Chartered Member assessment

The assessment

The Chartered Member assessment shows that you have met standards that help you carry out your governance duties.

The assessment tests your knowledge of The Four Pillars of Governance Best Practice, The Companies Act 1993, and the content of the IoD Company Directors' Course.

The assessment has two parts:

  1. Part A: multi-choice exam
  2. Part B: 3,000-word assignment.

You have to finish both parts of the assessment within three months of starting it.

To pass the assessment, you need to achieve 70 percent or more in both the exam and the assignment.

We encourage members to take the Chartered Member assessment soon after the Company Directors’ Course, while the course experience is fresh.

Your assessment pass does not expire. If you don’t have a board position when you pass the assessment, you can upgrade to chartered membership when you get one.

Chartered Member assessment equivalent

If you have passed the Australian Institute of Company Directors’ Company Director’s Course assessment, or been awarded Waikato University’s G3 Postgraduate certificate in governance, you only have to take part A of the assessment – the exam – not part B, the assignment.

Chartered Member assessment pre-requisite

To take the Chartered Member assessment, you will have finished the Company Directors’ Course (CDC) or an equivalent, or completed the requirements of recognition of prior learning.

If you are a highly experienced director, you may be eligible for recognition of prior learning instead of taking CDC. 

  1. You must have at least five years' experience on two or more qualifying boards. At least one of these organisations must have more than $5m assets, more than $10m turnover more than 15 staff . The position on the qualifying board must be for 12 months or more.
  2. You must have completed one full day of training with the IoD. This must be at post-Company Directors' Course level eg Audit and Risk Committees, Chairing the Board, Advanced Health & Safety Governance, Integrated Thinking and Reporting and Governance in the Public Sector.
  3. You must submit a reflective review outlining a governance challenge you have faced and your approach to dealing with it.

Contact the Registrar to discuss eligibility and apply 

Chartered Member assessment fees

We charge $295 for each of the two parts of the Chartered Member assessment. You pay each fee when you register for that part. Fees include GST.

If you start the assessment within six months of finishing the Company Directors' Course, you can take the assessment for no additional cost.

Chartered Member assessment CPD points

Each part of the Chartered Member assessment gives you 10 CPD points. These points do not depend on a pass mark.

Assessment details

Chartered Member assessment exam

You have 75 minutes to answer 60 questions in the exam.

There is a specific number of questions on each of four groups of governance topics.


No. of questions

Corporate governance
  • Code of practice
  • The four pillars of governance best practice
  • Companies Act
  • Board structure
  • Role of chair
  • Accountability


  • Fundamentals – financial statements, reporting, accounting concepts
  • Compliance
  • Monitoring financial performance
  • Building business value


Law and compliance
  • Law – legislation and directors’ duties
  • Compliance – delegations, policies, responsibilities to regulators
  • Best practice – records, proceedings, and indemnities


Risk governance
  • Risk definition
  • Risk appetite
  • Directors’ role in protecting business value
  • Risk culture




This is an open book exam. We supply a copy of The Four Pillars of Governance Best Practice and the relevant sections of the Companies Act. You cannot take any other materials into the exam room.

You can take the exam online at your choice of 16 locations in New Zealand.

Chartered Member assessment assignment

You have three weeks to finish the 3000-word assignment from when you register for it.

We provide a case study for the assignment that includes:

  • background information on an organisation
  • a set of board papers for the next meeting.


In the assignment you respond to five questions, covering five topics.


Word guide








Finance and legal



Board effectiveness and dynamics









Preparing for your assessment

When preparing for the assessment, consider

  • It takes about 30 hours of study on average to prepare for the exam and another 6-8 hours to prepare for and answer the assignment.
  • Begin preparation about 3-4 weeks before you apply for the assessment by reading:
    - The Four Pillars of Governance Best Practice
    - Relevant sections of the Companies Act 1993
    - Your Company Directors’ Course workbooks and notes.
  • You may also find it helpful to review:
    - Finance Essentials course materials
    - Health and safety guidance
    - Risk management articles.

Starting your assessment

To start your Chartered Member assessment:

  1. read the Chartered Member assessment candidate handbook
  2. review your study materials
  3. register your interest in taking the assessment

We email you confirming your eligibility to take the assessment. Our email includes a link to the assessment booking portal.

Set up your assessment profile in the booking portal. Through the portal, register to take each part of the assessment separately:

  • the exam, at your choice of location
  • the assignment

Download the Chartered Member assessment handbook