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BIA HOME : MICHIGAN : EDUCATION : CBIS

Certified Brain Injury Specialists

Michigan leads the nation in Certified Brain Injury Specialists! The Academy of Certified Brain Injury Specialists (ACBIS) offers a voluntary national certification program for both entry-level staff and experienced professionals working in brain injury services. ACBIS provides staff and professionals the opportunity to learn important information about brain injury, to demonstrate their learning in a written examination, and to earn a nationally recognized credential. Certification is based on a comprehensive training manual that covers the following topics:
  • Incidence and epidemiology of brain injury
  • Continuum of services
  • Brain anatomy and brain-behavior relationships
  • Functional impact of brain injury
  • Effective treatment approaches
  • Children and adolescents with brain injury
  • Health and medical management
  • Family issues
  • Legal and ethical issues

Certification is not restricted to any one profession or discipline. Rather, it is intended for anyone who delivers services specific to brain injury.

Applicants

All new paid applicants will receive a one-year subscription to the Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation. This reflects a commitment to ensuring that Certified Brain Injury Specialists have access to the latest brain injury research, treatment and practice information.

Eligibility Requirements

  1. Applicants must have had 500 hours of currently verifiable direct contact experience with an individual or individuals with brain injury.

  2. Experience can be paid employment and/or academic internship.

  3. The qualifying experience must have included formal supervision or have been conducted while the applicant operated under a professional license.  Volunteer work does not qualify.

  4. Applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalent.

Applications

The process for submitting an individual CBIS Application can be confusing, please follow these directions:

  1. You must set up an Account with BIAA first, complete the BIAA User Account Set-up Form – you must create a User ID and Password. You will receive a confirmation e-mail with a registration number. SAVE this e-mail – but DO NOT use the application link provided in this e-mail. You will pay BIAMI directly with the demographic form.

  2. BIAMI needs to know you wish to apply, so complete the BIAMI Demographic Form for Applicants and include the Registration Number (which you received in your confirmation e-mail from step #1). – Mail, fax, e-mail, with payment, to BIAMI.

BIAMI will send you a confirmation e-mail with a link to the CBIS application and a payment confirmation number to use on your actual application.

Important Note:  You have only ONE year to take your exam from the date of your application.  Those who do not complete the process in a timely manner must reapply and pay the fee again.

Training

Official ACBIS training is provided by our Certified Brain Injury Specialist Trainers (CBIST) and is offered throughout the year.  Training is not required to sit for the examination. You may complete self-study if you wish.

Persons who apply through BIAMI may attend any one of our trainings at no cost.  If you have applied directly through BIAA you may register for ACBIS training for $125.00.  Notification of trainings will be emailed to all who have applied through BIAMI. If you are interested in purchasing training please contact BIAMI a minimum of 2 weeks prior to the training.

  • Brighton, MI: July 30, 2014

Webinar Training

Live Webinars are scheduled in January and February.   Pre-recorded webinars are available upon request to those applying through BIAMI or those who purchased the training.

Order your Essential Brain Injury Guide through the BIAA Marketplace.

Certification Examination

Candidates must pass (80% or higher) on the certification examination. The exam can only be taken after all forms and fees have been submitted, processed and an approval email has been received.

You must arrange your own individual proctor for the exam. If you cannot find a proctor, BIAMI will proctor individuals for a fee of $50. Please call the office to schedule your test.

Notification of Exam Score: Candidates will receive immediate notification via email of their exam score upon completing the online examination.

Retakes: Candidates who do not pass the examination on the first administration may take one retest within one year of the initial application date an no additional charge. An applicant who does NOT pass after two attempts is welcome to reapply when ready.

Test Anxiety?

One of our trainers provided these suggestions to cope with test anxiety:

  1. You have two hours to take the exam so be sure to pace yourself. When you start the exam, realize how much time per question you have so you do not spend too much time on any one page and end up needing to rush at the end. That will result in errors that are unnecessary.

  2. Since this will be on a computer, use your hand, or a piece of paper, to cover all the other questions you have not answered so that you do not look at them. It is most important to focus your attention on only one question at a time.

  3. TAKE YOUR TIME AND THINK THROUGH EACH QUESTION COMPLETELY.

  4. Do not read more into the question that is on the page.

  5. Be sure to read each question twice before choosing an answer. Read it slowly. Think about what it is asking before you answer it.

  6. Begin by reading the first question. Do NOT look at the answers provided. Shut your eyes, imagine the answer to yourself. Be sure of it. Then open your eyes and find it in the choices provided.

  7. Do that for each question. Do not second guess your intuition.

  8. Do not go back and change answers. Most of the time the first answer that comes to you will be the right one.

  9. If you get to a question and you go through the process above, and you do not see the answer you are thinking is correct, do not panic. You need to reread the question because perhaps you misinterpreted it. If you still do not know the answer, leave the question and go to the next one. Do NOT leave the page, however, because you cannot go back once you sign off of the page.

  10. Again, TAKE YOUR TIME. Breathe. Stop and empty your mind for a minute. Then start again. Tell yourself you know the information, pause and think it through.  If you get your mind filled with fear, you will not have room to find the answer.

  11. If you end up not knowing the answer, do your best guess and let it go.  Just let it go.

Renewal Process

In order to maintain certification, both Certified Brain Injury Specialists (CBIS) and Certified Brain Injury Specialist Trainers (CBIST) are required to pay annual renewal fees and either (1) satisfy continuing education requirements or (2) retake and pass the examination.

The annual renewal requirements and instructions on how to submit your materials are described here.

Renew Your Certificate Online

BIAMI's Certified Brain Injury Trainers

The Association is grateful to our core team of volunteer Certified Brain Injury Trainers and their organizations for their commitment to education:

  • Cindy Barrus, PT, MM, CBIST
    Spectrum Health Rehabilitation & Nursing Center

  • Carol Green, OTR\L, CBIST
    Transitions Remodeling

  • Michael O'Connor, OTR\L, CBIST
    O'Connor Occupational Therapy Services, PLLC

  • Martin Waalkes, PhD, CBIS
    Hope Network Rehabilitation Services

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