Working together, ISAC and ICCS, under the sponsorship of the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation, have worked with leading certification companies to establish the first cytometry certification program. The goals of this program are to recognize professional excellence among cytometrists, aid cytometry employers in identifying qualified cytometrists, and assure the quality of cytometry applications world-wide.
In 2009 ISAC and ICCS contracted with the Professional Examination Service (PES) to conduct a market analysis feasibility survey for a certification in the cytometry field. Responses to the survey were overwhelmingly positive and showed support for certification from all work settings, career levels and geographical locations. Moreover, the results revealed a core of knowledge that all cytometrists need to have, no matter where they work or what they work on. In 2010 ISAC and ICCS contracted with Prometric to conduct a role delineation (job analysis) study. The purpose of the study was to determine the knowledge and skills necessary for all cytometrists and create an Examination Content Outline. The Societies engaged over 30 Subject Matter Experts to create the role delineation survey. Once again we had an overwhelming response to our survey. Over 650 members of the cytometry community participated. The results of the survey were analyzed by the Certification Advisory Committee members to create the Examination Content Outline, which represents the core body of knowledge and skills necessary for cytometrists. Please click here to view to the Examination Content Outline.
Using this Outline, ISAC and ICCS developed the examination, validated it, and began administering it in 2011. It is now available internationally.
The certification development process has been led by a volunteer committee of members of both Societies. The advisory committee members are:
Robert F. Murphy
The Societies followed certification industry best practices to create the examination:
Market Analysis (completed October 2009)
- Survey sent to both Societies and other Cytometry groups to assess the level of interest in cytometry certification.
- Over 800 survey responses were received from over 50 countries representing all work settings and geographic areas.
- The main conclusion of this survey was that there is very strong support for a certification program. Regardless of location and among all subgroups of people practicing cytometry in different capacities.
Role Delineation Study (completed August 2010)
- An extensive survey to determine the knowledge required by cytometrists to do their jobs was sent to your colleagues.
- Using survey data from over 650 of your colleagues representing all work settings and geographic areas the Certification Advisory Committee, with support from Prometric created the exam content outline, which can be accessed by clicking here.
Item Writing and Test Construction (completed April 2011)
- Over 20 volunteers representing all work settings from Asia, Europe, North America and South America wrote over 220 questions for the examination.
- Six of the item writer and three subject matter experts that did not write items gathered over three days to edit the 220 questions, write new items and constructed two forms of the exam.
Passing Point Study (completed April 2011)
- Seven subject matter experts, which include volunteers who did not participate in the item writing or test construction processes beta tested the examination.
- Their passing score recommendation was provided to our testing vendor Castle Worldwide. Who completed a statistical analysis and recommended passing point.
- The Certification Advisory Committee reviewed Castle’s data and approved the ICCE passing scores.