September 1, 2008

The CAE Designation - The Journey Begins

I know I am a little late to the game in talking about the ASAE & The Center's Annual Meeting, but it's better to be late than to never show up!!

For any of you who attended the Volunteer Breakfast on Saturday morning, did you feel the air kinda go out of the room and the blood begin to boil when the guy stood up who said he was a member of the committee who writes the questions for the CAE Exam? He stood up and talked about that committee's accomplishments, and I just couldn't help but hear a few people cursing that committee under their breath!

It wasn't me... yet!

However, it very well could be a year from now, because I am beginning to develop my study plan for sitting for the CAE Exam next year. I attended an event put on by the Association Forum of Chicagoland that talked about the CAE, and gave some background and tips to help us pass the exam. I have to be honest, it scared me a little...

The exam seems very thorough, which is a good thing to command the respect that a professional accreditation deserves, but perhaps not for someone who has only a little over five years' experience. They recommend reading a number of books to get the primer that you need to understand some of the topics you'll be tested on. One of them, The Association Law Handbook, is 592 pages... That's not a typo... 592 is the correct number... I have not read a book that has 592 pages perhaps ever. (Don't comment on what that says about me please :-)) It's a huge assignment, one that will take a lot of dedication, and a lot of money.

However, I personally feel as though professional accreditations are essential to showing your dedication to your chosen profession, and help you develop and retain your knowledge in many different facets of that profession. That's why neither the time reading and studying, nor the money that I'm going to have to spend, are going to get me down.

I am ready to begin this prepartion - wish me luck (and give me any advice you can)!!!


Lisa Junker said...

I promise you, the Law Handbook isn't as bad as it sounds! It is long, but it's written very concisely (lots of bullet points); it goes much more quickly than you'd expect.

Ben Martin has some great CAE exam tips on his blog, as you probably already know, and Caron Mason has been posting some on her blog as well. And please feel free to e-mail or call me anytime if I can help in any way! I still have my slides from the last time I taught Domain 10 for a CAE prep course, and I'd be happy to share them with you.

Good luck!

Greg Fine said...


Take the prep course, read the stuff and you will be fine. I have no doubt that you will rock on the exam!

Bruce Hammond said...

@Lisa - Thanks a lot for the links to Ben and Caron's blogs! I appreciate them. It's always good to get good information (and to hear that something like the Law Handbook isn't as bad as it seems!)

@Greg - Thanks for the kind words! Will follow your advice and hopefully have a successful run to my CAE!

Mark said...

I ordered the test cards from the Michigan Society, and then tape recorded them. I listened driving to and from work for 3 weeks.
No problem on the test

Bruce Hammond said...

@Mark - Thanks a lot for the tip and response! Glad to hear that you had an easy time of it!!

Maddie Grant said...

Are you taking the immersion course in Sept? I am! We can study together...! And we're having a YAPpy hour afterwards too (downtown DC, 9/23).