Frequently Asked Questions
Who is eligible to test for the certification? How long will it take to study for the test? What happens after I take the test? Find answers to these and other questions in the FAQs section below.
Log-in and Registration
Registration is Free! In order to access the free pre-test, Body of Knowledge, or certification test, registration is required.
You will be asked to input your contact information beginning with your company name. This will allow us to verify if you are an employee of a Printing Industries of America member company to receive special pricing.
If your company name is a member of Printing Industries but doesn’t show up on this list, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Once registration is complete, you are ready to take the pre-test.
We vet your membership through the registration process. Go the Register page to find out.
If you wish to register more than one person, contact us at email@example.com and we will get you set up. You are eligible for discounts of 10% for registering 3 or 4 people, 20% for 5-10 people, and even deeper discounts for more registrants.
Certification and Testing
A. Any professional with two or more years experience working in operations or production in an organization that produced printed products is eligible. Further, the applicant must cite at least one example of a process improvement they have made for their company. IPP certification is particularly intended to validate the experience of an individual actively employed in a quality management position, but individuals with general industry experience and appropriate training in the field of quality improvement can sit for the test and achieve certification.
A. You can take a 25-question pre-test that provides similar questions to those in the actual certification test. This test is free and accessible on this website; all you have to do is register for access. If you pass the pre-test with greater than 80% accuracy (over 20 questions answered correctly) you may be ready to take the certification test. However, Printing Industries of America has developed a Body of Knowledge (BOK) to help prepare individuals to successfully take the certification test. The BOK is available for purchase, along with the certification test, from the store.
A. You will receive an email at the email address you used to register for this site. That email will show your final score. If you scored less than 20 questions correctly, you are encouraged to study the IPP Body of Knowledge before attempting to take the actual certification test.
A. You can access the test through the store on this website. The test is delivered directly on the site and is available immediately upon receiving your email containing the access instructions to the testing page. If you choose to purchase the complete Body of Knowledge and Test Bundle, you will have six months to study the materials.
A. The test is timed; once started, you have 100 minutes to answer the 100 multiple-choice questions in the test. There is no way to stop the timer, so please ensure you’re ready to fully engage for the duration of the test. Any unanswered questions will be counted as incorrect when the timer is up. You can pass questions and return to them later, so one strategy for success would be to run through the questions rather quickly answering those that you are certain of, then returning to the more challenging questions at a later time.
A. The IPP certification test is offered online and can be taken at will. It is not a proctored exam. The test is timed to help ensure that individuals have enough time to consider each question, but not enough time to research answers. Organizations may to choose to offer the test to their employees in a classroom setting with a proctor on site, but it is not required to sit for certification.
A. You’ll be notified by email that you’ve passed the test and can claim your designation as a certified Improvement Professional in Print. Your name will be added to our online registry (you can choose to opt out of this if you wish) and you will receive a digital ‘IPP Certified’ badge that you may add to you email signature, social media profile, or website. You will also receive a nicely framed certificate proclaiming that you are a certified Improvement Professional in Print. This certificate ships within two weeks of your certification.
A. If you do not pass the certification test, you will have the option to take it again at a later date. The test questions are randomized so will not be offered in the same order on subsequent attempts. Individuals who wish to try the test again can do so at a $100 discount off of the certification test price.
We will make every effort to provide you a list of the questions you missed on the certification exam, however, we will not provide the correct answers. This is to maintain the integrity of the certification program.
Body of Knowledge
A. The IPP BOK includes seven self-paced online classes delivered by industry experts John Compton, Dr. Malcolm Keif, and Dr. Kevin Cooper. It also includes three books: Lean Printing: Pathway to Success; Lean Printing: Cultural Imperatives for Success; and Setup Reduction for Printers. The only way to get the entire IPP BOK is to purchase the IPP Certification Bundle, including the complete Body of Knowledge plus access to the certification test. You can purchase the online courses a la carte from the store on this website.
A. It should take 10-12 hours to take the seven online classes. It depends on an individual’s reading speed and comprehension abilities to say how long it will take to read the three books; realistically one can get through them all with 8-10 hours of reading. So one should expect to devote a minimum of 20 hours to study the BOK materials.
A. Over 80% of the material in the IPP certification exam is covered in the Body of Knowledge material. Since one can pass the exam with 80% correct answers, one who masters all of the material in the BOK can pass the exam. However, the testing does include some concepts that are part of Lean Management and other quality programs that may not be specifically covered in the BOK materials. Those interested in certification are required to have two years of industry experience, preferably in a quality improvement role, and must be able to cite at least one quality improvement idea or program they have implemented at their company. So we anticipate those interested in the certification would have some knowledge and experience in Lean/quality programs that would help them in the testing process. We encourage users to attend events such as Printing Industries of America’s Continuous Improvement Conference where well-known quality experts discuss core quality improvement and lean concepts.
A. Because we’re in the business of printing! Actually, the books will eventually be made available in online format, but for now, they are available in print only. We are dedicated to shipping the books within 48 hours of ordering the BOK. Users can get started with the online classes right away and by the time they are finished, the books will arrive.
A. Orders usually ship within 48 hours. Orders for overnight delivery should be placed by phone and must be placed by noon Eastern time by calling 800-910-4283 x770. While every effort will be made to process and ship the order per your request, next-day and priority delivery is not guaranteed. Most U.S., Canadian, and Mexican orders will be shipped via ground service UPS. Shipments outside of North America will be made by UPS or another traceable service. Duty and brokerage charges are the responsibility of the customer. Please use your street address as the shipping address; we cannot deliver to a post office box.
A. Access to the online courses is granted for one year from the time the order is placed.
A. While the IPP BOK teaching many of the concepts that are core to the Six Sigma approach and methodology, they materials were not designed to be a primer for Six Sigma belt designations. The BOK will prepare you for the Improvement Professional in Print certification.