Professional Development Programme

Become ARA qualified: the professional development programme

The ARA’s professional development programme is a competency based process through which members can qualify as a Foundation, Registered or Fellow member of the ARA.

Foundation (FMARA), Registered (RMARA) and Fellow (FARA) are levels of membership that provide you with the professional recognition that your career deserves. They are also professional qualifications, providing you with designatory letters equal to many other professions. FMARA, RMARA and FARA are a professional and public demonstration of your commitment to the highest professional and ethical standards set by the ARA. They also show a commitment to continuing your professional development, ensuring your skills and knowledge remain current.

In an increasingly competitive and diverse profession, Foundation, Registered and Fellow membership provide the opportunity to develop your career and increase your earning potential. They are an investment in your career, as these professional levels of membership can help:

  • Enhance your professional standing and employability, as many employers look for professional recognition by professional bodies.
  • Increase your influence in the profession and earn recognition from your peers.
  • Widen your professional networks and introduce you to new opportunities.
  • Contribute to the development of your chosen profession.
  • Demonstrate to employers, colleagues, stakeholders and the public that you have the competences, expertise and ethical behaviours that they value and trust.

Once qualified, Foundation, Registered and Fellow members must undertake a CPD review every five years to ensure they are continuing with their professional development.

Please visit the programme website to access further information and guidance, and learn more about the programme criteria.

Programme enrolment

When you are ready to begin your journey to become ARA qualified please register with the website and enrol onto your chosen programme. Enrolment is free until 1 January 2019.

Members who enrolled onto the registration scheme, but who did not submit their portfolio for assessment before the scheme closed, must enrol and progress towards Registered Membership via the professional development programme.

The ARA’s programme manager is available to support those interested to learn more of the programme and how it can help them progress in their career. The ARA is happy to support employers by arranging workshops with staff to discuss all aspects of the professional development programme. To contact the programme manager please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Please note that candidates and their mentors will receive occasional updates by email advising them of new guidance, reminders of submission dates, and other information relating to the professional development programme. The ARA will use the email address used during registration and enrolment.

All enquiries on the programme and programme website should be made to the programme manager.