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Top 11 Screen Printer Certifications

This article will discuss the top certifications for screen printing professionals, including their requirements and benefits.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 18 min read

Certifications are important for a screen printer in the job market because they demonstrate to potential employers that the individual has the knowledge and skills necessary to do their job. Certifications show that the individual has gone through rigorous training, understands industry standards, and is up to date on the latest trends and techniques. Furthermore, certifications provide employers with an assurance that the person they are hiring has met certain requirements and can be trusted to perform their duties at a high level of quality. Having certifications also gives a competitive edge when applying for jobs, as it shows that an individual has taken extra steps to ensure they have the necessary qualifications for success.

This article reviews the top certifications for Screen Printers, and explains how they can help to advance a screen printer's career.

What are Screen Printer Certifications?

Screen printer certification is a process by which individuals or businesses can demonstrate that they have the necessary knowledge, skills, and experience to produce quality screen printed products. This certification is usually obtained by taking an accredited course or passing an exam. It is designed to help screen printers understand the processes involved in producing high-quality prints, from set up and registration to color matching and troubleshooting. By obtaining certification, screen printers can show their clients that they are knowledgeable and experienced in the field of screen printing, making them more likely to be chosen for future jobs. Certification can also help increase rates for services rendered.

Pro Tip: Make sure to research the requirements and expectations of a screen printer certification program before investing in one. Many programs have specific criteria that must be met, such as prior experience or a minimum number of hours spent in the field. Additionally, be sure to check the organization's reputation and accreditation status to ensure you're getting the best possible education.

Related: What does a Screen Printer do?

Top 11 Screen Printer Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Screen Printers today.

1. Screen Printing Certification from the Academy of Screen Printing Technology

Screen Printing Certification from the Academy of Screen Printing Technology is an online certification program that provides a comprehensive overview of the screen printing process. The certification is designed to help individuals gain an understanding of the fundamentals of screen printing and how to apply them in a professional setting.

The certification program consists of four modules that cover topics such as screen preparation, ink selection, exposure techniques, and troubleshooting. Each module takes approximately three hours to complete and can be done at your own pace. Upon successful completion of all four modules, you will receive a certificate from the Academy of Screen Printing Technology.

In order to get certified, you must first register for the program on the academy's website. Once registered, you will have access to all four modules and can begin working through them at your own pace. After completing each module, you must pass a final exam in order to receive credit for it and move onto the next module.

The cost for the certification program is $249 USD. This fee includes access to all four modules and one attempt at each final exam. If you need additional attempts at any of the exams, there is an additional charge per attempt.

2. Certified Screen Printer from the International Association of Screen Printers

Certified Screen Printer from the International Association of Screen Printers (IASP) is a professional certification program designed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated an advanced level of knowledge and skill in screen printing. It is an industry-recognized credential that verifies a person’s expertise in the field.

The certification process involves passing a series of exams that test one’s knowledge and understanding of various aspects of screen printing, such as setup, registration, troubleshooting, and safety. The exams are administered online or through IASP-approved testing centers.

It typically takes around six months to complete the certification program, depending on how quickly you can study and pass the exams. To get started, you need to first register with IASP and pay the required fee. This fee covers the cost of all materials needed for the certification program, including textbooks and practice tests.

The total cost for Certified Screen Printer from IASP varies depending on your country or region. Generally speaking, it costs between $400-$600 USD to become certified.

3. Certified Master Screen Printer from the Professional Screen Printing Association

The Certified Master Screen Printer (CMSP) designation is a professional certification offered by the Professional Screen Printing Association (PSPA). It is designed to recognize individuals who have achieved a high level of technical proficiency in the screen printing industry. The CMSP certification requires that applicants demonstrate their knowledge and experience in the areas of screen printing, color management, design, production, and customer service.

To become certified as a CMSP, applicants must submit an application, pass an examination, and complete a portfolio review. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions covering topics such as screen printing processes, materials and supplies, equipment setup and maintenance, art preparation and design principles. The portfolio review evaluates the applicant’s work samples for quality assurance and consistency.

The cost to apply for the CMSP certification is $250 USD. This fee covers all materials needed for the application process including the exam fees and portfolio review fees.

The entire process usually takes about 6 to 8 weeks from start to finish. After submitting an application and passing the exam with a score of 80% or higher, applicants are required to submit their portfolio for review by PSPA judges. If approved by the judges, applicants will receive their official CMSP certificate within four weeks of completion of their portfolio review.

4. Certified Digital Textile Printer from the International Digital Textile Association

Certified Digital Textile Printer from the International Digital Textile Association (IDTA) is a certification program that recognizes digital textile printers who have demonstrated their knowledge and expertise in digital textile printing. This certification is designed to ensure that digital textile printers meet the highest standards of quality, safety, and performance.

The process for obtaining the Certified Digital Textile Printer certification includes an online application, a written exam, and an on-site inspection. The online application requires basic information about the printer such as contact information and experience in digital textile printing. The written exam tests the applicant’s knowledge of digital textile printing processes, materials, and equipment. Finally, an on-site inspection is conducted by IDTA personnel to verify that all necessary safety protocols are being followed.

