The Pathway to Chartership syllabus focuses on the knowledge and understanding required in a Chartered, professional practice.
The syllabus therefore spans a broad range of topics. This breadth of knowledge and understanding is essential to Chartership; provided that you remain a member of the LI, your Chartership will be for life. However, your career direction and the kind of work you do as a landscape professional may change numerous times as you face new challenges and opportunities. The Pathway to Chartership provides the foundation for the rest of your landscape career.
The syllabus is organised into six elements, each focusing on a different aspect of practice and professional knowledge.
The four core elements are about the key aspects of professional practice. They are:
• Professional judgment, ethics and values
• Organisation and management
Two underpinning elements focus on the way in which you should approach your professional practice: your skills in critically evaluating situations; reflecting on your practice; being proactive about keeping your practice up-to-date; and looking for opportunities to develop yourself.
The two underpinning elements are:
• Options and strategies
• Continuing professional development
b. Learning objectives
Each element contains a set of learning objectives, focusing on a different aspect of practice and professional knowledge. For each learning objective there are a series of statements describing the evidence you will need to demonstrate. Inevitably, some areas are wider in scope than others, and some may require you to engage in more extensive learning.
Although the learning objectives should always be your main point of reference, a checklist of topics is provided as an appendix to the syllabus to help you and your mentor think about the general areas of knowledge that you will be covering while on the Pathway to Chartership.
c. Connecting your knowledge
The syllabus has been organised into elements to help manage learning and record development in quarterly submissions, however, in real-life, areas of knowledge and expertise overlap. Landscape professionals need to be able to view their practice holistically, and you will be expected to be able to make connections between different topics and areas of expertise. The ability to make these connections is tested by the Pathway to Chartership examiners.
d. Practical experience and the syllabus
The knowledge and understanding you are required to have to become Chartered is very broad, and you are not expected to have direct experience of all areas of the syllabus. Landscape professionals are all involved with different types of work and have different opportunities within their careers.
You will, however, be required to demonstrate appropriate levels of knowledge and understanding in all elements of the syllabus. You will also be expected to show that you understand how to apply your knowledge in real-life situations occurring in professional practice.
This means that, where you do not have direct experience of a particular area, you need to find other ways of developing your knowledge and understanding of its application. This could include reading around the subject; attending training sessions; talking to practitioners; or work shadowing.
e. Stages of knowledge and understanding
Your progress towards Chartership is measured against a set of pre-defined stages of knowledge and understanding.
Stage 0 – No knowledge
Little or no knowledge or understanding of the areas encompassed by the learning objective.
Stage 1 – Basic knowledge
You have acquired some basic knowledge of the areas encompassed by the learning objective and understand basic concepts, but have yet to learn any substantial detail in respect of some or all of the areas. You have not yet explored how the areas are applied in practice in any depth.
Stage 2 – General knowledge
You have a general knowledge and understanding across the areas encompassed by the learning objective. You may have some experience of applying your knowledge and understanding in your practice but you would need to apply your expertise under supervision and may need to ask for advice or approvals on the steps you are taking from a more experienced practitioner or senior member of staff.
Stage 3 – Proficient
You have a thorough knowledge of the areas encompassed by the learning objective and have often applied your knowledge in your practice. You understand the implications of your actions and can take responsibility for most decisions in these areas. You are capable of working within the scope of this learning objective with little supervision/need to seek advice.
Stage 4 – Expert knowledge
Within the areas encompassed by the learning objective, you fully understand the implications of your actions, are able to foresee problems and come up with effective solutions and strategies. Other people may come to you for decisions, advice and guidance; you are capable of handling decisions in these areas entirely alone and are fully prepared to take personal responsibility for your decisions.
Stage 4 will only be achieved very rarely on the Pathway to Chartership by candidates with very extensive experience and deep understanding and expertise – for example, those who have already had a substantial career in the profession and are now functioning at a very senior level. Achieving stage 4 is therefore not a requirement for Chartership, and the majority of candidates will never achieve stage 4 in any syllabus area.
To be considered exam ready, you are expected to have demonstrated stage 2 level of knowledge and understanding across the majority of the syllabus and stage 3 in areas where you have particular experience and expertise during the course of your day-to-day work. You will not be able to progress to the exam if you have any areas at stage 0.