I was hoping to get clarity on this from other posts, but to no avail.
Is my understanding correct? (I'll try to articulate it as best I can).
If I pass an exam without having the required experience, I may be considered as an Associate of the ISC. This is irrespective of the exam passed (i.e. passing an SSCP or CCSP or CISSP with the required experience leads to the same level within the community).
Is the associate status valid for a specific time, and is that time bound to the exam passed?
If I pass the CCSP exam, and I don't gain the relevant experience before the certification would otherwise expire (3 years, I believe), would I then lose my Associate status, or is the Associate status indefinite? If I have to, worst case, make up for 4 years security work experience, and the CCSP is valid for 3 years before having to re-certify, how would that affect my Associate status (if at all).
If you select the option to be an Associate when booking the exam with Pearson VUE, after you pass the exam you will be an Associate. If you don't select that option and you pass the exam you are given 9 months to go through the endorsement process. If you aren't able to use that 9 months to gain the required experience for the full certification you can endorse as an Associate and be granted the appropriate time to gain the experience.
The Associate status last for n + 1 years, where n is the number of years of experience required to earn the full certification. In the case of the CCSP the Associate status will last 6 years (5 + 1). You can read this for yourself in the CCSP exam outline available here:
To maintain your Associate status for as long as you need it to gain the required experience to earn the full certification you need to pay annual fees and submit CPEs. You can read about those in the following links: