IPMA Qualifications 

The International Project Management Association (IPMA) is a federation of around 70-member associations across the globe which provides qualification standards for individuals working in project, programme and portfolio management. IPMA qualifications are internationally recognised and designed for project professionals at all levels in their careers. APM are the certification body in the UK for the IPMA and offer the full suite of qualifications.

IPMA qualifications are available as Project, Programme and Portfolio Management for Levels A and B only and as Project Management for levels C and D only.

The IPMA qualification price list is available upon request, please email ipmaqualifications@apm.org.uk for more information.

Level A

IPMA® Level A: Certified Project Director, Certified Programme Director and Certified Portfolio Director are internationally recognised qualifications offered by APM.

These qualifications are designed for experienced project professionals who can demonstrate an ability to manage complex projects, programmes or portfolios at a strategic level.

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Level B

IPMA® Level B: Certified Senior Project Manager, Certified Senior Programme Manager and Certified Senior Portfolio Manager are internationally recognised qualifications offered by APM.

These qualifications are designed for experienced project professionals who can demonstrate an ability to manage complex projects, programmes or portfolios.

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Level C

IPMA® Level C: Certified Project Manager is an internationally recognised qualification offered by APM.

Previously aligned to the APM Practitioner Qualification (PQ), the IPMA Level C: Certified Project Manager qualification is designed for relatively experienced project professionals who can demonstrate an ability to manage moderately complex projects.

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Level D

IPMA® Level D: Project Management Associate is an internationally recognised qualification offered by APM.

Previously aligned to the APM Project Management Qualification (PMQ), the ‘IPMA Level D: Certified Project Management Associate qualification is designed for people looking to progress in their project management career.

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Frequently asked questions

What regulations are the IPMA qualifications based on and where can I find further information?

The IPMA certification is based on the global competence standard the International Competence Baseline (ICB). This standard is defined by the IPMA and describes the competences that project, programme and portfolio managers should possess - Download the ICB.

The certification process involves several steps for the assessment of a candidate and is described in detail in the International Certification Regulations (ICR) - Download the ICR.

Are there any time limits regarding the process?

For a candidate to be awarded an IPMA certificate, they must have successfully completed each of the assessment steps within 18 months from the date of acceptance of their application.

Candidates are allowed to retake a specific stage of the qualification only once, before having to start the qualification from the beginning.

Who is an appropriate referee for my reference statement?

For levels A, B and C and also re-certification, the referees providing the reference statement need to be able verify the applicant’s eligibility in relation to the level and domain of certification for which the candidate is applying for.

Referees may be contacted by APM to solicit additional evidence.

Special dispensations

APM is committed to promoting a positive attitude towards people with special learning and physical needs. It has a great deal of experience in facilitating individual requirements and tailoring adjustments with the aim of removing any unfair disadvantage that an individual may encounter as a consequence of their medical condition.

A dispensation may be allowed for candidates with a medical or physical condition that prevents them from completing the examination within the normal regulations. All requests must be supported by a medical certificate or other relevant medical documentation from your GP or other medical professional.

For further information please contact the qualifications department - qualifications@apm.org.uk

Illness and cancellation

Illness: If you are unable to attend your examination/interview due to illness you must inform the APM Qualifications Department immediately.

This should be done either through your organisation, Accredited Provider or directly to APM. A medical certificate signed by a doctor must be provided within 5 working days of the examination/interview date.

Cancellation: If you withdraw from the examination up to 5 working days before the examination (10 working days for overseas examinations), a cancellation fee will apply.

Details of the cancellation fee are available from the APM Qualifications Department. If a candidate fails to attend the examination/interview, the examination fee is payable in full.

What is the appeals process?

Further information about APM’s assessment results enquiries process can be found here.



Re-certification is due five years after initial certification for all levels and domains. It is the responsibility of the certificate holder to initiate the re-certification process through application up to a maximum of six months after their certificate expiry date. An extension may be provided up to 12 months from the certificate expiry date, with justification.

Before applying for re-certification, you may wish to consider whether a higher level of certification is now better suited to your career development and experience. In that case, you should apply in accordance with the regulations for the relevant certificate.

  Level A Level B Level C Level D
Domain related experience required by the applicant Evidence of minimum 30 months of practical experience over five-year period NA
Complexity NA
Leadership of others NA

All levels require a minimum of 35 hours’ evidence of CPD per annum (175 hours total) since the last (re-)certification.

Applications for re-certification will be considered by a suitably qualified assessor at the relevant level. The assessor may decide to recommend: 

  • re-certification without the provision of any further information,
  • that you be called to interview with two assessors,
  • rejection of your application (if the evidence you supply is insufficient or inappropriate).

You are required to submit to the following documents as part of the re-certification application: application form, CV, full self-assessment, CPD log demonstrating you have completed 35 hours of CPD per annum and two referees statements.

Please submit your re-certification application and supporting documents to ipmaqualifications@apm.org.uk, your application will be processed and the team will be contact you with regards to payment of the appropriate fees.

How was the syllabus produced?

To support candidates in understanding how they will achieve competency elements and key competency indicators found in IPMA’s International Competence Baseline document, APM have translated these standards into syllabuses which better reflect UK qualifications.  As part of this translation, competency elements were grouped together to form learning outcomes with key competency indicators being grouped to form assessment criteria.  Candidates will provide assessment evidence through the various assessment methods. Due to the translation from standards to qualifications, competency elements and key competency indicators will be met providing candidates provide sufficient evidence of learning outcomes and assessment criteria in the syllabus.

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