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Individual Membership

Who can join?

We welcome applications from all involved with the study and care of the historic environment, including heritage management, further and higher education and the voluntary sector, regardless of academic background.

Students and those who do not yet meet the criteria may join as non-accredited members. Please read the Student and Affiliate applicants’ guide and apply online

What does it mean to be a member?

The Code of conduct, other regulations and standards and guidance are binding on all accredited members, and emphasise the duty to adhere to the professional and ethical standards. If you support the CIfA’s aims and agree to abide by its rules, we would welcome an application for accredited membership from you.

Student and Affiliate members are asked to support and work towards adhering to the Code of conduct.

The following brochure showcases some of our members, and the roles they have.

Accredited members of CIfA (Practitioners, Associates and Members) have to undertake at least 50 hours of CPD over a two year period. Your CPD is based on a Personal Development Plan (PDP) (Word doc file) and a CPD log (Word doc file). For more information about CPD click here.

In addition to recognition of your commitment to the profession, CIfA membership comes with a number of extra membership benefits.

How to apply

You should read the Applicants’ guide before you apply for accredited membership to make sure you understand what to submit. The forms and templates are at the bottom of this page. If you have any further queries please email

You should complete and submit the correct forms together with the relevant application fee (see below). These are the fees to process your application. Once your application has been accepted, you will then be asked to pay the subscription fee. You can find all subscription information here: There is no application fee to upgrade.

Concessionary rates are available to corporate members earning less than the minimum salary for their membership grade and members earning less than £10,000 (subs category 4). Members can claim the concessionary rate by sending proof of earnings and completing the form (

Corporate members can move to the ‘Retired’ category by confirming their employment status with the HMRC is declared as retired and their tax code has been altered accordingly.

Supporting information

Those applying for an accredited grade are also required to submit a Statement of Competence relating to the competence matrix and at least three examples of work as supporting documentation: this can be a wide range of documents, not just reports, please see the Applicants’ Guide for more details. Although evidence is not required at PCIfA grade we encourage applicants to submit any work they may have done.

Please note the Validation committee prefer hard copies of your work so they can review them more easily during the meetings. However, you can now submit your application electronically by email to Large documents can be sent via a link to Dropbox or Googledocs.


Applicants for accredited grades must also nominate two referees. Please contact them before you apply to make sure they are suitable and willing. One should be from your current or most recent employer and one from an appropriate archaeologist or historic environment professional or curatorial authority. For MCIfA (Member) grade the committee will ask for a second reference to be a curatorial reference. Please see Applicants’ guide for more details.

When will I hear?

We will write to you to confirm that we have received your application and ask you for any additional information we think you need to supply at that point. Applications for accredited membership are decided by the Validation committee which meets every eight weeks. (See below for dates)

Applications that are received less than three weeks before a Validation committee meeting will be processed for the subsequent meeting.

Application deadlines for Validation committee meetings 2015

22 June for 14 July meeting

17 August for 8 September meeting

5 October for 27 October meeting

16 November for 8 December meeting

We will write to you with the committees decision as soon as possible after the meeting. If you think you have waited too long to hear back from us please get in touch.

How to upgrade or rejoin

For information on how to upgrade your level of membership, please see section 4.1 of the Applicants’ Guide and follow the guidelines as for new members. Please note there is now a £10 fee to upgrade. Please remember to submit a PDP and CPD log with your upgrade application.

For information on how to rejoin the Institute, please see section 2.3 of the Applicants’ Guide and fill out a re-joiners’ form (see below). You will need to submit an up to date CV and for ACIfA and MCIfA grades your bibliography/grey literature from the last two years and your up to date CPD/PDP log. There is no fee to rejoin, but once your application has been accepted, you will be asked to pay the subscription fee. The re-joiner process is not open to self-validated members who originally joined before 1986, who will need to reapply as above for new members.

Information for referees

When nominated as a referee please ensure you return your reference promptly, within two weeks of receiving the request from us. You can do this by post or email This is so that applications are not deferred for another committee meeting which are eight weeks apart.

If you are unable to send this in within the time frame, please aim to do so before the next committee meeting. Late references are the most common reasons for applications being delayed or deferred. Please see above for meeting dates. The Validation committee prefer referees to use our template below. Please inform the applicant and the CIfA office if you do not consider yourself a suitable referee.


Please use the table below to download the relevant forms. If you have difficulty opening PDF documents you may need to update your adobe reader

Downloadable Documents

Guides (Pdf files)

Application/Rejoining forms (Word doc files)

Fees and Subscription Rates (Pdf files)

Guidance for Referees (Word doc file)

Membership regulations(Pdf files)

The Membership regulation provide guidance on the procedures of the Validation committee and membership appeals process (section 12)

Chartered Institute for Archaeologists
Miller Building, University of Reading
Reading, Berkshire RG6 6AB

0118 378 6446