OR Society Accreditation


Accreditation Grades

The OR Society's accreditation enables you to gain letters after your name to certify your achievements in your job. This is not so much an academic qualification as an acknowledgement by the society of your ability to deliver results in the workplace. It is therefore highly valued by employers and a great addition to a degree. There are four grades of accreditation:

1. Candidate Associate of The OR Society (CandORS)

Candidate Associate of The OR Society (entitling you to use the letters CandORS) is for those either completing a degree with a substantial OR content or starting their first employment in OR. Candidate associates are appointed a mentor to help guide them through the first couple of years in their OR career and to set them on their way to the higher accreditation grades. 

To apply: complete the straightforward CandORS application form and have this verified by a senior member of The OR Society.

This is an entry-level grade for those new to OR, but aspiring to achieve the grades of associate, associate fellow and fellow.

Apply for CandORS

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2. Associate of The OR Society (AORS)

Associate of The OR Society (AORS) is for recent entrants with a couple of years in OR, post first degree. Admission to the category of associate is dependent on a successful engagement in operational research. Candidates must have a minimum of two years’ experience in OR, which could include periods in masters’ level training, practice, research or education, and normally hold at least a second class honours degree (or equivalent qualification). Candidates without a second class honours degree or equivalent may be considered for any of the categories where they are deemed by the chair of the awarding panel to have a prima facie case for having reached the appropriate level of achievement.

AORS Application Example

AORS Application Example

3. Associate Fellow of The OR Society (AFORS)

Associate Fellow of The OR Society (AFORS), for those with a successful track record in OR extending over at least five years. Admission to the category of associate fellow indicates a successful record of achievement in, and/or a significant contribution to, operational research. Candidates must have a minimum of five years’ experience in OR, which could include periods in masters’ level training, practice, research or education, and normally hold at least a second class honours degree (or equivalent qualification).

AFORS Application Example

4. Fellow of The OR Society (FORS)

Fellow of The OR Society (FORS) is for those with a significant record of achievement extending over ten years or more in OR. Admission to the category of fellow indicates a very high level of achievement in, and/or a major contribution to operational research. Candidates must have a minimum of ten years’ experience in OR, which could include periods in masters’ level training, practice, management, research or education.

FORS Application Example

How to get accredited

First, read our guidance notes on how to prepare for accreditation: 

How to Get REady for ACCREDITATION

Secondly, applications for all our grades are completed online and the applicant must give details of achievements in OR, nominate two referees and, if applicable, pay a one-off, non-returnable application fee. An invoice will be sent to the applicant. 

The application is then peer-reviewed by an accreditation panel comprised of senior members of the society, who assess whether, for example, an applicant for FORS has achieved what they would expect of a high flier of ten years' standing. The panel, which is comprised of roughly equal numbers of practitioners and academics, interprets the term 'OR' broadly in arriving at its decisions.

Candidates for accreditation must be paid-up members of The OR Society. Entrance to the CandORS grade is free, but applicants to the higher grades pay a non-returnable application fee and an annual supplementary membership fee in addition to the relevant membership subscription. Only one application fee is payable, so those who enter early in their careers as associates, for example, can subsequently apply to move up to the higher grades without payment of further application fees.

To help you prepare, you may wish to review the three examples of practitioner applications in the right-hand side bar.

Apply for AORS, AFORS or FORS

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What Happens Next

Provided you apply online, we will send through an invoice and, once paid, the system will automatically take up your references and will send you an email to confirm that references have been taken up. As time goes on it will automatically send reminders to any referees who do not reply promptly. Once the references are in, your application will be scheduled for consideration at a particular meeting of the accreditation panel and you will be sent a further email informing you of the date of that meeting. You will be informed of the panel’s decision shortly after the meeting.

Fees for Accreditation

Candidates for accreditation must be paid-up members of The OR Society and must also meet the requirements set out in the rules.

  Application Fee* Supplimentary Membership Fee #
Candidate Associate $ £0 £0
Associate £31 £15.50 per annum
Associate Fellow £51.50 £23 per annum
Fellow £72 £30 per annum

* Payable on first application and non-returnable. Applicants who first apply for Associate or Associate Fellow and who later apply to transfer to a higher grade do not have to pay a further fee on applying to transfer. A minimum of two years must lapse between entering a grade and applying to transfer to another grade. The OR Society reserves the right to require failed applicants, whether first time or upon transfer, to pay a reapplication fee should they decide to reapply.
# Subject to increase in subsequent years and payable from the first membership renewal date after admission to the additional category. 
$ Candidate Associates will be required to pay both the application fee and supplementary membership fee when moving to Associate grade.

Accreditation Appeals Procedure

In the event that your application to become accredited is rejected by the accreditation panel, we have an appeals procedure. The details of that procedure are spelled out here.

    1. Appeals will be considered by an accreditation appeals panel (AAP), comprising three members appointed by Council who, at the date of their appointment, have not been members of the accreditation panel at any time during the preceding five years. Unless disqualified by association with the accreditation panel, the president will normally chair the AAP.
    2. A candidate for accreditation who has been notified of the accreditation panel's decision in their case may submit in writing to the society, within one calendar month of the date on which the notification was sent, a request for a written justification of the accreditation panel's decision.
    3. Should the candidate be dissatisfied with the justification provided, an appeal may be made in writing within six calendar months of the date on which the written justification was sent to the candidate. Appeals may be made only on the following grounds:
      • that the accreditation panel has not taken fully into account, has not given appropriate weight to, or has misinterpreted, information available to it,
      • that the accreditation panel has not applied correctly or fairly the rules of the accreditation scheme as approved by council.

The appellant should state in writing the grounds of the appeal and supply any supporting arguments or information.

  1. The accreditation panel will be asked whether it wishes to contest the appeal and if it does, to state in writing its grounds and supply supporting arguments or information.
  2. The AAP shall consider the documents in the case and must allow the appeal if the accreditation panel has not contested it. In the case of a contested appeal the AAP may at this stage
    • seek further information
    • invite both parties to a hearing
    • allow the appeal
    • disallow the appeal, whilst granting the appellant the right to a hearing
  3. The appellant and a representative of the Accreditation Panel will be invited to any hearing. Either party may request that they be accompanied by a named 'friend' (to include a colleague, tutor or similar, but legal representatives and other professional advisers are specifically excluded). The request to be accompanied by a particular friend may be rejected if there are reasonable grounds for so doing, e.g. if the friend's presence would be prejudicial to the hearing, or would create a conflict of interest. The friend may ask questions, speak on the party's behalf, and confer with the party, but may be debarred from answering questions addressed to the party. Whilst the AAP may need time to consider its ruling, whenever feasible, after adjourning to deliberate, the AAP shall invite the parties back to announce and explain its position, and seek to secure both parties' acceptance that its ruling is fair and reasonable. If this is not practicable the AAP shall communicate its ruling to both parties in writing, normally within fourteen days.
  4. The AAP's decision following a hearing shall be final.
  5. Each side shall bear its own costs regardless of the outcome of the appeal.