Group Exam - Overview & Rules

Group examinations make it possible for a group of 5 or more HSCG members to get together in one location and take advantage of one proctor, so they can all take the Soapmaker Certification Exams at the same time.

Local or regional groups or gatherings may want to arrange for group exams for HSCG members. Vendors or Suppliers may want to put together an HSCG Soapmaker Certification Examination for their customers who are HSCG members.

A Certification Advocate hosts the group exam. The main responsibilities of the Certification Advocate are:

  • To arrange a Proctor and Test Location
  • Collect and transfer registrations and fees to the HSCG by pre-arranged dates
  • Coordinate the logistics of the exam and Test Location
  • Assist the Proctor as requested

Any Certification Advocate must be a member in good standing of the HSCG.


  • Certification Advocate makes arrangements for a Proctor and Test Location
  • Up to 60 days before Exam: Advocate completes and sends in Group Exam Application Form
  • Up to 45 days before Exam: HSCG notifies Advocate of approval/disapproval
  • Up to 15 days before Exam: Advocate collects Registration Forms and fees from participating members
  • Up to 15 days before Exam: Advocate submits registration forms and fees for participants to the HSCG
  • Up to 10 days before Exam: Cancellations accepted with refund, minus 25%
  • Up to 7 days before Exam: HSCG mails exam to Proctor
  • Up to 3 days before Exam: Cancellations are accepted with refund, minus 50%
  • Date of Exam: Members take exams
  • Up to 1 day after Exam: Proctor mails exam to HSCG
  • Up to 7 days after Receipt of Exam: HSCG notifies examinees of results via email
  • Up to 14 days after Receipt of Exam: HSCG mails certificates to examinees

Group Exam Rules

These rules are also available as a .pdf document. View PDF document

  1. Group exams are conducted under the auspices of the HSCG. All rules and responsibilities contained in this document must be adhered to in order for the exam to be valid and recognized for HSCG Certification. Failure to comply with the rules will cause the exam results to be invalid.
  2. A group is defined as five or more Members who desire to take an exam at the same time, in the same location, with the same Proctor. Any of the Certification exams can be administered by the Proctor depending upon the Member's request.
  3. A Certification Advocate hosts the group exam. Their main responsibilities are to arrange a Proctor and Test Location, collect and transfer registrations and fees to the HSCG by pre-arranged dates, coordinate the logistics of the exam and Test Location, and assist the Proctor as requested.
  4. An Advocate may be an individual, an individual that is part of a group of individuals (such as a soapmaking group), a business, or an institution. If the Advocate is an individual, they are required to be a HSCG Member in good standing. If the business or institution holds a Vendor HSCG membership, then the business or institution is the Advocate. One individual from the business should be assigned as the contact person with the HSCG.
  5. An Advocate requests to hold Certification Exams by arranging for a Proctor and Test Location. The HSCG must receive Group Exam Application Form from the Advocate at least 60 days before the proposed exam date. The Request may be submitted by mail/email/fax.
  6. The HSCG may approve or disapprove this request based upon the HSCG's assessment. The Advocate and Proctor will be emailed of the HSCG's assessment at least 45 days before the proposed exam date.
  7. The Advocate is responsible for advertising the exam and collecting the Registration Forms and registration fee for each applicant. The completed registrations may be submitted by mail/email/fax. Payment can be made by mailing check or credit card information or calling the HSCG office with credit card information. Both registrations and fees must be received by the HSCG at least 15 days before the exam date.
  8. Applicants will be verified for membership and certification status, and the Advocate notified of any applicant not approved. The Advocate will notify this applicant of their rejected application. The registration fee minus 25% will be refunded to the Advocate who is responsible for returning the fee to this Member.
  9. The exams and instructions will be mailed to the Proctor 7 days before the exam date. The Proctor will keep these documents in safe keeping appropriate for confidential documents and not allow others to view the documents.
  10. At the approved date, time, and location, the Proctor will administer the exam to the group according to Exam Instructions for a Group Exam and Proctor Instructions for a Group Exam. The Proctor will assure that the Test Location maintains an environment suitable for conducting the exam. The Proctor is to actively monitor the examinees during the exam. The Advocate is to assist the Proctor as requested by the Proctor.
  11. After completion of the exam, the Proctor will immediately gather and account for all copies of the exam materials. The documents will be immediately placed and sealed in an envelope, which will be mailed to the HSCG within one business day after the exam. This mailing is done at the expense of the Advocate. The Proctor will not reproduce, copy, or retain the documents in any manner.
  12. The HSCG will grade the exams and notify the examinees, via email, of their grade within 7 days of receipt of exam. Certificates will be mailed within 14 days of receipt of exam.
  13. Only Members who have registered and paid for the exam are allowed to take the exam. The Advocate and Proctor must not allow a Member to take the exam if they are not on the HSCG's approved list of examinees.
  14. Cancellations for examinees received by HSCG up to 10 days before the exam will be refunded their HSCG registration fee minus 25%. Cancellations for examinees received by HSCG up to 3 days before the exam will be refunded their HSCG registration fee minus 50%. Cancellations received by HSCG within 3 days of the exam will not receive a refund. The Advocate is responsible for notifying the HSCG of any cancellations in a timely manner by mail/email/fax/phone. Registration fees will be refunded to the Advocate who is responsible for returning the fee to the Member.
  15. If the exam cannot be given on the agreed upon date, with the approved Proctor and Test Location, HSCG is to be immediately notified by the Advocate in order to re-evaluate the situation.
  16. Any fees incurred by the Advocate for the use of the Proctor and Test Location are the sole responsibility of the Advocate. A reasonable, additional fee may be charged to examinees by the Advocate to cover exam-related expenses. The Advocate is responsible for collecting these fees.
  17. These group exams are not to be advertised as part of a training program for the Advocate. Advertising for this group exam will state "The HSCG-approved Certification Exams will be given on (date) at (name of Test Location)".
  18. No solicitation may be done in conjunction with administering the exam. Neither Advocates nor Proctors may use the examinee list as a mailing list, or distribute business cards or promotional material to the attendees.
  19. Group exams are to be held at facilities that are suitable for handling the size of the group. There should be sufficient space for each examinee to prevent overcrowding and to discourage interaction (visual and audible) between examinees. The room should be well lighted and at a comfortable temperature. There should be no external distractions such as noise, music, or talking. The room should be available for at least 30 minutes before and 30 minutes after the exam.
  20. The Proctor is an individual who agrees to receive the exam, administer it in a preapproved Test Location following HSCG guidelines, and return all paperwork to the HSCG. The Proctor must verify that the exam was conducted according to the specific directions of the HSCG.
  21. Examples of individuals who may be acceptable as Proctors are:
    • College or university personnel such as deans, department chairs, professors, librarians, or testing center personnel.
    • Public or private school personnel such as superintendents, principals, guidance counselors, or teachers.
    • Other personnel such as civil service examiners, justice of the peace, public librarians, or Sylvan Learning Center personnel.
  22. Unacceptable Proctors include, but are not limited to, family members, friends, co-workers, supervisors, employers, vendors, or anyone with a potential conflict of interest.
  23. Certification is applicable only to HSCG Members in good standing. If the soapmaker is no longer a Member, or a Member not in good standing, Certification is immediately withdrawn by the HSCG. The Member is to immediately remove all Certification markings and statements, and not mislead people with regards to their Certification.

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