Every five years CEDIA completes a Job Task Analysis (JTA) to ensure the ongoing accuracy and relevance of each certification and corresponding education pathway. The training, certification, and overall growth of the workforce is a strategic priority for CEDIA, and to support that goal, the Certification Commission has completed an additional scheme alignment study to ensure that the full set of CEDIA certifications are best meeting the needs of the industry. The goals of this study were:
- Develop a clear, seamless pathway for individuals to start from no industry knowledge and work their way up into a competent, well-rounded technician who can work independently on a jobsite.
- Incorporate into CEDIA’s certifications the foundational knowledge domains of jobsite safety, construction methods, tools, safety, and cabling practices which had been previously covered under the ESPA EST certification.
- Eliminate any overlap in certifications so that they are stackable and offer clear recognition for either a specialized skillset, or competency to perform a particular job role that is widely recognized in the industry. New eligibility requirements should be incorporated when appropriate to ensure that foundational knowledge is held and therefore not required to re-test on higher level exams.
- Bring certifications up to the highest possible level of quality for professional certifications. This is defined by the global ISO/IEC 17024 standard to which CEDIA seeks accreditation under.
- Ensure that CEDIA certifications are globally relevant and recognized. Building codes along with certain practices and terminology have regional differences, but those elements will not be tested on exams, and measures will be put into place so that exams are not biased towards one region.
The result of the JTA and certification scheme review process was the creation of the CIT and IST certifications, which meet the goals above but do not necessarily align with the scope, purpose, eligibility, and renewal requirements of existing technician certifications. The new certifications have an additional Code of Conduct for holders, have an increased number of items on the exams, and in the case of the IST, require at least one year of experience and the foundational CIT certification as a pre-requisite. The new certifications will also be submitted for accreditation under ISO/IEC17024, which brings additional policy updates to how the certifications are administered. With significant changes in substance, it was necessary to reconsider the naming scheme to ensure clarity for all stakeholders and the long-term success of the certification.