TCP Frequently Asked Questions

What are the fees to enroll in the Trainer Certification Program?

Program Fees:
Application fee: $100
The application fee includes a complimentary TCP Manual. The separate purchase of a TCP Manual will not reduce the price of the application fee.

TCP Exam/Certification fee: $200
The exam/certification fee is due upon approval and acceptance into the program.

Educational Requirements:
Fee ranges based on the educational effort that the applicant chooses. Applicants must participate in one of the following educational efforts: 

  • TCP Clinic: Overall fee varies per TCP Clinic
  • Online Trainer Certification Course: $200 (includes 6-month subscription to

May I purchase the manual without applying to the program?

Yes. Submit the TCP Manual Order Form to the USHJA office, along with the manual payment of $65. 
** The separate purchase of a TCP Manual will not reduce the price of the application fee if you apply to the program at a later time.

What is the general application process?

  • Attend a TCP Clinic or complete the Online Trainer Certification Course.
  • Submit the application, application fee and supporting documents to the USHJA office. USHJA will send the complimentary manual, which is your study guide for the exam.
  • The TCP Committee meets three times per year to review applications. Remit the $200 exam/certification fee if your application is approved.
  • You will receive an email containing the exam log-in code once USHJA has received the program fee. You must pass the online exam with a score of 85% or higher within six months of the date the exam email was sent.
  • Certified Trainers: Passing the exam and returning the official certification letter grants certification status and prompts the Certified Trainer's profile to be posted on the website's Certified Trainers Directory.
  • Provisional Trainers: Passing the exam and returning the official certification letter grants Provisional status. A Provisional Trainer will have the opportunity to become a Certified Trainer after he has worked as a full-time professional trainer for at least three years. A Provisional Trainer must submit his request for promotion to Certified Trainer, along with an updated resume documenting his additional education and experience, after completing his third year working as a full-time professional trainer.

What is a Provisional Trainer?

A Provisional Trainer is a trainer who has worked as a full-time professional hunter/jumper trainer for at least one year but who has not yet reached the required three full years for certification. A Provisional Trainer will have the opportunity to become a Certified Trainer after he has worked as a full-time professional trainer for at least three years.  To request a promotion to Certified Trainer, click here

Why does the USHJA require applicants to have full-time professional hunter/jumper experience?

The TCP Committee feels it is important for the applicants to have real, full-time experience. This means 40 hours per week working in the industry acting as a professional at a professionally-operated stable who takes pride in good practices and horsemanship. If the applicant only teaches on a part-time basis, the unplanned mishaps that inevitably happen with horses may happen in their absence. Certified Trainers must have had exposure to what goes into all facets of being a professional horseman.

Can individuals from Canada apply to the program?

Yes, professionals who currently reside and train in the US or Canada may apply to the program, provided they meet all of the applicant requirements.

Will there be a "grandfathering" process for experienced professionals?

USHJA does not offer a grandfather exemption into the Trainer Certification Program.

If I am certified through another organization or certification program, will this automatically transfer to the USHJA program?

Each of the certification programs that are currently offered by the various organizations offer a wide variety of knowledge and require different experience levels in order to participate. Certification from another organization will not automatically provide you certification with USHJA.

Will trainers be required to have a specific level of certification in order to attend certain horse shows?

No. A trainer will not be required to be certified to attend a specific level of competition.

What is the format of the online exam?

Five sections comprise the exam with 30 questions in each section. The questions will be true/false, multiple choice and labeling. Applicants receive their score and receive their incorrect answers at the end of the exam.

Is there a maximum time allotted for taking the exam?

Accepted applicants are given six months to pass the online TCP exam. Applicants may log into the exam two times and once logged in, there is no limit to how long it takes an applicant to complete the exam.

May I retake the exam if I am unsuccessful in passing it?

If a member is unsuccessful in taking the exam, he or she will have the opportunity to take the exam again within 30 days of the first attempt. If he or she is unsuccessful in the second attempt, he or she will be required to wait six months before re-applying to the program.

How do I maintain my certification?

Certification must be maintained and updated every five years.  Click here to view the Renewal requirements

How will a USEF suspension affect a member's Trainer Certification?

If an individual is suspended by the USEF, that individual's USHJA Trainer Certification or Provisional status will be suspended for the same time period. Upon completion of the USEF suspension period, the individual's USHJA Trainer Certification will be reinstated, absent good cause to the contrary. Reinstatement of the individual's USHJA Trainer Certification remains at the sole discretion of the USHJA.

What is are the insurance requirements for certification?

USHJA requires that Certified Trainers be covered for their professional activities under a commercial/professional liability insurance policy. The official certificate of liability insurance must be requested from and issued by your insurance agent. The certificate must list your full name and coverage must include commercial general liability. The coverage must be in place and remain valid throughout the entire application and certification process. Click here for more information regarding  insurance requirements.