A look at prep classes offered for the LEED Green Associate exam

Interested in pursuing a ‘green job,’ but don’t know where to start? Perhaps becoming a LEED Green Associate is a good first step.

LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a green building certification system developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). According to the USGBC web site, the LEED system “provides building owners and operators a concise framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions.”

There are several types of LEED certifications. As the certifications progress they become more specified to occupation, but not the entry certification: becoming a LEED Green Associate. In fact, becoming a LEED Green Associate is geared towards professionals who want to demonstrate green building expertise in a non-technical field of practice.

To become a LEED Green Associate you must pass a written exam which costs $200 ($150 for USGBC members) and requires a $50 application fee. To take the exam, a prep course is encouraged beforehand. For those of you out there without any sustainable or green building experience already, the prep course is actually required.

Here is a look at some of the prep course option in the region:

The Long Island Chapter of the USGBC offers the most economical prep course, seven study groups for the cost of $295 ($245 for USGBC members). These study groups are held during the evening (6 – 8 p.m.) at the chapter’s Hauppauge headquarters for seven sessions total. These study groups are also offered through Stony Brook University’s Corporate Education and Training Department for the same price.

Like the study groups listed above, Suffolk County Community College (SCCC) offers an online prep course through its Professional Development and Continued Education Department. This prep course, offered during the fall, spring and summer semester, lasts several weeks, but does not require attending class at a central location. Instead, SCCC, in conjunction with GreenEdison, a Manhattan-based training company, offers the study groups online for a cost of $350. Coursework equals eight hours total.

CleanEdison also offers a one-day crash course. Based on internet research, these crash courses are becoming more popular. As far as CleanEdison’s crash course is concerned, it lasts eight hours (9 a.m. until 5 p.m.) and costs $345. This course is offered on a reoccurring basis in New York City.

Hofstra University too offers a crash course of sorts, only it’s two days long. Offered through the Hofstra University Continued Education Department, there are three prep courses offered between now and September. The two-day course costs $595 and is held on back-to-back days beginning at 8:30 a.m. and running until 5 p.m. (a disclaimer on the course listings states that the length of class is left to the digression of the instructor).

Another crash-course out there is offered by Green Education Services, a private company that provides ‘green job training’ much like CleanEdison. Green Education Services offer a prep class online and in person. It’s online prep class consists of two eight-hour sessions at a cost of $199. The company’s in-person prep class is offered in New York City and consists of an eight-hour session at a cost of $399.

Know of any other organizations or schools in the areas that offer prep classes for the LEED Green Associate exam? Are you apart of an organization or school that offer prep classes for the LEED Green Associate exam? If so, we’d love to hear from you.

Further research into each offering is encouraged by this blog to better understand the organization that is providing the prep class and whether or not the class, or even the exam, is right for you. Good luck.


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