Although becoming certified doesn't necessarily make you a better welder, it gives you a huge advantage in terms of employment and lets potential employers know that you are skilled in your trade. The American Welding Society operates over 70 testing facilities in the United States. If you are a welder in the state of Michigan and wish to become certified, you will have to visit one of the two accredited testing centers operating within the state.

Know your stuff. By the time you apply for certification, you will want to have acquired the skills necessary to be a welder. This can be done while in high school, at a post-secondary institution, through an apprenticeship, or by a combination of these avenues.

Schedule a test at an accredited testing facility. The two test centers, as of 2011, located in the state of Michigan are the National Testing & Research Lab in Detroit and Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor. Note that AWS rules prohibit you from being tested by the same individual who trained you.

Complete an application for certification. This may be downloaded from the AWS website.

Bring your completed application, $30 and a form of photographic identification such as a driver's license to the AWS test facility on the date for which you scheduled your test. You will need to perform a weld, which will then be inspected. If you pass, you will be issued a certification card within two weeks of your test. If you fail, you may schedule another test.


You must renew your certification every six months or it will lapse. This can easily be done by submitting a certification maintenance form, available on the AWS website, every six months. Be sure to have your employer sign the form to verify that you are performing the same type of welding for which you tested.