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AWS Frequently Asked Questions

Browse AWS Frequently Asked Questions


Which test should I take?

Consult your company’s welding or quality control engineer or QA manager for the proper tests needed.  You can also complete our online Request Form and we will assist you in choosing the most appropriate tests for you.

Do you offer classes/instruction?

Yes we do! We offer a two week course on FCAW and SMAW with the opportunity to take a AWS certification test at the end of the two weeks. Please contact the AWS Coordinator for pricing and information.

Do you test off-site?

Yes we do! Every situation is different, contact our Coordinator to obtain a pricing quote.

How do I schedule my test?

AWS Certification testing is on a first-come first-serve basis.  To guarantee a test date appointment, the ATF must have received the applicant’s completed registration form, as well as payment in full for the tests to be administered.

How far in advance must I schedule my testing?

We would recommend scheduling testing 2 to 3 weeks in advance, and that candidates with Special needs testing and large group testing frequently require additional planning time due to material ordering/shipping, etc.

Do you test on weekends?

Regular testing for AWS Certification is only available Mondays through Thursdays from 8:00am until 4:00pm.

How many tests can I take in one day?

We recommend one per day; however this is dependent on the skill of the test taker.

Can I practice before the test?

There will be no practice time allowed during the testing process. However you will be given the opportunity to weld on a practice plate to allow familiarization with our welding equipment.  If you feel you need to improve your skills before testing, you can register for practice time at our facility which takes place prior to your test date.

How long does it take to complete the test?

This varies from welding process and welder skill.

Is there a time limit to complete the test?

Yes, the testing time varies based on WPS.

What if I need to cancel my test?

Prior to 48 hours in advance, 100% refund, within 24-48 hours 75% refund, day of testing, no refunds will be given.


Things to bring to your certification test:

  • Safety glasses/goggles to cover prescription glasses
  • Welding Helmet
  • Welding cap
  • Ear protection
  • Leather boots
  • Welding jacket
  • Welding gloves
  • Correct clothing- full length jeans/trousers no holes or frayed edges
  • Valid picture I.D. – U.S. Driver’s License or Equivalent

General Information

  • Applicant must observe all NS Safety rules and regulations while testing
  • Norfolk Southern Training Center is also a tobacco free campus
  • Once the testing begins, you cannot leave the campus