Elevate Your Inspection Expertise and Standing
Who makes the ideal SCWI?
Ideal candidates for the SCWI exam have sought out opportunities to expand their careers. Senior Certified Welding Inspector candidates typically will have supplemented their basic education or gained extensive problem-solving experience. This type of background generally provides them with a deeper and more specific understanding of advanced NDE topics, quality systems, procedure qualifications, and other SCWI knowledge areas as identified below.
If your position has evolved into supervisory or managerial responsibilities in the field of quality control/quality assurance, you will want to apply for the highest level of certification: a Senior Certified Welding Inspector, or SCWI.
To qualify for SCWI certification, candidates need to have been certified as a CWI for a minimum of six (6) years out of the previous eight (8) years.
Applicants must also have a minimum of 15 years’ work experience in at least three of the areas listed in AWS B5.1:
- Experience in the development of procedures, inspection requirements, acceptance criteria, and specification for weldments.
- Experience in planning, control, and application of base metals and filler metals in the preparation and completion of production weldments.
- Experience as a welder, welding operator, or tack welder in fabrication, manufacturing, or construction.
- Experience in the detection and measurement of weld discontinuities by application of visual or other nondestructive evaluation processes to a written procedure.
- Experience in planning, control, and application of repair welding.
- Experience in the preparation of written procedures for welding, nondestructive evaluation of weldments, or destructive tests of weldments.
- Experience in the qualification of welders or welding procedures to various codes, standards and specifications.
- Experience applying welding related codes, standards, or specifications.
- Experience in operational techniques and activities used to fulfill quality control requirements for weldments.
- Experience in teaching the occupational skill of welding or subjects related to welding; its application, control, materials, and processes.
Initial SCWI Exam Application
Retest Application for SCWI
Renewal Application for SCWI 3rd and 6th Year
Recertification Application for SCWI 9th Year
QC1:2016-AMD1 - Specification for AWS Certification of Welding Inspectors
(Effective Jan 1st, 2017 - Reference for Qualification Criteria)
B5.1:2013-AMD1 - Specification for the Qualification of Welding Inspectors
B5.1:2003 - Specification for the Qualification of Welding Inspectors
English (for referencing exam structure)
ADA Disability Accommodations
AWS Bank Information
Certification Duplicate Order Form
Change of Site/Cancellation Form
Employment Verification Form
Exam Audit Request Form
Exam Security Agreement and General Term of Use Form
Policies and Fees
Qualifying Work Experience Form
Visual Acuity Form
Photo ID Requirements
To view the Exam Schedule click here.
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Body of Knowledge
For CWI’s and SCWI’s (3 and 6 year cycles):
The renewal process is an important part of maintaining your certification. SCWI’s and CWI’s maintain their certification by submitting an approved renewal application to the Certification Department. The application must be submitted by the expiration date of the current certification and no earlier than 11 months prior to the expiration date of that certification.
To qualify for renewal, the CWI or SCWI shall attest to having no period of continuous inactivity greater than two years during the previous three years of certification in activities described in AWS B5.1. This work experience must be documented in the Qualifying Work Experience section of the application. Resumes are not accepted.
A 60-day administrative extension period is allowed. During this time, certification will be considered as expired. Renewals submitted after the administrative 60-day grace period but within one year of expiration may be accepted for renewal; however, administrative late fees may apply. If all renewal requirements have been met, certification will be reactivated.
AWS may send a renewal notice, but if not received, it remains the responsibility of the SCWI or CWI to renew on time.
For further information concerning the CWI or SCWI certification renewal, please refer to AWS QC1.
As an AWS Senior Certified Welding Inspector, you must renew your certification every three years. Every nine years, you must recertify, by one of options indicated below. An approved 9-year recertification application must be in the AWS Certification Department by the expiration date of the current certification and no earlier than (11) months prior to the expiration date of the current certification.
A 60-day administrative extension period is allowed. During this time, certification will be considered as expired. If the paperwork is received on time and all renewal or recertification requirements have been met, certification will be reactivated.
- 9-Year Recertification by taking Parts A&B of the SCWI Exam: Candidates will need to test to both Parts A&B of the SCWI exam and achieve at least the minimum 72% composite average to recertify. Reference the SCWI Body of Knowledge for a list of acceptable preparatory materials.
- 9-Year Recertification by Endorsement: You can take an endorsement exam to recertify. You can apply for this option up to (11) months prior to your expiration date. Passing one of these exams meets the requirements for recertification. Endorsements require passing a two-hour exam on one of the following:
AWS D1.1 Structural Steel
AWS D1.2 Structural Aluminum
AWS D1.5 Bridges
AWS D15.1 Railroad
AWS D17.1 Aerospace
API 1104 Pipelines
ASME Section IX, B31.1 and B31.3 Boiler & Pressure Vessel
ASME Section VIII, Div. 1 & Section IX Boiler & Pressure Vessel
Structural Drawing Reading
All endorsement exams (with the exception of Structural Drawing Reading) will be offered all over the US in convenient locations using computer based testing with our partners at Prometric. After your application has been submitted to AWS and approved, you will be provided with an Authorization to Test (ATT) letter in order to schedule your appointment through Prometric at one of their centers. Prometric session fees will apply at the time you schedule your appointment.
Important Note: AWS QC1 defines endorsements as "Indication of an additional skill documented in writing and added to one's certification credential(s)". In fulfilling the 9-year recertification requirement, endorsements cannot be taken to the codebook to which your CWI certification was attained.
- 9-Year Recertification by Accumulated Continuing Education: If you have kept yourself up to date in the inspection profession by attending classes and seminars related to welding, your education requirements may be satisfied. You need 80 contact hours (PDHs) of seminars, courses or online courses such as those found through American Welding Online (awo.aws.org) that meet the requirements of QC1 Section 16.
The course content must be in one or more of the subject areas as defined in the Education and Experience Requirements of the B5.1, Specification for the Qualification of Welding Inspectors Section 5.
- Endorsements or Certifications Achieved Prior to 9-Year Recertification:
- Endorsements: Certified Welding Inspectors who have previously taken and passed one or more endorsement exams prior to the nine-year cycle may apply for recertification without having to meet further examination, professional development hour, or seminar requirements.
- Certified Radiographic Interpreter: At any time during your nine-year cycle, if you meet the prerequisites, you can apply to become certified as an AWS Certified Radiographic Interpreter (CRI). This is a valuable certification that fulfills your nine-year requirement.
- 9-Year Recertification Course: If your certification expires within the next seven (11) months and you aren’t going to recertify through examination or haven’t accumulated 80 PDHs in the past nine years, the AWS 9-year recertification course is for you. Upon completion of the course, you will receive an AWS Certificate of Completion for the course. Your new wallet card, certificate, and stamp will be mailed to you. Your certification number and renewal month will not change.
Note: DO NOT mail the full 9yr Recertification application if completing the online registration.
Become a Skilled Tradeperson
The demand for most trades is strong and getting stronger. The U.S. Department of Labor forecasts healthy growth in the neighborhood of 8 to 9 percent over the next decade. Jobs associated with building and rebuilding roads, bridges, water, and the power grid are expected to grow by double-digit percentages–faster than the overall economy.