Policy PP-08 A
Issued: 30 Jun 1996
Revised: 16 Jan 2020
ASNT Position on ASNT Level III Certification
The purpose of this position paper is to clarify the intention of ASNT to maintain the personnel certification program for ASNT NDT Level III and develop an ASNT central certification program for all NDT Levels. The Industrial Radiographer Radiation Safety Personnel (IRRSP) certification program is unaffected by this position paper.
The American Society for Nondestructive Testing believes that accurate, efficient performance of nondestructive testing is essential to the satisfactory performance and life of all engineered components and structures. Effective qualification and certification of NDT personnel is one of the necessary steps to achieving proper performance of NDT.
Prudent and cost-effective usage of resources demands that the number of different certification systems employed in industry be minimized to avoid redundant and overlapping requirements and examinations.
ASNT CERTIFICATION OVERVIEW
ASNT Recommended Practice No. SNT-TC-1A Qualification and Certification of Nondestructive Testing Personnel. The first document with significant impact on qualifications of NDT personnel in industry was ASNT’s Recommended Practice No. SNT-TC-1A, published in 1968. SNT-TC-1A provides a guideline for employers to develop a written practice for qualification and certification of their nondestructive testing personnel.
ASNT NDT Level III
Following the publication of SNT-TC-1A, ASNT established a NDT Level III certification program in 1976. The ASNT Level III program was developed to minimize concerns about the inconsistent qualifications of employer certified Level III personnel. The ASNT Level III program provides an unbiased standard for the highest certification level of nondestructive testing personnel. The ASNT NDT Level III certificate provides an independent verification that an individual has satisfied the published minimum requirements for qualification to this program. SNT-TC-1A recognizes the ASNT NDT Level III certificate as meeting general qualification requirements to the extent specified in an employer’s written practice.
As an alternative to the guidelines in ASNT’s Recommended Practice No. SNT-TC-1A, ASNT CP-189 “Standard for the Qualification and Certification of Nondestructive Testing Personnel” was approved by ASNT’s Board of Directors in 1989. The document was approved as a national consensus standard by ANSI in 1991 and was reapproved in 1995. ANSI/ASNT CP-189 establishes specific minimum requirements for qualification and certification of NDT personnel. Unlike the SNT-TC-1A document, when ANSI/ASNT CP-189 is specified, personnel qualification and certification minimum requirements in the employer’s written practice can not be reduced from those specified in this document. ANSI/ASNT CP-189 requires that an individual possess a current ASNT NDT Level III certificate in the applicable method, as a prerequisite to employer certification as a NDT Level III.
ASNT NDT PROFESSIONAL LEVEL III
As part of the evolution of ASNT certifications, in 1989 the ASNT Board of Directors approved a plan providing for enhancements that would build upon the existing ASNT Level III program and provided a stand-alone, permanent, life-time certification. The Professional NDT Level III certification was intended as an ASNT credential, independent of employer requirements.
Requirements for the Professional NDT Level III certification incorporated common elements of the original ASNT NDT Level III Certification program. Verifiable evidence of comparable Level II experience, successful completion of the Basic examination and at least one Method examination were common to both certifications. A written Generic Practical examination was an added requirement for Professional NDT Level III certification for each method endorsement. This program also provided industry sector specific (ISS) endorsements, as recognition for specialized industry requirements; however, the ISS endorsements were not required for Professional NDT Level III certification.
During 1995, it became apparent to the ASNT Board of Directors that the complexity of certification issues required an analysis of the options to determine an appropriate direction for ASNT personnel certification activities. A Certification Task Force was appointed, consisting of one Society officer, chairmen of the National Certification Board, Education & Qualification Council, Standards Development Committee and several other appropriate individuals to study the various certification program options and provide the Board of Directors with a recommended course of action.
ASNT CENTRAL CERTIFICATION
The Certification Task Force recommended and the Board of Directors approved the continuation of the current ASNT NDT Level III certification program and the development of an ASNT central certification program for all NDT levels.
To formulate an effective and consistent certification program, the ASNT Professional NDT Level III certification will be expanded to consider the growing needs for world harmonization in personnel certification. The written generic practical examination feature in the program will be incorporated into the ASNT Level III central certification requirements while the lifetime certification provision has been removed. Of course, consideration of requirements for harmonization with international standards for qualification and certification of NDT personnel, such as ISO 9712, will be included in the development of central certification of all levels of NDT personnel.
ASNT CERTIFICATION SUMMARY
The intent of this position paper is to clearly establish the Society’s position concerning ASNT personnel certification programs. An ASNT central certification program for all levels of NDT personnel is being developed. The current ASNT Level III Certification program will continue without change, indefinitely. This means that current ASNT Level III certificate holders will be able to continue their current certificates through the existing recertification/renewal processes. The significant point here is that central certification of NDT personnel does not eliminate the current ASNT NDT Level III certificate. Also, the ISS option will continue to be available, based on industry needs.
For those individuals wishing to update their current ASNT NDT Level III certificate, certain requirements for central certification will be recognized as satisfying parts of the central certification requirements, i.e. Basic and Method examinations. Current ASNT NDT Level III certificate holders would be required to successfully complete the additional requirements for central certification only.
The following ASNT certification programs will continue to be offered as long as they are deemed appropriate to the personnel qualification needs of the NDT industry:
NDT Level III
ASNT’s NDT Level III certification provides an unbiased standard for the highest certification level of nondestructive testing personnel. The ASNT NDT Level III certificate will continue to provide an independent verification that an individual has satisfied the ASNT published minimum requirements for qualification to this program.
ASNT CENTRAL CERTIFICATION
ASNT will develop a central certification program for nondestructive testing personnel that will satisfy, but not be limited to, the requirements necessary to align with ISO 9712. This will provide a needed service for those individuals and companies associated with international business requiring central certification of personnel performing nondestructive testing.