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Certification information and application

Certification is an industry-owned and managed recognition scheme. Recognition of skills and experience of personnel is essential if we as an industry are to be part of the solution of sustainable water resources.

The intention is that ALL surface and groundwater Hydrographers will be registered on the AHA register of  Certified professionals.

Certification is voluntary, however by becoming a certified Hydrographer, you’ll be helping to raise the profile of hydrometric monitoring as an industry, and improve skills, knowledge, standards across the Australia – which in turn will help the hydrometric monitoring industry control its own future and become more sustainable. There are personal benefits too – as a certified Hydrographer you’ll gain recognition for your skills and better prospects for your future career.

When certified, you can use a post nominal (i.e. the three letters) indicating the level of certification after your name, e.g. John Doe CPH

[NOTE: Certification for oceanographic hydrographers is administered by the Australasian Hydrographic Society.]

Level of certification

1. AHA Certified Cadet Hydrographer (CCH)

This is a person who has BOTH of the following:

It is expected that this level of certification is the first stepping stone towards becoming an AHA Certified Practising Hydrographer (CPH).

2. AHA Certified Associate Hydrographer (CAH)

This is a person who has BOTH the following:

  • Proven in-house and/or external training or qualification in a discipline associated to hydrometric monitoring
  • Minimum 3 years proven experience in most aspects of hydrometric monitoring

[Prior to 1 July 2015, this level of certification was known as Certified Practising Hydrographer]

3. AHA Certified Practising Hydrographer (CPH)

This is a person who has the following:

  • Minimum 5 years proven experience across ALL aspects of river and stream hydrometric monitoring

In addition to the experience, a CPH will hold a:


[Prior to 1 July 2015, this level of certification was known as Certified Qualified Hydrographer]

Certification Fees

All fees exclude GST

Initial applications and Renewals:

  • Application fee $55
  • Annual fee
Level of Certification Annual fee Discounted annual fee for AHA members
AHA Certified Cadet Hydrographer (CCH) $165.00 $40.00
AHA Certified Associate Hydrographer (CAH) $195.00 $70.00
AHA Certified Practising Hydrographer (CPH) $225.00 $100.00

NOTE: If a certified hydrographer believes their status or level of certification has changed at any time e.g. exceeds 5 years experience, completes Diploma etc. they may apply for re-classification at no extra cost.

Awarding AHA Certification

When AHA receives:

  • New certification applications: an Application Form and Associated Documents
  • Renewal of certification: Continuing Professional Development Log

It will assess your application to determine whether you qualify for certification/renewal. If you qualify, AHA will send an invoice covering the application fee and the annual fee. If you do not qualify, AHA will contact you to explain the additional steps needed to qualify for certification.

When payment is received, AHA will:

  1. Send documentation stating the Certification level and currency dates to the AHA Certified Hydrographer;
  2. Enter the Hydrographer’s name and level of certification on the AHA register of  Certified professionals.

Certification is for twelve months and will expire 31 December. For applications received July-December, the initial period will extend to 31 December in the calendar year after your initial application.

1. New Certification Applications

  1. Complete the application form [docx format]
  2. Please provide copies of Qualifications, Statement of Attainment etc, along with details of relevant Hydrographic Industry experience. This should include a brief description of work practices carried out (i.e. open channel, closed pipe, groundwater, atmospheric measurement etc.).

Send the completed form and supporting documentation by email to services [AT] aha.net.au

AHA will undertake initial assessment from the documentation provided by applicant to determine the eligibility for level of certification that the applicant has nominated.

After certification, keep a CPD Log (see Process of Continuing Professional Development below).

2. Renewal of National Certification:

Every 12 months, AHA will send an invoice to renew certification.

Every 24 months at renewal time, AHA certified hydrographers also

  1. need to show that they have remained active in the industry and have taken steps to keep up-to-date with new technology and information.
  2. should submit for assessment a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Log for the review period shown on the  register of Certified Professionals.

Process of Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

By requiring a regular re-certification process AHA is ensuring that certified personnel remain active in the industry and are keeping their knowledge and skills up-to-date. People who demonstrate this by earning the required CPD points in the required timeframe will maintain their active status. Those failing to earn the required CPD points will be considered “Inactive”.

CPD requirements for re-certification (see below):

  • Remain active in industry in an area related to certification in hydrometric monitoring.
  • Provide CPD evidence every 2 years:
    • Certified Cadet Hydrographer (CCH): 8 points
    • Certified Associate Hydrographer (CAH): 9 points
    • Certified Practising Hydrographer (CPH): 10 points

How to accumulate points to satisfy CPD requirements for re-certification: NOTE: Documented proof required.

Continuous active participation in field and or office activities specific to hydrometric monitoring This would require written proof, endorsed by a manager of continuous ability to carry out field and/or office activities that include tasks specific to hydrometric monitoring e.g. gauging, survey, data edit/management, modelling etc. Maximum 1½ point for each year of service i.e. maximum 3 points. Provide written, endorsed (by manager) proof stating the type of activities and duration.
Attend a short course, seminar or in-house training deemed relevant to hydrometric monitoring (assessed by AHA) These include courses, short courses, or seminars, which might be held in conjunction with trade shows or field days. The AHA, professional associations or societies, universities, colleges or technical institutes, manufacturers or distributors or part of an in-house training program, may conduct these courses. Maximum of 2 points per course. Provide a certificate of attendance or other evidence of involvement/attendance
Attend an accredited/endorsed course in hydrometric monitoring conducted by a registered RTO Course work must be offered by an accredited institution and be related to hydrometric monitoring and/or applicable to the job description. Points for achievement of each unit of competency (Statement of Attainment), Provide a transcript for evidence.
Attend a hydrometric monitoring conference, trade show or field day with published agenda The AHA, professional associations or societies, universities, colleges or technical institutes, manufacturers or distributors or part of an in­house training program, may sponsor these events. 2 points per event to a maximum of 4 points.
Attend an in-house Hydrographic Workshop such as a Departmental Hydrographic Section workshop / meeting Documented evidence signed by the Supervising Hydrographer or employee, as recognised by the AHA, describing the objectives, duration, activity, and outcomes of the workshop / meeting. Acceptance of evidence at the discretion of the AHA. Maximum of 1 point
Exceptional activities Activities that do not fall into any of the previous categories may be submitted for the management committee for review. The AHA will assess these activities for relevance. Activities might include overseas study tour or industry leadership activities. Points to be assessed and awarded by AHA to a maximum of 4 points.
Teach or author a paper relevant to hydrometric monitoring presented at a short course, seminar, technical conference, in-house training class or published in a Journal. Prepare and deliver new material for a paper, publication or training course. Only the initial submission will be allowed when presenting a paper repeatedly. The AHA will assess these activities for relevance. Points to be assessed and awarded by AHA to a maximum of 4 points.
Membership of the AHA Membership of the AHA 1 point per year (up to previous 2 years prior to renewal)

Inactive status

Renewals are due each year after certification. If no renewal is received six months after expiry, the certification status of that hydrographer will be considered “Inactive” until this is rectified. An “Inactive” Certification status prevents the hydrographer from practising as an “AHA Certified Hydrographer” until they renew their certification. If the inactive period is less than one year, renewal can be made by paying all renewal fees and submitting sufficient CPD points to cover the inactive period. If the inactive period is for more than one year, the certification is forfeited and re-certification will require the applicant to start the certification process over from the beginning.