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Certified in Homeland Security, CHS® Level III

About the CHS-III certification

What does becoming CHS- III demonstrate?

The CHS-III certification is designed to ensure that certificants have a strong working knowledge of major incident response and the national systems in place for major incident response. To become certified applicants will display an understanding of the National Response Framework (NRF), a working knowledge of the 5 mission areas under the National Preparedness Goal, the guiding principles of the NRF, as well as the mechanisms for how disaster response is handled.

The second area of focus for this certification deals with the individual’s knowledge of the National Incident Management System (NIMS). Certificants will be assessed on their knowledge of how the NIMS works and the major principles of the NIMS. Lastly, certificants will have knowledge of the Incident Command System (ICS). Applicants will know the general roles of the command staff positions as well as the major general staff roles.

How was the Exam Developed?

The CHS-III certification exam was developed in accordance with the American National Standard Institute’s (ANSI) 17024 standards for personnel certification. The exam was developed in collaboration with leading homeland security subject-matter experts who saw the need for homeland security professionals to have a base knowledge of the National Response Framework(NRF), National Incident Management System(NIMS), and the Incident Command System(ICS) and how the Department of Homeland Security utilizes these to prevent and respond to national disasters. The exam was also reviewed by hundreds of homeland security subject matter experts to ensure the exam aligns with the knowledge needed by a professional in the homeland security field.

Who should obtain this certification?

Individuals who would benefit from this guide and the certification include: law enforcement, active military, active military looking to transition to a security related position, current homeland security professionals at the municipal, state, and federal level, private sector professionals with security responsibilities, and private contractors that currently work or seek to work with the Department of Homeland Security or other government entities that have a mission to protect the homeland.

Eligibility Requirements

The following eligibility requirements must be met by all ABCHS applicants:

  • Hold the CHS-II credential; or have 3 years of relevant homeland security experience related to the topics covered in CHS- I, CHS-II, and CHS-III as referenced in the CHS candidate handbook
  • No felony convictions
  • No dishonorable discharge from the military
  • Neither a record of disciplinary action from any state, province or territory, or licensing or certification board within the past 10 years nor subject under any such investigation
  • Agreement to uphold the ABCHS Code of Conduct
CHS-III Recertification Program Requirements

The assessment component of CHS-III is a certification exam that covers critical aspects of homeland security. To maintain the CHS-III certification, those with CHS-III designations are required to obtain 30 Continuing Education Units (CEU) per three-year recertification cycle. This is waived if the CHS-III holder obtains the CHS-IV credential within that 3 year period.

CHS-III can also be taken at a Pearson VUE testing center. ABCHS will send the candidate a voucher and testing site locations for the candidate to schedule a time to take the exam.

Military Personnel: Pearson VUE offers professional ABCHS certification exams to U.S. military service members on-site at military installation testing centers worldwide.


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