Earn Industry Recognition as a Professional Animal Scientist

23 June 2021

Christine Warzecha, Territory Sales Manager, Trouw NutritionBy Christine Warzecha, PAS, M.S. 
Territory Sales Manager

The American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists (ARPAS) bestows the Professional Animal Scientist (PAS) certification on industry professionals that meet education, experience, examination and continuing education unit (CEU) requirements.

This esteemed certification provides professional credibility, attests that the individual adheres to a strict code of ethics and substantiates the professional’s commitment to ongoing education of new trends and developments in the field.

Continuing Education
In today's ever-evolving business climate, industry clients want assurance that they are receiving advice from certified professionals who possess knowledge of the latest research and advancements in the species of interest. The ARPAS organization was developed to register professionally competent Animal Scientists and provide an outlet to sustain their professional competence by offering continuing education opportunities for credits to maintain their certifications.

Species Focus
There are a few options for certification, but first you must select your specie(s)/product(s) focus area(s). Options include:

  • Aquaculture
  • Beef Cattle
  • Companion Animals
  • Dairy Cattle
  • Horses
  • Laboratory Animals
  • Poultry
  • Sheep
  • Goats
  • Swine
  • Meat Science
  • Dairy Product Science
  • Poultry Products
  • Feed Management Certification
  • Dairy Nutrition

The next step is to choose what type of certification suits you best. You can become a Registered Animal Specialist (RAS) or a Registered Animal Product Specialist (RAPS), which are ideal for individuals who have not completed a college degree program but have at least two years of experience in their respective field or area of specialization.

The Professional Animal Scientist (PAS) certification is limited to current undergraduate or graduate students or professionals with a Bachelor of Science, Master of Science or Ph.D. in an area of animal science or a closely related field. Individuals who hold the PAS title and a M.S. degree can then become board certified in:

  • Animal Behavior
  • Food Science
  • Genetics
  • Nutrition
  • Physiology
  • Welfare

Application Process
To become certified, you must submit an online application form on the ARPAS website. Next, sign up for the exam and submit the $25 examination fee, along with a valid photo ID. After those are received, the ARPAS administrator will contact you via email to schedule your online exam.

The exams are currently being offered online due to social distancing initiatives in place. Your respective exam will be based on which specie(s)/product(s) you selected as your focus. To prepare for the exam, review the study materials and sample questions for each selected specie category on the ARPAS website.

Continuing Education
To maintain the certification, all PAS and RAS members must complete a minimum of 16 continuing education units (CEUs) each calendar year. Any credits earned in excess of the required 16 CEUs will be counted toward the following calendar year’s requirements. A yearly maximum of 32 credits is allowed per member.

All members must pay yearly dues, which range from $10 to $150 depending on the type of membership.

Earning ARPAS’ PAS, RAS or RAPS certification helps hold you accountable for committing to ongoing industry education. The certifications also gain you credibility with your employer, clients and other industry professionals. Fostering industry education also prepares certified professionals to better influence public policy. With ongoing education as a key requirement, certification also benefits the industry as a whole by encouraging its members to stay active and support ongoing research toward meaningful advancements.