Susan Slaughter

SAS Certification as a Tool for Professional Development

In Everything, SAS, SAS certification, SAS Papers, Western Users of SAS Software on September 1, 2014 at 10:58 am

SAS Certification As a Tool for Professional DevelopmentIf you had told me a year ago that I would write a paper about SAS certification for the Western Users of SAS Software 2014 Educational Forum and Conference, I would have been very surprised!  I became a SAS Certified Professional long ago, and that certification expired–long ago!  However, in the past six months, both my son and a friend have become SAS certified.  In the process, I learned a lot.

Now Andra Northup and I have written a paper titled SAS Certification as a Tool for Professional Development.  Doing the research for this paper, we gathered information and opinions both from SAS users and from experts at SAS Institute.  Here are some interesting things I learned:

  • Over 67,000 SAS certificates have been awarded.
  • The volume of tests taken has doubled in the past three years.
  • The first SAS certification was in Europe and required passing 3 two-hour exams.
  • Since 2006, certifications no longer expire, but are tied to a particular version of SAS.
  • Some people claim that the Advanced exam is easier than the Base exam.
  • The pass rate for the Advanced exam is, in fact, higher than for the Base exam.
  • At only $55, the online practice exam for the Base exam is a bargain, and it’s good for six months.
  • The SAS Programming 1: Essentials online self-paced course is FREE.

If you are going to the conference, I hope you will attend our presentation Thursday, September 4, 2014 2:00-2:50pm. If not, then you can download the paper here.

  1. Hello Susan,

    I liked the paper, in particular the salary analysis, and the before-during-after tips. I presented a paper on the SAS Certification process at SAS Global Forum in San Francisco last year. What surprised me most in my research was (1) the low ratio of SAS users who are certified; (2) how older, vastly experienced (and non-Certified) SAS programmers viewed the SAS Certification process as a shortcut for the less experienced; (3) how those with no SAS knowledge of SAS hoped certification WAS their shortcut to getting into SAS.

    Good luck at the presentation!


  2. Andrew, Thanks for your comment and for pointing out your VERY INTERESTING paper. There have been a lot of papers written about certification, and I confess that I had missed yours so I’m glad you brought it to my attention.

    For anyone else who has not seen Andrew’s paper, here is the link


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