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Phyllis Harden

Legislative & Special Projects, Pine Bluff Sand & Gravel
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Lean FAQ


Program Basics
CM-Lean Details
Instructors and Hosting Courses


Tell me a little about the AGC’s LCEP? How do I register for the courses? Are there any requirements to be completed before taking the courses?
Everyone related to the construction process has incentive to get the project done faster and at a lower cost - from the project owners who want to see tangible results for their investment to the contractors and designers who want to do their job well and move on to the next project. Lean Construction is based on the holistic pursuit of continuous improvements aimed at minimizing costs and maximizing value on a construction project: planning, design, construction, activation, operations, maintenance, salvaging, and recycling.

To help contractors develop the knowledge needed to build lean, AGC developed the Lean Construction Education Program. Construction professionals at all experience levels will learn the building blocks necessary to transform their projects and companies into a lean operating system.

  • Unit 1 | Variation in Production Systems
  • Unit 2 | Pull in Production
  • Unit 3 | Lean Workstructuring
  • Unit 4 | The Last Planner® System
  • Unit 5 | Lean Supply Chain and Assembly
  • Unit 6 | Lean Design and Pre-construction
  • Unit 7 | Problem-solving Principles and Tools

We primarily rely on our chapters to offer the curriculum programs and exams. The courses available are posted by our chapters directly on the national calendar. If you don’t see something near you, we recommend you contact your local chapter to express interest and see if/when they plan on offering the courses. You can find a listing of AGC chapters : here.

Where can I take LCEP classes?
Classes can be delivered at local training centers or in-house at construction firms. The primary delivery locations are at AGC Chapters. See a calendar of upcoming courses here.

Are the classes offered online?
The courses are in-seat only. Participants must attend all seven courses in a classroom environment, delivered by an approved instructor, to be eligible to sit for the exam.

Can I take the courses online or via self-study?
No. Participants must attend all seven courses in a classroom environment, delivered by an approved instructor, to be eligible to sit for the exam.

Do I have to take all seven courses? Can I just take the exam?
Participants must attend all seven courses in a classroom environment, delivered by an approved instructor, to be eligible to sit for the exam

How long are the classes?
It is a seven-course curriculum (35 hours total).

Can I take LCEP classes in multiple locations?
Yes. The LCEP is developed in a manner to allow consistent delivery across the country and you should feel free to mix-and-match training locations as your schedule allows.

Do I have to take the courses in order?
It is not required for the credential that the courses be taken in order however, the course materials do build upon each other and it is strongly recommended that they be taken in order to maximize your experience.

Do I have to be a member in order to attend the class or sit for the exam? If I want to be a member how do I join?
No, you do not need to be a member to attend the course and sit for the exam. Joining AGC's membership has many benefits such as providing you with an incomparable menu of products, programs and services to support your business. Join at a local level!

I reside outside the US, do I have to be a US citizen or US resident in order to take the class or exam? Do you have a chapter or representative outside the US to host the class and/or the exams? Can I take the courses and exam online?
No. You do not need to be a US citizen or US resident to take the class or to sit for the exam. You just need to be able to travel to the US and Canada to take the courses and exam. The courses and the exam are offered in-seat in the US and Canada only.

What is the CM-Lean credential?
The AGC Certificate of Management-Lean Construction (CM-Lean) is an assessment-based certificate credential that denotes knowledge and understanding of concepts related to lean adoption, practice and process transformation outlined in AGC’s Lean Construction Education Program. Successful candidates will carry the CM-Lean designation.

How do I earn my CM-Lean? How do I register for the CM-Lean exam? Which application(s) do I need to fill out?
Individuals earn the CM-Lean credential by:

  • Completing all seven LCEP courses, facilitated by an approved instructor
  • Must have approved application in advance of exam administration. Once you have completed the seven mandatory course and are ready to take the exam, you need to fill out the online CM-Lean application.
  • Passing the CM-Lean exam by earning a raw score of 105 or higher

Can I sit for the exam without taking the classes?
Participants must attend all seven courses in a classroom environment, delivered by an approved instructor, to be eligible to sit for the exam.

How much does it cost to earn my CM-Lean?
Participants will need to pay to attend all seven LCEP and the exam fee. The cost of the individual LCEP courses varies by training location but is generally somewhere between $1,400 and $2,400 for all seven courses. This typically includes the price for the course books.

The fee for the CM-Lean exam is $575, and in the event that you must re-take the exam there is a re-testing fee of $100.

What is covered in the CM-Lean exam?
The CM-Lean exam is based on learning concepted from within the courses. The 150 questions of the exam can be found directly in the course materials.

What is the format of the exam and how much time will I be given?
The CM-Lean is a 150 question, multiple-choice exam, derived directly from the LCEP course content. Each question provides four answer options with one correct option. All items on the exam will be scored with the same point value. Four hours will be given to complete the exam and total exam time is calculated in the testing software.

Does the CM-LCEP expire?
Yes. The term of validity for the CM-Lean credential is three years from the date of receipt. This term was set to reflect the changing nature of this technology-based process. Participants will be required to pass an examination on changes to the practice to retain a valid credential or renew their credential by earning 30 Continuing Education Units (CEU’s).

Prior to the three year anniversary all CM-Lean holders are required to earn thirty (30) hours of Lean related continuing education (CE) hours during the three years. You can start submitting your hours through the CM-Lean Renewalweb page as you earn your hours.

How do I show that I’ve earned my CM-Lean?
Following passing the exam and completion of the post-exam survey participants can immediately begin using the designation “CM-Lean” following their name. Within one month participants will also receive a certificate from AGC of America acknowledging their receipt of the credential.

What does it mean to be a LCEP approved instructor?
Instructors needs fill out the online Instructor Approval Form. Following verification that the instructor meets the qualifications to facilitate that course they will be notified of their approval by the Director of LCEP.

How do I become an approved instructor?
Instructors must complete the online Instructor Approval form, and must submit a resume/Bio detailing Lean experience to AGC of America. The form details the qualifications necessary to become approved to instruct that particular course and other requirements, such as a review of the course materials and instructor orientation.

More information on becoming an instructor can be found here

I am an approved instructor—do I still have to attend the course as a participant to sit for the exam?
Approved instructors, who have facilitated a course in the Lean Education Program are not required to additionally take that course as a participant. Instructors should submit a class roster form for each unit as they facilitate it to have their completion included in the database.

I would like to host the program at my company. How do I do this?
Courses can be hosted by anyone so long as the following conditions are met:

  • Courses are taught by an approved instructor.
  • Each participant has and retains their own copy of the Participant’s Manual for that unit and the participant’s attendance is documented with AGC of America for each participant upon completion of each unit.
  • The courses are taught as designed and to their required duration.

For more detailed information, visit the AGC website here or email

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