ICF Membership Requirements

To become a member of the International Coach Federation you must meet at least one of the following requirements:

1. Hold a current ICF Credential (ACC, PCC, or MCC);
2. Have completed at least 60 hours of coach-specific training that meets ICF standards.* See what qualifies as coach-specific training below; or
3. Be enrolled in 60 hours of coach-specific training in an ICF-approved program that has either the Accredited Coach Training Program (ACTP) or Approved Coach-Specific Training Hours (ACSTH) distinction. *For new members only.

For more info click here

ICF Credentialing Process

For over a decade, the International Coach Federation has been leading the development of professional coaching. More than 11,000 coaches have participated in one of ICF’s three credentialing programs, gaining coaching expertise and professional fulfillment. With an ICF Credential, coaches demonstrate not only knowledge and skill, but also a commitment to high professional standards and a strong code of ethics.

Anyone serious about building or maintaining a coaching business should pursue ICF Credentials and become part of this well-respected group that has chosen to regulate itself and provide accountability to clients and the coaching profession as a whole.

All ICF Credentialed Coaches complete rigorous education and practice requirements, providing testimony to their commitment to excellence in coaching.
The mission of the ICF Credentialing program is to:

  • Protect and serve consumers of coaching services
  • Measure and certify competence of individuals
  • Inspire pursuit of continuous development

Research Proves the Advantages of Having a Credential

ICF research has revealed several reasons coaches benefit from getting a credential. According to the 2012 ICF Global Coaching Study, credentialed coaches reported a higher-than-average income worldwide compared to non-credentialed-coaches, with the exception of the Middle East and Africa. According to the 2010 ICF Global Consumer Awareness Study, clients who worked with an ICF Credentialed Coach were more likely to be satisfied with their coaching experience and recommend coaching to others. In the 2010 ICF Global Consumer Awareness Study, 84 percent of adult consumers who had experienced a coaching relationship reported that it was important for coaches to hold a credential.

How To Become Credentialed

The ICF offers three credentials:

When applying for the ACC or PCC, you must determine if you are qualified to apply via the ACTP or portfolio path. There is only one application path for the MCC.

The ICF Credential Process Video

Selecting a Coach Training Program

Start by choosing the ICF Credential that best fits your coach-specific training and your coaching experience:

Become an ICF Credential-holder

Coach Training Schools

Training Program Search Service (TPSS)

ICF does not provide coach specific training and as the accrediting body, we cannot recommend any specific training programs.

To ensure quality training, the International Coach Federation accredits or approves coach-training programs that meet its high standards. To find ICF accredited or approved programs, we suggest that you use our Training Program Search Service (TPSS) below. The search for a coach training program is a highly individual process which depends greatly on your personal preferences and goals. The TPSS is designed to give you basic information about all ICF accredited or approved programs. More information can be found here.

MD-ICF Peer Coaching Assistance

We recognize that the process of completing the ICF certification can raise many questions. MD-ICF established a Peer Coaching initiative to encourage and assist persons associated with the MD-ICF Chapter in the goal of completion of ICF certification. It is for persons either beginning the process or in the midst of the process to become a coach. This is our effort as a chapter to do all we can to coach forward those persons who are not yet certified by the ICF.

  • Two coaching sessions will be offered to persons who are starting or perusing the completion of their ICF credentialing.
  • There will be no charge for the two sessions. These sessions will be scheduled at a mutually agreeable time by the two parties.
  • This is one of the benefits of belonging to our local chapter, so participants receiving this coaching should be members of the Maryland Chapter.
  • The coaching provided is "Peer coaching". These two calls are not the same as "Mentor Coaching" as understood by the ICF. "Mentor Coaching" as understood by the ICF is ten paid hours in which the participant is specifically coached on their coaching of clients. The purpose of this offer of "Peer coaching" is simply to encourage/design/strategize with persons who are on the path toward completion of the ICF certification.
  • Our coaches will refrain from recommending to participants being coached any specific coach training schools and/or mentor coaches. If anything we want to widen the scope of possibilities, rather than narrow them, and then help the persons being coached develop their own action plan toward completion with our encouragement and accountability.

Currently, five credentialed coaches are signed up to offer "peer coaching" services, and 15 persons have signed up to participate as clients. If you are interested in participating either as a coach or a client please send an email to [email protected]