Frequently Asked Questions about the CSP program
How do I become a CSP?
The certification of an individual's competence is accomplished through a written exam. The exam is designed to measure the individual's knowledge in 6 areas: Business, Human Resource Management, Marketing, Sub-Contractors, Snow & Ice Science, and Snow & Ice Operations and Techniques. A candidate will determine eligibility, complete an application and submit any necessary application materials, be approved by SIMA, and then take the exam.
Why should I become a CSP?
The CSP program is a tool designed to educate you in all aspects of snow and ice management. It can also become one of your best sales tools, allowing you to explain to your customers what you learned and achieved through the program.
Who is eligible to take the exam?
CSP applicants can apply for the exam under 2 options: direct snow management experience or snow-specific training, experience, and education. Click here for eligibility specifics.
How do I study for the exam?
SIMA recommends the 6 CSP study modules, which are the source of the test questions. Streaming webinar presentations of review questions and extra study help on each module is also available for purchase on SIMA's Training Center. Click here for information on purchasing CSP study materials.
How do I register to take the exam?
To register for the CSP exam, take the following steps:
1. Submit application, any application materials, and fees to SIMA (more information). Click here to download an application.
2. When your application is approved, you will receive an email prompting you to sign up for an exam date (more information).
What is the cost of the CSP exam?
The exam fee is $350 for members and $500 for non-members.
Where can I take the exam?
Exams are given online once per month through SIMA's Training Center at train.sima.org, and can be taken from your home or office computer.
When can I take the exam?
Once your application materials are submitted, you will receive an email with a link to sign up for an exam date. Exams are offered once per month. Click here for current exam dates.
How many questions are on the exam, and how long will I have to take it?
The 200-question exam is divided into six sections, with a separate exam for each: Business, Human Resources, Marketing, Sub-contractors, Snow & Ice Science, and Snow & Ice Operations and Techniques. The exam will be available in your SIMA Training Center classroom on your designated date at 10am EST, and removed the following day at 4pm EST. You can complete the six sections in any order during that time. You will have two chances during the exam timeframe to earn a passing score on each section.
Can I use study materials when I am taking the exam?
Use of study materials, outside help from another individual, or other study aides are NOT permitted. Individuals verify that they solely are responsible for the answers provided on the exam(s) and that they were not assisted by other individuals. Individual participation in any irregularity occurring during the exam, such as giving or obtaining unauthorized information or aid, as evidenced by observation or subsequent statistical analysis, may be sufficient cause to invalidate the results of the examination, or other appropriate remedy. SIMA will review exam length logs and other data to ensure exams are being taken properly.
How do I access the exam on my exam date?
Once you have signed up for a date, you will receive detailed instructions via email on how to access the exam. If you are having trouble accessing it, please call the SIMA office at 414-375-1940.
Can I reschedule/cancel my exam date?
If you need to reschedule your exam, please contact Ellen@sima.org at least 24 hours prior to request a new exam date. If you miss your scheduled exam, you will have to sign up and take it during a future scheduled date. Exams will not be given outside of the monthly scheduled dates.
How long do I have to take the exam once my application is submitted?
The exam is offered once per month, planned 3 months ahead. Submit your application when you are ready or almost ready to sit for the exam, as you are required to sign up for a date within 3 months of your application submission.
When will I receive my results?
You will receive your score at the end of each section. SIMA will send an official results email the day after your exam, which will include retake sign up information if applicable.
What happens if I don't pass the exam?
You will have two chances during the exam timeframe to earn a passing score on each section. If a passing score is not earned on a section after the allotted two tries, you will have to retake during a future exam date. You will only have to retake the sections you did not pass, not the entire exam. Retake information and sign up will be included in your official results email.
What do I get after I become a CSP?
1. CSP listed after your name on SIMA mailings, website, and member directory.
2. A framed certificate, wallet card, and marketing materials to help you promote your CSP status.
3. A CSP marketing kit added to your SIMA Training Center classroom, which includes brochures, social media images, press releases and more to promote your designation.
Once I pass the exam, how do I maintain my CSP designation?
You must pay an annual renewal fee of $130 to SIMA. You must also earn 15 continuing education credits per year, starting the year after you pass the exam. Continuing education credits and the renewal fee will be due December 31 of each year. Credits can be obtained through various activities including but not limited to the following: educational seminars, SIMA's annual symposium, publishing industry related articles, and mentoring new SIMA members. Click here for more information about maintaining your CSP designation.