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The Chartered Institute of Housing is the independent voice for housing and the home of professional standards

Guidance for members in Scotland

The IRPM has commissioned CIH to design and manage the Member examination to enable IRPM Associates to progress to Member grade, subject to prerequisite three years' experience. The information below provides details to candidates in Scotland, their sponsors and others interested in becoming a professionally qualified member of IRPM on the structure and regulations for the examination.

Download the IRPM member examination syllabusDownload registration formVisit the IRPM website

The IRPM have developed examinations at both levels based on the management of heritable property in Scotland.  The IRPM distance learning pack, developed in conjunction with the Property Managers Association Scotland (PMAS), forms the primary syllabus for these examinations and underpins the learning for students at both levels. The distance learning pack and further information on the examinations, including past papers at Part II level, are available on the IRPM website. You must log in to the members area to view these.

Why is CIH involved in the examination?

CIH is a nationally recognised awarding organisation for housing qualifications. In addition, CIH approves qualifications delivered by universities and colleges across the UK and overseas. This provides CIH with considerable experience and expertise in the design and delivery of qualifications to national quality assured standards.

What will I have to do to pass the Member examination?

The Member examination has been designed as an unseen examination paper and is divided into two parts; Part 1 and Part 2.

Part 1 consists of a single compulsory question that carries a potential 40 marks. It will present a detailed problem or 'crisis' and candidates will be asked to respond to this problem from the perspective of their specialist area of expertise as well as being expected to understand the wider implications of block management.

Part 2 requires candidates to answer three questions from a total of eight. The questions will be taken from a range of four specialist areas: service charge accounting, general property management, technical/building surveying and affordable housing. This section carries 60 marks.

Candidates will also be reqired to demonstrate that they have fulfilled and filed up to date CPD requirements before being granted Member status.

What level is the examination set at ?

The qualification has been designed to be assessed at level 1 of an undergraduate programme (equivalent to Level 7 of the SCQF). This would be at least the same level as an HNC year one or a SVQ level 3/4 qualification.

When will the examination take place?

The unseen examination, if there is sufficient demand will take place in April and October each year. Candidates will be informed of their results within 10 weeks of taking the examination.

Where will it take place?

The examination will be held in Glasgow. The location of future examinations will depend upon the number and location of candidates but we will endeavour to provide a centre within reasonable travelling distance for all.

What if I need special arrangements for the examination?

Should you require special facilities or support you must make CIH aware of your needs when you apply for registration. CIH and IRPM are committed to providing access to all and will endeavour to meet all requests for support and/or provide special facilities to enable open and comprehensive access to the examination.  Applicants will need to provide evidence of independent assessment of their needs where appropriate.

How can I prepare for the examination?

IRPM will organise workshops specifically to assist candidates preparing for the examination. The distance learning pack will be provided to all candidates and this will form the basis of the examination questions. Candidates should additionally keep abreast of all issues affecting the law and management of property in Scotland, for instance; considerations of the Scottish Government, precedent decisions in the courts and good practice guidelines published by bodies such as the Health and Safety Executive.

What are the regulations for the examination?

The examination will be conducted according to the CIH/IRPM regulations.  It is important that you read these regulations to ensure that you fully understand your rights and responsibilities relating to the conduct of the examination.  Should you wish to appeal against the decision of the examination board you should contact CIH and request a copy of the appeals procedure.  You must submit any appeal within fourteen days of the receipt of the decision of the examination board. 

How will the examination be assessed?

Candidates will need to pass both Part 1 and 2 of the examination. The answer scripts from the examination will be marked by academic assessors. The scripts will then be sample marked by an external examiner appointed by CIH. The final decision will be taken by the CIH/IRPM examination board. This will comprise of the assessors, the external examiner, representatives from IRPM and CIH.

The results of the examination board will be sent by CIH to candidates following the examination board meeting.

What can I do if I fail?

Candidates who fail the examination will be allowed to retake the examination at the next sitting. Candidates will be required to retake the whole examination. There will be an administration fee of £100 for a first retake of the examination. Should the candidate fail the second attempt a full resit fee will be charged.

Candidates who fail the examination can request feedback on their strengths and weaknesses to enable them to prepare for the second attempt.  Details on how to obtain this will be in your results letter.

What does it cost?

The cost for both parts of the examination is £360. This must be paid in full before the candidate sits the unseen examination. Should the candidate decide not to proceed with the examination a refund of the fee can be made subject to an administration charge. Fees cannot be refunded to any candidate who withdraws from the programme less than three weeks before the examination date. However, the candidate may be transferred to the next available examination session. No fees can be refunded once the unseen examination has been taken.

How do I apply?


Download an application form and return it to:

By post:
CIH education, Chartered Institute of Housing, Octavia House, Westwood Way, Coventry, CV4 8JP
By email:


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