The cost of obtaining the Certified Digital Textile Printer certification varies depending on the size of the business and other factors. Generally speaking, it takes between two to four weeks to complete the entire process from start to finish.

Overall, obtaining a Certified Digital Textile Printer certification from IDTA is an important step for any business looking to demonstrate its commitment to quality and safety in digital textile printing.

5. Certified Automated Screen Printing Technician from the Automated Screen Printing Alliance

Certified Automated Screen Printing Technician (CASPT) is a certification program offered by the Automated Screen Printing Alliance (ASPA). It is designed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated knowledge and proficiency in the operation of automated screen printing equipment. The certification requires passing an online exam that covers topics such as safety, maintenance, troubleshooting, and operation of automated screen printing machines.

The CASPT certification typically takes about 2-3 months to complete. To get certified, applicants must first register with the ASPA and pay a $75 registration fee. After registering, applicants will be given access to the online course material which includes videos, quizzes, and other resources. Once the course is completed, applicants must pass a multiple-choice exam that covers all topics related to automated screen printing machines.

The cost for the CASPT certification program is $150 USD for non-members of ASPA and $100 USD for members. This fee includes access to all course materials and the exam fee.

6. Certified Advanced Screen Printer from the Society of Graphic Designers of America

The Certified Advanced Screen Printer (CASP) is a professional certification program offered by the Society of Graphic Designers of America (SGDA). The program is designed to recognize individuals who have achieved a high level of proficiency and expertise in screen printing.

The CASP certification requires applicants to demonstrate their knowledge and skill in the areas of screen printing techniques, materials, equipment, and design principles. Applicants must also pass an online multiple-choice exam administered by the SGDA. The exam covers topics such as color theory, basic typography, design principles, and production processes.

It typically takes about three months to complete the application process for the CASP certification. Applicants must submit a portfolio of their work along with their application form and fee. Once accepted into the program, applicants will be given access to online course materials which they must complete before taking the online exam.

The cost for obtaining the CASP certification varies depending on whether or not you are a member of SGDA. For non-members, it costs $350 USD; for members, it costs $250 USD. Additionally, there is an annual renewal fee of $50 USD for all applicants regardless of membership status.

Overall, obtaining the CASP certification is an excellent way for experienced screen printers to demonstrate their expertise in this field and gain recognition from peers and employers alike.

7. Certified Inkjet Operator from the Specialty Graphic Imaging Association

The Certified Inkjet Operator (CIO) certification is a program offered by the Specialty Graphic Imaging Association (SGIA). This certification is designed to recognize individuals who have achieved a high level of proficiency in the operation and maintenance of digital inkjet printing systems. The CIO certification is based on industry standards and best practices for operating digital inkjet printing systems.

To become certified, candidates must complete an online training program, pass an exam, and demonstrate their knowledge of digital inkjet printing. The online training program consists of four modules: Introduction to Digital Inkjet Printing Systems, Operating Digital Inkjet Printing Systems, Troubleshooting Digital Inkjet Printing Systems, and Maintenance of Digital Inkjet Printing Systems. Each module includes interactive activities and assessments that allow candidates to demonstrate their understanding of the material.

The CIO exam consists of 60 multiple-choice questions covering topics such as color management, media handling, software setup, maintenance procedures, troubleshooting techniques, and safety protocols. Candidates must score at least 80% on the exam in order to be eligible for certification.

The cost for the CIO certification program is $250 USD for SGIA members or $400 USD for non-members. The cost includes access to the online training modules and one attempt at the CIO exam. It typically takes between 10-15 hours to complete all four modules and take the exam; however this can vary depending on each individual’s learning style and experience with digital inkjet printing systems.

8. Certified Pre-Press Technician from the American Prepress Association

Certified Pre-Press Technician from the American Prepress Association (APPA) is a certification program that recognizes individuals who have achieved a high level of knowledge and skill in the pre-press field. This certification is designed to help employers identify qualified pre-press technicians, and to provide employees with an opportunity to demonstrate their expertise.

To become certified, applicants must pass a comprehensive exam that covers topics such as digital imaging, color management, file preparation, proofing, printing technologies, press operations, and quality control. The exam consists of multiple choice questions and requires a minimum score of 80% to pass.

The APPA offers two levels of certification: Certified Pre-Press Technician (CPT) and Advanced Certified Pre-Press Technician (ACPT). The CPT certification requires applicants to have at least one year of experience in the pre-press field and provides basic knowledge about pre-press processes. The ACPT requires three years of experience in the pre-press field and provides advanced knowledge about pre-press processes.

It typically takes several months to prepare for the exam, depending on how much time you are able to dedicate to studying. To get started, you can purchase study materials from the APPA or enroll in an online course. Additionally, there are practice tests available online that can help you prepare for the exam.

The cost for taking the exam varies depending on your level of certification; it costs $150 for CPT certification and $200 for ACPT certification.

