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bullet WHEN DO I HAVE TO BEGIN ACCUMULATING CONTINUING EDUCATION HOURS AND HOW MANY DO I NEED?

All New Hampshire certified Natural Scientists must satisfactorily demonstrate 24 continuing education hours per biennial renewal period. All continuing education Hours must be earned in the licensees renewal time frame. New licensees must obtain 12 continuing education hours within their first renewal period.

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WHAT IS A CONTINUING EDUCATION HOUR (CEH)?


A Continuing Education Hour (CEH) is equivalent to one contact hour.

arrow HOW CAN I EARN THE REQUIRED CONTINUING EDUCATION HOURS?

Continuing Education Hour activities must be relevant to the practice of Natural Scientist and should include technical, ethical or managerial content. CEH's may be obtained through successful completion of college courses, participation on committees of professional or technical societies, on-line or correspondence courses, seminars, workshops, teaching, vendor demonstrations, in-house trainings, patents, publication of technical papers or professional/technical presentations made at meetings, conventions, or conferences. CEH's  may also be earned by publishing a professional journal or textbook and through the award of patents. The criteria for continuing education activities is outlined in administrative rules Soil 403.02 and 403.03.

 

arrow DO I HAVE TO SUBMIT MY COURSES IN ADVANCE TO THE BOARD FOR APPROVAL?

The Board does not pre-approve courses. The Board is relying on the professional judgment of the Natural Scientist to choose courses which comply with the administrative rules, and enhances the professional knowledge of the practice of Soil or Wetland Science.

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HOW LONG MUST I KEEP DOCUMENTATION OF CONTINUING EDUCATION?

The Natural Scientist will be responsible for all record keeping. Documentation must be maintained for four years. Copies of documentation may be requested by the board for random audit purposes per Soil 403.04.

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HOW DO I REPORT MY CONTINUING EDUCATION HOURS TO THE BOARD?

The renewal form contains a statement that includes language regarding the completion of continuing education requirements of Soil 403. Each Natural Scientist is required to provide a signature attesting to the completion of their continuing education.

arrow ARE CARRY OVER CREDITS ALLOWED?

No, carryover credits are not allowed.

arrow IS IT EXPENSIVE TO COMPLY WITH THE REQUIREMENT FOR CONTINUING EDUCATION?

That depends on your individual selections. The certified professional will be responsible for choosing programs that will meet the needs of their scope of practice; therefore it is up to the professional judgment of the natural scientist to choose the programs that would most benefit their practice. In-house trainings given by your employer or vendor demonstrations may count towards or possibly fulfill your CEH requirement.


arrow ARE THERE EXEMPTIONS TO THE CEH REQUIREMENT?

 Licensees on temporary active duty in the armed forces of the United States exceeding 120 consecutive days in a year are exempt. Licensees with proof of disability, or other extenuating circumstances may be exempt, however they must apply to the Board for their specific exemption, per Soil 403.05, 403.06.

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HOW DO I KEEP TRACK OF THE COURSES AND SEMINARS I HAVE ATTENDED?

You will need to maintain your own records of continuing education. Due to limited file space at the Joint Board office if you send your proofs of attendance in, it will be destroyed. Please maintain your documentation in your files; it will be needed if you are chosen for audit.
 
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I LET MY CERTIFICATION LAPSED OVER 12 MONTHS HOW DO I REINSTATE IT?

There is no reinstatement application for Wetland and Soil Scientists. If your certification is lapsed for over 12 months, your file will be destroyed and you will be required to reapply and be reexamined.

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WHERE DO I OBTAIN INFORMATION ABOUT CONTINUING EDUCATION PROGRAMS?

Your local Soil and Wetland Scientist societies, colleges and universities, professional trade organizations or your employer may have information about Continuing Education Programs.

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HAVE AUDITS OF COMPLIANCE WITH CONTINUING EDUCATION GUIDELINES BEEN CONDUCTED?


No, the first audit will be conducted in May of 2014, 10% of Soil and Wetland Scientists will be randomly chosen to provide proof of compliance with Administrative Rules Soil 403.01, Continuing education. Audits will then be conducted on a yearly basis.

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HOW WILL NATURAL SCIENTISTS BE CHOSEN FOR THE AUDIT?

A neutral third party will be retained to query the Board's database for a random selection of Natural Scientists. No Board members or staff will participate in selection of professionals for the audit.

arrow HOW ARE AUDITS CONDUCTED?

Natural Scientists randomly chosen for the audit are notified by US mail of the requirement to provide verification to the Board of 24 Continuing Education Hours claimed on their renewal and are given approximately 30 days to submit verification. Once verification is received it is reviewed for compliance and the Natural Scientist is notified of the audit results.

arrow ARE THE AUDITS OF OTHER BOARDS A SUCCESS?

Yes, the majority of licensees audited submitted the requested documentation completely, accurately and in a timely manner.  Every effort was made to work with licensees chosen for audit to assist them with providing proper documentation. Upon completion of the audits, the majority of licensees audited are able to provide verification of compliance. 


arrow WHAT TYPES OF ISSUES ARISE DURING AUDITS OF OTHER BOARDS?

During the 2010 Engineer
audit, several licensees failed to retain verification records as required per Administrative Rule Eng 403.07 (c) and had to go back to the course sponsors or organizations and request documentation be reissued. There were no disciplinary actions as a result of the 2010 Engineer audit; all licensees were in compliance!

arrow WHEN WILL THE NEXT AUDIT BE CONDUCTED.

Audits are conducted on an annual basis. In order to have an adequate number of Natural Scientists eligible for audit under the new rules, the first Audit will take place in May 2014.

arrow WHO DO I CONTACT FOR MORE INFORMATION?

You may submit questions to Bobbie Carter, Program Specialist I at
bcarter@nhsa.state.nh.us