Certified Quality Inspector (CQI) vs. Certified Quality Technician (CQT): A Comprehensive Comparison

  • /
  • Blog
  • /
  • Certified Quality Inspector (CQI) vs. Certified Quality Technician (CQT): A Comprehensive Comparison

In the world of quality management, certifications like the CQI and CQT from the American Society for Quality (ASQ) are highly regarded. These certifications validate a professional's expertise in quality control and assurance. This post aims to compare these two certifications to assist students and professionals in choosing the one that best suits their career path.

Certification Overview

CQI: Certified Quality Inspector

  • Target Audience: For individuals who perform inspection and testing roles and require a fundamental understanding of quality control processes.
  • Key Focus: This certification focuses on inspection, laboratory procedures, measuring process performance, data recording, and formal report preparation.

CQT: Certified Quality Technician

  • Target Audience: Paraprofessionals working under quality engineers or supervisors, focusing on problem-solving, preparing inspection plans, and applying statistical methods for process control.
  • Key Focus: Emphasizes analyzing and solving quality problems, preparing procedures, training inspectors, performing audits, and analyzing quality costs.

Examination Structure

CQI Exam

  • Format: Multiple-choice questions.
  • Details: One-part, 110-question exam with 100 scored and 10 unscored questions. Total appointment time is four-and-a-half hours, with 4 hours and 18 minutes of exam time.

CQT Exam

  • Format: Multiple-choice questions.
  • Details: Similar to CQI, it is a one-part, 110-question exam with 100 scored questions. The total time and exam duration are identical to CQI.

Work Experience Requirements


  • Requires two years of work experience or successful completion of an ASQ-approved technical/apprenticeship training course. If lacking a high-school diploma or GED, three additional years of work experience are needed.


  • Requires at least four years of higher education and/or work experience in one or more areas of the CQT Body of Knowledge. Prior ASQ certifications can apply to this requirement. Degree holders can have part of the four-year requirement waived.

Body of Knowledge Comparison

CQI Body of Knowledge (BoK) Highlights:

  1. Technical Mathematics: Including basic shop math, algebra, geometry, trigonometry, measurement systems, and numeric conversions.
  2. Metrology: Emphasizes the use of various gauges and measurement instruments, gauge handling, and calibration.
  3. Inspection and Test: Covers blueprints, sampling, testing methods, software for test equipment, and inspection planning.
  4. Quality Assurance: Focuses on basic statistics, statistical process control, quality improvement, and audits.

CQT Body of Knowledge (BoK) Highlights:

  1. Quality Concepts and Tools: Covers quality principles for products and processes, standards, cost of quality, and basic quality tools.
  2. Statistical Techniques: Includes general concepts, calculations, control charts, and data plotting.
  3. Metrology and Calibration: Emphasizes measurement equipment, control, and maintenance of measurement and test equipment.
  4. Inspection and Test: Focuses on blueprint reading, inspection concepts, techniques, and processes.
  5. Quality Audits: Addresses various types of audits, audit components, tools and techniques, and communication tools.
  6. Risk Management: Covers risk assessment and mitigation, corrective action, and preventive action.

Career Path and Opportunities

  • CQI: Suitable for those aspiring to specialize in quality control inspection and testing roles.
  • CQT: Ideal for individuals seeking a broader role in quality problem-solving, inspection planning, and statistical process control under the guidance of quality engineers.


The CQI and CQT certifications cater to different facets of quality management. CQI is more focused on inspection and testing, whereas CQT offers a broader perspective, including quality problem-solving and statistical process control. The choice depends on individual career goals, experience, and interest areas. Both certifications can significantly enhance credentials in the quality management field, paving the way for professional growth and opportunities.

Similar Posts:

November 4, 2021

Causes of Poor Software Quality

March 6, 2021

Quality Gurus Photos

49 Courses on SALE!