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Top 10 Disc Jockey Certifications

This article provides an overview of the top disc jockey certifications available and their benefits.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 16 min read

Certifications for a disc jockey are important in the job market because they demonstrate a level of expertise and professionalism that employers look for when hiring. Certification shows potential employers that the DJ has mastered the basics of the craft, as well as having an understanding of industry standards and trends. Additionally, certifications can help a DJ stand out from other applicants when applying for gigs. They demonstrate that the DJ has taken initiative to learn more about their craft, and is willing to put in extra effort to improve their skills. Finally, certifications can open up new opportunities for DJs, such as teaching classes or working in music production.

The purpose of the article is to review some of the top certifications for Disc Jockeys and explain how they can help to advance a disc jockey's career.

What are Disc Jockey Certifications?

Disc jockey certification is the process of becoming certified by a professional organization to demonstrate proficiency in DJing. This certification is typically awarded after completing a course or program that covers topics such as music selection, mixing, and equipment knowledge. It can also involve hands-on training with experienced DJs. By obtaining disc jockey certification, DJs can gain recognition for their skills and show potential employers, clients, and customers that they have the knowledge and experience necessary to DJ professionally. This can help them stand out from other DJs who may not necessarily have the same level of expertise. Additionally, certified DJs may be able to access exclusive events or opportunities that are only available to those with certifications.

Pro Tip: When selecting a disc jockey certification program, look for one that provides hands-on training and closely mimics real-world scenarios. This will give you the best opportunity to learn the skills and techniques necessary to be successful in the field.

Related: What does a Disc Jockey do?

Top 10 Disc Jockey Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Disc Jockeys today.

1. Certified Professional Disc Jockey (CPDJ)

Certified Professional Disc Jockey (CPDJ) is a certification program designed to recognize the highest level of professional DJing. It is administered by the International Association of Professional DJs (IAPD), and it is the only internationally recognized certification for DJs.

The CPDJ program consists of two parts: a written exam and an oral exam. The written exam covers topics such as music theory, DJ techniques, and industry knowledge. The oral exam focuses on topics such as customer service, problem-solving, and professionalism. Both exams must be passed in order to receive the certification.

In order to be eligible for the CPDJ program, applicants must have at least three years of experience in professional DJing or related fields. They must also submit a portfolio of their work with references from clients or employers that can attest to their skill level.

The cost of the CPDJ program varies depending on which package you choose. The basic package costs $395 USD and includes both exams, study materials, and access to online resources. The premium package costs $595 USD and includes additional study materials, practice tests, and one-on-one mentoring sessions with IAPD experts.

It typically takes between four weeks and six months to complete the CPDJ program depending on how much time you dedicate to studying for the exams each week.

2. Certified Mobile Entertainer (CME)

Certified Mobile Entertainer (CME) is a certification program for DJs, MCs, and other mobile entertainers. It is designed to provide recognition for those who have achieved a high level of excellence in the field. The CME program is administered by the Mobile DJ Network and provides an industry-recognized certification that can be used to demonstrate professional experience and skills.

The CME program consists of three levels: basic, intermediate, and advanced. Each level requires passing an exam that tests knowledge in areas such as music theory, equipment setup, sound system design, and customer service. The exams are offered online through the Mobile DJ Network website.

It typically takes between 6-12 months to complete all three levels of the CME program. This time frame will vary depending on how much time you are able to dedicate to studying and preparing for the exams.

To get certified, you must first register with the Mobile DJ Network and pay a one-time registration fee of $99 USD. You then must pass each level’s exam with a score of at least 70%. Once all three levels have been passed successfully, you will receive your official CME certificate from the Mobile DJ Network.

The cost for taking all three exams is $149 USD per exam ($447 total). Additionally, there may be additional costs associated with purchasing study materials or taking practice tests prior to taking the actual exams.

3. Certified Digital DJ (CDDJ)

Certified Digital DJ (CDDJ) is a certification program developed by the Digital DJ Association (DDA). It is designed to help DJs become more proficient in their craft and to provide them with an industry-recognized credential. The program consists of an online course, followed by a practical exam.

The online course covers topics such as music theory, mixing techniques, and digital DJing technology. It also includes information on how to use popular DJ software programs like Serato, Traktor, Rekordbox and Ableton Live. The course takes approximately 8-10 hours to complete.

The practical exam is administered at a local DDA-certified testing center and requires the candidate to demonstrate their knowledge of the material covered in the online course. Candidates must pass both the online course and the practical exam in order to be certified as a CDDJ.

The cost of becoming a CDDJ varies depending on where you take the exam, but typically ranges from $100-$300 USD.

