Important Insights on Professional Certification Submissions

by Denise Butchko

The ACSP is always excited to have designers taking on the challenge of becoming professionally certified. It’s important to the credibility of our industry and the individual that’s representing our industry on each and every sales call.

We want EVERYONE to be successful!

Taking tests and submitting design challenges can be time consuming and nerve-wracking. Here are some valuable insights into what the committee is looking for when assessing submissions:


1.  Present the drawings and the descriptions as if you were talking to your customer. We need to know your thought process and why you designed a space the way you did. There’s always more than one right answer. We need you to walk us through your approach and the why behind it. We can then more accurately assess the function and aesthetic of your design.

2.  Take the time to be clear and accurate in your labeling of accessories, counter-top heights and overhangs.  Toe-kick heights, drawer heights, and placement of hooks and accessories make a big difference in evaluating the score as well.

3.  Consider reviewing industry standards.  Then, if you decide to design a space that doesn’t coincide with those, tell us why.  There’s ingenuity AND there’s bad design.  You won’t get any points for bad design.  What’s bad design?  It’s a space that won’t function well once the items are in place (real life).  We see sections of hanging that don’t allow enough height for the garments, drawer sections and islands that are both too tall and too short and no counter-top overhang on islands.

4.  Pay attention to the parameters of each design challenge and make sure your space planning accommodates those.  We really DO “do” the math!