The variety between Master Beekeeper programs can be so diverse as to be ridiculous. At one end is a program that is essentially a college degree in and of itself.
At the other end are programs in which a person takes a test, online or on paper, that is essentially a information regurgitation dump and if passed, one is “certified” the same as the previous.
Ultimately, this wide divergence makes the whole thing ridiculous and irrelevant.
However, there can be value in having something to show that one has demonstrated and learned information to the point of mastery. A third party certification can be useful in professional endeavors.
However, one shouldn’t need to spend hundreds, perhaps thousands, of dollars to attain that certification. The information is what it has always been. New research adds to that and can be included in an updated, generally available schedule.
There is the potential for a relatively inexpensive testing and skills demonstration based certification that does not require sucking up to a group of elitists or paying out the nose for something that needn’t be so.
It should be consistent across the board and give opportunity to anyone wishing to attempt to do so.
Using the model provided by CNG Farming and its Apiary certification section as a general basis, it is possible to take an online test for knowledge and submission of documentation showing successful demonstration of skills to attain beekeeping certification.
If you can demonstrate knowledge and that you have the skills , there shouldn’t be a society parade or one-upsmanship about which prestigious or not prestigious place one attained certification from.
That is only desired by those who use said certification as a wall decoration and bragging point.
Keep coming back and we’ll continue to flesh out this self driven and achieved beekeeping certification program that focuses on actual useful knowledge and demonstrated skills.
The goal is to provide a certification solution based on your needs and required outcomes. The knowledge testing will be able to be completed online, scored and reported in a way that is set against open and objective standards.
In other words, you’ll be able to know what is tested, what the scoring requirements are and see for yourself if you met the necessary number of correct answers to pass. Anyone will be able to see the requirements information.
The demonstrated skills will be a matter of having any current Master Beekeeper from any program or any two not Master Beekeepers observe your demonstration, answer specific questions about how successfully you completed said skill, and submitting the observation form to the website to be added to the accumulated total of your certification requirements.
Once all tests have been successfully passed and all skills have been successfully documented and submitted, the certification will be listed on the website.
There will likely be minimal fees for testing and processing documentation to help pay for the web hosted site and service(s) pursuant to the process.
A membership will be available, but not mandatory for those successfully achieving certification. The membership creates, at minimum, a network of recognized peers to help continue making the certification process available and to provide a listing for those seeking certified beekeepers to be local observers for them.