The Established Level Accreditation Program (ELAP) replaces the previous ARMS Advanced Level Accreditation Program (ALAP) and is designed for mid to senior Research Management Professionals who wish to enhance their leadership, management, and content skills to become more effective research leaders in the rapidly evolving research and innovation sector. The program comprises of a mix of taught material, group discussions and written assignments. Successful conclusion of the program occurs when candidates have attained 100 points which then allows participants to be designated Accredited Research Manager (Established) or ARM(E).

The Established Level Accreditation Program is typically designed for:

  • Mid to senior level Research Managers who have worked in the sector for 5 or more years; or
  • Senior academics and professional staff who are transitioning into a senior Research Management role.


The Established Level Accreditation Program recognizes that there are a wide variety of positions in research management, and while there may be common knowledge required across most positions, that there will also be more specialised knowledge required for individual roles. The ELAP is therefore designed to allow maximum flexibility for candidates to achieve the 100 points required for the program.

A major change from the previous Advanced Level Accreditation Program (ALAP) is that candidates are no longer required to enrol in cohorts once a year. 

Candidates may select from a variety of ARMS professional development offerings to achieve their required 100 points with the following provisos:

  • To be eligible for the ELAP, candidates must have either previously completed the Foundation Level Accreditation Program, or alternatively been assessed as eligible based on previous experience. Applications for the program will be made available on the ARMS website. This form also serves as the application form to commence the ELAP. There is no charge or processing fee associated with application. Further details of the application process are given below.
  • Once a candidate’s application is accepted, they have a maximum three-year period to attain the 100 points required for successful completion of the program.
  • Whilst candidates may select from the full range of ARMS programs to attain their 100 points, a minimum of 75 points must be in assessed ARMS programs. Candidates may also accumulate up to 25 points from non-ARMS programs. Each ARMS program will identify its points value, whether it is assessed or not assessed, and if an assessed component, identify the assessment mechanism.
  • Completion of the Leadership, Management and Strategic Thinking element, three (3) one-day (or equivalent) electives and participation in nine (9) Group Learning sessions are compulsory elements for graduation from the Established Level accreditation program.


A full list of programs eligible for the Established Level Accreditation program will be maintained and regularly updated on the ARMS website. The programs below are examples of eligible programs. 


  1. Leadership, Management and Strategic Thinking - A comprehensive Group Learning workshop which focuses on leadership, management, and strategic thinking skills. Currently, this element is delivered via multiple short, online virtual meetings. This program is assessed and has a value of thirty (30) assessed points.
  2. Three (3) electives - (equivalent to one day contact) from a selection of specialist areas providing deeper knowledge of the topic chosen, and implementation of a research management setting. Each elective is assessed by an authorized Service Provider and has a value of ten (10) assessed points. A list of electives is available on the ARMS website.
  3. Attendance and participation in a minimum of nine (9) 1-hour, regularly scheduled, group learning discussions. This element of the program is non-assessed and will accrue nine (9) non-assessed points.

ARMS offers a variety of other non-compulsory programs, both assessed and non-assessed which can be used for this accreditation program. Details can be found on the ARMS website.


To enrol in this ELAP program, registrants must first respond to a call for Expressions of Interest (EOI), which is made twice a year by the ARMS Executive Office, by completion of a form available on the ARMS website. As there is a significant time commitment expected of all participants, it is essential that the individual has the relevant background and experience to complete the program and can commit the level of time required for each element of this program.  The individual will also require the endorsement of  their direct line manager. The EOI will also request documentation to support any requests for approval of prior learning as points from non-ARMS programs. The onus is upon the applicant to provide sufficient supporting documentation to approve applications for non-ARMS points.

All EOIs are reviewed by a sub-committee of the ARMS Accreditation Council. All EOIs will be formally acknowledged by the Executive Office. If an EOI has been approved by the sub-committee, the Executive Office will write formally to the individual, clearly articulating the terms and conditions associated with this program and re-iterating the time commitments necessary for its successful completion. Applicants will also be advised of which programs and their respective points will be approved for inclusion into the non-ARMS (non-assessed) element of the ELAP.

If the EOI has not been approved by the sub-committee, the Executive Office will write to the individual stating that the applicant did not have the relevant skills and experience necessary for successful completion of this program. Please note that the successful completion of a recent Foundation Level Accreditation Program does not indicate that an individual will be suitable and accepted to the ELAP program. Applicants will be encouraged to reapply in future rounds provided their relevant skills and experience have developed towards mid-senior level management.

ELAP participants will be granted three (3) years to successfully complete the program.


Whilst there is no fee for applying to join the ELAP, each element contributing to the 100 points may have a separate charge. Fees will be advertised with each element.

Fees are revised on an annual basis to include CPI increases. The revised fees are endorsed by the ARMS Board. Registrants will be advised of the Society’s Cancellation Policy at the time of registration.


To successfully complete this program leading to accreditation at the Established Level participants must complete 100 points of activity over a three-year period including completion of any mandatory programs. A minimum of 75 points must be completed in ARMS assessed programs. Assessment methods will vary between programs with some requiring written assignments and others being assessed on/during participation. The assessment mechanism for each program will be specified in the program description.