AALEP aims to advance the profession of government relations by the improvement of the qualifications and usefulness of government relations professionals through high standards of ethics, conduct, education, and achievement; by the establishment and maintenance of the highest standards of professional ethics and conduct of the members of the Association; by the increase and diffusion of government relations knowledge through meetings, professional contacts, reports, papers, discussions, and publications.

AALEP recognizes the responsibility of GR professionals to continue their educational and professional development.  

AALEP has developed standards and criteria for those organizations wishing to offer Continuing Education for GR professionals and to maintain the highest level of quality in those programmes. AALEP is intent on (a) developing and delivering continuing education programmes and products; (b) providing educational and technical assistance to organizations, associations and other entities;  (c) collaborating with organizations that seek to become AALEP-approved Providers of continuing education programmes.

Providers must meet the Standards provided below in order to receive approval from AALEP as a provider of Continuing Education for GR professionals. Each standard includes a general principle followed by the related criterion/criteria.  


Principle: Continuing Education (CE) in GR is an ongoing process consisting of formal learning activities that (1) are relevant to the GR practice and education, (2) enable GR professionals to keep pace with emerging issues and technologies, and (3) allow GR professionals to maintain, develop, and increase competencies in order to improve services to their clients/employers and the general public and enhance contributions to the profession. 


  1. Provider  must have a statement of goals for their CE programme that reflects this Principle.


Principle: Effective programme management is essential for maintaining the highest quality in continuing education programmes for GR professionals .


  1. Providers must include the direct input of GR professionals in all phases of the decision-making and programme-planning process for the activities offered to GR professionals.
  2. Providers must have a clearly designated programme administrator who is responsible for ensuring that the organization meets AALEP Standards.
  3. Providers must ensure the security of proprietary information, and the confidentiality of individuals and organizations.
  4. Providers must have written procedures for addressing participant complaints in a reasonable, ethical, and timely fashion.
  5. Providers must select instructors and develop programme materials that respect cultural, individual, and role differences.


Principle: Successful continuing education in GR requires: (1) careful educational planning that results in a clear statement of educational objectives; (2) the selection of appropriate instructional methods to achieve those objectives; and (3) the selection of instructional personnel with demonstrated expertise in the programme content.


  1. Providers must develop educational objectives that clearly describe what participants are expected to learn. 
  2. Providers must select instructors with expertise in the programme content and who are competent to teach this programme content. 


Principle: The content of continuing education is the crucial component of programmes intended to maintain, develop, and increase conceptual and applied competencies that are relevant to GR practice and education. CE programs may include content related to well-established GR principles, or may be based on content that extends current theory, method, or practice. CE programmess may provide information related to ethical, legal, statutory or regulatory policies, guidelines, and standards that impact GR.


1. Providers must be prepared to demonstrate that information and programmes presented are based on a methodological, theoretical, research, or practice knowledge base. This requirement must be met by at least one of the following:

1.1. Programme content has obtained credibility, as demonstrated by the involvement of the broader GR practice and education communities in studying or applying the findings, procedures, practices, or theoretical concepts;

1.2. Programme content has been supported using established research procedures ;

1.3. Programme content has peer reviewed, published support beyond those publications and other types of communications devoted primarily to the promotion of the approach;

1.4. Programme content is related to ethical, legal, statutory or regulatory policies, guidelines, and standards that impact GR.

2. Providers are required to ensure that instructors, during each CE presentation, include statements that describe the accuracy and utility of the materials presented, the basis of such statements, the limitations of the content being taught, and the severe and the most common risks. 

3. Providers must be prepared to demonstrate that content is relevant to GR practice and education.

4. Providers must clearly describe any commercial support for the CE programme, presentation, or instructor to programme participants at the time the CE programme begins. Any other relationship that could be reasonably construed as a conflict of interest also must be disclosed. 


Principle: Evaluation of CE programmes is for the purpose of improving future programs.


  1.  Providers must obtain the CE participants’ evaluation as to how well each educational objective was achieved.
  2.  Providers must assess the participants’ satisfaction, using a written evaluation form, with the overall programme.
  3. Providers must ensure that there is a method in place to assess what the participants have learned from the programme.
  4. Providers must use the results of the abovementioned evaluation processes to improve and plan future programmes.


Principle: The awarding of CE credit is based on participation in learning activities offered in accordance with AALEP Standards.


  1. Providers must award CE credit for GR professionals on the basis of one credit per one hour of instructional time.
  2. Providers must provide documentation to each participant that includes the AALEP approval statement, the name and date of the activity, the number of CE credits earned, and a signature or other verification from the provider organization.
  3. Providers must be able to verify the awarding of CE credit to participants and provide this verification to individuals who request it for at least three years after completion of the activity. 


Principle: CE promotional materials must contain accurate and complete information for potential programme participants.


1. Providers must clearly indicate how potential participants may obtain the following information prior to enrolling in a CE programme:

a. Educational objectives;

b. A description of the target audience and the instructional level of the activity (introductory, intermediate, or advanced);

c. Schedule;

d. Cost, including all fees and the refund/cancellation policy;

e. Instructor credentials, including relevant professional degree and discipline, current professional position, and expertise in program content;

f. The number of CE credits offered for each activity;

g. A clear indication of any activities within a programme that are not offered for CE credit.

2. Sponsors must make clearly evident to all potential participants, prior to registration, any known commercial support for CE programmes or instructors. Any other relationships that could be reasonably construed as a conflict of interest also must be disclosed.

3. Providers must assure that when referring to AALEP approval, the correct statement is used in all promotional materials such as ads, brochures, and announcements

When referring to AALEP approval, the following statement must be used: "(Organization name) is approved by the AALEP to provide continuing education for GR professionals. (Organization name) maintains responsibility for this program and its content." 









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