FAQs: IRA Institute Online

Q: What are the system requirements for IRA Institute Online?
IRA Online Institute currently uses the Cornerstone LMS platform administered by the American Bankers Association. Click here to view system requirements.

Q: How many hours on average does an attendee spend working on the readings and assignments?
Attendees will spend an average of 15 to 20 hours per week reading and working on assignments. Some weeks are less demanding and may require less time. The last week is a review.

Q: Do attendees have to be online at any certain time of day or certain day of the week?
No. For weekly assignments, attendees are not required to be logged in at any certain time or day of the week. Attendees must complete the weekly assignments by Sunday of the following week—giving nine days to complete each assignment. Attendees can work on the course any time of day or night, any day of the week, and from any computer. Live webinars will be scheduled every 3 weeks to review previous week’s assignments. Attendees will have an opportunity to ask instructors questions and interact with fellow students to better prepare for the final exam. Dates and times will be included as part of the class schedule. Webinars will be scheduled for 90 minutes but may vary on actual length due to class participation, attendance is highly encouraged.

Q: Where are the reading materials located?
All reading materials are located within American Bankers Association’s (ABA) Cornerstone site, which is the platform used to host IRA Institute Online. The reading materials are printable and are available for the entire 12 weeks.

Q: Are there discussion boards that attendees must take part in?
Yes, attendees are required to post brief answers to discussion board questions on a weekly basis.

Q: When should I register?
We suggest registering at least a couple of weeks before the start of the course. There are limited spots available so it’s best to register early.

Q: How do I take the exam after the IRA Institute Online course?
CIP Exam – After registering for the CIP exam, you will choose a date to take the exam and a proctor will need to be selected at your office (a manager, supervisor, or an HR department employee can proctor). Ascensus will then send the exam access information to the agreed upon proctor by the date that you selected to take the exam. The exam is a 150 multiple-choice online exam that must be completed in 3 hours.

CISP Exam – You will need to apply directly to the American Bankers Association (ABA). Refer to the application due dates and submit your application online at aba.com/CISP Exam. The CISP exam is an electronic exam and candidates can choose their exam date, time, and location at a national test center, known as Castle Testing Centers, within a defined date range. For additional CISP exam information, visit the ABA website at aba.com/CISP.

Q: What type of support is there if I have questions?
If you have questions during the course regarding navigating the site, resource materials, or assignments, the coaches are available by email to assist you. If you have questions regarding system requirements or issues with the Cornerstone site, you should contact ABA.

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FAQs: IRA University

Q: When will I receive my login information?
You will receive your IRA University logins approximately 5 business days prior to the kickoff webinar. If you have not received your login information 48 hours prior to the kickoff webinar, please contact us at education@ascensus.com as your organization’s security settings may have blocked our system generated email.

Q: What happens if I miss one of the weekly webinars?
Weekly participation Wednesdays at 1:00 p.m. CST is recommended. However, sessions will be recorded and are available to the participant while attending IRA University.

Q: Is there group pricing available?
For groups of 5 or more, contact us for discounted pricing.

Q: When do I take the exam?
You have 30 days upon conclusion of IRA University to take the exam.

Q: What topics are covered on the exam?
Review the CIS Certification Exam Guidelines for details.

Q: Does the $1,199 registration fee include the cost of the exam?
Yes.

Q: If I do not pass the exam, is there a charge to retake the exam?
If you do not receive an 80 percent or greater on both parts of the exam, you are eligible to retake the exam 30 days from the date of the original exam date. The exam retake fee is $299.

Q: Once I have earned the certification, am I required to earn CE credits to maintain the certification?
Yes. After earning the CIS designation, the next step is to maintain your certification by completing 24 continuing education (CE) credits within the three-year certification period. To maintain your designation, you can attend Ascensus IRA seminars and advanced courses of study.

Q: What system requirements do I need?
• Adobe® Acrobat® Reader required to view participant guide for webinar training.
• Microsoft® Internet Explorer® 8.0 or higher
• Microsoft Windows® XP Service Pack 3 (SP3), Windows Vista®, or Windows 7
• Video graphics adapter able to display 800×600 screen resolution or higher
• Sound card with speakers or headphone capability
• Adobe Flash® Player 8 or greater

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FAQs: HSA University

Q: What happens if I miss one of the weekly webinars?
Weekly participation at 2:00 p.m. CST is recommended. However, sessions will be recorded and are available to the participant while attending HSA University.

Q: Is there group pricing available?
For groups of 5 or more, contact us for discounted pricing.

Q: When do I take the exam?
You have 30 days upon conclusion of HSA University to take the exam.

Q: Does the $899 registration fee include the cost of the exam?
Yes.

