner Assessments?
The amount will vary. You must take the learner assessment, earn an 80% or better and participate in the Academy CE Registry.
As an example, you can earn up to 1.1 Tier 1 continuing education hours through participation in the “Green Book CEU program.” This constitutes most of the Tier 1 continuing education hours you will need for one three-year certification period. Importantly, one can earn Tier 1 continuing education hours only once by reading and passing a learner assessment tool from a specific publication. In other words, one should not reread the same book or issue of a publication with the expectation that those hours would apply towards recertification for two different certification periods.
Seminars in Hearing, either current issues or those published within three years preceding the certificant’s use, will count towards Tier 1 continuing education hours. Each issue counts as approximately 10 hours; however, please note that the number of hours actually earned varies depending upon the transcript registry used. Provided you pass with 80% correct or better and participate in a continuing education registry (AAA or ASHA), you may use Seminars in Hearing to count towards your 15 hours of Tier 1 continuing education hours during a three-year period.
Will Other Tier 1 Activities Be Available Soon?
ABA is continuously working with CE providers to make a variety of Tier 1 CE activities available to ABA certificants and indeed, to all audiologists. ABA will keep you apprised of new offerings as we learn of them.