The Core Humanitarian Standard on Quality and Accountability (the CHS) tells organisations and individuals how to ensure they deliver quality, effective and accountable humanitarian responses. 

The CHS contains Nine Commitments, which are explained in this elearning course. Each commitment includes key actions and organisational responsibilities ("what you should be doing") and indicators ("are you doing it right?")

This elearning module introduces the CHS. Even if you do not work for a humanitarian organisation or are not involved in programme delivery, it is useful for everyone to know about the Nine Commitments, as it will help you to understand why humanitarian organisations act in certain ways.

The course was developed in partnership with the CHS Alliance, the Sphere Project, Groupe URD and IECAH.


This module is suitable for humanitarians of all levels, and for others who are interested in an overview of the Core Humanitarian Standard.

Learning Objectives

  • Why quality, accountability and people management are vital for effective humanitarian work
  • How and why the CHS was developed and who supports it
  • The four Humanitarian principles underpinning the CHS
  • The structure of the CHS including the Commitments, Quality Criteria, Key Actions, Organisational Responsibilities, Performance Indicators and Guiding Questions
  • The scope of the CHS and how it interacts with development or advocacy
  • The responsibilities the CHS places on you and your organisation
  • The links between the CHS and technical standards
  • How individuals and organisations can apply the CHS


This module will take 1-2 hours to complete.

Other languages

This course is also available in French and Arabic and Swahili. 

PHAP Credentialing Program: Understanding the Humanitarian Ecosystem. 

PHAP Credentialing Program logo

This course will help you prepare for the PHAP Credentialing Program certification in Understanding the Humanitarian Ecosystem.

In particular, the course addresses some aspects of segment 3.4 of the certification assessment outline.

Read more about the PHAP Credentialing Program