Iowa Board of Certification

Our Mission: The Iowa Board of Certification credentials prevention and treatment professionals in addictions and other behavioral health fields by promoting adherence to competency and ethical standards.

Latest News

SAVE THE DATE... the second IBC C.A.R.E. Conference is scheduled for September 14-15, 2017!
  Watch the website and your email for more information.

Handouts from 2016 C.A.R.E. Conference

NEW: Certified Peer Recovery Specialist (PRS) credential

Starting December 1, 2015, peer specialists in Iowa can apply for the Peer Recovery Specialist (PRS) credential through IBC. This credential is reciprocal with other states/countries that also carry it through IC&RC - currently there are 18 U.S. states and Canada that offer this credential. This credential is for those individuals who are themselves in recovery and who provide mental health
or substance abuse peer support services within a licensed mental health or substance abuse agency/organization.

A 90-day grandfathering period will occur from January 1 through March 30, 2016 for those who are certified with IBC as a MHPSS as of March 1, 2016. After reviewing education, experience and supervision requirements in the PRS handbook, if you are a certified MHPSS by 3/1/16 and wish to upgrade to PRS within the grandfathering time, complete the PRS application and submit it with the requirement documents and fees; if it’s complete and meeting all requirements, you will not have to pass an exam and you will be issued a PRS in place of your MHPSS credential (fees paid toward your MHPSS will be prorated for the PRS credential).

There are 2 ways to apply for this credential:

  1. If you are certified with IBC as a MHPSS as of March 1, complete the PRS application and send it to the IBC office between January 1 - March 30, 2016 with required documents and fee; OR
  2. If you are not certified with IBC as a MHPSS, or if you are a MHPSS and the grandfathering period has passed, complete the PRS application and send it to the IBC office with required documents and fee. Once the application is complete, you’ll sit for the IC&RC exam, then be issued a certification after receiving a passing score.

IBC will continue to offer the MHPSS credential along with the PRS credential, however only the PRS credential is reciprocal. View flowcharts outlining the application process for both credentials: PRS Flowchart, and  MHPSS Flowchart.

IBC Announces the Temporary Certified Alcohol Drug Counselor (tCADC)

IBC has started a new credential – the tCADC. This credential is for students or those new to the field who have met all education requirements for CADC or IADC, but have little to no formal experience or supervision in the field as a substance abuse counselor.

The applicant will complete the "tCADC application" and submit it to the IBC office along with required fees. Once we determine that the applicant has met the education requirements for at least a CADC, the applicant will sit for the exam, and upon receiving a passing score on the exam, will be issued a 2-year certification as a tCADC. There is no recertification for tCADC.

tCADC’s have a maximum of 2 years to complete the required experience and supervision as a substance abuse counselor, and will need to upgrade to either CADC or IADC before the two-year certification is over.

Advanced Certified Prevention Specialist (ACPS) Credential

IBC is excited to offer a new Advanced Certified Prevention Specialist (ACPS) credential for Iowa professionals wishing to advance their prevention careers.

This credential is an opportunity for prevention professionals to demonstrate advanced prevention competencies such as application of the Strategic Prevention Framework, collaboration with substance abuse treatment and other behavioral health services, utilization of technology in service provision, and administration of trauma informed services.

IDPH and IBC sees this new credential as an important accomplishment for the prevention workforce of the state. We hope to create a strong pool of Advanced Certified Prevention Specialists to meet the leadership needs of our state.

Current CPS's who want to upgrade to the ACPS will need to complete the "ACPS Upgrade Application" found on the IBC website. Prevention specialists not currently certified with IBC will need to complete the "ACPS Application" which is also found on the IBC website.

IC&RC Practice Exams Now Available

IC&RC now has practice exams available for CADC, IADC, CPS (Prevention Specialist) and CCS (Clinical Supervisor) applicants.

Practice exams were developed to mimic IC&RC’s computer based testing (CBT) platform to enhance a candidate’s preparation experience. Candidates have 60 minutes to complete the 50-question practice exam. At the completion of each practice exam, candidates are provided with a score report detailing their performance based on the various content areas of the exam.

The cost of all practice exams is a non-refundable $49.00 fee which goes directly to IC&RC. You can get more information on practice exams by going to IC&RC’s website at:

Practice exams for other credentials will be coming in the future.


IBC now accepts Dwolla payments for certification and other fees. We are pleased to support this Des Moines based business. We think you’ll like paying this way and know it will save you money from our current credit card payment method.

What is Dwolla? It’s a payment network that allows any business or person to send, request, or accept money for a small fee to the receiver only. It’s safe (you don’t have to provide any credit card info), it’s fast (just click on the “Dwolla” button), and it’s easy (you can pay using your computer, tablet or smartphone). Even better, you don’t have to have your own Dwolla account (as with PayPal) and there are no fees charged to the person sending the money.

Effective July 12, 2013, we quit accepting credit card payments. Instead, if you wish to pay your fees to us remotely, use the Dwolla button below. Simply click the "Pay with Dwolla" button, which will take you to a form. Fill out the form - be sure to enter the "purpose of the payment" field so we can apply your payment correctly- click "Continue" and follow the instructions.


IBC credentials – at a glance

View a Credential Comparison chart that compares all IBC credentials.

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Click to map our location

Iowa Board of Certification, 225 NW School St., Ankeny, IA 50023
phone: 515-965-5509, fax : 515-965-5540

IC&RC logo 

The Iowa Board of Certification is a proud member of IC&RC, the global leader in the credentialing of prevention, addiction treatment, and recovery professionals. Organized in 1981, IC&RC provides standards and examinations to certification and licensing boards in 25 countries, 47 states and territories, five Native American regions, and all branches of the U.S. military.