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Become an HFI-Certified Usability Analyst™

Usability is becoming increasingly critical to online success, but most designers or developers have no formal training in it. HFI's Certified Usability Analyst (CUA) program validates a usability practitioner's expertise in user-centered design.

Usability professionals speak out
Training, Certification, and Career Outcomes – (pdf file)


Benefits of Certification, with Mary M. Michaels

Benefits of HFI Certification

Preparing for the CUA Exam, with Mary M. Michaels
Preparing for the CUA Exam

More information on HFI's certification program
Detailed information sheet
Download (63K pdf file)
Certified Usability Analyst

There are currently 4976 HFI-Certified Usability Analysts™.

HFI-Certified Usability Analysts have a clear understanding of research-based principles of designing interfaces from the perspective of the end user. They perform data gathering, task analysis, and usability testing. They pinpoint the usability problems and offer design solutions. The usability analyst brings the critical success factor to bear throughout the development life cycle. That is, designing for the user.

The advantages of becoming HFI-certified:

Art Zippel
  Read how CUA certification helped Art Zippel in his career.

 The certification served as a reinforcement for what I'm doing, so I am more confident in presenting a concept or design"
Jim Obrien
Jim O'Brien
Senior Interaction Designer
 The training was great, very effective. Now, having been tested and certified by HFI, I have more confidence in addressing usability challenges."
Chow Murie
Chow Sok Mui Murie
Senior Creative Consultant
NCS, Singapore
The Process: Become HFI-Certified

HFI-Certified Usability Analysts pass an examination demonstrating their mastery of the fundamental principles of user-centered design. The following HFI courses provide a solid foundation in this knowledge. You can take the certification exam without having to take these courses.

Course 1. User-Centered Analysis and Conceptual Design
User-centered analysis is the basis for designing software interfaces that are intuitive and easy to use. In this course, you'll learn the methods of analyzing user requirements.

Course 2. Practical Usability Testing
A critical component of creating a user-centered application is progressive testing. This course provides practical techniques to help you move the design into accordance with the user's needs, limitations, mental models and cognitive styles.

Course 3. The Science and Art of Effective Web and Application Design
This course draws on the most up-to-date usability research and on the principles of successful visual design. You will learn how to create winning Web sites that balance user performance and visual appeal.

Course 4. Putting Research into Practice
This course provides participants a fast-paced review of recent usability research with a distinct "How can I use this?" focus.

HFI's public course schedule

 I went to a taxonomy conference recently and much of the discussion was around 'are we a profession?', 'what are the qualifications needed?', 'what should we call ourselves,' and 'do we need a certification program?'

" HFI is way ahead of the game and has done so much to provide standards for the usability field through their courses and programs. I really appreciate the work they're doing and feel that I'm able to do a better job for my company as a result of HFI's courses and certification program."
Linda Moir
Linda Moir
Manager, Web
Alberta Blue Cross

Several times a year, HFI will offer a two and a half hour online exam.

In India we offer a proctored exam for those wishing to be certified. For information on examinations in India, please contact training@humanfactors.com.

Register for exam. Upon successful completion of the exam, HFI-Certified Usability Analysts receive an authenticated certification diploma. If you do not pass the exam, you can retake it within six months at no cost. For pricing of the courses and the examination, please see below.

Keeping Current

Our policy is "Once a CUA, always a CUA." However, HFI-Certified Usability Analysts can stay up-to-date on the latest Web design research by attending the Putting Research into Practice course each year.

Future options may include affiliation of the program with a university so students would receive Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for taking the four courses.


Courses range from $1,450 to $1,725 each.

There is a $225 fee to take the two and a half hour online examination once all classes are completed. If you wish to take the exam without taking the HFI courses, the fee is $800.

Certification Track Pricing

If you prepay for the complete certification track in advance (four courses plus the examination) the cost is $5,720. This track must be completed within a two-year period. This certification track fee is non-refundable, but course seats may be transferred to another person. Contact Judy at 1-641-209-6825 or judy@humanfactors.com if you would like to be on this track. For information about onsite pricing, please call 1-800-242-4480.

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