Printed from the blog of Lori Greene, AHC/CDC, CCPR, FDAI
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Feb 21 2013

Are you a CDT yet?

Category: General InfoLori @ 3:30 am Comments (4)

I have quite a few letters after my name.  They won’t all fit on my business card, and my email signature looks silly if I include all of them.  There are some that I can use just for joining an organization and paying my annual membership fee, which seems too easy.  But I proudly display the designations for the certifications I’ve achieved, because they all represent many years of experience, hours of studying, and rigorous tests.  When someone sees my business card or email signature for the first time, they often key in on the designations they’re familiar with.  Those certifications immediately communicate that I have some level of knowledge about the topic – that I made the investment to achieve the certification.  Obviously the letters don’t say everything about who I am, but they help with the first impression and then it’s up to me.

One of the most valuable certifications I’ve achieved is that of Construction Documents Technologist (CDT), through the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI).  I later received an additional CSI certification – Certified Construction Product Representative (CCPR).  Last fall I attended Arc-US, a conference where I was able to meet with 20+ architects.  Because of those letters after my name, I truly believe that our meetings began on a different note than if I didn’t have the certifications.  If you work in the door and hardware industry, imagine meeting an architect, locksmith, or end user who is an AHC (Architectural Hardware Consultant).  WOW!  This person knows something about hardware and made the effort to get their AHC!  Becoming a CDT (or beyond) is a way for us to have a similar type of clout in the architectural world.

Last year at this time, I wrote about the reason I decided to take the CDT exam, which involved an embarrassing moment with the Spec King.  I respect him very much, so I’m sure you can imagine how excited I was to receive a notification from LinkedIn last week, stating that the Spec King had endorsed me in the category of…wait for it…SPECIFICATIONS!  I don’t know everything there is to know about specifications but I’ve come a long way, and his acknowledgement of my effort really means a lot.

LinkedIn Specifications

Still not sure whether you want to make the investment?  Attend the free webinar TODAY, February 21st, at 2 p.m. ET.  Learn more about the benefits of the CDT certification, and the requirements and resources needed for successful exam preparation and study.  Download the FREE CDT Candidate Handbook to help you prepare for the exam.

The registration deadline is February 28th, and the exam will be held April 1st-27th in the US and Canada.  Join a local or online study group – it’s great for networking as well as helping you prepare for the exam!  For more information, visit the CDT page on

Do you know someone who should consider taking their CDT exam?  Send them a link to this post!

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4 Responses to “Are you a CDT yet?”

  1. Don Cherry says:

    As a fellow CCPR, I think it’s important to note that three CSI advanced designations (CCA, CCPR, and CCS) are tiered, and can only be tested for and awarded after obtaining the CDT certification. I busted my tail to get that CCPR designation when there was still only one page of us nationwide in the CSI directory (still have that copy from 1998!), but didn’t want to get too far into the alphabet soup game by listing both. By default, if anyone lists the CCA, CCPR, or CCA designation, they are a CDT.

    • George Everding says:

      Don is correct that today the CSI certifications (CCS, CCCA, and CCPR) require obtaining the CDT certificate first, and this has been the case since the creation of the CDT in 1986. However, you may occassionally run into a CCS (Certified Construction Specifier) who does not have a CDT. The CCS was the first CSI certification(1978)and those who obtained the CCS prior to 1986 obviously never were required to take the CDT exam. However, as part of their CCS exam, they were required to write a specification out long hand from scratch, so if you do meet one of these individuals, give them even more respect.

      CCCA and CCPR came along after the CDT, and have always had CDT as a prerequisite. I concur with Lori that studying for and taking the CDT is a great career step – regardless of your role in the construction industry, you’ll benefit from becoming a CDT.

  2. Wayne Ficklin says:

    I don’t get too carried away with putting letters after my name, although I could if I wanted to do it. I generally use RA, CCCA but I could also use plenty of others and I don’t use CDT since you have to have CDT to get CCCA. I do think that gaining the experience from studying the content is far more valuable than gaining the letters. Anything to further my knowledge is far better than trying to add letters but then again I’m a quiet person so I don’t tout myself a lot.

  3. Architectural Hardware says:

    Thank you for this appealing and quality content. This very informative and interesting content with many eye-opening points.

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