Mentoring Corner: CIH Exam Study Tracker / Core Competencies for the Practice of Industrial/Occupational Hygiene

Starting a new mentoring relationship in the new year and need a topic to focus your meetings? This is a great topic with which to start a mentoring partnership.  If the mentee is not a CIH, but has aspirations to acquire this designation, the mentoring pair can review these two resources to develop a plan for studying for the CIH exam.  The CIH Exam Tracker Tool is available from the ABIH website.  Look for the tool described in the middle of the page (3rd item under “In Addition.” )  This utility can be used to develop a plan for studying, identifying gaps in the mentee’s IH experience, and to track time studying in each of the rubrics.  If the mentee needs a framework to develop a CIH exam study plan, a sample study plan is being provided.  The Core Competencies for the Practice of Industrial/Occupational Hygiene publication can also be used in preparing the study plan.

If the mentee is already a CIH or they have no immediate plans to sit for the exam, the Core Competencies for the Practice of Industrial/Occupational Hygiene publication can be used to develop a career portfolio using the Key Competencies Diagram on page 6 to identify gaps in professional experience and/or knowledge.  For example, a 3 year and/or a 5 year plan can be mapped out so that the mentee can focus on improving technical skills in those competencies by way of professional practice, formal training or through self-paced learning.  The mentoring pair may consider using the CIH Exam Study Tracker as a career competency tracking tool instead of using it to study for the exam.  Some modifications to the MS Excel file may be required if used for this purpose.  For example, as a starting point, using the Reference Section from the Tool (checklist), they could work together to identify gaps in a mentee’s educational background/professional practice and determine ways to rectify them through book references, workshops, PDC’s, etc.

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