Certification is a signal to the world that a certificant holds the requisite knowledge and skill set to successfully conduct a vocational assessment and make recommendations about the evaluee. Therefore, CRCC’s vocational evaluation specialist certification process is guided by the principle that a professional must not only have technical knowledge about assessment but can also conduct evaluations and make recommendations according to an acceptable standard. Vocational assessment, like rehabilitation counseling, is best accomplished by focusing on the strengths of the individual with a disability.

The certified vocational evaluation specialist (CVE) is a competency-based certification process. Competency-based certification is increasingly viewed as most appropriate method for awarding a professional credential.

A competency is a measurable set of knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to effectively perform the tasks of the vocational assessment process. Since a competency is task-based, an individual may need to transfer the competencies to new situations and environments. The vocational evaluator needs a combination of several competencies to perform the overall job well.

A competency-based certification infers a candidate’s ability to perform vocational assessment tasks at a given level. This type of certification encompasses both knowledge of vocational assessment and the necessary skills to apply that knowledge. The certification requires the crucial foundation of medical and psychosocial aspects of disability and chronic illness. Further, the certification also encompasses attitudes about rehabilitation and disability.

Rehabilitation professionals considering becoming certified vocational evaluation specialists should first take the time to reflect on their current skillset, experience level, and career aspirations accurately and honestly. Practitioners need to develop their skillsets beyond those traditionally associated with the discipline of vocational evaluation. Assessment is a crucial factor in the vocational process for people with disabilities. The systematic procedure for collecting data and information necessary to draw relevant and accurate conclusions and make decisions about the characteristics of a person have always been part of the rehabilitation process. Combined with an understanding of rehabilitation and disability concepts, critical thinking, and problem-solving, the CVE’s skillsets are evolving to include strategic thinking and analysis that incorporates business and community knowledge; innovative thinking about the role of assessment in the lives of people with disabilities; and enhanced, high quality service provision.

The competency-based vocational evaluation specialist certification (CVE) requires candidates to hold the CRC. The revitalized certification process provides a framework for certification that validates an individual’s capabilities to perform a required standard of work. This competency-based framework recognizes the knowledge, skills, behaviors, and experience a practitioner can demonstrate. The courses and capstone that must be successfully completed before the credential is awarded are designed to measure a practitioner’s proficiency level based on their ability to perform the tasks of the vocational assessment process.

The approach of developing vocational evaluation specialists who also have expertise in rehabilitation counseling should have a cascading effect on the field. Their performance is likely to be higher than people with expertise in just one of the areas. The results should be better outcomes for people with disabilities.