Types of Arborists

Many types of professionals involved are in arboriculture. Below is a listing of some of the designations and titles you may come across as well as their specialization/skills.

Title

Specialization or Chief Skills

ASCA Registered Consulting Arborist® (RCA)

 

Has demonstrated higher skills in certain technical areas related to trees and tree care, providing objective, independent opinions, with training for higher communication, presentation, and/or report writing skills.

ISA Board Certified Master Arborist (BCMA)

 

Has demonstrated higher skills in certain technical aspects of tree care and equipment used as an arborist, with higher knowledge of arboriculture.

ASCA Member

 

Has demonstrated higher skills in certain technical areas related to trees and tree care, providing objective, independent opinions with improved communication and presentation skills.

Educators, Researchers, and Cooperative Extension staff

 

Have demonstrated higher education and skills in diagnosing tree growth and conditions, with improved communication and presentation skills; may lack field experience.

 

Landscape Architect License/ Registration

Requires a four- or five-year college degree and range of one to five years of design experience to take the license exam; has demonstrated a higher competency in design and planning; may lack field experience with trees.

ISA Certified Arborist

 

Has demonstrated basic knowledge to inspect trees and perform tree care. Has required state arborist statute designations or licenses. Has demonstrated basic knowledge to perform tree care with required minimum qualifications (individual and/or business) to meet statute requirements for the specific jurisdiction.

ISA Certified Arborist Specialties
(Municipal, Utilities, and Tree Risk Assessor)

Has demonstrated higher knowledge and skills in the subject specialty of arboriculture.

ISA Tree Risk Assessment Qualified (TRAQ)

Has demonstrated knowledge of a standardized and systematic process for assessing tree risk.

State Licensed or Professional Forester

 

Has demonstrated basic knowledge of forest practices and forest management plan. Required in some states to write plans for forest management; forestry is generally not required in urban areas; may lack field experience with individual trees.

Certified Urban Forester (CaUFC) or Certified Forester (SAF- CF)

 

Has demonstrated a higher level of knowledge and experience in urban forestry and urban forest management; may include fire suppression and Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) property mitigation/basic knowledge and experience in forestry.

ISA Certified Tree Worker

 

Has demonstrated a basic knowledge of tree care to assist certified arborists in performing tree care services.