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The Challenge Of Certification

The American Handwriting Analysis Foundation is dedicated to advancing the handwriting sciences and giving recognition to those who foster research, increase knowledge in the field, and who prove to be exemplary handwriting analysts. The designation “Certified Graphologist” (CG - AHAF) is for the serious student interested in advancing to a professional level in the field as well as Handwriting Analyst professionals seeking to have their expertise validated by AHAF. Applicants are expected to meet minimum educational and experience levels, which can include:

12 units of college studies, including courses in psychology or psychology-related courses, two years of independent study in the handwriting sciences or with a recognized course or instructor. Each applicant’s prior studies and experience will be evaluated as part of the application process. All applicants will have a brief (on-line) meeting with the Certification Chair in advance of or shortly after submittal of the application.

AHAF’s certification examinations are not an “easy pass.” They consist of a rigorous two-part process. Part One is comprised of essay, multiple choice, and true/false questions that require intensive research and experience. The questions are intended to test the ability of the analyst to synthesize graphological theories with psychological concepts applied to real-life situations.

Part Two requires in-depth analysis dealing with issues such as life guidance, personnel selection, compatibility, child guidance and vocational assessment. The analyst is required to write comprehensive, professional reports about the writers based on their findings.

Part One is to be completed within 60 days of the receipt of the Part One Exam.  Part Two is to be completed within 90 days of the Part Two Exam. An extension may be granted at the discretion of the Certification Chair. The applicant must have received a passing grade on Part One before applying for Part Two.

Each exam is graded and critiqued by AHAF-certified judges who are required to score and return the test within six weeks. The tests are judged blind (judges do not know whose test they are scoring) to allow for an unbiased assessment. Members of the panel score applicants on accuracy of interpretation (using a scoring rubric), quality of reports in terms of professional presentation, justification of findings, diplomacy, and meeting the objectives of the “client.”

Becoming professionally certified by AHAF is a process to ensure the public that our certified members are competent representatives of the handwriting sciences and of our organization. To maintain certification, AHAF CG’s must remain members in good standing (having paid “Professional” level dues each calendar year), and must meet continuing education requirements, leading to the renewal their certified status every five years. All members are governed by AHAF’s Code of Ethics.

Note: although some of our members either teach or are affiliated with recognized courses listed on our website, AHAF does not sponsor any specific course of study or method. Therefore, what constitutes an “accepted” course or instructor is determined on a case-by-case basis.

For more information about becoming AHAF-certified please contact Certification Chairperson Ralph Zackheim.

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