4. Certified Club DJ (CCDJ)

Certified Club DJ (CCDJ) is a certification program designed to recognize and reward DJs for their skill, knowledge, and experience in the club scene. The program is administered by the International Association of Professional DJs (IAPD).

The CCDJ certification requires applicants to demonstrate their proficiency in a variety of areas including music selection, mixing techniques, crowd engagement, and equipment setup. Applicants must also pass an online exam that covers topics such as music theory and industry trends.

The process typically takes between two to three months from start to finish. To get started, applicants must submit an application form along with a fee of $50. Once accepted into the program, applicants have access to online resources and materials that will help them prepare for the exam.

The cost of the CCDJ certification varies depending on the package chosen by the applicant. The basic package includes access to online resources, practice exams, and one attempt at taking the actual exam. More comprehensive packages include additional attempts at taking the exam as well as additional study materials and support from IAPD staff members. Prices range from $200-$400 USD depending on the package chosen.

5. Certified Radio Station DJ (CRSDJ)

A Certified Radio Station DJ (CRSDJ) is a certification program designed to recognize professional radio DJs who have achieved a high level of excellence in their craft. The CRSDJ certification is offered by the National Association of Radio and Music Professionals (NARMP).

The CRSDJ certification process requires applicants to demonstrate their knowledge and experience in the fields of radio broadcasting, music production, and the business side of radio. Applicants must also complete a written exam that covers topics such as radio programming, music selection, and station operations.

The application process takes approximately four weeks from start to finish. To apply for the CRSDJ certification, applicants must submit an application form along with proof of experience in radio broadcasting or music production, such as a resume or portfolio. Applicants must also pass a written exam which consists of multiple-choice questions about radio programming, music selection, and station operations.

The cost for the CRSDJ certification varies depending on the applicant's experience level. For those with no prior experience in radio broadcasting or music production, the cost is $200 USD; for those with some experience in these areas, the cost is $400 USD; and for those with extensive experience in these areas, the cost is $600 USD.

Once certified, CRSDJs can use their credentials to demonstrate their expertise in radio broadcasting and music production to potential employers or clients. They may also be eligible for discounts on certain products or services related to their profession.

6. Certified Beatmaker/Producer (CBMP)

Certified Beatmaker/Producer (CBMP) is a certification program offered by the Academy of Professional Recording Arts (APRA). It is designed to recognize and reward producers who have demonstrated excellence in beatmaking and production. The CBMP certification is the highest level of recognition for beatmakers and producers in the industry.

The CBMP certification requires applicants to submit a portfolio that includes at least three original beats, as well as at least one full-length track produced by the applicant. The portfolio must also include a written statement explaining why the applicant believes they should be certified as a beatmaker/producer.

The application process takes approximately six weeks from submission to review. Once an applicant has been approved, they will receive their official CBMP certificate.

The cost of becoming a Certified Beatmaker/Producer varies depending on the region, but typically ranges from $500-$1,000 USD.

7. Certified Music Video DJ (CMVDJ)

Certified Music Video DJ (CMVDJ) is an online certification program for DJs and producers that allows them to become certified in the art of mixing music videos. The program consists of a series of courses, tutorials, and tests designed to teach DJs the fundamentals of mixing music videos. The program takes approximately 8-10 hours to complete and includes topics such as video editing, audio engineering, video mixing techniques, and more.

To get Certified Music Video DJ (CMVDJ), you must first purchase the certification package from the CMVDJ website. The package includes access to all courses, tutorials, and tests required for certification. It also includes a certificate of completion upon successful completion of the program. The cost of the certification package is $99 USD.

8. Certified Open Format DJ (COFDJ)

Certified Open Format DJ (COFDJ) is a certification program designed to recognize the skills and knowledge of DJs who specialize in playing an open format style of music. An open format DJ is someone who plays a wide variety of genres, from hip-hop to house, rock to reggae and everything in between. The goal of the COFDJ program is to provide DJs with recognition for their expertise in this field and to help them stand out from the crowd.

It typically takes about 3-4 months to complete the certification process. In order to become certified, DJs must pass a written exam that covers topics such as music theory, mixing techniques, beat matching, song selection, and more. Additionally, applicants must submit a portfolio showcasing their experience and skills as a DJ. Once all requirements are met, applicants will receive their official COFDJ certificate.

The cost for the COFDJ program depends on which package you choose; there are basic and premium packages available. The basic package costs $99 USD and includes access to the online course material along with one exam attempt. The premium package costs $199 USD and includes access to additional resources such as sample mixes, feedback sessions with industry professionals, and two exam attempts.

