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Become a PGA Member

There are three pathways to become a PGA Member:
  1. PGA Professional Golf Management (PGM) Apprentice Program
  2. PGA Golf Management University Program
  3. Test-out Option for current and former LPGA Members

While the apprentice and university programs differ in significant ways, both pathways require completion of the same PGA PGM curriculum, work experience, PGA Playing Ability Test, and employment or internship requirements. The courses cover content and activities every PGA Professional should know and be able to demonstrate when they enter the profession as a PGA member. 

The Reciprocity test-out option is available for either current or former LPGA Class A Tour Player members or current LPGA Class A Teaching and Club Professional division members only.

PGA Professional Golf Management (PGM) Program

The PGA PGM Program provides world-class training for aspiring golf professionals by offering skill-based training programs that provide state-of-the-art skills and knowledge. Graduates of this program will become outstanding golf professionals who provide exceptional service to their customers, employers, fellow professionals and the game of golf.

In order to become a PGA member via this method, you will need to become a registered apprentice and go through the program, which includes getting a background check, completing the required courses, pass the Playing Ability Test (PAT), and meet the required employment eligibility requirements. Click here to learn more about the program and to register.

PGA Golf Management University Program

The PGA Golf Management University Program is a four and one-half to five year program for aspiring PGA Professionals that is accredited by The PGA of America. It provides extensive classroom studies and internship experience to prepare students with the knowledge and skills to succeed in the golf industry.

This program is currently offered at 19 universities nationwide, each with specific entry requirements. Financial assistance is offered to eligible students in the form of scholarships, workstudy programs, loans, and grants. 

Click here to learn more about the program, download a fact sheet, sign up.

LPGA Test-Out Options

Current or former LPGA Class A Tour Player members or current LPGA Class A Teaching and Club Professional division members are eligible to apply for the reciprocity process of testing out. LPGA Class B or LPGA apprentices are not currently eligible for this program.

Click here to learn more about this program

Playing Ability Test

The Playing Ability Test or “PAT” is a measure of golfing ability. It means PGA Professionals have the skills needed to teach and grow the game. The 36-hole playing ability test is something you must pass, along with the other requirements to become a PGA Professional.

2019 PAT Schedule - Coming Soon


How to Sign Up for a PAT

Step 1: Register with the PGA of America by calling or online at www.pga.org at least 14 days prior to your preferred test date. Registrations are taken in order of receipt. Individuals may be registered for only two PATs at any one time. The registration fee, paid at the time of registration, is $100.00 for each PAT and the registrant is responsible for all additional on-site fees.

Step 2: After you have registered and paid all fees with PGA Headquarters, tee times and pairings will be emailed to you approximately 10 days prior to your test date by the Section Office as well as posted above. To ensure this information reaches you, please provide PGA Headquarters with your preferred email address. NCPGA Section Fees are NOT PAYABLE ONSITE.

PAT Policies and Procedures