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PCC Paths

There are three application paths for the Professional Certified Coach (PCC) Credential. For each path, the applicant is required to have completed at least 125 hours of coach-specific education or training, a minimum of 500 hours of client coaching experience, 10 hours of mentor coaching over a minimum of three months, and must pass a performance assessment of their coaching and a computer-based written exam delivered by ICF Credentials and Standards.

Your application path is determined by the training(s) used to meet the 125-hour coach specific training requirement. Review the requirements below to determine which path fits the training you have received or are considering.

Use the tabbed content below to review each pathway’s requirements, pricing and review time, which vary with each path. You can find these details under the appropriate path’s tab.

  • PCC ACTP Path

    Requirements:

    • Completion of an entire ICF-Accredited Coach Training Program (ACTP)*. Check for your program’s approval below.
    • A minimum of 500 hours (450 paid) of coaching experience with at least 25 clients following the start of your coach-specific education or training. At least 50 of these hours (paid or unpaid) must occur within the 18 months prior to submitting the application for the credential.
    • Completion of the Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA)**.

    *An ACTP program, when completed in full, includes at least 125 student contact hours, 10 hours of mentor coaching and a performance evaluation process.

    **The Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA) will be replaced by the ICF Credentialing Exam in the second quarter of 2022. once the new ICF Credentialing Exam has been released, all applicants for an ICF ACC, PCC, or MCC Credential will be required to take and pass the new exam, even if an applicant has previously passed the CKA.

    Pricing:

    • ICF Members, PCC – ACTP application: $300 USD
    • Non-members PCC – ACTP application: $500 USD

    Estimated Timeline for Review: 4 weeks

  • PCC ACSTH Path

    Requirements:

    • At least 125 hours of coach-specific education or training through an ACTP or ACSTH program(s). Check for your program’s approval below.
    • 10 hours of Mentor Coaching over a minimum of three months to be documented on your online application. Your Mentor Coach must hold a PCC or MCC credential in good standing.
    • A minimum of 500 hours (450 paid) of coaching experience with at least 25 clients following the start of your coach-specific education or training. At least 50 of these hours (paid or unpaid) must occur within the 18 months prior to submitting the application for the credential.
    • Performance evaluation (two audio recordings and written transcripts of coaching sessions to be uploaded with your application).
    • Completion of the Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA)*.

    *The Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA) will be replaced by the ICF Credentialing Exam in the second quarter of 2022. once the new ICF Credentialing Exam has been released, all applicants for an ICF ACC, PCC, or MCC Credential will be required to take and pass the new exam, even if an applicant has previously passed the CKA.

    Pricing:

    • ICF Members, PCC – ACSTH application: $575 USD
    • Non-members, PCC – ACSTH application: $775 USD

    Estimated Timeline for Review: 14 Weeks

  • PCC Portfolio Path

    If you are counting Continuing Coach Education (CCE) units and/or non-approved training toward your training requirements, you are required to follow the PCC Portfolio path.

    Requirements:

    • At least 125 hours of coach-specific education or training with robust documentation. You will be required to demonstrate that you have completed a comprehensive education or training program that includes the ICF definition of coaching, Code of Ethics and Core competencies and is organized in a scope and sequence that encourages your growth as a coach.
    • 10 hours of Mentor Coaching over a minimum of three months to be documented on your online application. Your Mentor Coach must hold a PCC or MCC credential in good standing.
    • A minimum of 500 hours (450 paid) of coaching experience with at least 25 clients following the start of your coach-specific education or training. At least 50 of these hours (paid or unpaid) must occur within the 18 months prior to submitting the application for the credential.
    • Performance evaluation (two audio recordings and written transcripts of coaching sessions to be uploaded with your application).
    • Completion of the Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA)*.

    *The Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA) will be replaced by the ICF Credentialing Exam in the second quarter of 2022. once the new ICF Credentialing Exam has been released, all applicants for an ICF ACC, PCC, or MCC Credential will be required to take and pass the new exam, even if an applicant has previously passed the CKA.

    Pricing:

    • ICF Members, PCC – Portfolio application: $675 USD
    • Non-members, PCC – Portfolio application: $875 USD

    Estimated Timeline for Review: 18 weeks

  • Education / Training (Portfolio Path Only)

    Candidates on the PCC Portfolio Path must complete at least 125 hours of coach-specific education or training with robust documentation.

  • Mentor Coaching (ACSTH and Portfolio Paths Only)

    Candidates on the PCC ACSTH and Portfolio paths must document at least 10 hours of Mentor Coaching on their online application.

  • Experience Requirements

    Applicants for ICF Credentials are required to demonstrate a set number of hours of coaching experience. Coaches must complete an attestation of this experience as part of the application.

  • Coach Knowledge Assessment / ICF Credentialing Exam

    The Coach Knowledge Assessment (CKA) is a tool that can be used to measure coaches’ understanding of the knowledge and skills important in the practice of coaching. The CKA tests coaches on their understanding of the body of knowledge that includes the ICF definition of coaching, Core Competencies and Code of Ethics.

    NOTE: The CKA will be replaced with the ICF Credentialing Exam in the second quarter of 2022. The ICF Credentialing Exam is a computer-based written exam designed to assess an applicant’s understanding of and ability to apply the ICF definition of coaching, the updated ICF Core Competencies and Code of Ethics in realistic coaching scenarios. The ICF Credentialing exam will be delivered in partnership with Pearson VUE through their global network of testing centers and through the Pearson OnVUE system, which allows applicants to complete the exam online at their home or office while being monitored by a remote proctor.  

  • Performance Evaluation and Transcripts (ACSTH and Portfolio Paths Only)

    The PCC ACSTH and Portfolio processes include a performance evaluation through which ICF Assessors review two recorded coaching sessions with transcripts submitted by the applicant. Applicants are required to pass this performance evaluation at the PCC level in order to be awarded the PCC credential.

  • Submission

    Do not send documentation to ICF Credentials and Standards by mail or email. Only documentation that has been included with your online application will be accepted.

    To create your application, please complete the ICF Credentialing Survey.

  • Support

    If you have questions about the credentialing process, please visit the FAQ page.

    If you need support regarding the Associate Certified Coach Credential or if you do not find the answer to your question on the FAQ page, please visit the ICF Support page.

Learn More About ICF Credentialing

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