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What is the difference between a certificate course and professional certification?

from AWDI

It is training that separates the two. A Certificate Course is limited instruction awarding a certificate to those who have taken the particular course. A certificate program is to provide knowledge you didn't have. Professional Certifications are independent of training courses and assess industry knowledge — i.e., what you do know.

A Certificate program has nothing to do with standards compliance, per se, while Certification is about compliance with recognized standards and practices.

A Certificate program is developed by a profit making entity to favor its own interests and may or may not be industry accepted. A Certification program is offered by a third party to separate those who meet the assessment standards from those who do not.

Don't be fooled. The distinction between certificates and certifications is important when you consider the implications: According to accepted standards, holders of assessment-based certificates may NOT use letters or acronyms behind their names, nor may they use the word "certified" in describing their credentials. The use of letters, acronyms and the word "certified" are reserved to holders of professional or personnel certifications as defined in the standard.

There is only one registered Certification Mark for window installation: Certification Mark Registration No. 78939046 (PRINCIPAL REGISTER). While some supplier companies offer certain training that may be useful and also promise "certified," (for example www.osicertified.com) it is no substitute for identifying installers' independent compliances and capabilities. more


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