The ACSM Committee on Certification and Registry Boards (CCRB) defines irregular behavior as any behavior that undermines or threatens the integrity of the application, assessment, or certification processes of ACSM CCRB, whether it occurs before, during or after an exam.
Irregular behavior may include, but is not limited to, having or seeking access to exam materials before the exam, impersonating an examinee or engaging someone else to take the exam by proxy, copying answers from someone else or allowing one’s answers to be copied, copying or memorizing and reproducing test items, altering or misrepresenting scores, stealing exam materials, possessing unauthorized materials during a computer-based exam (e.g., recording devices, photographic materials, printed reference material) or other such behavior which may cast doubt on the exam results of that or another person. It may also include making false representations during the application process or in connection with certification status, altering or falsifying ACSM certificates or other documents, or making the false representation that one is certified by ACSM by using the legally-protected identity marks.
The content of all ACSM CCRB exams and its items are proprietary and strictly confidential, and the unauthorized retention, possession, copying, distribution, disclosure, discussion, or receipt of any examination question, in whole or in part, by written, electronic, oral or other form of communication, including but not limited to e-mailing, copying or printing of electronic files, and reconstruction through memorization and/or dictation, before, during, or after an examination, is strictly prohibited. In addition to constituting irregular behavior subject to disciplinary action such as revocation of certification or revocation of eligibility for future certification for a specified period of time, such activities violate ACSM’s proprietary rights, including copyrights, and may subject violators to legal action.
Exam applicants or examinees can be disqualified from taking or continuing to sit for an examination, or from receiving examination scores, and may be required to retake an examination if, at its sole discretion, the ACSM CCRB Executive Council (CCRB EC) determines through proctor observation, statistical analysis or any other means available to it, that said exam applicants or examinees were engaged in collaborative, disruptive, or other irregular behavior before, during the administration of, or following, the examination, or if the ACSM CCRB EC determines that the integrity or validity of the examination otherwise is in question.
In some instances, while the evidence of irregularity is sufficiently strong to cast doubt upon the validity of scores, such evidence may not enable the ACSM CCRB EC to identify the particular individuals involved. In any such circumstances, the ACSM CCRB EC reserves the right to withhold the scores of all candidates, including candidates not directly implicated in the irregularity and, if necessary, to require all candidates to take an additional examination at a later date under conditions which will ensure the validity of all scores.
Anyone who has information or evidence that irregular behavior has occurred should submit a written, signed statement to the ACSM CCRB EC as describe in the “Complaints” policy, detailing the incident with copies of any supporting evidence or documentation.
If the ACSM CCRB EC determines that allegations of irregular behavior are true, the organization may impose sanctions against the offending individual, which may include temporary or permanent loss of eligibility for exams or certification, revocation of an existing certificate, suspension of certification, invalidation of scores, or other sanctions as deemed appropriate. Such sanctions also may include legal action against the offending individual.
The CCRB EC shall maintain a record of all appeals, take appropriate action regarding the appeal in a timely manner, and document the actions taken. Candidates or certificants who perceive a lack of due process may appeal to the CCRB EC.