9. Certified Turntablist (CTTBL)

Certified Turntablist (CTTBL) is a certification program created by the International Society of Turntablists (IST). It is designed to recognize and reward turntablists who demonstrate exceptional skill and knowledge in the art of turntablism.

The CTTBL certification process consists of three levels: Certified Turntablist Level 1, Certified Turntablist Level 2, and Certified Turntablist Level 3. Each level requires passing a written exam as well as a practical performance test. The written exam covers topics such as turntable history, techniques, scratching, beat juggling, and music theory. The practical performance test requires demonstrating various skills on the turntables such as scratching, beat juggling, and blending.

The entire process can take anywhere from several months to a year or more depending on how much time and effort you put into studying for the exams and practicing your skills on the turntables.

To get started with the CTTBL certification process, you must first become an IST member which costs $25 USD per year. Once you are an IST member, you can register for the CTTBL exams which cost $50 USD each. After successfully passing all three exams, you will be awarded your CTTBL certification.

10. Certified Karaoke Host/DJ (CKHDJ)

A Certified Karaoke Host/DJ (CKHDJ) is a professional karaoke host and DJ who has been certified by the National Association of Mobile Entertainers (N.A.M.E.). The certification process requires that the applicant pass an exam administered by N.A.M.E., which covers topics such as music selection, microphone techniques, song organization, and crowd control.

The certification process typically takes between two to four weeks to complete, depending on the individual’s schedule and availability for testing. To receive the CKHDJ certification, applicants must first register with N.A.M.E., pay a registration fee of $50, and then take the exam at one of their approved testing centers located throughout the United States. After passing the exam, applicants will receive their certificate in the mail within 2-4 weeks from when they registered with N.A.M.E..

In order to maintain their CKHDJ certification, professionals must renew their membership annually by paying a renewal fee of $25 per year and completing continuing education courses provided by N.A.M.E.. These courses cover topics such as new music trends, technology updates, and legal issues related to karaoke hosting/DJing in order to ensure that certified professionals are up-to-date on industry standards and best practices for providing quality entertainment services for clients around the country.

Do You Really Need a Disc Jockey Certificate?

No, you do not need a disc jockey certificate to become a successful DJ. While having a disc jockey certificate may be helpful in establishing yourself as a professional DJ, it is not necessary for success.

In today’s digital world, anyone with access to the right equipment and knowledge can become a successful DJ. There are many online resources such as tutorials and courses that provide the same information that is taught in disc jockey certificates. With the help of these resources, aspiring DJs can learn everything they need to know about mixing music, selecting songs, and creating playlists without ever obtaining an official certification. Additionally, many DJs make use of self-promotion techniques such as creating websites or social media pages to showcase their talent and draw attention to their projects.

Furthermore, there are plenty of opportunities available for DJs who don't have any formal qualifications. Many local venues hire DJs based solely on their skills and experience rather than on any kind of certification. Additionally, some radio stations will hire DJs simply based on their audio demos or mixes that they have submitted. Ultimately, it is up to the individual DJ to create their own unique sound and style in order to stand out from the crowd and draw attention from potential employers or fans alike.

In conclusion, while a disc jockey certificate may be beneficial in certain circumstances, it is certainly not essential for success in this field. With hard work and dedication combined with the right knowledge and tools, anyone can become a successful DJ without ever earning an official certification.

Related: Disc Jockey Resume Examples

FAQs About Disc Jockey Certifications

1. What qualifications do I need to become a Disc Jockey?

Answer: To become a Disc Jockey, you should have a good knowledge of music, an understanding of the industry and technical equipment, and experience in mixing and programming music. You may also need to complete a certification program or hold a qualification in the field.

2. How can I get certified as a Disc Jockey?

Answer: You can get certified as a Disc Jockey by enrolling in a DJ school or training program that offers certification. Most of these programs offer practical and theoretical instruction on topics such as music selection, mixing techniques, event production, radio broadcasting, and more.

3. Are there any online courses available for becoming certified as a Disc Jockey?

Answer: Yes, there are many online courses available for becoming certified as a Disc Jockey. These courses typically provide instruction on topics such as mixing techniques, music selection and organization, event production, radio broadcasting, and more.

4. Is there an exam required to become certified as a Disc Jockey?

Answer: Yes, most DJ certifications require the successful completion of an exam demonstrating your knowledge of the material covered in the coursework. The exams vary depending on the specific certification you are pursuing.

5. How long does it take to become certified as a Disc Jockey?

Answer: The amount of time it takes to become certified as a Disc Jockey depends on which certifications you are pursuing and how quickly you progress through the coursework or exam requirements associated with those certifications. Generally speaking, most certification programs can be completed within 6 months to 1 year if you dedicate yourself to studying regularly throughout that time period.