Certification News

Big Changes Coming for Landscape Industry Certified Program

June 1, 2018

The National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) recently announced changes to the Landscape Industry Certified Technician Exterior program.

The test that is currently being administered is a combination of hands-on and written exams. As of May 1, 2019, the current exams will be eliminated. A new exam will be created and administered completely online and through remote proctoring.

CLCA was the original creator of the Landscape Industry Certified Technician exam. The association and its Certification Committee are saddened by NALP's decision and are so grateful to have worked with great people and educational institutions to help promote professionalism and excellence in our industry. Our decades of working together resulted in thousands of our colleagues having earned their certification and seeing their careers soar.

What This Means for Certification Exam Candidates

Applicants who have already taken the written and/or hands-on exams and are eligible to re-take any portion of the exam will have opportunities to re-test. However, that eligibility window ends April 30, 2019. After that date, anyone who has not passed the test will be required to take the new exam in its entirety.

Unfortunately, because of these changes by NALP and the expiration of the ability to offer the test after April 30, 2019, CLCA will not accept any new exam applicants, effective immediately. Since few exam applicants pass the exam on their first try, the number of people eligible to re-take the exam is very large. With less than a year left to pass the written and hands-on exams before the program changes, CLCA is endeavoring to make sure any applicant that needs to re-test can do so. Between now and April 30, 2019, CLCA will host the following opportunities to take the current exam:

Written testing dates/locations

  • June 15, 2018 - Oceanside, CA
  • July 25, 2018 - Escondido, CA
  • October 12, 2018 - Petaluma, CA
  • December 7, 2018 - Sacramento, CA
  • February 6, 2019 - Ontario, CA
  • April 5, 2019 - La Mesa, CA

Hands-on testing dates/locations

  • October 13, 2018 - Petaluma, CA
  • April 6, 2019 - La Mesa, CA

More dates may be added for written and hands-on testing!

As of May 1, 2019, candidate information will be transferred to NALP (the owner of the certification exam), who will be administering the program from that point forward.

CLCA is exploring all opportunities and options relative to the future of industry certification in California via a newly formed task force. And while their work will take some time, we look forward to keeping you updated about their progress.

We have a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) that should answer many of the questions you might have about this upcoming change. If you have questions not answered in the FAQ, please do not hesitate to reach out to the CLCA office at (916) 830-2780 or certification@clca.org


for more information

Allison LoDolce

Landscape Industry Certified Technician Program

916.830.2780 x10


Photo Credit: Chris Roesink