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Certified Welding & Testing
AWS, API, ASME, CWB, ASNT, ABSA

Student Welder Certification

To fully understand what is meant by welder certification, it is important to understand the difference between welder qualification vs. welder certification. Welders, welding operators and tack welders to be employed for work under most U.S. welding codes, shall have been qualified by the applicable tests as described in specific sections of applicable codes such as AWS D1.1, ASME IX or API 1104.

To be "Qualified" to conduct work means to have experience, training and assessment that is deemed suitable by a knowledgeable party.

To be "Certified" to conduct work means to have written evidence, from a third party authority, that skills have been verified by testing to be incompliance with the requirements of a licensing standard.

Overview

This program is designed to validate learning by providing a practical outcomes assessment that is recognized and consistent with the general requirements set forth by U.S. welding codes and standards for the qualification of welding personnel. At prescribed intervals within an approved curriculum, and as a means of validating learning, code approved weld tests will be administered using approved WPSs and lesson plans. Completed weldments will be inspected and tested against the acceptance criteria of the applicable welding code. Upon the acceptance of the weld test supervisor, the instructor will fill out an application for certification by documenting all of the test data.

The application is sent to the test supervisor for approval and the issuance of a recognized industry welder qualification test record. In correspondence dated May 22, 2014, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) notified districts that state CTE certification reimbursement funds were available to reimburse districts for a certification exam taken and passed by a student to qualify for a license or certificate.

Justification

The Texas State Board of Education has legislative authority to adopt curriculum standards called the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) that describe what students should know and be able to do, in each grade or subject area. House Bill #5 (HB 5), passed by the Texas Legislature in 2013, made substantial changes to the state's curriculum and graduation requirements, assessment program, and accountability system. A student may now earn a "Performance Acknowledgment" on the student's diploma and transcript for earning a nationally or internationally recognized business or industry certification or license based on performance on an examination or series of examinations sufficient to obtain a nationally or internationally recognized business or industry certification.

The Texas Education Agency (TEA), in response to HB #5, requires that all students, upon graduation from a Career and Technical Education High School, achieve an industry recognized pre-employment credential in their dedicated field (welding). In addition to students enrolled in a traditional "welding as a career" program, this includes students that are in non-career multi-occupational fields (Agriculture), students that are in career fields but want a credential in a related field (automotive) and students with special needs. No such program exists that can reach out to the diverse student population in welding and related education.

Prerequisites

Candidates for this program must be students enrolled in good standing at a public educational institution. The welding instructor administering tests must be an approved welding examiner in full compliance with TX-EDU-WP1 at the time of invigilation and the test facility must have on record a completed self-audit or site visit audit form. All students within the approved program, regardless of ability or aptitude, must be given the opportunity to test using the most applicable of all the certification lesson plans.

Testing is designed to be a "capstone" or summative assessment of learning at the completion of a learning segment or block. A student may take as many tests as needed using any process that can be safely and effectively implemented using an approved written WPS/Lesson Plan. The cost of student certification is $20 per test/process.

Evidence

Upon completion of a weld test, acceptable to the authorized instructor, the teacher will fill out an application for certification and submit it to the test supervisor. If accepted the test supervisor will generate and issue a welder qualification test record and wallet card commensurate with the nature of testing. The wallet card has a QR code that when scanned will reveal all relevant test documents and the verification that the welder is current and in good standing with the certification standard. However, the wallet card is not the official record of testing. Only the "Welder Qualification Test Record" shall be used to communicate the official extent of qualification.

Duration of certification

The period of effectiveness for student welder certifications are as follows:
Welding certification extends indefinitely provided the student remains active in the process for which he is certified and is enrolled in good standing at the educational institution. Welder certification may be revoked if there is any reason, by any welding authority, to question the ability of the welder. The qualification/certification may extend beyond graduation or otherwise discharge in good standing providing that the welder returns to the certifying educational institution for period evaluation or otherwise validation that welding activity has not lapsed beyond 6 months.

Documents associated with the student welder certification program

  • Visual weld inspection procedure INT-VT-001, with corresponding procedures for destructive testing
  • Educational WPS and corresponding PQR documents for SMAW, GMAW, FCAW and GTAW.
  • Code qualification testing lesson plans
  • Welder Qualification Test Records and wallet card representing welder qualification
  • Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) For:
    • Welding Grades 10-12
    • Advanced Welding Grades 11-12
  • Application for student welder certification

Performance Acknowledgements

House Bill 5 (HB 5), passed by the Texas Legislature in 2013, made substantial changes to the state's curriculum and graduation requirements, assessment program, and accountability system. A student may earn a performance acknowledgment on the student's diploma and transcript for earning a nationally or internationally recognized business or industry certification or license with:

(1) performance on an examination or series of examinations sufficient to obtain a nationally or internationally recognized business or industry certification or

(2) performance on an examination sufficient to obtain a government required credential to practice a profession

Nationally or internationally recognized business or industry certification shall be defined as an industry validated credential that complies with knowledge and skills standards promulgated by a nationally or internationally recognized business, industry, professional, or government entity representing a particular profession or occupation that is issued by or endorsed by:
  • a national or international business, industry, or professional organization
  • a state agency or other government entity or
  • a state-based industry association
Certifications or licensures for performance acknowledgements shall:
  • be age appropriate for high school students
  • represent a student's substantial course of study and/or end-of-program knowledge and skills
  • include an industry recognized examination or series of examinations, an industry validated skill test, or demonstrated proficiency through documented, supervised field experience and
  • represent substantial knowledge and multiple skills needed for successful entry into a high-skill occupation
The program described herein is structured and supported by:
The North American Welding Group
111 West Anderson St.
Suite E330
Austin, Texas 78752
Board Of Directors:
Gary Cunningham - gcunningham@wfisd.net 940-781-4540
Richard Dawdy - rdawdy@judsonisd.org 210-710-1603
William Pearson - william.pearson@cfisd.net 281-605-0898
For questions or comments pertaining to information on this site, please contact:
Richard DePue – weldingndt@bellsouth.net 716-474-6519