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Becoming A Coach

Understanding the ICF Coach Credentialing Paths: Levels 1, 2, 3

Unclear about recent changes to the ICF’s coach credentialing pathways? We’ve got you covered with this straightforward guide!

The ICF Coach Credentialing Paths: Levels 1, 2, 3

Over the past several years, the International Coaching Federation has undertaken a broad review and update of their Core Competencies and coach credentialing process. The rollout of these changes have taken place over time, culminating in an entirely new accreditation structure.

So, what does all this mean to you? 

Starting in January 2023, if you’re interested in pursuing your ICF coach credential, you’ll have three pathways to choose from.

The ICF Credentials

International Coaching Federation credentials represent the gold standard of the coaching industry, and reflect your current level of training, experience, and mastery of the ICF Core Competencies. They include:

Associate Certified Coach (ACC)

  • 60 hours of qualifying education
  • 100 hours of client coaching experience

‍Professional Certified Coach (PCC) 

  • 125 hours of qualifying education
  • 500 hours of client coaching experience

‍Master Certified Coach (MCC) 

  • 200 hours of qualifying education
  • Hold or have held a PCC Credential
  • 2,500 hours of client coaching experience

So, how do you go about qualifying for your ICF credential? 

It starts with choosing the right coach training program. The new training Levels 1, 2, and 3 reflect what level of accreditation your education provider has been awarded by the ICF.

Level 1

Level 1 training programs offer between 60 and 124 contact learning hours, which meets the education requirements for the Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credential.

If you received your coach training prior to these changes, the Approved Coach Specific Training Hours (ACSTH) program becomes Level 1.

Prior to January 2023, Lumia Coaching was an ACSTH program.

Level 2

Level 2 training programs provide at least 125 and up to 175 contact learning hours, and are designated as PCC Accredited Education. Upon completing a Level 2 program, you’ll meet the education requirements to apply for either an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) or Professional Certified Coach (PCC) credential.

If you received your coach training prior to these changes, the Accredited Coach Training Program (ACTP) “all inclusive” program becomes Level 2.

As of January 2023, Lumia Coaching is now an ICF accredited Level 2 training provider.

Level 3

Level 3 training is for those seeking a Master Certified Coach (MCC) credential. It includes 75 contact learning hours of MCC Accredited Education. 

“We are innovating our current global accreditation model to set the highest standards for coach-specific education in the world. Our new structure will enable coaches to find a clearer path to quality education that prepares them for the nuance, complexity and sophistication of today’s coaching consumer.” – Luke Davis, vice president of ICF Coaching Education

What’s Changing with Level 2?

Up to now, Lumia’s Signature program has provided everything students need to apply for an ACC credential with the ICF. With our transition to a Level 2, we become a “one stop shop” for earning either your ACC or PCC Credential. 

To meet the ICF’s Level 2 requirements we’re revising our curriculum, recruiting additional instructors, and expanding the length of our Signature program from 60 to 125 hours. 

‍Starting in January 2023, Lumia's Level 2 program will include:‍

  • All training hours needed for ACC or PCC Credential
  • Live observation coaching with feedback in class 
  • Written feedback on recorded coaching sessions
  • In-house performance evaluation by PCC Instructor
  • 7.5 hours of group mentoring with PCC Instructor
  • Required 1-1 Mentor Coaching sessions with PCC coaches included 
  • New and updated live classes taught by ICF Credentialed Instructors

‍What Happens Next?

Our Level 2 Signature program debuts in June 2023. Students who sign up for our Essentials track starting in January 2023 will meet all Level 2 requirements, and will seamlessly step into our Level 2 Signature program when it launches. 

Level 2 is now open for enrollment, and the first cohorts are already starting to fill. To learn more or to sign up, check out our Signature program overview.

If you are a current Lumia Essentials student or recent graduate who intends to do the Signature program, you’ve got options! Level 2 Signature is not better than our current program that runs through May 2023, it’s just different. We encourage you to book a call with our Admissions team to gain clarity on what path is best for you. 

‍Want to Become A Coach?

There’s no better time than now to get started! Come check out Lumia Life Coach Training - a program that's every bit as unique as you are. Grounded in science, our ICF accredited program features authentic instructors, a robust curriculum, business instruction to prepare you for liftoff as an entrepreneur, and fellow students dedicated to becoming a collective force for good.

Lumia Coaching: Vibrant community. Evidence-based life coach training. Lifetime support.

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