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Interested in becoming a LEED Green Associate or LEED AP? What you need to know

Published on Written by Posted in LEED

You've made up your mind. You're ready to step up your game and become a LEED professional.  

Here's what you need to know about the application:

First things first: the eligibility requirements

  • LEED Green Associate: You must be 18 years old to take this exam, but beyond that there are no eligibility requirements. However, we do recommended that you have exposure to LEED and green building concepts through education, volunteering, or work experience.
  • LEED AP with specialty: You will not be required to document experience on a LEED-registered or certified project, but it will be assessed within the exam.

The application steps

  1. Log into your usgbc.org site user account, then navigate to Credentials.
  2. Select your exam of choice.
  3. Complete the exam registration process.
  4. Schedule exam date and location on prometric.com/gbci.

The cost

  • LEED Green Associate exam: USGBC/CaGBC members/full-time students: $200 (non-members: $250)
  • LEED AP specialty exam: USGBC/CaGBC members: $250 (non-members: $350)
  • Combined exam (LEED Green Associate and LEED AP with specialty): USGBC/CaGBC members: $400 (non-members: $550)

How long do I have?

Registration is valid for one year. In that year you are allotted three registrations per exam section. After this year expires, you must wait 90 days before registering again. You may also request an extension of the one year registration period for extenuating circumstances. 

Ready to do this?

Take the first step and apply

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    Nora Knox made 10 contributions in the last 6 months

Nora Knox

Digital Marketing Manager U.S. Green Building Council

196 commentsLeave a comment

is it mandatory to take LEED GA course before I apply for a LEED GA exam and if i took a LEED GA course how long do I have after the course to take the exam before my course expires.
., U.S. Green Building Council
Thank you for your interest in earning the LEED Green Associate credential! After registering for a LEED exam, you have one year to take the exam from the date that you register for the exam. Within that one-year period, you will have up to three times to pass the exam. Please note that the previous response from GBRI is an USGBC Education Partner; however, GBRI is different from GBCI (Green Business Certification, Inc. - the third party certification body for LEED). Good luck!
Marketing Manager, Green Building Research Institute (GBRI)
Amro, If you are preparing at a good pace, a 1 month preparation would be sufficient to gain a sound knowledge over the LEED Green Associate knowledge domains. Please have a look at our Free Resources in the following link: https://www.gbrionline.org/leedv4-exam-important-things-to-know/ GBRI's Exam Prep materials are available for 1 year from the date of purchase.
Thank you very much for your kind and prompt feedback
University of Kansas
I am currently a college student and am looking at taking a LEED exam. Should I take the Green Associate or AP? Should I wait to take the AP exam once I have a career or does it matter?
LEED Specialist, U.S. Green Building Council
Thank you for your interest in earning a LEED credential. There are two paths to earn the LEED AP with specialty credential. One option is to take the LEED AP combined exam on the same day. This is a two-part exam with Green Associate covered in the first part and the LEED AP with specialty portion covered in the second part. The second option it to take the LEED Green Associate on one day and then the LEED AP with specialty exam on another day. I would recommend taking the Green Associate exam first, which means taking the exams separately. However, here are some pros and cons that help inform your decision: Pros: 1. The combined exam offers a direct path to earning the LEED AP with specialty. 2. You may find it convenient to test on the same day. There is a normal delay in posting your exam results to registering for the next exam seating. 3. There is a price break to take the combined exam. Cons: 1. This could require more studying at one time. 2. You must pass both parts to earn the specialty. This is true, even if you pass the specialty exam (part 2) and fail the Green Associate exam (part 1). However, if you take the specialty exam and only pass part 1, you can become a Green Associate. You can learn more about the LEED Green Associate exam here: http://www.usgbc.org/resources/leed-v4-green-associate-candidate-handbook. You can learn more about the specialty credentials in the respective candidate handbook here: http://www.usgbc.org/search/candidate%20handbooks.
Marketing Manager, Green Building Research Institute (GBRI)
Dear Abigail, You could definitely take up a LEED Green Associate Exam. After securing your LEED Green Associate credentials, you shall go for any LEED AP specialization of your choice. LEED Green Associate credentials are valid for two years and to maintain it, you have to earn 15 CE hours. Instead of trying to maintain your LEED GA credentials, you could take a LEED AP Exam. Green Building Research Institute (GBRI) would love to help you in securing your LEED credentials. Here is the link to our LEED Exam Prep: https://www.gbrionline.org/courses/all-inclusive-leed-v4-exam-preparatio... All the best!
Do I need to take a course before I apply for a LEED GA exam and if i took a LEED GA course how long do I have after the course to take the exam before my course expires.
Marketing Manager, Green Building Research Institute (GBRI)
Dear Amro, It's not mandatory to take up a course to apply for the LEED Green Associate Exam. But, there are several knowledge domains that you ought to cover to gain your LEED credentials. The following are the knowledge domains and the approximate number of questions which would be tested during the exam: (1)LEED Process (16 questions), (2)Integrative Strategies (8 questions), (3)Location and Transportation (7 questions), (4)Sustainable Sites (7 questions), (5)Water Efficiency (9 questions), (6)Energy and Atmosphere (10 questions), (7)Materials and Resources (9 questions), (8)Indoor Environmental Quality (8 questions), (9)Project Surroundings and Public Outreach (11 questions) (10)Innovation and Regional Priority Green Building Research Institute (GBRI) would help you in gaining an in-depth understanding of above said knowledge domains. Please have a look at this link and skim through our packages: https://www.gbrionline.org/courses/all-inclusive-leed-v4-exam-preparatio... Good luck!
Do I need to take a course before I apply for a LEED GA exam and if i took a LEED GA course how long do I have after the course to take the exam before my course expires.
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