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Have a question about the SAVE International® Certification Program? Below are some of our most frequently asked questions:

Certification Program Questions

What type of certification does SAVE International offer? What are the requirements?

The SAVE International certification program is the industry standard for recognizing competence in the practice of the Value Methodology. SAVE offers two levels of certification:

The Value Methodology Associate (VMA) recognizes those individuals who decided to become professional value engineers, but who have not yet acquired all the experience or technical skills expected of a CVS. VMA certification requires the following from each candidate:

  • Certification application
  • Payment of the appropriate application fee
  • Copy of their Module I certificate of completion
  • Completed certification exam

The highest level is the Certified Value Specialist (CVS) which is recognition of the individual who has met all certification requirements, both technical and experience, and whose principal career is value engineering. To achieve CVS certification, one must:

  • Select an advisor who is a Certified Value Specialist (CVS)
  • Complete an approved Module I workshop
  • Complete an approved Module II seminar
  • Accumulate the required certification points (CPs)
  • Submit the CVS certification application
  • Submit a summary worksheet and supporting documentation
  • Submit an original scholarly paper on a value related subject
  • Pass Parts I through VII of the certification exam after Certification Board approval of the application and paper

What is a Module I workshop?

The Module I workshop is the first of two courses approved by SAVE International for certification training. Completion of the Module I course is required for all levels of certification.

The Module I workshop is typically the first step toward certification as a value practitioner. Participants of approved Module I workshops receive a certificate of completion and are eligible to take the examination for certification as a VMA. There is no specific academic degree, work experience or technical background required to participate in the Module I workshop. Instructors must be approved by SAVE to teach the Module I workshop.

The purpose of the Module I training is to teach potential value study team leaders and team members the fundamentals of the value methodology – its background, theory and application. The 40-hour workshop consists of 20 hours of lecture and 20 hours of project activity. The course ensures that all candidates for certification through SAVE receive the crucial basic knowledge necessary for successful practice of value engineering.

The value methodology can be applied to improving quality, enhancing performance, improving schedule, increasing efficiency, reducing risk, safety, enhancing procurement, reducing cost and problem solving on a wide variety of projects, products and processes.

The Module I workshop introduces certification candidates to the flexibility and effectiveness of the value methodology correctly applied via the job plan. To accomplish that, the Module I workshop content covers value engineering history, benefits of using the job plan, function analysis, FAST diagramming, various cost analysis techniques, creativity and innovation tools, presentation skills, etc.

Certification Fee Questions

What are the certification application fees?

The VMA certification application fee is $50 USD for SAVE International members or $200 USD for non-members. The fee for college students enrolled in a university Module I workshop (approved by SAVE) is $20 USD.

The CVS certification application fee is $360 USD for SAVE members or $960 USD for non-members.

How can I pay my certification application fee?

You can pay your certification application fee with a credit card online via the online certification application form. Or you can pay by check made payable and sent to SAVE International, 19 Mantua Road, Mount Royal, NJ 08061 USA.

 I took a Module I workshop a couple months ago, but was unable to take the VMA exam. Now I would like to take the exam – is the price still the same? How do I go about taking it?

SAVE International does not charge any additional fees for proctored exams outside of a Module I workshop. Any compensation paid to a proctor is a private arrangement between the certification candidate and the proctor.

To take the VMA exam apart from a Module I workshop, you will first have to select a proctor. The proctor will need to request permission via email from the SAVE certification administration office (cao@value-eng.org) to administer your exam. An approved proctor must be a CVS in good standing or a faculty member of an accredited college or university. Once the proctor has been approved, the exam is mailed to him/her and they will monitor you while you are taking the exam. The proctor will then return the completed exam to SAVE for grading.

Certification Application & Exam Questions

I am planning on attending the upcoming SAVE International annual conference and would like to take the CVS exam while I am there. If I bring my application with me, may I take the exam?

