CST Certification

Eligibility Requirements

  • 4 years of industry related experience, or
    4 years industry related degree
  • Adherence to AACE's Canons of Ethics

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Recertification & Maintenance

CST certification is valid for 4 years and not eligible for recertification.

CST Examination Investment

While AACE membership is not required for certification, members receive the benefit of reduced examination fees.

  • US$250 for members
  • US$375 for non-members
  • US$175 resit fee (member and non-members)

All fees are due upon submission of an application and are non-refundable. The fee includes our eligibility documentation review and computer based testing (CBT) fee. Review our policy by clicking here


The only prerequisite for an AACE International examination is meeting the above eligibility requirements. Candidates are never required to purchase or participate in training offered by AACE International, AACE International Certification Institute, or any AACE-affiliated companies as a prerequisite for certification. Candidates are also not required to purchase study materials offered by AACE International. However, many candidates find the study guides and other recommended resources helpful in their certification preparation. The following recommended resources are available for you to purchase and use at your discretion.

Exam Structure

  • 3 hours maximum
  • 100 simple multiple choice questions
    • Domains: Schedule Development (60) and Schedule Maintenance & Controlling (40)
  • Any style, battery operated calculator permitted (not provided by the testing center) 
  • Open Book – using AACE's CST Primer and PSP Study Guide only (must be in a binder)

Earning the Certification

  • An overall score of 70% or higher is needed to pass the exam

    Example: 100 questions answered with 70 correct, 30 incorrect = 70% final result (pass the exam)

To remain strong and responsive to the needs of certified members and other cost professionals, the public, and AACE International Certification Institute, our certification programs solicit input from all interested individuals and organizations as to the policies and procedures used in administering the Association’s certification programs. Please address any comments you may have regarding the administration of certification programs to the Certification Board via e-mail to certification@aacei.org or via U.S. mail at Certification Board, AACE International, 726 East Park Avenue #180, Fairmont, WV 26554 USA