Originally Posted by T-Square
PSIA National has standards:http://www.psia.org/01/education/education.asp
National sets the overall standard and then farms out to the various divisions the responcibility to test and see that their members meet the standards. You will see some differences from division to division. However, the overall intent is met nationwide.
I think this provides some really good things. PSIA-E developed the Master Teacher Certification a few years back.http://www.psia-e.org/ed/alpine/MTC/
This allows Level II instructors to advance even if they can't meet the skiing requirements of Level III. I attended the first inside training sesson for this and they were swamped with attendees, most with grey hair. Its a great program.
Each division has its own study guide with some great things to look at in each.
I think that we get a good synergy going between the Divisions that would not be there if it were a top down driven program.
You are right, national does create national standars (which are referenced in this study guide). Each division is free to adopt (or not) those national standards.
Each division does not necessarily produce their own study guides though. There were national study guides for each level of certification published in 1996 (I think), which are available free to download of the national website. These study guides, while they still have value, need updating to be current with the new core concepts and alpine technical manual. The national website does have other electronic resources that are newer and great, but don't have the technical content that this study guide does.
This study guide references the core concepts, the alpine technical manual, and the national website. I think it is a great, and dynamic educational tool. I am hopeful that national may embrace technical study materials like this in the future.