PMI-ACP reqirements

Ensuring Your PMI-ACP Certification Stays Current: Renewal and Validity Guide

Earning PMI-ACP certification is a professional achievement. It is a certification that comes after long work to achieve Education and training in addition to earning a passing score on the PMIC-ACP exam. Know how long your PMI-ACP certification is valid and how to renew it to maintain your Project Management Institute (PMI®) issued certification.

Ultimate Guide to PMI-ACP Certification

Download the Ultimate Guide to learning about the PMI-ACP Certification.

What is PMI-ACP

The PMI certification known as “PMI-ACP®” stands for “Project Management Institute-Agile Certified Practitioner.”  Earn it through meeting all PMI-ACP requirements and passing the PMI-ACP exam; maintain it through continuing education efforts. It is a Project Management Institute (PMI®) project management certification, such as Project Management Professional (PMP®), but with an Agile focus. PMI states that those with PMI-ACP® designation have proven their skills and knowledge:

  • Understanding and applying multiple agile approaches, including Scrum, Lean, Kanban, and Test-Driven Development.
  • Engaging stakeholders effectively to gather requirements, incorporate feedback, and ensure project success.
  • Delivering value to customers through iterative development cycles and employing agile metrics for informed decision-making.

Having a Scrum Master job title, working in agile project management using Agile methodology, or knowing Agile principles does not equate to certification. You must meet education requirements to qualify to take the PMI-ACP exam, which will verify your status as a PMI Agile Certified Practitioner.

PMI-ACP Validity

As with all other PMI certifications, staying updated on best practices and honed skills is a requirement. There is a renewal cycle to ensure that those with PMI-ACP certification fulfill PMI ethical and professional standards. A PMI-ACP certification is only valid for three years following issuance. 

To maintain your certification, you must know what constitutes a Project Development Unit (PDU) and know how to earn PDUs that meet PMI requirements. Each time you earn PDUs, you must submit them to the PMI Continuing Certification Requirements (CCR) within a set time. Failure to earn the required PDU type or PDU amount within the period of your project management certification (e.g., Project Management Professional (PMP) or PMI-ACP) negates the validity of your credential.

PMI-ACP Renewal Process

If it is your first certification renewal or one of many, the PMI certification renewal process is the same.

  1. Go to the PMI Requirements page for information about professional development requirements to maintain your PMI-ACP certification.
  2. Complete the continuing education requirements using vetted resources; keep documentation of your efforts in case of audit.
  3. Log into your account and use the Continuing Certification Requirements (CCR) system (CCRS).
  4. Submit your PDUs for review and credit towards your renewal.
  5. Pay the PMI renewal fee once you have earned the necessary PDUs.

PMI-ACP Renewal Requirements: Earn 30 PDUs In A Three-Year Cycle

For PMI-ACP certification renewal, the project management professional needs to accumulate 30 continuing education hours (PDUs) for Education (minimum 18 PDUs) and Giving Back (maximum of 12 PDUs), with a focus on increasing understanding of agile or its methodologies. A PDU equals one hour of learning, working, or volunteering.

The PMI Talent Triangle’s (Ways of Working, Power Skills, and Business Acumen) determines the type and quantity of education PDUs for recertification, with a minimum number of hours from each element. For PMI-ACP, you must have 30 PDUs earned within three years of the certification issuance that are distributed across categories:

There is no limit on the number of Education PDUs you can earn – meaning that you can earn all 30 PDUs in Education if you choose. However, you can not earn all Education PDUs in only one part of the Talent Triangle; the distribution of skill areas and requirements is part of qualifying for recertification.

Education examples included in the PMI CCR Certification Requirements Handbook include:

  • Training courses offered by a PMI Authorized Training Partner (ATP)
  • Educational events held by a PMI chapter
  • Academic Education through programs accredited by the PMI Global Accreditation Center (GAC) (report each course separately, not at a degree or certificate program)

Potential PDUs may be earned through verifiable work “Giving Back” to the profession through agile-oriented professional work and volunteering. Examples included in the PMI CCR Certification Requirements Handbook include mentoring someone working in agile, creating content on agile-related topics for a presentation, and volunteering for a PMI event.

For Education and Giving Back PDUs, documentation of the submitted effort from a credible source is required. PMI may conduct audits, and during that process, documentation of completed training is crucial for your credential status to remain.

PMI-ACP Renewal Process

To report PDUs and view your certification records, log into your profile and access the online Continuing Certification Renewal System (CCRS):

As the renewal is three years, most PMI-ACP certification holders, like the PMP or other PMI certification holders, submit PDU efforts as they go. This prevents any last-minute scramble to meet your renewal requirements and helps you plan what training or Education you need to complete to keep your certification valid.

When you are ready to renew your PMI certification (PMI-ACP or PMP), you will need to have a credit card or accepted payment form, as there is a fee:

  • PMI members pay $60 US renewal fee
  • Non-PMI-members pay $150 US renewal fee

After the PMI accepts your renewal payment, no matter what day before your actual expiration date that happens, a new three-year cycle begins from your most recent expiration date, as shown in this PMI example:

  • certification renewal date is July 1, 2019
  • renewed on March 1, 2019.
  • certification renewal date is July 1, 2022 (three years from the original renewal date).

You do not have to retake the PMI-ACP certification exam if you maintain your PDUs and pay all fees within the renewal period.

Strategies for Meeting Renewal Requirements

While PMI has Authorized Training Partner (ATP) programs offering exam prep courses for PMI-ACP, it is not mandatory to take courses from ATPs. What is required is that the content, learning, or effort connects to and advances Agile project management as a profession and field.

PMI CCR Certification Requirements Handbook provides these suggestions, among others:

The documentation for your effort will vary by type. Examples include copies of publications, sample educational materials or course agendas, proof of employment, a copy of a presentation, and evidence supporting your coaching or mentoring arrangement, such as meeting notes. You need the documentation to support your PDU submission for an Audit.


The work you put into fulfilling PDU requirements needed to maintain PMP, PMI-ACP, and other PMI certifications has two key benefits: it helps you keep your certifications valid, and it helps ensure that your knowledge is current with the project management evolving profession. Additionally, through Giving Back to the profession, you maintain your professional network and are seen as a PMI talent source for others.

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Erin Aldridge, PMP, PMI-ACP, & CSPO
Director of Product Development at
Erin Aldridge, PMP, PMI-ACP, & CSPO