Prior to sitting for the CVS exam, you must submit your CVS application, including your paper and documentation, to the SAVE International certification administration office using the online certification application form for review/approval. This process can take up to three months; therefore, you would not be able to sit for the CVS exam if you have not been previously approved.

I completed the Module I workshop. How do I take the certification exam?

Oftentimes, the VMA certification exam is administered at the end of a Module I workshop by the workshop instructor. If you wish to take the exam at some date following completion of the Module I workshop, you will need to select a proctor. The proctor will need to request permission via email from the SAVE International certification administration office (cao@value-eng.org) to administer your exam. An approved proctor must be a CVS in good standing or a faculty member of an accredited college or university. Once the proctor has been approved, the exam and instructions are mailed to him/her and they will monitor you while you are taking the exam.

Certification Workshop Instructor & Proctor Questions

I have agreed to proctor a VMA exam. What do I need to do?

SAVE International thanks you for serving as a certification exam proctor. As a proctor, you must place your request for as many VMA exams as you have candidates taking the exam using the online certification exam request form.

SAVE will verify that you are either a CVS in good standing or a faculty member of an accredited college or university. Upon verification, SAVE will mail you the requested number of VMA exams enclosed with electronic answer cards in sealed envelopes. Attached to the exam(s) and equal number of return envelopes will be a letter of instruction that will explain the exam process in accordance with SAVE policy. Be sure to read the instruction letter as soon as you receive the exam package. Upon completing the exam session, the proctor returns all used and unused exams to the SAVE certification administration office.

What is the lead time required for exam requests?

VMA exam requests must be placed using the online certification exam request form at least two weeks prior to the requested delivery date in order to guarantee delivery. Requests placed with less than two weeks notice will be considered “rush orders” and proctors will be required to reimburse SAVE International for the expedited shipping costs.

VMA exams and instructions are mailed to proctors only. Exams may not be copied, scanned or otherwise photographed or reproduced. Completed and unused exams must be returned to SAVE no more than two weeks following the exam date.

Certification Policy & Administration Questions

Do I have to be a member of SAVE International to be certified?

No, you need not be certified to be a member of SAVE International nor do you need to be a member to become certified. However, SAVE strongly encourages membership and includes financial incentives throughout the certification program that benefit members.

I let my certification expire. How do I reactivate it?

If your Associate Value Specialist (AVS) certification has expired, the SAVE International certification board is offering you the opportunity to reinstate your entry-level certification with the new VMA. If you are interested, please complete the AVS to VMA application and return it with your certification application fee to the SAVE certification administration office.

If your AVS recertification date is after June 30, 2016, the AVS recertification will no longer be offered; however, you may still retain your AVS certification until June 2020. At any time before your AVS certification expiration date, you may choose to convert to VMA certification by completing the AVS to VMA application and returning it with your certification application fee to the SAVE certification administration office.

If you were a CVS and have allowed your certification to expire, you should refer to the SAVE Certification and Recertification Manual for guidance. If your CVS certification is more than 12 months past due, then you will be obligated to begin the certification process anew.

If you have not maintained an active membership in SAVE during the time that your certification lapsed, then you must pay the non-member fee.

Who administers the certification program?

The SAVE International certification program is administered by CVS’ appointed by the SAVE Board of Directors for two-year terms. All attempts are made to have the Board represent a cross section of the Society and applications, including industry, government and construction and members from both internal programs and consultants.

It must be emphasized that the SAVE certification program is designed for those utilizing the value disciplines in their principal career. It is not an honors program (SAVE has a separate program to honor deserving individuals and organizations); certification must be earned by completing all criteria and requirements. It is for individual recognition and may not be transferred or used to imply that an organization is certified.

Where do I learn about the Value Methodology?

The best and most convenient way to learn the techniques of the Value Methodology, its application and management is as a member of SAVE International. Your SAVE membership gives you opportunities for career growth, professional development, information, contacts, new ideas, involvement and recognition. All this lays the foundation for your greater career success! For more information about the benefits of SAVE membership or to join, please click here.

For additional information about the SAVE International certification program and requirements, please visit the certification section of our website.