Categories of AISC Certification


Building QMS Certification (BU - previously noted as acronym "STD")
This program's governing document is the Certification Standard for Steel Building Structures and describes certification requirements for building fabricators regardless of project size and complexity. Certification includes all functions of providing Structural Steel fabrication from receipt of contract through final delivery. AISC believes there is a basic level of quality all fabricators must maintain regardless of the facility’s size or capacity..

Bridge QMS Certification
In 2014, this program completed the conversion to a standard-based bridge certification, which replaces the previous checklist criteria. This transition completes a two-year process of converting bridge participants and applicants to the AISC Certification Program Requirements for Steel Bridge Fabricators. In addition, the program requirements introduce the certification categories of Certified Bridge Fabricator: Simple (SBR), Intermediate (IBR), and Advanced (ABR). Certificates will temporarily continue to include either the “Intermediate/Major” or “Advanced/Major” designations to allow transportation departments additional time to update their standard specifications.

Categories, as defined by the Bridge Requirements & Standard:
  • Certified Bridge Fabricator - Simple (SBR) consists of unspliced rolled sections.
  • Certified Bridge Fabricator - Intermediate (IBR) are typical bridges that do not require extraordinary measures. Typical examples might include: (1) a rolled beam bridge with field or shop splices, either straight or with a radius over 500 ft; (2) a built-up I-shaped plate girder bridge with constant web depth (except for dapped ends), with or without splices, either straight or with a radius over 500 ft; (3) a built-up I-shaped plate girder with variable web depth (e.g., haunched), either straight or with a radius over 1000 ft; (4) a truss with a length of 200 ft or less that is entirely or substantially pre-assembled at the certified
  • Certified Bridge Fabricator - Advanced (ABR) are those requiring an additional standard of care in fabrication and erection, particularly with regard to geometric tolerances. Examples include tub or trapezoidal box girders, closed box girders, large or non-preassembled trusses, arches, bascule bridges, cable-supported bridges, moveable bridges, and bridges with particularly tight curve radius

Bridge Component QMS Certification (CPT)
This program's governing document is the Standard for Bridge and Highway Metal Component Manufacturers and describes certification requirements for facilities that manufacture and supply specific components, composed primarily of metal to bridge and highway construction projects. Certification is appropriate for manufacturers of components that include bracing not designed for primary loads (diaphragms, cross frames and lateral bracing); camera, light, sign and signal support structures; bridge rail; stairs; walkways; grid decks; drains; scuppers; expansion joints; bearings; ballast plates; and mechanical movable bridge equipment.


Sophisticated Paint Endorsement (SPE) 
This endorsement’s governing document is the Standard for Shop Application of Complex Protective Coating Systems, which was developed as a joint effort with Society for Protective Coatings: SSPC to streamline the criteria for both the marketplace and industry. The program evaluates the qualifications of structural steel fabricators and manufacturers of bridge and highway metal components who apply sophisticated or industrial protective coatings, such as zincs, expoxies, urethanes, or multi-coat systems in their paint shops following fabrication. There are three categories: P1-Sophisticated Paint Endorsement-Enclosed, P2-Sophisticated Paint Endorsement-Covered, and P3-Sophisticated Paint Endorsement-Outside. The program is optional for all AISC Certified fabricator participants.

Fracture Critical Endorsement (FC)
This endorsement is focused on the requirements of AWS D1.5, Clause 12, AASHTO/AWS Fracture Control Plan for Nonredundant Members. The provisions of Clause 12 apply to steel bridge members or components that are designated as “fracture critical.” Fracture critical members are basically tension members, or portions of members, of a bridge whose failure could cause a partial or complete collapse of the bridge. The program will evaluate the capability of the bridge fabricator to meet the more stringent fabrication demands of the D1.5 Fracture Control Plan. This endorsement is optional for only Certified Bridge Fabricators: Intermediate or Advanced.


Erector QMS Certification
In 2015, this program began the conversion to a requirement-based erector certification, which replaces the previous checklist criteria.  Additional information on this conversion can be found at the Erector Program Channel.

  • Program Requirements Criteria (CSE) - Program Requirements for AISC Certified Erectors of Structural Steel is the governing program document and references the Standard for Structural Steel Erectors. These documents describe the criteria of a quality management system and safety management system for structural steel erectors. The quality management system shall address all functions of structural steel erection from receipt of contract through completion of  the work of the erector.
              • The Erector Requirements will supersede the current checklist criteria and categories (Certified Steel Erector and Advanced Certified Steel Erector).  This will begin for new applicants on February 2, 2015, and a Certification Bulletin will be released to address the transition of current erector participants.
              • The program will also include 3 optional endorsements: Seismic, Metal Deck, and Bridge Erection.
  • Checklists Criteria:
    • Certified Steel Erector (CSE)
      Erection companies providing services necessary for erection of structures such as schools, shopping centers, light manufacturing plants, warehouses, low-rise beam and column structures, simple non-continuous bridges, and steel-framed buildings.

      A Certified Steel Erector must have the following items:
                    • Erection plan
                    • Formal safety plan
                    • Program to promote project planning
                    • Formal program to monitor compliance with required welding and bolting procedures
                    • Written substance abuse plan and policy

    • Advanced Certified Steel Erector (ACSE)
      Erection companies providing services necessary for erection of structures such as large public and institutional buildings, heavy manufacturing plants, bunkers, bins, major bridges, continuous girder bridges, railroad bridges, powerhouses, major industrial facilities, locks and dams, high-rise structures, arenas, and repair and rehabilitation of existing steel structures. The organization shall understand the procedures involved and have ready access to the requisite talent, resources, and experience necessary to erect complex steel structures

      An Advanced Certified Steel Erector must have the following items listed below as well as meet the requirements for Certified Steel Erector:

              • Implementation of the quality and safety systems defined in the Certified Advanced Steel Erector checklist
              • Experience in staged construction for maintaining traffic
              • Experience in composite and concrete core construction
              • Experience in close tolerance erection (as in architecturally exposed structural steel)
              • Experience in use of gantry and other specialized crane systems
              • Experience in retrofit and maintenance
              • Experience with complex projects such as working over water and railroad tracks
              • Experience with large-scale erection projects
              • Experience and equipment for rivet removal
              • Written procedure for jacking and use of falsework


Metal Building Systems (MB)
AISC sponsorship of this program concluded at the end of 2009.