The APR Turns The Big 5-0!

By Posted in - APR & Professional Development & Public Relations on January 15th, 2014

The last of the baby boomers are not the only ones turning 50…the APR credential will also celebrate 50 years in 2014. Although the process itself has changed significantly over the past five decades, the APR remains the only nationally recognized certification of the public relations profession. To all my fellow APRs…congratulations! This is a milestone for us all to celebrate. For those of you who are considering the APR…why not make 2014 the year!

As we move into this anniversary year, PRSA will be celebrating those who have already achieved the designation by sharing their stories and testimonials. PRSA will also be promoting the APR and encouraging people to sign up.  You will soon start seeing tools and resources made available though PRSA, including free webinars and updated content on the web site (

Having served as the NCPRSA Accreditation Chair for the past three years, I have heard countless people say, “It’s something I really want to do, just have not found the right time.” Sound familiar? If so, think about adding the APR to your list of professional development goals for 2014. You won’t regret it. I promise.

APRLogo2In honor of our 50th anniversary, here are a few fun facts about the APR:

– The program originated in 1964 and was administered by PRSA until 1998, when the Universal Accreditation Board was formed to administer the Examination for Accreditation in Public Relations.

– Currently, more than 3,800 PRSA members hold the APR Credential (roughly 18 percent of the membership).

– A 2005 PRWeek/Korn Ferry salary survey, found that Accredited public relations professionals’ annual salaries were approximately 20 percent higher than those of their non-Accredited colleagues, when factors such as age and experience are controlled.

– The cost to take the exam is only $385.00 and PRSA offers a $110 rebate upon completion of the computer-based Examination. Can’t beat it for $275.00!

– The APR is good for life. The only requirement is that every three years you earn a certain number of “points” in continuing education and service categories.

On behalf of all those who have had the honor of adding those three letters after their names…happy 50 APR!



(2) awesome comment(s)...

  • Tracy Lathan - Reply

    February 3, 2014 at 10:45 am

    Thanks for your feedback Sam, I couldn’t agree more! There should be more education about the APR during the undergraduate years, especially since it can impact decision s regarding continuing education…

  • Samantha Halle - Reply

    January 30, 2014 at 12:31 pm

    Surprisingly, “APR” has never once been mentioned during my PR curriculum in undergrad. And after reading about the accreditation process and hearing from those who have earned those three letters, I wish that it would have. It would be tremendously helpful for students to know about the options and opportunities for professional growth and advancement that a career in public relations offers!

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