The NCCAP Page
The National Certification Council
for Activity Professionals
Our Mission:  The National Certification Council for Activity Professionals is a credentialing body,
which sets standards and criteria to ensure that those we serve have optimal life experiences
Why Become
NCCAP Certified?

1. Federal Law, OBRA, states that an
activity department must be directed
by a "qualified professional." One of
the ways to become qualified is to
become a Certified Activity

2. NCCAP certification is recognized
by HCFA (Health Care Financing
Administration) as an organization
that certifies activity professionals
who work specifically with the elderly.

3. NCCAP certification assures
administrators and surveyors that you
have met certain professional
standards to become certified.

4. Many administrators will only hire
activity professionals who are already

5. Some administrators offer a higher
salary to a certified professional.

6. Become NCCAP certified so others
will know that you are nationally
qualified and giving quality activity
service to residents/clients.


May derive from a wide variety of
curricula: Social Work, Recreation,
Education, and Business degrees.
These are a few of the educational
backgrounds that represent our
certified members.

Activity work experience with elderly
populations, where at least 50% are
55+ years of age. Some volunteer
work with elderly clients may be

Current education (within past 5
years): workshops, seminars, college
courses that keep the activity
professional abreast of present
trends. NCCAP's Body of Knowledge
contains 27 areas of education with
many subheadings that are

May include: advising a group,
working one to one, teaching a class,
conducting workshops, publishing
professional articles, supervising
students and/or managing 5 or more
activity staff persons.

The cost of being certified initially
ranges from $45 to $65 depending
upon the level. Renewal is required
every two years with 20-40 hours of
continuing education and a fee of $40.

For further information visit
for Activity Professionals
in Long Term Care Settings

Copyright 2004-Present
The Activity Director's Office
All Rights Reserved

Continuing Education …Clock Hours, where to find them
Kathy Hughes, ADC, NCCAP President

Many people struggle to get their clock hours for their NCCAP renewal on a regular basis.
Here are some ideas that will make that struggle a little less stressful.

#1. Find your state activities association. Each year state activity associations hold annual
conferences, either in the spring or fall. Some hold two conferences. They are a great
resource for getting those clock hours on a regular basis. You can use the
website and find the NCCAP State Rep who will let you know about their upcoming
conferences. Also listed are the various state activities association links to go directly to
their websites. Most state associations have enough hours available for you to get
everything that you need. Also keep in mind that if you write an article that is 400-600
words in length, about activities and have it published in your state association newsletter,
well that would count for one hour of continuing education. Many state associations
struggle looking for articles that they can share with their membership.

#2. Find a community continuing education opportunity. The web site has
a “Sample Certificate” posted under the “Downloads and Requests” link from the
homepage that you can copy off and use for those opportunities that fall within the
NCCAP Body of Knowledge. A computer course at your local high school, a craft class at
a local craft store, as well as your local library has many continuing education
opportunities. Even your local Toastmasters ( group has workshops on
management subjects and there is one in your area.

#3. Don’t forget that you can also use 20% of your continuing education for facility
inservices. Take the “Sample Certificate” and fill it in at each of your inservices. If your
facility sponsors a workshop you can utilize it just like a regular workshop. Make sure that
all the information needed can be found on the certificate.

#4. Need just a couple of hours? NCCAP sponsors a “NCCAP Chat” on Wednesday nights
at 8:00PM EST, everyone is welcome and the chat lasts one hour. Information, as well as
a form that you need to complete for NCCAP can be found on the web site
as well. The $10.00 fee is our fundraiser for our scholarship fund. Share ideas with
activity professionals from all over the world. Many folks join in just to chat with others
while some have earned their entire clock hours by joining the chat. It is a chat room just
for activity professionals.

#5. Online and home study courses are always a non-traditional form of continuing
education. Keep in mind that all online and home study course have to be NCCAP pre-
approved. Always ask the company for their NCCAP pre-approval number prior to taking
the course. We encourage companies to post their online and home study courses on the
NCCAP Bulletin Board. Several members have also posted ideas on obtaining continuing
education courses on the NCCAP Bulletin Board to inspire and help you get your hours.

#6. Make sure that the certificate that you receive has all of the required information on it.
The following information needs to be on your certificate, if the course or session was not
NCCAP pre-approved:

  1. name of the attendee
  2. title of the educational session
  3. date of the session — Sessions/workshops over 8 hours need to include a time
    outline verifying the number of hours attended
  4. clock hours spent in the session
  5. instructor's name and credentials
  6. signature of instructor or sponsor
  7. sponsoring agency

Earning clock hours for your continuing education is as varied as our credentialed
members. There are many possibilities and many ways to learn. We encourage a life long
updating of your skills and education.
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