American Board of Industrial Hygiene Explains CIH Job Analysis Studies

The American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH) is committed to developing the most content-valid examinations for people applying to the CIH program.

Lansing, MI, June 18th, 2013 -- The development of a quality credentialing or licensing program should follow certain logically sound and legally defensible procedures for developing examinations. Before a content-valid examination is developed, the knowledge and skills needed to be a certified professional in the field must be determined. The process for identifying these areas is known as a Role Delineation/Task Analysis or Job Analysis, which serves as a blueprint for examination development.


The critical reason for conducting a Job Analysis study is to ensure that an examination is content-valid. Content validity is the most commonly applied and accepted validation strategy utilized in establishing certification programs today. In psychometric terms, validation is the way a test developer documents that the mastery to be inferred from a test score is actually measured by the examination. A content-valid exam appropriately evaluates knowledge or skills required to function as a certified practitioner in the field. It contains a representative sample of items that measure the knowledge or skills contained in the profession being tested.


Job Analysis studies are conducted at ABIH in conjunction with exam consultants from Castle Worldwide. The studies include:

  • Initial Development - A panel is convened to identify the domains, tasks, knowledge and skills essential to the performance of a Certified Industrial Hygienist. Panel members represent a variety of practice settings, geographic regions, educational levels and years of experience.
  • Validation Study - A random sample of CIHs certified within the last ten years then participates in a validation survey.
  • Development of Test Specifications - Based on the ratings gathered from the representative sample of CIHs, the test specifications for the certification exam are developed.


“The Job Analysis study is an integral part of ensuring that the CIH examination is content-valid and that the aspects of the profession covered on the exam reflect the tasks performed in practice settings,” reported Ron Drafta, CIH, Certification Program Manager at the American Board of Industrial Hygiene.  “For both broad content areas and tasks, a Job Analysis study identifies their criticality and frequency. These ratings play an important role in determining the content of the CIH examination.”


To learn more about the American Board of Industrial Hygiene or the CIH program, please email, visit, or call (517) 321-2638.


About the American Board of Industrial Hygiene

Since 1960, ABIH, a not-for-profit corporation, has been the world's largest, premier organization for certifying professionals in the practice of industrial hygiene. ABIH is responsible for ensuring high-quality certification including education, experience, examination, certification maintenance and ethics enforcement.

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