Training Center: NICET Accreditation and Considerations

As one of the most respected agencies for certifications in the industry, the National Institute for Certification of Engineering Technologies (NICET) has nationally recognized certification programs that can define career advancement paths for security...


As one of the most respected agencies for certifications in the industry, the National Institute for Certification of Engineering Technologies (NICET) has nationally recognized certification programs that can define career advancement paths for security professionals of all levels. These programs are increasingly used by employers to measure job skills and knowledge.

Since the Institute was founded in 1961, more than 121,000 technicians and technologists have met NICET’s rigorous certification criteria, and the number grows rapidly as more people rely on NICET certification to measure the qualifications of their workforce.

NICET has set the standard for expertise in fire alarms and is on the way to defining the standard for video security systems. The tasks, knowledge and skills in each certification suggest the kind of training and experience that each person has and can establish credibility with employers.

NICET has a total of 26 different certification programs, six of which are typically recognized as security-centric:

Fire Protection

Automatic Sprinkler System Layout –
Levels 1-4

Fire Alarm Systems – Levels 1-4

Inspection and Testing of Water-Based
Systems – Levels 1-3

Special Hazards Suppressions Systems –
Levels 1-4

Security Systems

Video Security Systems Designer –
Levels 1-2

Video Security Systems Technician –
Levels 1-4

NICET is not a training or education organization and does not offer nor condone any training solutions. They are specifically a certifying body. It is up to the individual seeking certification to seek out what they need to qualify for the certification program they are looking to complete. There are several organizations that offer NICET training, either through classroom courses or available online. However, be wary of a company that says they are “approved” by NICET because that is not within the realm of the certification parameters.

Once a candidate has received the appropriate training (or opted out of the training) they are ready to take the NICET certification exam. The candidate can schedule an exam online by visiting http://www.nicet.org/candidates/scheduling.cfm. Walking through a step-by-step process online, the candidate may determine where the appropriate NICET exam is being offered.

Another consideration for NICET certification is work experience. Depending on the certification you are going for and the level (1-4), you must have a certain number of years of work experience under your belt to qualify to take the examination. An applicant may be required to prove up to five years acceptable work experience for certain grades of certification. Some levels of certification do not require the work experience proof.

Finally, the applicant must also have an endorser, either a boss, colleague or customer, sign off on their application for certification.

NICET accreditation holds tremendous weight and value in the industry and should be considered by both novice and professionals alike. It can lay out a path for career advancement and can provide proof of skills sets to both current and prospective employers.

Connie Moorhead is president of The CMOOR Group and founder of SecurityCEU.com based in Louisville, Ky.