Federal Records Management

FAQs about NARA's Certificate of Federal Records Management Training Program

1. Why should I get NARA's Certificate of Federal Records Management Training?

NARA's program gives Federal records management professionals a set of benchmarks to gauge their professional development. The information contained in the courses associated with the Certificate cover every aspect of Federal Records Management and are an important step in acquiring the skills necessary to manage Federal records.

2. How does NARA's Certificate of Federal Records Management Training Program work?

Each student must attend Knowledge Area classes 2-6 (details below) and must pass the corresponding exam for each class. Upon the successful completion of the classes and tests, an individual receives a Certificate signed by the Archivist of the United States.

3. What subjects are covered in the Certificate of Federal Records Management Training Program?

NARA has identified five "Areas of Knowledge" that are covered by the certificate program. These are:

  • Knowledge Area Two: Creating and Maintaining Agency Business Information
  • Knowledge Area Three: Records Scheduling
  • Knowledge Area Four: Records Schedule Implementation
  • Knowledge Area Five: Asset and Risk Management
  • Knowledge Area Six: Records Management Program Development

4. How does NARA's Certificate of Federal Records Management Training differ from other records management certification programs?

NARA's Certificate of Federal Records Management Training focuses on policies and procedures unique to the Federal environment. It is not intended to replicate any existing records management certification programs, nor does it result in the CRM designation that is achieved by meeting both educational and work experience certification requirements established by the Institute of Certified Records Managers (ICRM) ( http://www.icrm.org/) and by passing their required examinations.

5. Do all records management officers and liaisons in the Federal Government have to obtain a Certificate of Federal Records Management Training?

Participation is voluntary; NARA does not require any Federal records officer or liaison to complete the program.

6. If I have experience as a records manager in the Federal Government, may I take the tests without taking the courses?

No. Because NARA's records management policies and procedures are constantly evolving, it is imperative that records management personnel take classes to remain current. Many earlier policies and procedures no longer apply or are significantly different.

7. May an individual who works as a contractor for a Federal agency participate in the Certificate of Federal Records Management Training Program?


8. Where are the certificate courses offered?

Courses are offered in all NARA regions and at NARA Headquarters in College Park, MD. Please visit NARA's Records Management Training Program Learning Management System for specific course offerings and information.

9. How much does NARA's Certificate of Federal Records Management Training cost?

As of October 1, 2018, the required certificate courses are free.  Prior to October 1, 2018, the cost to attend the five courses, KA2 (2 days - $300), KA3 (2 days - $300), KA4 (2 days - $300), KA5 (2 days - $300), and KA6 (1 day - $150), totaled $1,350. There has never been, nor will there be, any cost for the certification testing.

10. Are tests given at the end of each course?

No. Tests are administered via the Internet. Following each course, the course instructor provides an online address and other identifying information to access the appropriate test. The instructor also provides information on how to take the test if you are not able to take the test online.

11. How long after I complete the course do I have to take the online test?

You may take the test at any time after completing the course. It is strongly recommended, however, that you take the test within one to two weeks after course completion.

12. How will I know if I have passed the test?

You will be provided immediate feedback on the accuracy of your test answers and informed if you have passed or not.

13. If I do not pass the test, may I take it again without retaking the relevant course?

Yes, you may retake the test without retaking the relevant course.

14. If I pass the test, how do I get my certificate?

When you have successfully completed all tests, we will send the Certificate to you within two months. However, your mailing address information in your account profile in the Learning Management System must be accurate, or you will not receive your Certificate.


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