What Is CSCP Certification and Do You Need It?

Written by Coursera Staff • Updated on

CSCP certification is one way to demonstrate your knowledge of supply chain processes and logistics. Explore the relevance of a CSCP certification in advancing your career in supply chain management.

[Featured image] Two CSCP-certified professionals are standing in a warehouse holding tablet devices.

Supply chains facilitate product and service delivery to end customers through carefully orchestrated data flow, logistical operations, and monetary transactions.

According to a Statista survey, the global supply chain management market—valued at $15.58 billion in 2020—should reach nearly $31 billion by 2026 [1]. The increasing growth hints at more opportunities for career development in the supply chain industry. 

If you want to widen your supply chain management knowledge, read on to learn how the CSCP certification can help you enhance your skill set. 

What is CSCP certification?

The APICS Certified Supply Chain Certification (CSCP) is a credential offered by the Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM), a large nonprofit committed to developing supply chain intelligence.  

The CSCP program spans every phase in the supply chain, starting from suppliers and extending through a firm's internal processes before ultimately reaching the end consumer. Furthermore, the program recognizes the significance of managing the reverse flow of products, emphasizing key aspects such as handling returns, refurbishing, and recycling.

**As of 2024, CSCP is at Version 5.0 [2]. 

Read more: Supply Chain Management: Definition, Jobs, Salary, and More

Who should attempt the CSCP exam?

The CSCP exam is ideal for experienced supply chain management professionals aiming to broaden their expertise in the entire supply chain process. The CSCP certification is especially an excellent choice if your job role concerns:

  • Supply chain design

  • Supplier management

  • Supply chain management

  • Transportation

  • Distribution channels

  • Third-party logistics (3PL)

  • Fourth-party logistics (4PL)

  • Customer management

Eligibility criteria for CSCP certification

While the CSCP is meant for seasoned professionals, the ASCM removed the eligibility requirement for the CSCP certification program to foster inclusivity for all eager learners [3]. Consequently, individuals with an eligibility status of “Denied” or “On Hold” now have the opportunity to take the CSCP exam.

How much is the CSCP exam?

The price differs for ASCM members and nonmembers, ranging from $1,390 to $2,000 [4]. ASCM members with certification upgrades pay $1,390, while nonmembers and members without certification upgrades pay $1,940. Here is a cost breakdown to maintain and obtain the certification [4]:

  • Annual membership and certification upgrade: $199

  • ASCM offers a Learning System (CSCP Self-Study Exam Prep): $1,390 for members and $1,940 for nonmembers and members without certification upgrades 

  • The bundle includes the CSCP Learning System, Exam, and 2nd Chance Exam with Membership: $2,515 for members and $3,505 for nonmembers and members without certification upgrades.

Keep in mind that if you opt into the bundle option, members with certification upgrades save as much as $1,166 on the CSCP Learning System, Exam, and Bundle products.

What's on the CSCP exam? 

Earning your CSCP certificate requires successfully passing a single exam encompassing eight modules [2]:

  1. Supply Chains, Demand Management, and Forecasting

  2. Global Supply Chain Networks

  3. Sourcing Products and Services

  4. Internal Operations and Inventory

  5. Forward and Reverse Logistics

  6. Supply Chain Relationships

  7. Supply Chain Risk

  8. Optimization, Sustainability, and Technology

The test has 150 questions, of which 130 are operational and 20 are pretest [2]. Scoring ranges from 200 to 350, with a passing threshold set at 300 or above. A score below 300 results in failure. You'll have 3.5 hours to complete your CSCP examination.

Note: Pretest questions, randomly placed in the CSCP exam, have no bearing on your final score and are compulsory for statistical purposes only. 

How to register for the CSCP exam?

You can take the CSCP exam at a Pearson VUE test center or online using the OnVue system.

You'll need an Authorization to Test (ATT) to schedule an exam with Pearson VUE. After purchasing the exam, ASCM will send you an ATT confirmation email with scheduling instructions. Ensure that you take the exam within the specified period in your ATT. The validity period for an ATT for the APICS exam is six months, starting from either the exam purchase date or the date when the exam credit was utilized [5]. 

Benefits of being CSCP certified

Regardless of your experience level, possessing a CSCP certification can benefit your career. Attaining the CSCP designation signifies your ability to navigate disruption, handle risk, and adopt contemporary supply chain technologies. You also may potentially earn more money. According to a 2019 ASCM survey, supply chain professionals with APICS CSCP certification earned median salaries 25 percent higher than their non-certified counterparts [6].

What salary could you earn with the CSCP certification?

According to Payscale, a CSCP in the US earns an average annual base salary of $93,000 [7]. Keep in mind that compensation levels vary by company. The following list includes remuneration offered by popular firms:

  • Amazon: $110,678

  • Johnson & Johnson: $96,000

  • Acumed: $100,000

  • Parker Hannifin Corp: $100,498

  • Maersk: $93,350

  • Boeing: $95,497

CSCP vs. CLTD: What's the Difference?

The Certification in Logistics, Transportation, and Distribution (CLTD) credential focuses on the timely and intact delivery of items to their destinations. This includes handling the movement of materials from suppliers to production and storage and efficiently transporting finished goods to distribution channels or consumers. 

In contrast, the CSCP credential prepares you for every facet of the supply chain, from assessing potential vendors and coordinating material transportation to managing inventory on arrival. 

How to train for the CSCP exam

The ASCM offers up to four training options for CSCP. You may opt for one or more learning styles based on your study schedule:

1. Self-study: The self-study option allows you to independently learn at your convenience using the CSCP Learning System, featuring interactive online modules and printed books.

2. Instructor-led: If you prefer a structured learning environment, you can participate in instructor-led classes offered by approved ASCM partners. These classes and the Learning System facilitate peer discussion and networking.

3. Instructor-supported: If you're looking for instructor support but can’t commit to a schedule, consider instructor-supported online classes through Fox Valley Technical College, an ASCM partner. You can complete assignments at your own pace with a dedicated instructor for APICS' 14-week course and no set meeting times [4].

4. Corporate and group: Should you favor group study, the ASCM can assist you in organizing groups for self-study or instructor-led classes, either at your location or in a virtual setting.

How to maintain your CSCP certification

To maintain your CSCP certification, you must earn 75 professional development maintenance points every five years [2]. You can accumulate maintenance points by doing the some of following tasks:

  • Participating in or presenting at educational events

  • Contributing articles to supply chain publications

  • Demonstrating involvement in organizations related to the industry and more

Next steps

CSCP certification can help demonstrate your understanding of and competence in supply chain management. Whether you're preparing for the exam or exploring career options in supply chain management, check out the Supply Chain Principles course on Coursera. Offered by the Georgia Institute of Technology, this course features videos, quizzes, and interactive learning to help you comprehend emerging trends in supply chains. Upon completion, gain a shareable Professional Certificate to include in your resume, CV, or LinkedIn profile.

Article sources


Statista. “Size of the global supply chain management market worldwide from 2020 to 2026, https://www.statista.com/statistics/1181996/supply-chain-management-market-size-worldwide/.” Accessed March 14, 2024.

Keep reading

Updated on
Written by:

Editorial Team

Coursera’s editorial team is comprised of highly experienced professional editors, writers, and fact...

This content has been made available for informational purposes only. Learners are advised to conduct additional research to ensure that courses and other credentials pursued meet their personal, professional, and financial goals.