Read for Recertification Credit

Read for Recertification Credit

Welcome to the SHRM Books Read-for-Recertification Credit Program!

Reading for recertification credit is a great way to broaden knowledge and earn SHRM-CP® or SHRM-SCP® professional development credits (PDCs) along the way.

Notice: Beginning January 1, 2021, the program's book quizzes are replaced with a short-essay format for which SHRM-certified professionals can still earn three PDCs per book.

1. Read the FAQs

Start with these Frequently Asked Questions for detailed information about the program, approved books, and essay activity.

2. Choose a book to read

More than 100 books on a range of HR, management, and business topics are currently approved for credit. Browse the entire list and choose books that best enhance your expertise and competencies. 

Not every book in the SHRMStore is approved for recertification credit. Please make sure your book appears on the list before you start reading.

Also, check the list of books leaving the program this year so you can plan ahead.

3. Complete your activity

Be sure to read the essay activity tips before you start writing.  

When you have finished reading the book, find and click the corresponding link on this page to be taken to the related activity in the SHRM eLearning portal. 

Once you have successfully submitted your essay in the portal, SHRM Books will review and accept it as "Completed" or contact you with questions within seven (7) business days of receiving your essay.

This activity is free and open to all SHRM-certified professionals.

4. Report your activity

After your essay has been accepted as "Completed", you can self-report your activity in the SHRM Certification portal or wait until the system updates your PDC history.

To self-report your activity:

1. Log into the eLearning portal to find the activity's Certificate of Achievement in your eLearning transcript

2. Note the activity ID on the certificate (in the bottom-right corner above the SHRM logo)

3. Log into the SHRM Certification portal and use the activity ID to report your PDCs.

​Are you an author?

You are welcome to submit your own book for consideration. Please review the criteria below and then submit an application to have your book evaluated.

SHRM Books selects English-language books that:

  • Cover topics as defined by the SHRM BoCK™.

  • Offer practical or strategic value to HR professionals and people managers.

  • Provide timely, relevant, well-researched and accurate content.

  • Demonstrate expertise and thought leadership on the topic.

  • Feature the length (30,000 – 100,000+ words) and standards (copyedited, indexed, typeset, etc.) typical of professionally-published business books.

  • Are readily available for sale through Amazon and/or other book resellers. The Amazon listing can represent direct fulfillment or inventory sold by a third party.

If your book is accepted, you will be asked to provide your author biography and a JPG image file of your book cover.


Frequently Asked Questions


Q. How many credits can I earn through the program?

You can earn three professional development credits (PDCs) toward recertification by reading an approved book then completing the essay activity. 

Q. Do all the books have the same PDC value?

Yes. Completing the related activity for any of the books in the program earns three PDCs. 

Q. How often are books added to the program?

Books can be added to the program throughout the year so be sure to check the list for updates.

Q. When are books removed from the program?

Books that no longer meet the program criteria are removed at the end of each calendar year. The titles are posted here as they are identified for removal. 

Q. Can I read the e-book or listen to the audiobook and still receive credit?

Yes. You can access the book in any format.

Q. What else should I know about the program?

SHRM Certification may select your essay for auditing and contact you for more information at your time of recertification.


Q. How long do I have to submit my essay after I finish reading the book?

Try to submit your essay as soon as you finish reading the book -- especially if you are reading the book near the end of the year when books no longer meeting the program criteria are removed.

Q. How long must my essay be?

About 500 words. 

Important! The activity form does not count your words so it is strongly recommended that you write and save your essay on your own device then paste the text into the form.

Q. What should I write about?

Please answer the question "What lessons have you learned by reading this book and how will you apply them in your work?"

Avoid writing a book review or summary. Instead, focus on how the information has changed or will change your work, professional relationships, career plans, and perspective.

Q. Can I compose my essay in the activity form?

No. The activity form does not count words, check spelling and grammar, or save draft versions of your essay. 

To protect against data loss and use text editing features, write and save your work on your own device then paste the text into the form.

Q. How will my essay be graded?

Your essay will be reviewed for word count and whether it answers the question. There is no evaluation of punctuation or other technical aspects of your writing. 

Once reviewed and accepted, your essay is marked "Completed" to finish the activity and generate your Certificate of Achievement in the eLearning portal. 

The SHRM Books program will contact you directly if there are any questions about the essay.

Q. If my essay is accepted after review, when will I receive the PDCs?

Once your essay is reviewed and accepted, your recertification record will be updated within ten (10) business days with the PDCs earned for this activity.

Important! Register for the essay activity with the same email address you use with SHRM Certification to ensure that your PDC history is promptly updated. 

If you use different email addresses, you can self-report the completed activity to Certification. Find the activity ID on the Certificate of Achievement in your eLearning transcript (in the bottom-right corner above the SHRM logo).


Q. What are the technical requirements?

The eLearning platform is most compatible with Mozilla Firefox. Try changing browsers if you experience problems with the activity while using Internet Explorer or Google Chrome. 

Q. If my essay is incomplete or contains errors, can I submit an updated version?

Yes. You can immediately update the activity while you are in the eLearning portal. If you have already logged out, you can return to the activity through the same link you used to enroll in the activity. 

Important! If you try to edit your essay in the eLearning portal, your original text could be erased. Please save a copy of your essay on your own device then paste the text into the activity form.

You can change your submission until SHRM Books has accepted it and locked the activity. Contact if you need to edit a locked essay.


Q. I started a book quiz in the SHRM eLearning portal but did not complete it before the program changed to the essay format. Can I still earn recertification credit by passing the quiz?

Yes. If you registered for the quiz in the eLearning portal before the essay program was launched on January 1, 2021, you have one year from the date you registered for the quiz to achieve a passing score (70 percent or better) and earn three PDCs. 


Q. What if I have more questions?

Please contact us at


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