Latent Print CertificationLatent Print Certification Home Page
Check out all the latest news about the Latent Print Certification Program and the Certification Board here. As new updates are received, they will be posted for your information.
Latest News from the IAI Latent Print Certification Board
Orlando ConferenceDue to the cancellation of the Orlando IAI Conference, the Latent Print Certification Board (LPCB) held its annual meetings virtually. The following are
some updates from these meetings:
Digital TestingThe LPCB has been actively pursuing digital testing for a number of years. Although there have been numerous difficulties over these years – related to cost and test security, in particular – the LPCB announced the implementation of a digital solution in Reno in 2019. Subsequent Beta testing was successful, and the LPCB has provided the digital version as an option for initial certification applicants from early 2020 on! A number of initial certification applicants have already completed their tests using the digital option, and feedback has been very positive.
The digital solution includes:
- Shipping a mini computer in a hard case
- The computer is pre-loaded with Photoshop Elements 2020, to allow for zooming, rotating and marking
- Proctor or applicant will need to supply monitor(s) (VGA, Digital Port or HDMI), mouse and keyboard (USB)
It is strongly recommended that applicants choosing the digital solution familiarize themselves with Elements before they take the test (free trial versions of the software are available from Adobe).
Initial certification applicants may elect to receive the comparison portion of the test digitally only, hard copy only, or both. Applicants need to indicate if they would like to use the digital option. Please be aware that there may be some delays if you choose to take the test digitally, as there are currently a limited number of mini computers available..
In addition, the LPCB continues to pursue longer term digital solutions for both the written and comparison portions of the initial certification test, as well as for the recertification (comparison) test.
Applications for Certification / RecertificationDue to the volume of ingoing/outgoing tests, the LPCB is reviewing both initial certification and recertification applications once a month. This is a necessary workflow due to the volume of applications. All applications are reviewed within 60 days of submission, and if any changes are required the applicant will be contacted for corrections. The certification/recertification process takes an average of 60-90 days to complete once the application is submitted. Please keep this in mind, both when applying and when considering following up with the LPCB Secretary for a status update.
Recap of the Certification Test
- The Certification Test consists of two parts; the comparison test and the written test.
- All questions on the written portion of the test are multiple choice. For this updated test, you are encouraged to take advantage of the recommended study material as listed on the Suggested Reading page.
- The number of hours of required training for new applicants is 160 hours. Educational and basic experience requirements remain the same as per the FCMB Operations Manual. These hours must be completed within five years prior to the application submission. Training listed outside of the five years will require modification by the applicant.
- When Part four of the certification test (Case for Review) including the moot court was discontinued in 2017, it was replaced with a new pre-certification requirement that applicants must attend 16 hours of qualifying court testimony training. This training may be either internally developed by the agency/company they are working with or from an external entity. This training will be in addition to the 160 hours of technical training. The applicant is also required to submit a supporting letter from a supervisor attesting to the fact that the candidate has successfully completed the moot court and has been deemed competent to represent their agency in court. If you are not employed by a law enforcement agency then a letter from a prosecuting attorney attesting to your competency will also suffice. This requirement must be attached to your application at the time of submission. If the application is incomplete, it will be returned to the applicant, delaying the review process and potential time frame for testing. Prior testimony experience and court transcripts can not be used as a substitution for his process.
- The cost of all certifications is $300 (IAI members) and $400 (non IAI members) and became effective January 1, 2017.
Recap of the Recertification Test
- The current Recertification test comprises of ten (10) latent prints and four (4) exemplars
- All latent prints must have a correct conclusion (Note: none have been deemed inconclusive)
- Applicants have 30 days to return the test. It is strongly recommended that you return it with a tracking number as this may be requested if your test has not been received by the LPCB secretary by the deadline.
- Tests received after the deadline will put your certification into EXPIRED status.
- There is an option for the test taker to leave their test incomplete with the addition of a box and a signature line. This allows the test taker to opt out of having to make a conclusion they may not be comfortable with. If this option is selected, this will be considered a failed test due to non-completion.
