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To Certify or Not to Certify, That is the Question!

The research industry is very important to me. The research community might have reached a new era with Professional Researcher Certification (PRC). A number of industries have certifications and perhaps it was time that our industry has one.

A few months ago, the The Marketing Research Association (MRA) added PRC. As a result, myself and hundreds of other researchers across the world are certified. The entire process was very easy and if you have any questions about what category to be certified under, Elyse Gammer or Jennifer Cattel can help you. Their contact information can be found at the MRA Headquarters Staff Page.

It could be said that there are a few reasons that I got certified:

  1. I am on the national MRA board and wanted to support the organization.
  2. I truly believe that the industry needs more standards. Certification really plays into that.
  3. I was scared to let the grandfathering time limit lapse and have to take the test!

I will admit it was a pu pu platter—a combination of all 3!

On the MRA site, part of the definition of PRC is:

“The Professional Researcher Certification was developed as a powerful professional tool for researchers of all levels of work experience and education. It is the goal of MRA to encourage high standards within the profession in order to raise competency, establish an objective measure of an individual’s knowledge and proficiency and to encourage continued professional development. Additionally, it is the hope of MRA that these certification standards will increase consumer understanding of research and foster premiere professional standards in the industry.”

Joan Burns knows all of the ins and outs of the PRC program and hopefully will post a few reasons as to why this is important to you and the industry.

Here is what I know for sure: prior to the Grandfathering deadline, you simply submit your application and résumé. Your application then goes before a review committee. If you are qualified, you will be certified. If you wait until after the deadline, you must submit your information and you will be required to past a test.

The date for becoming Grandfathered is February 28, 2007—less than 200 days away! I won’t tell you that you should sign up, but I will tell you to seriously look into it and make an educated decision.

I look forward to your thoughts.

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