Frequently Asked Questions about Continuing Education
The Board does NOT have a list of specific continuing education programs or activities available to complete the continuing education requirement. Do NOT call the Board office to find out where to take continuing education.
Please note: The continuing education requirements have not changed for renewal of your license in 2012. You are not required to report continuing education in professional ethics.
Pre-Approval of Courses or Activities
The Minnesota Board of Architecture, Engineering, Land Surveying, Landscape Architecture, Geoscience, and Interior Design does not pre-approve any courses or activities for continuing education. The Continuing Education Assessment Form (see below) is a tool created by the Board for licensees and certificate holders to use to help determine which courses or activities will meet the statutory requirements. It is up to each licensee or certificate holder to become familiar with the statutory requirements and to determine for themselves whether or not a particular course or activity meets those requirements.
Sponsors of courses and activities are welcome to review the statutory requirements and state the following on their advertising, "The Minnesota Board does not pre-approve courses and activities, however to the best of our knowledge this course/activity meets the continuing education requirements outlined in MN Statute 326.107. Final discretion is up to the Board."
Continuing Education Assessment Form - use this form to help you determine which courses or activities meet the statutory requirements for continuing education. You may also keep this in your file as part of your record of continuing education.
Continuing Education Documenting Form - Use this form to keep a running total of the courses and activities you participate in over the reporting period. You are not required to submit this form with your renewal.
Continuing Education Record Checklist - Wondering what you need to keep in your files in case of an audit? Use this checklist to help you keep track. Remember it is your responsiblity to ensure you have proper supporting documentation of your activities.
Exemption Request Form - Use this form to request an exemption from the continuing education requirement due to military service, illness, injury, or other extenuating circumstance which prevented you from obtaining the required professional development hours. You must also provide supporting documentation with your request.
Continuing Education Requirements (MN Statute 326.107)
Subdivision 1. Requirements. (a) Architects, professional engineers, land surveyors,
landscape architects, geoscientists, and interior designers licensed or certified by this board must
obtain the number of professional development hours described in paragraphs (b) to (d) during
each two-year period of licensure or certification identified in section 326.105. This requirement
must be satisfied during the two-year period prior to biennial renewal except for a carryover
permitted from the previous renewal period, which must not exceed 50 percent of the biennial
requirement of professional development hours.
(b) Licensed professional engineers must earn a minimum of 24 professional development
hours per biennial renewal except for the carryover permitted.
(c) Licensed architects, land surveyors, landscape architects, geoscientists, and certified
interior designers must earn a minimum of 24 professional development hours per biennial
renewal except for the carryover permitted.
(d) Dual license or certificate holders who have obtained a license or certificate for two
professions must earn professional development hours required by the license or certificate
requiring the greatest number of professional development hours and must obtain in each
profession a minimum of one-third of the total professional development hours required. The
remaining one-third requirement may be obtained in either profession at the sole discretion
of the licensee or certificate holder.
Subd. 2. Programs and activities. Continuing education must consist of learning
experiences which enhance and expand the skills, knowledge, and abilities of practicing
professionals to remain current and render competent professional services to the public.
Practitioners may pursue technical, nontechnical, regulatory, ethical, and business practice needs
for a well-rounded education provided the education directly benefits the health, safety, or
welfare of the public. Continuing education activities which satisfy the professional development
requirement include, but are not limited to, the following:
(1) completing or auditing college-sponsored courses;
(2) completing self-study college or non-college-sponsored courses, presented by
correspondence, Internet, television, video, or audio, ending with examination or other verification
(3) participation in seminars, tutorials, televised or videotaped courses, or short courses;
(4) attending self-sponsored and prepared in-house educational programs;
(5) completing a study tour with a structured program resulting in a written or visual
presentation by the licensee or certificate holder;
(6) presenting or instructing qualifying courses or seminars. Professional development hours
may be earned for preparation time for the initial presentation;
(7) authoring published papers, articles, or books. Professional development hours earned
may equal preparation time spent, may be claimed only following publication, and shall be given
for authorship or presentation, but not for both;
(8) participating in professional examination grading or writing. A maximum of five
professional development hours per biennium may be applied from this source;
(9) providing professional service to the public which draws upon the licensee's or certificate
holder's professional expertise on boards, commissions, and committees such as planning
commissions, building code advisory boards, urban renewal boards, or non-work-related
volunteer service. A maximum of ten professional development hours per biennium may be
applied from this source; and
(10) patents, after they are granted, for a credit of ten professional development hours.
Subd. 3. Criteria. (a) Continuing education courses and activities must meet the criteria in
paragraphs (b) to (f).
(b) There must be a clear purpose and objective for each activity which will maintain,
improve, or expand skills and knowledge obtained prior to initial licensure or certification or
develop new and relevant skills and knowledge.
(c) The content of each presentation must be well organized and presented in a sequential
(d) There must be evidence of preplanning which must include the opportunity for input by
the target group to be served.
(e) The presentation must be made by persons who are well qualified by education or
(f) There must be a provision for documentation of the individual's participation in the
activity, including information required for record keeping and reporting.
Subd. 4. Exemptions. The following licensees or certificate holders are exempt from the
continuing education requirements:
(1) a new licensee or certificate holder for the individual's first biennial renewal; or
(2) a licensee or certificate holder who has experienced during the biennial renewal a serious
illness, injury, or other extenuating circumstances, or who has been called to active duty in the
military services for a period of time exceeding 120 consecutive days, as reviewed and approved
by the board, and where such activities restrict compliance with the continuing education
requirements, as supported by documentation furnished to the board.
Subd. 5. Comity. Continuing education requirements may be met without completing the
entire renewal form if an individual is licensed or certified in another state, province, or district
which is listed by the Minnesota board as having continuing education requirements acceptable to
the Minnesota board and the licensee or certificate holder certifies in the appropriate section that
all continuing education and licensing or certification requirements for that state, province, or
district have been met. The licensee or certificate holder must still maintain complete records as
described in subdivision 7.
Subd. 6.[Repealed, 2003 c 85 s 5]
Subd. 7. Reports and records. The licensee or certificate holder shall maintain a file in
which records of courses and activities are kept, including dates, subjects, duration of programs,
sponsoring organization, professional development hours earned, registration receipts where
appropriate, and other pertinent documentation, for a period of two years after submission to the
board. This information may be required to be produced by licensees or certificate holders. The
board may require a licensee or certificate holder to produce this information in connection with
verification of a renewal application, a random audit conducted by the board, or upon receipt of a
complaint alleging noncompliance on the part of a licensee or certificate holder.
Subd. 8. Noncompliance. If the board rejects professional development hours reported
by a licensee or certificate holder in an amount sufficient to reduce the number of nonrejected
professional development hours below the required minimum number, the licensee or certificate
holder must be notified of the board's rejection of the hours. The licensee or certificate holder
has 180 days after notification to substantiate the validity of the rejected hours or to earn other
qualifying hours to meet the minimum requirement. The board's rejection of any professional
development hours submitted during this 180-day cure period does not extend or expand the
cure period. If the board does not reinstate a sufficient number of the rejected professional
development hours to meet the required minimum number of professional development hours,
or the licensee or certificate holder does not complete or substantiate that the individual has
completed other qualifying professional development hours to meet the required minimum
number of professional development hours within the specified period of time, the individual's
licensure or certification shall be suspended. Professional development hours earned within the
180-day cure period and applied to current renewal may not be applied to the requirements
for the following biennial renewal.