OK, raise your hand if you know how to use Revit or AutoCAD or Inventor really well. You consider yourself a “professional” user. Most of you? Good. Now keeping your hands raised, how many of you actually have an easy way to prove it? Think about it.
In today’s competitive marketplace, there needs to be a way to set a standard benchmark of knowledge for using a particular software program. And that knowledge then needs to be validated.
This is why Autodesk launched professional certification way back in 2005, and later in the UK in 2008. The Autodesk Certified Professional Exam is a formal, proctored exam that you take at an Autodesk Certification Centre. It is comprised of 35 questions and has a 2-hour time limit. While some questions are multiple choice, the majority of the questions require you to actually use the software to create or modify a data file and then type your answer into an input box. In this way, you are being tested on your practical knowledge rather than just theory. The exam is a straight pass / fail, and a passing score is around 80%.
The Autodesk Certification program has been steadily gaining in popularity over the past 10 years. According to Tomas Karlson, European Regional Manager for Autodesk Education, “In 2010-2013 we had extremely strong growth, averaging 60-70% per year. In the academic market we are currently displaying astonishing numbers with 80% year-on-year growth for the User program. I believe this is a testament to the fact that especially schools and students place a high value on industry endorsed certification programs.”
So students coming out of university, industry professionals and companies competing for work can all benefit from the credibility that certification brings. As a professional user, you can add the Autodesk Certified logo to your emails and business cards. You can display your Autodesk Certified certificate and even list your name in the Autodesk Certified Professionals database.
Your employer can gain a competitive advantage through the ability to market Autodesk-certified staff on projects. Some companies use certification to make the right employment and placement decisions. Others use certification to lower staff turnover. Employees feel more valued if their company is willing to invest in their professional development.
So whichever reason makes the most sense to you, let’s say you decide certification will give you an edge. You are chosen to get certified and you register with a certification centre to take the exam. Now there is the small detail of actually passing! The Autodesk Certified Professional exam is not easy, nor should it be. In fact, the failure rate for Autodesk certification in the UK is 34%. Many of those who fail the exam do so because of overconfidence, lack of preparation, not reviewing the skills being tested, etc. Besides, when was the last time you sat an exam? It might be longer ago than you’d care to admit. Sitting down in front of a list of questions in a testing environment might be daunting to someone who remembers overhead projectors – so that’s everyone over 30 then!
We introduced our Autodesk Certification Workshop for this reason. It’s a half-day workshop the day before or the morning of the exam. It gives you a refresher on aspects of your Autodesk software that you may not use that often. You also receive top hints and tips from your trainer – who has already passed your exam – on the exam layout, how to approach it, and how to optimise your chances of passing. Ahead of the workshop we provide a web-based “mock” test. The results of this practice test tell us the areas you need help with, which we cover in the workshop.
Results have proven the workshop’s worth. With the standard pass rate for Autodesk certification at 66%, when combined with our workshop, the pass rate goes up to 95%.
One of our clients Halliday Meecham Architects encouraged members of their team to take the Autodesk Professional Certification exam, knowing the verification of their skills might work well in the future when bidding for projects. The professional certification workshop prepared the delegates for the exam. “The workshop gave us a good insight into the format of the exam,” states Matthew Fuller. “We got some helpful tips on how to approach the exam and how to manage our time to have the best chance of passing.”
Another architecture and engineering client BDP was the first company to be assessed and certificated under BRE Global’s BIM level 2 Business Systems Certification Scheme, and Autodesk Revit professional certification was a significant aspect of achieving this. Having professionally certified employees also means that BDP are able to demonstrate their capabilities and their level of expertise. It acts as a powerful differentiator, setting themselves ahead of competitors and establishing themselves as market leaders.
“The workshop leading up to the professional certification exam is an invaluable refresher course” says Director of Information and Technology, Alistair Kell. “It touches on areas of Revit that will be on the exam that you might not use on a day-to-day basis, reminds you of the knowledge that you already have, and leaves you feeling prepared and confident for the exam.”
Autodesk offers certification exams for AutoCAD, Autodesk Inventor, AutoCAD Civil 3D, Autodesk Revit Architecture, Autodesk Revit MEP, Autodesk Revit Structure and Autodesk 3ds Max Design. For the next certification dates with Cadassist click here. You can find the upcoming workshops by browsing the training section of our website or emailing Gordon.firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also call us on 0845 872 5555
DILBERT © 2000 Scott Adams. Used By permission of UNIVERSAL UCLICK. All rights reserved.