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How was the National Certified Peer Specialist (NCPS) developed?

Mental Health America began working on the National Certified Peer Specialist (NCPS) certification in 2015. In partnership with the Florida Certification Board (FCB), MHA convened a group of Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) including Patrick Hendry, Sue Bergeson, Larry Fricks, Tom Lane, Joseph Rogers, Janie Marsh, Andrew Bertagnolli, Andrea Crook, Larry Real, and Brenda Bergeson.

After establishing the target audience characteristics for certification, MHA, FCB, and the SMEs established draft competencies for public comment using the following documents:

MHA then collected national feedback on draft competencies and updated competencies as necessary and appropriate. With the updated competencies, a validation study was conducted with feedback from peers around the US about the importance and frequency of use of each competency in their work. From this data, a psychometrician from the Florida Certification Board developed a blueprint for the 125-question examination. SMEs and selected peers were trained to develop the multiple-choice questions for the examination.

Requirements for hours of experience, letters of recommendation, training, and continuing education were determined by SMEs after an environmental scan of requirements across the states. 

Applications for the NCPS opened in March 2017.

Learn more about the NCPS and start your application today.