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Certification Update

Brian Fullenkamp | May 04, 2021

 

Under the direction of the Certification Commission, CEDIA is continuing the revamping and restructuring of all certification exams and pathways. These updated certifications are designed to raise the credibility of the industry as a whole and to give integrators a way to be examined and recognized for their specific skillsets and commitment to professionalism.

Created by the industry and for the industry, these certifications are something residential integrators will be able to claim as their own. This is apparent in CEDIA’s work with the more than 500 people who participated in some portion of the CIT’s development, including completing the Job Task Analysis Survey, sitting for the Beta Exam, or being a part of the Exam Committee.

The CEDIA Cabling and Infrastructure Technician (CIT) Certification successfully launched in January 2021 and gave early-career technicians a perfect starting point in the industry. This certification has recently been submitted to ANSI/ANAB for accreditation under the global ISO/IEC 17024 standard and is now in its application stage. Accreditation is a process performed by a third-party entity to ensure that a certification program is meeting the highest standards of quality and that the exam is fair, valid, and reliable.

For CEDIA, 2021 will be another big year for its certification program. Continuing from the successful CIT launch, the association is now in development of the next certification, the Integrated Systems Technician (IST). The CEDIA IST will provide the next successive step in the overall certification pathway. As a prerequisite, those wishing to sit the IST exam must hold an active CIT; however, holding an active ESC-T will also satisfy this requirement. On top of this prerequisite, a new CEDIA Certification Code of Conduct agreement has also been put in place for both the CIT and IST, as well as a one-year work experience requirement for the IST. These are just some of the changes stemming from the revamping and restructuring of the CEDIA Certification Program.

The Integrated Systems Technician (IST) exam is currently in development and will begin beta testing September of 2021. There are currently over 20 volunteers working on the Integrated Systems Technician exam. Just like the CIT set the foundation for early-career technicians, the IST will become the premier certification for experienced technicians wanting to show that they have a broad base of essential technical knowledge. The IST is comprehensive and intends to cover over 120 knowledge and skill areas from the six overarching knowledge domains consisting of: Project Processes, Infrastructure, Equipment Installation, Communication Systems, Integrated Systems, and System Verification and Testing. The final IST exam will become the gold standard for integrators and will include 150 questions, making it longer than any of CEDIA’s previous certifications.

Once launched, the IST will replace the ESC-T as CEDIA’s core technician certification. The IST Beta Exam will be available September at this year’s CEDIA Expo in Indianapolis, IN, USA. For those not for able to sit the exam at Expo, the IST Beta will also be available via remote proctoring or live at Kryterion testing centers worldwide. Additional info regarding the IST including prerequisites, study materials, and beta exam sign up can be found at cedia.net/certification or by contacting the CEDIA Certification team directly at certification@cedia.org.  

In addition to the recent CIT launch and the upcoming IST launch, CEDIA’s Networking Specialist certification is also in the early stages of revision. A committee of key stakeholders including integrators, educators, and manufacturers is performing an in-depth Job Task Analysis to update the comprehensive list of knowledge and skills most needed for competent job performance. This summer, an industry-wide survey will be conducted to validate that framework and to update the exam blueprint. The Networking Specialist serves as an advanced certification and covers residential networking infrastructure, design, configuration, and security. The Networking Specialist is intended for those with at least two years of experience.

With the CIT completed and in the process of accreditation, the IST in development towards its beta launch, and the Networking Specialist being revamped, 2021 looks to be an exciting and ground-breaking year for CEDIA Certification and all those who hold certifications or have participated in the development process.

 

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