Certification Programs (HTML)

I’m looking for a certification program in HTML or XHTML. Googling the keywords lead me to the W3School, and not much else.

After reading the comments in an older thread on this forum: “I just took the HTML Certification from W3schools”, I’m inclined to agree with a number of posters… the W3School may not be best caliber certification program.

(I had considered posting my question to that thread, but it’s 13 months old and the posting guideline suggested I start a new thread.)

Although many on that thread suggested a portfolio is more important than a certificate, I also agree. However, my motivation is job related. I recently applied for (and got) a job requiring extensive knowledge of HTML as well as a “Technical Certification” (in job description). None of the candidates had a certification, so they based the hiring on experience and portfolio. Since this is a one-year contract job, it would be a good idea for me to get the certification, just in case they ask for it in the future.

Does anyone have suggestions? Thanks for your feedback.

[FONT=“Georgia”]Why would they?

If you’re doing good work, I doubt they’d care.


Shaun, without going into unnecessary details about who I work for, I’m simply asking for suggestions. Your feedback is not relevant to my question.

[FONT=“Georgia”]Hey, you asked for suggestions.

My suggestion is you don’t worry about it. You already got the job, what are you fussing about?

There’s a reason why none of the other applicants had “Technical Certification” in HTML. If you really want to do a course, why not do something more useful like one in server management or web-technologies? That would carry more weight anyway.

HTML? Is there even an HTML certificate?


I’m struggling to think of any.

If it was networking they’d be the Cisco qualifications, if development then the Microsoft qualifications, but with HTML, can’t think of any.

You could say that you can write XHTML valid code and demonstrate this by using a validator on your websites.


The closest thing you could get is the CIW Web Master’s certificate which is explicitly aimed at web design however it along with every other web design qualification are either seriously outdated, worthless (in terms of what they teach) or simply expelled as not really noteworthy on your resume. Honestly I wouldn’t bother if it’s going to cost you anything, if they are giving it away free as part of the job (as training) then go for it, otherwise just leave it :slight_smile:

There isn’t any official HTML certificate anywhere. All such “certifications” are offered by a specific web site and have no weight beyond that of the site itself.

http://www.brainbench.com/ is one site that specialises in computer “certifiications”.

http://certification.about.com/ has a lot of material about the real computer certifications offered by the big computer companies that actually have industry recognition. http://certification.about.com/od/webinternet/Web_and_Internet_Certifications.htm has information specifically about recognised web related certifications.

http://webdesign.about.com/od/certifiedxhtmldevelopers/Certified_XHTML_Developers.htm has a test at the end of the course that tests if you really understand HTML properly - most people who take that test fail due to not knowing as much HTML as they thought.

Shaun, you have a good point, and after fruitlessly searching for a certification program in xhtml, I am seriously considering going for xml certification, even though I know for a fact I will never use xml at this job.

Accelerator, thanks for the suggestion, and it may be the best idea, but given the nature of the organization, the HR department does the screening.

The organization is “by the book”, and so I was very surprised they didn’t change the job description, but instead waived that one criteria. Well, to further explain why I think having a certificate is important, the organization is looking for additional personnel using the same job description. It’s not my place to tell them there’s no such thing as a legitimate html technical certification (it’s a very large organization and not a corporation).

Felgall and Alex, also thanks! I printing out this post and keeping it at work.

There is if you count the one Alex mentioned (although that does include a few other things apart from HTML).

Well we say legitimate, it’s recognised but pretty much considered a bit of a joke by most professionals because it’s neither a degree (which is of a higher level and more generally valuable) and it’s run by an organization who’s idea of “up-to-date” is about equal to W3Schools :slight_smile:

All of which is irrelevant to the HR people who will be the first people to look at the resumes and decide on who to pass on to the next stage of the hiring process.

HTML Certification? Check, that’s on the resume. Move him to the potential interview pile.

HTML Certification? Nope, into the recycle bin with you.

So just to make sure that you end up in that pile just pick one of the thousands of HTML ‘certifications’ from some nobody somewhere on the web and include that on your resume. If you pick the right one then it will sound really good and you will not even need to know any HTML to get it.

That’s how you play the game…

Smells like rubbish if you ask me, I don’t know any recruiters (and yes I do know some) who look at a CV / resume and immediately toss out anything which doesn’t look like it has a load of fancy qualifications (without checking how much value they actually have). Heck, I could create my own certification scheme for web designers and claim I am accredited (and put that on my resume to bump it up in that manner). If you have a degree or pHD in a related subject from an established institution… yes it will be taken seriously, if you have an A+, CCNA, MCSE or other well established qualification… yes it will be taken seriously. But if you expect me or anyone else to believe that you stand more of a chance of getting employed by just diving into the pool of pseudo qualifications and bulking out your resume with (what is to all relevant standards) unrecognised and un-established fluff, it’s going to take a lot more convincing. Or are you all saying we should go to W3Schools, take the HTML and CSS quizzes for $99, have a fancy irrelevant qualification and be happy that it’ll help us get more work?

That’s basically what I was saying.

I know but the response to it made me want to reply, if resumes are a game to fool the recruiter it’s no wonder most people lie when writing them :rolleyes:

I’d actually suggest that lying in your resume isn’t a good idea since if you do get the job they will soon find out that you lied (and you could find that you don’t keep the job for very long) and if you don’t get the job then the lying didn’t achieve anything.

Of course if the job spec actually asks for something meaningless such as HTML certification then you can’t be expected to tell the truth about there not being one since they have already indicated that they require everyone applying to pretend to have a certification that doesn’t exist. That still doesn’t do away with the actual need to know HTML in order to be able to do the job - all it means is that instead of asking for proof that the people applying know HTML they are asking people to provide evidence of an HTML “certification”. Now obviously the better you know HTML the easier it will be to get a “certification” and if you know it well enough you could even get one that actually means something (in that it actually tests you properly). but since the meaningful ones and the totally meaningless ones have equal standing that requirement doesn’t prevent someone who doesn’t know HTML from applying provided that they can find a “certification” that they can pass that says they know it. So the end result would be that the requirement doesn’t provide the expected distinction between suitable and unsuitable candidates and so the end result is an increased chance that the company will end up at least interviewing more people who are unsuitable than they would have with a better written job spec.

Which brings us back to the subject of… what do you give in respect to “HTML certification” when there isn’t such a qualification (all the ones mentioned and all the mindless fluff ones cover a more general rounding of the web and aren’t explicit enough to qualify"… we really need a serious fix for education in the industry. I’m surprised SitePoint haven’t done something in regards to some kind of learning program (them being a publisher and leading figure on web trends). :slight_smile:

The HTML test on the end of the tutorial series at http://webdesign.about.com is probably as close to being a proper HTML certification as you can currently get and it doesn’t claim to be a certification at all. It does require an advanced knowledge of HTML to actually pass the test and it does “sort of” have the backing of the New York Times to give it some level of officialness.

At least if you manage to pass that test you have proved to yourself that you really do know HTML properly. Of course the extremely high failure rate means you would have to put a real load of effort into learning HTML thoroughly in order to actually pass.

Once you get past the recruiter you still have to get through the people with a clue who will be interviewing you.

I normally get calls for 2-3 dozen jobs a year from headhunters and you’d be amazed at how often they ask for things that are not physically possible (x number of years of experience in something that has only been around for y years).

I just ask them to clarify their requirements because they are impossible and they go back to the clients and do so.

BUT if I didn’t have the basic qualifications required (certifications, etc…) then I would never even get the original phone call because I wouldn’t come up when they search their databases.