9. Certified Color Separator/Color Matcher from Pantone, Inc.

Certified Color Separator/Color Matcher from Pantone, Inc. is a professional-grade color matching system that helps designers and manufacturers accurately match colors for products. It uses Pantone's proprietary color matching technology to ensure accurate color reproduction from design to production.

The Certified Color Separator/Color Matcher includes a set of tools and software that allow users to quickly and accurately match colors for product development, printing, packaging, and other applications. The system includes an intuitive user interface, a library of over 10,000 Pantone colors, the ability to create custom palettes, and advanced color management features.

The Certified Color Separator/Color Matcher is available online through Pantone's website or through authorized resellers. It typically takes 1-2 business days for delivery after ordering.

The cost of the Certified Color Separator/Color Matcher varies depending on the version purchased. Prices range from $699 to $1,999 USD depending on the features included in each version.

10. Expert Level Certification in Heat Transfer Technology from Stahls' Transfer Express

Stahls' Transfer Express Expert Level Certification in Heat Transfer Technology is a comprehensive program designed to train and certify professionals in the heat transfer industry. This certification is offered by Stahls’ Transfer Express, a leading provider of custom heat transfer products and services.

The program consists of five courses that provide an in-depth understanding of the principles and techniques used in the heat transfer industry. The courses cover topics such as garment selection, printing methods, design considerations, application techniques, and troubleshooting. Upon completion of all five courses, participants will receive their Expert Level Certification in Heat Transfer Technology from Stahls’ Transfer Express.

The program takes approximately 8 hours to complete and can be done at your own pace. It is available online or through on-site training sessions with experienced instructors. The cost for this certification is $399 USD per person.

In order to get certified, you must first register for the program online or via phone at (800) 478-2457. Once registered, you will have access to the online course materials which include videos, tutorials, and quizzes. Upon successful completion of all five courses and passing the final exam with a score of 80% or higher, you will receive your Expert Level Certification in Heat Transfer Technology from Stahls' Transfer Express.

11. Certification in Advanced Embroidery Techniques from National Network of Embroidery Professionals

The Certification in Advanced Embroidery Techniques from the National Network of Embroidery Professionals (NNEP) is a program designed to recognize and reward embroiderers who have demonstrated advanced knowledge and skill in the field. The certification is awarded after successful completion of an intensive course that covers topics such as machine setup, thread selection, fabric preparation, hooping techniques, digitizing, and more. The course typically takes two days to complete and requires passing a written exam at the end.

To get certified through NNEP, you must first register for the course online or by mail. The cost of registration is $400 which includes tuition fees and materials. Once registered, you will receive access to online resources and instructional videos that will help you prepare for the course. After completing the course successfully, you will receive a certificate of completion from NNEP that can be used as proof of your advanced embroidery skillset.

Do You Really Need a Screen Printer Certificate?

The answer to this question depends on the type of screen printing you plan to do. If you are doing hobbyist or small-scale screen printing, then a certificate is probably not necessary. However, if you intend to make a living from screen printing, either by running your own business or working for a larger company, then it is likely that you will need some kind of certification in order to prove your competency and knowledge in the field.

Screen printing certification courses are available through many different providers, both online and offline. These courses typically cover topics such as design basics, fabric preparation and selection, setup and registration techniques, troubleshooting tips, and more. They can also include hands-on practice with various types of equipment used in the industry. Although there are no universal standards for these certifications, they can still provide potential employers with valuable evidence of your expertise in the field.

In conclusion, it is important to assess your individual needs when deciding whether or not to pursue a screen printer certificate. For those who intend to work professionally in the industry, having a certificate may be essential in order to demonstrate their qualifications and level of experience. However, hobbyists and others who do not need to prove their proficiency may find that such a credential is unnecessary.

Related: Screen Printer Resume Examples

FAQs About Screen Printer Certifications

1. What certifications are available for screen printers?

Answer: There are several certifications available for screen printers, including the Screen Printing Technical Foundation (SPTF) Certification, Screen Printing Training and Education Network (SPTEN) Certification, and International Association of Screen Printers (IASP) Certification.

2. How do I become certified as a screen printer?

Answer: To become certified as a screen printer, you must complete an accredited course in screen printing or attend a recognized training program. Additionally, some certification programs may require additional experience or examinations before awarding the certification.

3. What are the benefits of becoming a certified screen printer?

Answer: Becoming a certified screen printer can help to demonstrate your expertise in the field to potential employers or clients. It can also provide access to industry networks and resources that may otherwise be unavailable, as well as potentially open up new job opportunities.

4. Are there any prerequisites for obtaining a certification?

Answer: Most certification programs have certain prerequisites that must be met before enrolling in the program, such as having prior experience in the field or passing an examination on related topics. It is important to check with specific programs to determine their individual requirements for enrollment.

5. How long does it take to obtain a certification?

Answer: The amount of time it takes to obtain a certification will vary depending on the specific program and its requirements. Generally speaking, most programs can be completed within six months to one year if all required courses and exams are successfully completed on time.