ANSI - American National Standards Institute
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ANSI Seeks Leaders for Launch of Certificate Accreditation Program

Call for nominations for assessors and accreditation committee members

New York, Nov 11, 2008

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI), a private non-profit organization that administers and coordinates the U.S. voluntary standardization and conformity assessment system, has issued a call for assessors and committee members to lead a new accreditation program for organizations that issue demand-based education and training certificates to U.S. workers.

Currently, there is no nationwide regulation, oversight or monitoring consistently applied to all bodies that offer certificates – nor is there a nationally recognized set of criteria/requirements to evaluate the quality of these programs.

In May 2007, ANSI formed an advisory panel of key industry and government leaders to examine the quality and content of training programs that lead to a certificate, and the need or demand for accrediting these programs.

“Based on the input received, we believe this new accreditation program will help to educate the public on the meaning of certificates, the difference between certificates and certifications, and how to differentiate among certificate programs with varying levels of rigor,” explained Dr. Roy Swift, ANSI program director. “This activity is also expected to provide quality benchmarks for the design of future certificate programs.”

Accreditation provides a neutral, third-party attestation that a given certificate program leads to better educated and qualified workers. Accreditation programs are based on standards that outline specific requirements for both the agencies that issue personnel certificates and the specific certificates being offered.

“ANSI is committed to an active partnership with educators, trainers, industry, ANSI Accredited Standards Developers, and government experts to facilitate the development of a certificate accreditation program that is based on continual quality improvement,” added Dr. Roy Swift, ANSI program director.

The new ANSI program will also follow the evaluation process outlined in the international standard ISO/IEC 17011, General Requirements for Accreditation Bodies Accrediting Conformity Assessment Bodies. This process includes using specially trained assessors to review documents submitted by applicants against defined requirements, conduct on site assessments of all applicants, and make recommendations to the Institute’s newly established Certificate Program Accreditation Committee that is responsible for making the accreditation decisions.

To this end, ANSI is currently soliciting nominations from dynamic national experts in the fields of training, education, personnel certificates, federal, state and local government and policy development for consideration as assessors and members of the Certificate Program Accreditation Committee.

Positions descriptions and requested qualifications can be found here (for assessors) and here (for commitee members). Questions and requests for application materials should be directed to Dr. Roy Swift (rswift@ansi.org; 202.331.3617).

Deadline for submission of the application packet is December 1, 2008.

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