Get Chartered

Routes to ICF Professional Membership

Professional Membership of the Institute of Chartered Foresters confers chartered status (Chartered Forester or Chartered Arboriculturist) and allows the use of the post-nominals MICFor. There are two routes to gaining chartered status: Professional Membership Entry (PME) and Assessed Professional Competence (APC).

Professional Membership Entry (PME)

PME is the standard route to obtaining chartered status and is available only to Associate members of the Institute.  This is a five-step assessment process:

  1. Two-year work record demonstrating competency
  2. CPD record demonstrating no less than 66 hours of relevant CPD activities undertaken in the two years prior to submission
  3. A career profile that describes your career development to date and your longer-term ambitions.
  4. Critical Analysis (3000 – 3500 words focussed on your professional lessons learned in a challenging situation at work).
  5. Professional Interview

Eligibility for PME is assessed using a points-based system, where applicants must have obtained 10 qualifying points before they can present. Points are awarded to a combination of academic qualifications (a minimum of 4 points from a single, degree-level qualification or above) and relevant professional experience (a minimum of 2 points, with 1 accrued per year of full-time relevant work at a supervisory or managerial level).

Associate members have up to 10 years to complete PME from the point of joining but are recommended to start preparing for PME as soon as possible after joining.

Click here to download the PME Guidance Notes

To find out more about requirements for joining as an Associate member, please see our Membership Journey Planner or download our information guide:

ICF Associate Membership Information Guide

Apply for Associate Membership

Fees & Schedule

The 2021 Examination Fees for PME is £450.00, payable in two instalments: £200.00 by 1st June, and £250.00 by 1st August.

Associate members wishing to proceed through PME should submit a completed PME1 Form to register for the assessments as soon as they know when they intend to present.

A completed PME3 Form must then be received by 1st June along with the first instalment of the examination fees.

The written submission (Career Profile, CPD Record, Work Record and Critical Analysis) must be created and submitted through the Members’ Area portal by 1st August, by which time the second instalment must also be paid.

Professional Interviews for applicants who are invited forward will be held in November.

Assessed Professional Competence (APC)

APC is the non-standard route to obtaining chartered status and is open only to senior forestry and arboriculture professionals who are not eligible to present via PME outlined above.

To be eligible for APC, applicants are required to possess at least fifteen years of relevant experience and to have held a position of senior, strategic responsibility for at least five of those years.

In addition, applications for Professional Membership via APC must clearly demonstrate all of the following points:

• that the applicant has achieved a position of leadership in their profession, where they are responsible for the strategic management and planning of their own work and usually that of colleagues;
• that the applicant’s opinions are respected by others such that they are an acknowledged authority or an established name in their field;
• and that the applicant has a professional influence at a senior and strategic level that extends beyond their day-to-day work environment.

APC Guidance Notes

For more information about applying via the APC Route or to request an application form, please contact Ben Summers-McKay, Member Services Manager.


The full fee for APC in 2021 is £790.00. This comprises an application fee of £290.00, which must be paid on submission of an application.

Where applicants are invited to attend a professional interview, the interview fee of £500.00 must be paid in advance.

Deadline for Application

Applications via APC may be submitted at any time throughout the year. Those who apply before 1 August in any year will be assessed and, if invited forward, will be interviewed in November that year. If sufficient applications have been received before 1 April in any year, interviews will also take place in May/June of that year.


If you have been an ICF member in the past, having resigned or let your membership lapse, and wish to be reinstated, please read our Guide for Reinstatement.

Already Hold Professional Status in the EU?

Further advice and information for individuals who hold professional status outside of the UK is available by contacting ICF directly.