Tree Risk Assessment Qualification (TRAQ)

See below for current TRAQ Classes, if available.

Why Become ISA Tree Risk Assessment Qualified?

ISA offers the Tree Risk Assessment Qualification (TRAQ) as an instructor-led credential that demonstrates professional knowledge in tree risk assessment through participation in a training course and passing its accompanying exam. The TRAQ program offers tree care professionals the opportunity to expand their knowledge of the fundamentals of tree risk assessment by learning a standardized, systematic process for assessing tree risk and providing information to tree owners and risk managers for making informed decisions that will promote the safety of people and property and enhance tree benefits, health, and longevity. Through education and training, arborists will learn strategies to systematically identify and assess tree risk.

The qualified professional will:

  • be proficient with the fundamentals of limited-visual and basic tree risk assessment, as defined in ISA’s Best Management Practices: Tree Risk Assessment;
  • understand the principles of advanced diagnostic techniques for assessing tree risk;
  • gather and synthesize information needed to assess tree risk; and
  • make reasoned judgments and recommendations for mitigating identified risk.


To be eligible to register for the course and take the exam, you must have earned one of the following credentials:

  • ISA Certified Arborist® or ISA Board Certified Master Arborist®
  • ISA Tree Risk Assessment Qualified
  • A degree in arboriculture, urban forestry, traditional forestry, or horticulture that is part of a national qualifications framework or is from a college or university
  • A national certification or certificate in arboriculture (see a complete list in the Tree Risk Assessment Qualification Application Guide)
  • ASCA Registered Consulting Arborist (RCA) status
  • Licensing or Certification from an approved state/province program (see a complete list in the Tree Risk Assessment Qualification Application Guide)
  • SAF Certified Forester

Course and Assessment

The qualification consists of a two-day educational course followed by a half-day assessment that includes both a written and a field component. You must attend the course and successfully complete the assessment in order to receive this qualification.

When applying to participate in a TRAQ event, applicants must agree to the terms, conditions, and policies outlined in the Tree Risk Assessment Qualification Application Guide.

All course registrants will receive a copy of the Tree Risk Assessment Manual and a course workbook.


Qualification courses are offered through ISA via ISA chapters and associate organizations, and other hosts. Pricing may vary by course and host.

For TRAQ courses that are co-hosted by ISA and a local Chapter or Associate Organization, the fees are: US$625 for ISA members and US$750 for non-members. If you’re only retaking the assessment and not attending the course, the cost is US$150.

To renew your Tree Risk Assessment Qualification, the fees are: US$220 for ISA members and US$260 for non-members. For just the renewal assessment, the cost is US$150.

Maintaining Your Qualification

The TRAQ credential is valid for five (5) years from the date it is earned. A credential holder must take the renewal course and pass its exam every five years in order to renew the credential. Maintaining this qualification does not require CEUs; however, ISA certification holders will be offered 14.5 CEUs for attending the course.

The renewal course is an abbreviated version of the full course. The renewal is a one-day refresher with five hours of instruction and three hours to take the exam.

Current TRAQ holders can complete the abbreviated renewal course as early as 18 months prior to the expiration of their qualification. Upon passing the renewal exam, the expiration date will be adjusted to five years from the original expiration date. This means that if you pass the renewal exam four years into your credential, you will have six years until it expires.

TRAQ holders who do not take the renewal course and exam before their expiration date will be required to retake the full TRAQ course and pass its exam to requalify.


Additional Resources

Record and categorize information while performing a basic tree risk assessment with the ISA Basic Tree Risk Assessment Form. This tool builds on the tree risk assessment methodology outlined in ISA’s Best Management Practices and is used throughout the TRAQ training.


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Current TRAQ & Renewal Course Offerings & Locations:

Please check back for upcoming classes.

Register and pay for your registration here.

Registration Form:  Available Soon!

TRAQ Fees:
(For events that are co-hosted by ISA and a local Chapter or Associate Organization)

ISA Member $625
Non ISA Member $750
Exam Retake $150

TRAQ Renewal Fees:

ISA Member $220
Non ISA Member $260

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Course Content and Objectives

The course content is based on the new Tree Risk Assessment Manual and is divided into nine modules:

  1. Introduction to Tree Risk Assessment
  2. Levels of Assessment
  3. Target Assessment
  4. Site Assessment
  5. Tree Biology and Mechanics
  6. Tree Inspection and Assessment
  7. Data Analysis and Risk Categorization
  8. Mitigation
  9. Reporting

Through education and training, arborists will learn strategies to systematically identify and assess tree risk.

The qualified professional will:

  • Comprehend the fundamentals of limited-visual and basic tree risk assessment as defined in the ISA Best Management Practices:  Tree Risk Assessment
  • Understand the principles of advanced diagnostic techniques for assessing tree risk
  • Gather and synthesize information to assess risk
  • Make reasoned judgments and recommendations for mitigating identified risk

Course and Examination Format

The standard ISA TRAQ event consists of a two-day course followed by a half-day examination. Under certain circumstances, instructors may extend the time length of the course.  The course’s instructional design is based on best practices for adult education. Learning activities include lectures, discussions, small-group activities, applied case studies, and field activities. These activities are intended to cater to a variety of learning styles and foster adult learning and application of course content.

The examination consists of two parts:

  • The written portion is made up of 100 multiple-choice questions. Each question has four choices listed, only one of which is correct. You will have two hours to complete the written exam.
  • The performance-based part of the exam is an outdoor tree assessment practicum. The performance-based exam will test your ability to apply tree risk principles to a tree at the training site.

You will have one hour to complete it.

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