OHShub.com interviews recent successful examinees of the Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) exam administered by the American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH). The resultant text is as follows:
OHShub.com: When did you decide to take the CIH exam?
Examinee: I decided in 2003 to make it a goal of mine to obtain the CIH certification.
OHShub.com: When did you obtain certification?
Examinee: I actually obtained certification in May 2010.
OHShub.com: What is your current career field and how do you feel it prepared you?
Examinee: Currently I am in the consulting field. I feel that it (i.e. being a consultant) prepared me by having the ability to complete a multitude of traditional IH projects. The great thing about being a consultant is that there is always something new and fresh in meeting the needs of the client, which exposes you to a variety of the traditional “IH rubrics”.
OHShub.com: How long had you been in the IH/Safety career field when you sat for the CIH exam?
Examinee: Less than 10 years. I believe it was actually 9 years. While you can take the test after 5 years, I have always personally regarded the CIH designation highly. I felt that it was important and wanted to have a certain “skillset” prior to sitting for the exam.
OHShub.com: Are you saying that you did not just want to have a “certification” but wanted to be able to exemplify the characteristics of most CIH’s in the field?
Examinee: Exactly. That is precisely my thoughts and feelings.
OHShub.com: What was/is your work/career-life like?
Examinee: I consider myself very fortunate to have a very well qualified mentor (who is a CIH) and excellent IH support staff around me. Personally, I feel that it would have been much more difficult to obtain such a high level IH skillset without those continuing resources.
OHShub.com: Personally, how many hours do you think you studied in preparation for the CIH exam?
Examinee: Great question. But one that I thought about many times after many months of studying. I’d imagine that I studied somewhere in the range of 700-800 hours in all. Granted, this was over a few years. However, over the final year leading up to the exam, the final breakdown was probably somewhere in the range of:
- > 12 months out = 120 hours
- 12 – 6 months out = 200 hours
- 6 – 3 months out = 200 hours
- 3 – 1 months out = 120 hours
- < 1 month out = 60-90 hours