- The wait time for a failure of the recertification test for one erroneous exclusion is six (6) months.
- The wait time for an incomplete test is six (6) months.
- The wait time for a failure of the recertification test for one or more erroneous identifications is one (1) year.
- The wait time for a failure of the recert test for more than one erroneous conclusion is one (1) year.
- Failure of the recertication test for a second time for any reason will necessitate a wait time of one (1) year and will require taking the full Certification test again as per the current standards outlined in the FCMB Operations manual.
- Failure to retake the test within six (6) months of the established re-testing time frames after a failure will require taking the full Certification test again as per the current standards outlined in the FCMB Operations manual.
Test SecurityAll applicants and proctors are reminded that all test materials, answers and related documents generated as part of the testing process are the property of the Latent Print Certification Board. They are not to be copied, photographed, electronically retained, transmitted or shared. The use of AFIS or any electronic searching software for any purposes is not permitted. The testing process is an independent assessment. Participants are not to use any assistance in the form of the verification, review, or consultation with another examiner, or other means that would aid the examiner in the completion of their examination. As a certified examiner, it is your responsibility to protect the integrity of the test. Those to be found in violation of this policy are subject to disciplinary action up to and including suspension or revocation of your certification. If you are aware of this occurring and you do not report this knowledge to the Board, you may be subject to the same disciplinary process.
IMPORTANT NOTE: You need to ensure your personal profile on eCert is up-to-date and is kept up-to-date to avoid a lapse in your certification. You must provide a current personal email address in your profile. Presently, eCert continues to experience problems with Hotmail accounts so it is recommended using an alternative email provider. Recert renewal notifications are only made by email and lack of receipt of a notification will NOT qualify you for an exemption on late renewals.
If you are having technical or login issues with eCert, please direct all enquiries in a timely manner to the IAI home office (954-589-0628).
Courses Accepted for Credit Towards Certification and Recertification
All courses accepted for credit for either a new certification or recertification application must be submitted to the LPCB for review. All courses must contain topics related to the latent print discipline. Courses which will NOT be accepted are general crime scene courses, or courses that are covered under another certification program.
If you are a course instructor and you wish to have your course added to our list, you must provide a syllabus to Board Member Shannon Prince or to the LPCB Chair Tim Fayle for approval. The course syllabus needs to include a course overview (including course objectives, outcomes, etc.) and a course schedule, showing a breakdown of how the hours are spent / allocated for each topic. Internal training programs need to provide the same information. Please contact the Latent Print Certification Board for the appropriate form.
Online courses may be accepted, and there are currently over 40 online courses on the approved courses list. Online courses need to also provide proof that the course includes a testing component to ensure student engagement, provide instructor feedback opportunities, and offer technical support if the student is having technology-related issues.
A full list of courses accepted for LPCB credit is available on the Latent Print Certification site for download. This information will be updated quarterly.
Please note that acceptance of courses for credit is NOT an endorsement of the training by the LPCB.
Your 2020-2021 Latent Print Certification Board Members are: Tim FAYLE, Chair; Anne STEINMETZ, Secretary; Jenna ALIMBERTI, Kaitlin DELPHY, Matt MARVIN, Shannon PRINCE and Trent RUNDQUIST. Congratulations to Trent as the successful candidate to the Board this year, and we look forward to working with him.
LPC Board Members
Our sincere thanks go to outgoing board member and former Secretary Jamie BUSH for his service to the Board. Jamie served on the LPCB for 19 years, including 12 years as Secretary. There are very few Certified Examiners who have not interacted with Jamie regarding latent print certification at some point in their careers. Jamie has always exhibited a passion and drive for promoting the virtues of the certification program, and his presence on the LPCB will be sorely missed. Jamie has been retained as a special advisor to the LPCB for the next year.
There will be opportunities for election to the board next year for those of you who may be interested in applying. All applications for board positions must be received by the Secretary in writing no later than 30 days prior to the annual conference.
If you have any questions, comments or feedback, please forward these to the LPCB Secretary.