Professional Guide Training and Certification

The 2024 statewide Guide Training Workshop is enrolling now. Registration Information

woman holding tour guide certificate

Our Guide Training and Certification program is the first of its kind in Iowa, and is designed specifically for staff and volunteers who lead guided programs at Iowa’s tourism attractions, including but not limited to museums, nature centers and conservation areas, historic sites, science centers, and agritourism.


Diane Van Wyngarden


Diane Van Wyngarden

Delivery Method

This program offers two components: 
1. A one-day workshop is filled with interactive activities which teach methods and techniques for creating and delivering dynamic guided programs. The workshop focus is guiding adult visitors, including the unique needs of motorcoach and other travel groups.

2. All individuals completing the workshop have the optional opportunity to receive Professional Guide Certification from Iowa State University. Certification is completed during a one-hour session at each individual’s place of work or an Iowa location of his or her choice. Certification details are available upon request.


The one-day workshop fee is $1,300, which includes one day of instruction, workshop activity materials, a course workbook for each participant, and instructor travel to any Iowa location. The maximum number of participants per workshop is limited only by the venue space provided.  Individual certification is an additional fee.


Guide Certification Benefits

  • Generate new tools for your programs
  • Received public recognition of your work
  • Generate statewide promotion for your organization
  • Gain confidence about your skills
  • Find solutions to your program challenges
  • Prove that volunteers can be professional guides
  • Earn professional credentials for job opportunities

Congratulations to these individuals for successfully completing the training course and becoming certified as a Professional Guide!

Partner Responsibilities

  • Provide pre-registration and payment services
  • Provide a meeting venue
  • Lunch and refreshments are normally included in the workshop schedule. A registration fee may be charged to cover these expenses. Local sponsorships from partners are encouraged if costs exceed $20 per person registration fee.