Frequently Asked Questions

What qualifications are acceptable to be eligible for Provisional or Full Membership?

Applications for Provisional and Full Membership of the AIOH must satisfy the qualifications criteria of a first degree or diploma in Science, Applied Science or Engineering with a major in a quantitative science. Whilst there is no formal definition of quantitative subjects, it is taken broadly to mean a subject that has a major quantitative content, such as chemistry, physics, biological sciences, mathematics, most engineering subjects, applied statistics and core hygiene subjects. Subjects which are largely descriptive such as psychology, geology, botany and zoology are not acceptable. The first year of the course should contain greater than 50% quantitative science. The 2nd year or combined 2nd and 3rd year should also have greater than 50% quantitative science in the course. Academic transcripts are required with applications to verify the amount of quantitative subjects studied.

For applicants with Postgraduate qualifications the following criteria are used to assess suitability for Provisional or Full membership:

  • the undergraduate degree of the applicant satisfies AIOH Membership requirements; or
  • the postgraduate course is acceptable to council and the content is such that it makes up for “hard” science deficiencies in the undergraduate course.

Qualifications considered acceptable to Council include the following:

  • Certified Industrial Hygienist by the American Board of Industrial Hygiene;
  • the BOHS (British Occupational Hygiene Society) Diploma of Professional Competence in Occupational Hygiene;
  • A certified hygienist under any IOHA recognised certification scheme;
  • The Worksafe Australia (National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety) Thirteen Week Course or Ten Week Course in Occupational Hygiene.
  • AIOH accredited courses

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My qualifications do not meet the above criteria am I still eligible?

An applicant for Provisional or Full Membership, who does not have a science or engineering degree or tertiary qualification with the quantitative science content outlined above, may be considered if the qualifications they have, in conjunction with their experience and demonstrated competence, are considered qualifications that may be acceptable to Council. If the applicant has qualifications, or has completed short courses, in occupational hygiene, or occupational hygiene related areas, and can demonstrate, via their reports, a sufficient breadth and depth of knowledge and skills for Provisional Membership or for Full Membership, they will be granted Provisional Membership or an interview for Full Membership respectively.

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What level of experience do I require for the different grades of membership?

The required level of experience for Provisional membership is 1 year with greater than 50% working in the field of occupational hygiene or one of its specialist branches. For Full membership the required level of experience is 5 years with greater than 50% working in the field of occupational hygiene or one of its specialist branches per year.

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Can I apply for Full membership if my role is more management and I am currently not practicing Occupational Hygiene?

Yes on the basis that at least fifty per cent (50%) of your working time is, or has been as the case may be, directly involved with occupational hygiene over a minimum 5 year period. For example an HSE Manager who was a full time hygienist in the past can apply for Full membership.

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How many references are required and what is required in a referee report?

There must be two references for Provisional and Full applications. One referee shall be familiar with the work performed by the applicant and shall testify as to the applicant’s duties, responsibilities, work performance, length of experience and should include a recommendation for the grade of membership sought. Referees will not always be contacted by the institute as part of the application assessment process.

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Do my referees need to be Full Members of the AIOH?

It is preferable that at least 1 reference is from an AIOH member.

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How many technical reports need to be provided to support my application?

One report is required for Provisional membership and 2 reports for Full membership.

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How old can the reports be?

At least 1 report should be less than 12 months old.

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What are the reports assessed against?

Reports should demonstrate practical occupational hygiene problem solving using basic theoretical principles of recognition, correct evaluation by monitoring or data gathering and comparison against recognised health or engineering based standards.

For Full member applications, these principles need to be demonstrated at a high level of interpretation including the provision of advice on the interpretation of relevant legislation and control requirements that are derived from any of the gathered monitoring or data. Generally brief reports with little or no explanation or interpretation do not meet the requirements.

For Provisional member applications, reports should contain no technical errors and demonstrate a good working knowledge of recognition and evaluation. Limited control knowledge is required.

It is expected that reports contain sufficient detail to give the reader a clear explanation of the exposure scenario, why exposure monitoring is required, how it was performed and evaluated (including any limitations) and what action is required, if any.

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Can I submit a hazmat survey report (i.e. asbestos/lead/SMF/PCB) for my application?

Routine hazardous materials audit reports and asbestos surveys, have very little professional interpretation of results and do not demonstrate recognition, evaluation and control acceptable for evaluation of an applicant for Full or Provisional membership.

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Can I submit published papers, lecture notes, company procedures or a thesis?

Published papers, lecture notes, company procedures and policies of a generic nature can be submitted but must be accompanied by a statement detailing the proportion and nature of the contribution of the applicant. Similarly a thesis can be accepted but must be accompanied by a statement from the applicant and from their thesis supervisor detailing the proportion and nature of the contribution of the applicant.

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My current role doesn’t require me to produce technical reports to the required standard. How can I submit a report for membership?

Reports are required to assist the committee in determining the level of competence of an applicant. If in your current role you are not required to produce reports an applicant can revise Occupational Hygiene reports they have produced previously so they can be assessed against the assessment criteria set out previously.

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Who reviews the reports?

At least 3 members of the M&Q committee review the applications. All members of the committee are Full members and COH’s.

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What happens if my reports do not meet the acceptability criteria?

If submitted reports fail to meet acceptability criteria then additional reports may be requested, the applicant may be offered a lesser level of membership or the applicant is rejected. The committee takes into consideration the applicants experience and references before making any decision.

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Once my applications and reports have been assessed what happens?

If your application meets the criteria for Provisional membership you will offered the level of membership you applied for. If your application does not meet the criteria you will be sent correspondence outlining which criteria you specifically did not meet. For Full membership if your application meets the criteria you will be offered a full interview otherwise you will be sent correspondence outlining which criteria you specifically did not meet. A teleconference with a member of the M&Q committee can be arranged to obtain additional feedback on your application at your request.

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How long does it take for the committee to review an application?

This is dependent upon how many applications are currently being assessed. If applications are complete the committee aims to review within 8 weeks. If applications are not complete and require additional information or reports then the process can take several more weeks.

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What is involved in a Full membership interview?

The interview is conducted by two Full or Fellow members of the Institute. A third person may be present as an observer but they will take no active part in the interview. The interview is expected to take approximately two to three hours and will include discussion about the following:

  • The applicant’s present position
  • The professional activities the applicant is involved in
  • The applicant’s understanding of the principles of occupational hygiene including topics such as use of information sources, interpretation of data, design of occupational hygiene surveys, and use and interpretation of exposure standards.
  • Contact with the profession
  • The applicant’s understanding of legislation and how it applies to Occupational Hygiene
  • Committees (Chaired or member)
  • Journals/books scanned (either hard copy or via internet access)

The applicant’s level of knowledge and experience across a range of occupational hygiene areas such gases, vapours, noise, dusts, thermal stress, radiation, ergonomics and toxicology to name a few will be reviewed. There is no expectation that the candidate has extensive practical experience and a detailed knowledge of all areas of occupational hygiene areas to be eligible for Full membership.

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How long does it take to organise an interview?

This is dependent upon the availability of the interviewers and the applicant. We aim to organise the interview within 8 weeks of making contact with the applicant.

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What happens if I am not successful in my interview?

Correspondence outlining the reason why you were not successful will be mailed to you including an offer for a mentor. A teleconference with a member of the M&Q committee can be arranged to obtain more detailed feedback on your interview at your request. You can reapply after a minimum 12 months based on the professional development you have undertaken and advice provided by your mentor.

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