How to Apply for RA Registration

Qualifications to Apply for RA Registration

As of January 1, 2020, the Register of Professional Archaeologists will offer a new category of registration: Registered Archaeologist (RA). The Registered Archaeologist certification is designed for those who are dedicated to a professional career as an archaeologist but who have not, or not yet, received their master’s degree.

The online process (Apply Now) requires that all applicants:

  1. Accept the Register’s Code and Standards. The applicant must accept and agree to abide by the standards the Code of Conduct, Standards of Research Performance, and Grievance Procedures of the Register of Professional Archaeologists.
  2. Hold a Bachelor’s degree.
  3. Have at least two years of supervised work experience within the archaeological field. Accepted experience includes employment, internship, laboratory work, or field work. Participation in a field school for credit does NOT meet this qualification.
  4. Have a thesis or equivalent work completed.
  5. Starting in 2021, RA’s must accumulate eight continuing education credits in order to join or renew.

Registered Archaeologist Sponsorship from an Active RPA

Registered Archaeologist applicants are required to upload an RA Sponsorship Form with their application. The RA Sponsorship Form must be completed by an active RPA who sponsors the applicant and endorses their application.

We ask that all RPA’s abide by our Code of Conduct and ethic policies when filling out the Sponsorship form for applicants.

If you have any questions regarding the new Registrant category please contact the Register’s Business Office at or (410) 931-8100.

Documentation Needed

With your application, you must submit:

  1. A completed online application
  2. An official transcript showing degree completion (scanned copy uploaded to application)
  3. Documentation of at least two years of supervised work experience 
  4. A signed sponsorship form 
  5. A .pdf not to exceed 14mb (trim pages from the end of document, as needed) of the thesis or equivalent report or series of reports that demonstrate the applicant’s design, execution of research, and substantive data analysis on an archaeological topic. At minimum, the .pdf must include:
    • Title page
    • Abstract (if not originally required, prepare and include one as the first or second page of the .pdf)
    • Table of Contents (must list all document chapters/sections, figures, and tables)
    • Chapter 1/Introduction
    • All chapters containing or summarizing data and data analysis

Please Also Note:
Effective January 1, 2020, applications for RA and RPA registration must be accompanied by an official transcript from an accredited institution. Diplomas and unofficial transcripts are only acceptable in rare cases and only if prior arrangements with the Registrar are made.

Application and Annual Fees

Upon application submission you will receive a prompt reply from the Register confirming receipt and providing a link to the invoice for the non-refundable application fee ($35). Upon application acceptance, you will receive a notification with a link to the invoice for your initial annual registration fee. The $35 application fee is waived for applicants who have received their degree within the six (6) months prior to application submission. The annual registration fee is $99.

Please Note: The standard application fee will be waived in 2020!

Process for Application Review

You can read more about our application review process and timeline here.


Visit our Registration FAQs for frequently asked questions! You can also contact the Register’s Business Office at (410) 931-8100 or if you have unanswered questions or encounter difficulties.

Online Application

Ready to become an RPA? You can apply for registration using our online application!