Certification refers to the confirmation of certain characteristics of an object, person, or organization. This confirmation is often, but not always, provided by some form of external review, education, assessment, or audit. Accreditation is a specific organization's process of certification.
One of the most common types of certification in modern society is professional certification, where a person is certified as being able to competently complete a job or task, usually by the passing of an examination.
There are two general types of professional certification: some are valid for a lifetime, once the exam is passed. Others have to be recertified again after a certain period of time. Also, certifications can differ within a profession by the level or specific area of expertise they refer to. For example, in the IT Industry there are different certifications available for software tester, project manager, and developer. Similarly, the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology offers three certifications in the same profession, but with increasing complexity.
Certification does not refer to the state of legally being able to practice or work in a profession. That is licensure. Usually, licensure is administered by a governmental entity for public protection purposes and a professional association administers certification. Licensure and certification are similar in that they both require the demonstration of a certain level of knowledge or ability.
In first-party certification, an individual or organization providing the good or service offers assurance that it meets certain claims. In second-party certification, an association to which the individual or organization belongs provides the assurance. Third-party certification involves an independent assessment declaring that specified requirements pertaining to a product, person, process or management system have been met.
Certification in software testing
For software testing the certifications can be grouped into exam-based and education-based. Exam-based certifications: For this there is the need to pass an exam, which can also be learned by self-study: e.g. for International Software Testing Qualifications Board Certified Tester by the International Software Testing Qualifications Board  or Certified Software Tester by QAI or Certified Software Quality Engineer by American Society for Quality. Education-based certifications are the instructor-led sessions, where each course has to be passed, e.g. Certified Software Test Professional or Certified Software Test Professional by International Institute for Software Testing. 
Types of certification
- Academic degree
- Professional certification
- Product certification and certification marks
- Cyber security certification
- Digital signatures in public-key cryptography
- Music recording sales certification, such as "Gold" or "Platinum"
- Film certification, also known as Motion picture rating system 
- Professional certification (computer technology)
- Laboratory Certification and audits 
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Certification — third party attestation related to products, processes, systems or persons (p. 5.5 ISO/IEC 17000:2004). Источник … Словарь-справочник терминов нормативно-технической документации
certification — cer·ti·fi·ca·tion /ˌsər ti fi kā shən/ n 1 a: the act of certifying b: the state of being certified see also certiorari ◇ Certification of an interlocutory decision by a trial court allows an appellate court to review the decision and to answer a … Law dictionary
certification — [ sɛrtifikasjɔ̃ ] n. f. • certificacion 1310; lat. certificatio ♦ Dr. Assurance donnée par écrit. Certification de signatures, de chèques. ⇒ authentification. ● certification nom féminin (latin médiéval certificatio) Assurance donnée par écrit.… … Encyclopédie Universelle
certification — CERTIFICATION. s. f. Terme de Palais. Assurance par écrit, que l on donne ou que l on reçoit en matière d affaires. Sa certification est au bas de la promesse d un tel. Certification de caution. Certification de criées … Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798
certification — Certification. s. f. verb. Certaine sorte d assurance par escrit que l on donne ou que l on reçoit en matiere d affaires. Sa certification est au bas de la promesse d un tel. certification de caution. certification de criées … Dictionnaire de l'Académie française
Certification — Cer ti*fi*ca tion, n. [L. certificatio: cf. F. certification.] The act of certifying. [1913 Webster] … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
certification — early 15c., from M.L. certificationem (nom. certificatio), noun of action from pp. stem of certificare (see CERTIFY (Cf. certify)) … Etymology dictionary
certification — [sʉrt΄ə fi kā′shən] n. [Fr] 1. a certifying or being certified 2. a certified statement … English World dictionary
certification — This is the process of authorising a stock transfer form to be deposited and registered without the cover of a certificate. It can only be carried out by the registrar. Certification may be required if ( i) One certificate is used to cover more… … Financial and business terms
certification — (sèr ti fi ka sion) s. f. 1° Terme de palais. Assurance par écrit. Certification de caution, de criées. Vieilli. 2° Terme de bourse. Certification des signatures, obligation du cédant et souvent des deux parties dans le transfert de certaines … Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré