A certification documents the competence of an individual on a set of predetermined qualifications or performance standards of an industry group, agency, or association.
It is important to research your field and/or your employer's expectations before undertaking a certification. There are some third-party verifications on certifying organizations.
Examples include the National Commission For Certifying Agencies and GoCertify.com. You can also contact national and state professional and trade associations such as those provided in the CareerOneStop Career Resource Library.
The terms certification and licensure are frequently used interchangeably. For our purposes, certification differs from licensure in that occupational licenses are typically issued by a government entity and are required before an individual may work or practice in a particular occupation or profession (e.g. Licensed Practical Nurse).
For a certification to be included here, it must require either education, training, work experience, or examination; and must not be a state-required license, although it may lead to a license.
Click on an industry occupation to view its certifications.