Credentialing Process

Organizations that wish to host NIMS testing are encouraged to review the following and download all suggested materials. Individuals who are not currently affiliated with a company, school, or other formal training program should contact us.

Interested in hosting NIMS testing? Employers, schools, and colleges can now schedule a free, one-on-one credentialing consultation with a NIMS expert.

Hosted in the past, but need a refresher? Try a short video tutorial.

Before Testing

Register Organization

Before testing may begin, a representative (usually the primary contact) must register the organization with NIMS.

Related Actions:

Register Account Administrator

Account administrators are those who oversee registration, payment, and proctor/evaluator assignments. Account administrators are often instructors and trainers, but can also be other training program personnel.

Register Proctor and Evaluator

Proctors oversee the online theory assessment, and do not need any technical knowledge. Evaluators are employees or industry professionals who submit the performance assessment of the candidate.

Register Candidates

Individuals must register as candidates and purchase a subscription or test pass before proctor or evaluator assignments are made. Registration is needed once per person for life.

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Are you an account administrator? You can register up to 20 candidates at one time using the Add Candidates page - learn how to mass register candidates here.

Watch the registration process from start to finish

Performance + Theory

Individuals earn NIMS credentials by passing performance and theory assessments in functional job areas from entry- to master-level. Most test for NIMS credentials after completion of a training program that has aligned to the NIMS skill standards, often at an educational institution or through an employer.

Individuals may take assessments without completing a formal training program by applying their prior learning and experience. These individuals earn credentials to verify their skills and signal their eligibility for jobs and advancement potential.

Performance Assessment

An individual must successfully perform a documented series of skills checks and demonstrations. Some require a third-party quality inspection by industry representatives. 

An account administrator at the organization must assign an evaluator to assess a candidate's performance and submit an affidavit online.

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Theory Assessment

Before or after the completion of the performance assessment, individuals may take the theory assessment while under proctor supervision. Each test has a time limit of 90 minutes and is taken via the NIMS website.

An account administrator at the organization must assign an proctor to launch a candidate's test in a controlled environment.

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Earning Credentials

Official credentials are issued once candidates successfully complete the theory assessment and the performance assessment. Credentials can be printed at any time by both candidates and account administrators by logging into the NIMS online testing center.

How much do NIMS credentials cost?