Q: Is there a charge to retake the exam?
If you do not receive an 80 percent or greater on the exam, you are eligible to retake the exam 30 days from the date of the original exam date. The exam retake fee is $299.

Q: Once I have earned the certification, am I required to earn CE credits to maintain the certification?
Yes. After earning the CHSP designation, the next step is to maintain your certification by completing 8 continuing education (CE) credits within the three-year certification period. To maintain your designation, you can attend Ascensus HSA seminars and advanced courses of study that have been approved by the HSA Standards and Practices Commission.

Ascensus HSA seminars (including HSA webinars), HSA courses at Ascend, and HSA eLearning courses are approved for CHSP continuing education credits.

Q: Are there any other fees associated with earning/maintaining the CHSP certification.
To earn the certification, the $899 HSA University registration fee includes the exam fee. No additional fees are required to earn the certification.

Upon meeting the CE requirements to maintain the certification, a renewal fee of $125 is assessed at the end of the three-year certification period.

Q: What is the CHSP exam process?
After completing HSA University or the HSA Certification Workshop at Ascend, you will receive your exam login information. You have 30 days following the completion of training to complete the exam. More details regarding the exam will be emailed upon registration. A passing score is 80 percent or greater. If a passing score is not achieved, you will be eligible to retake the exam 30 days from the date of the original exam date for a fee of $299.

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FAQs: Ascend

Q: Is there a course list to help me choose which classes to attend?
The Ascend brochure lists all the courses offered with descriptions to help you in your selection process.

Q: After choosing my course schedule at registration, can I switch my classes once I get to Ascend?
Yes. You may adjust your schedule at any time on-site.

Q: What time does Ascend end?
The Ascend general courses end at 12:15 p.m. on Wednesday. The optional CIS II exam prep and HSA certification workshop end at 4:00 on Wednesday.

Q: Is lunch provided for attendees registered for the CIS II exam prep or HSA certification workshop?
Yes, lunch will be provided on Wednesday for attendees who are registered for one of the optional certification workshops.

Q: Is the CIS II exam prep or HSA certification workshop required?
The CIS II exam prep and the HSA certification workshop are optional.

Q: Are the CIS II exam prep and HSA certification workshop included in the price of Ascend?
There is a $299 exam fee for the CIS II exam and the CHSP exam. Printed study material is also provided for these workshops.

Q: Are there HSA courses I should not take on Monday and Tuesday of the conference if I’m registered for the HSA certification workshop on Wednesday?
For attendees who are registered for the HSA certification workshop, we do not recommend taking the HSA Overview and Advanced HSAs courses as that material will be covered in Wednesday’s HSA certification workshop.

Q: What courses should I take to prep for the CIS II exam prep on Wednesday?
Recommended CIS courses are listed in the Ascend brochure.

Q: What is the dress code?
The dress code is business casual. Bring a sweater or light jacket as conference rooms are often cool.

Q: Can I bring a guest to the Welcome Reception?
The Welcome Reception is only available to paid attendees of Ascend.

Q: Are meals included in the Ascend registration?
A full breakfast is provided each day and lunch is provided Monday and Tuesday.

Q: Do you offer any group discounts?
Yes. Please contact us at Education@ascensus.com for special group pricing.

Q: What course materials will I receive?
Free download available of course outlines and PowerPoint presentations through a secure website one week before, during and for 30 days after Ascend. Or you can choose to purchase, at the time of registration, a spiral-bound book of the PowerPoint® presentations of all the Ascend courses.

Q: What is the CHSP exam process?
After completing HSA University or the HSA Certification Workshop at Ascend, you will receive your exam login information. You have 30 days following the completion of training to complete the exam. More details regarding the exam will be emailed upon registration. A passing score is 80 percent or greater. If a passing score is not achieved, you will be eligible to retake the exam 30 days from the date of the original exam date for a fee of $299.

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FAQs: Webinars

Q: What system requirements do I need?
• Adobe® Acrobat® Reader required to view participant guide for webinar training.
• Microsoft® Internet Explorer® 8.0 or higher
• Microsoft Windows® XP Service Pack 3 (SP3), Windows Vista®, or Windows 7
• Video graphics adapter able to display 800×600 screen resolution or higher
• Sound card with speakers or headphone capability
• Adobe Flash® Player 8 or greater

Q: What is included with my webinar purchase?
Live Webinar – Includes one phone connection and one Internet connection at one room where an unlimited number of listeners can participate. A downloadable workbook is also included with your purchase.

Digital Delivery – Within one business day of purchase, unless otherwise noted, you will receive a downloadable prerecorded webinar and PDF workbook. The webinar can be saved to your computer and watched as many times as you wish

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