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Program Requirements

educator in field


Candidates have four years from the enrollment date in which to complete the EE Certification program. Candidates may count previous workshops and experiences that have occurred during the past one year prior to enrollment. Go here for more information on how to enroll.

Program At A Glance

Program Portfolio

Enrollees in the program will begin developing an online portfolio that will include documentation of participation for each of the following Criteria:

Criteria I: Instructional Workshops - Total of 70 hours.

Criteria II: Outdoor Instructor-led Experiences - Total of 50 hours.

Criteria III: Knowledge of Environmental Education Resources and Facilities - Total of 30 hours.

Criteria IV: Teaching Experiences. Total of 30 hours. Document hours directly to your online account.

Criteria V: Community Partnership Project . Total of 20 hours. Document hours directly to your online account.

*Note: Criteria I-III can be documented with an EE Form which then can be emailed to , faxed to (919) 715-5161 or mailed to the Office of Environmental Education and Public Affairs, 1609 MSC, Raleigh, NC 27699-1609.

We strongly recommend that enrollees keep copies (hardcopy and/or scanned copies) of their EE Forms for their own backup records.

Continuing Education

Once educators earn their certification, they are required to complete fifty hours of Continuing Education (CE) every five years in order to maintain an active status within the program. Once submitted and approved, the educator’s certification will be renewed and certification will remain active for the next five years.

Anything that counts as Certification Program Criteria I or II, or instructor-led seminars, lectures or conference sessions related to EE can be documented towards the 50 hours using an EE Form (with a maximum of 10 hours per experience). Activities that would be considered "site visits" under Criteria III do not count as continuing education credit. Also, teaching or volunteer hours cannot be used--credit hours must be some type of activity in which you received direct instruction or training.

The first five-year renewal cycle begins the day of the individual’s official certification date. For example, if Jane Smith was certified on 1/1/2012, she has until 1/1/2017 to complete her fifty hours of continuing education credits. Her next renewal cycle would begin on 1/1/2017 and end 1/1/2022. These renewal cycles are recorded on the individual's certification account page. Activities must occur after the individual's certification date to be used for CE credit.

Note: Individuals certified prior to January 1, 2009, when the continuing education requirement began, have 5 years from that date (until January 1, 2014) to complete the 50 hours of Continuing Education, and the activities for CE must have taken place after 1/1/2009.

Please submit your EE Forms for all continuing education activities by emailing them to or mailing to the Office of Environmental Education and Public Affairs, 1609 MSC, Raleigh, NC 27699-1609. 

Please allow 10-15 days for your documentation to appear on your account page. When you complete the continuing education requirements, your certification will be renewed for another 5 years.  The continuing education requirement must be completed every five years in order to remain active in the program.  To view your certification information at any time, click on the “My Account” tab at the top of any Office of EE Web page and then click “My EE Certification status.”