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Exam Integrity

It is the responsibility of the SAS Global Certification Program to protect the integrity and value of the credentials that we develop and award. A SAS certification can open doors and provide opportunities for new jobs, promotions, higher pay and more. Unfortunately, with that value comes attempts to bypass the demanding work required to study, learn, and demonstrate proficiency in the objectives covered in SAS certification exams.

We recognize most testers abide by the rules covered in the SAS Certification Candidate Agreement and those instated by exam delivery providers and test proctors. It is for these thousands of SAS credential holders worldwide that we take the precautions and actions detailed on this page to protect the value and integrity of our program and your credentials.

SAS Certification Candidate Agreement

The SAS Certification Candidate Agreement is a contract between SAS Institute, Inc and a Certification Exam Candidate. This agreement details the rights and responsibilities of the certification candidate and the SAS Global Certification Program. At the time of your exam, you will be presented with this agreement, and you will be required to accept the terms of the agreement if you wish to test. You reserve the right to decline the agreement if you feel you cannot meet the terms. We strongly suggest you read the SAS Global Certification Candidate Agreement in full prior to the day of your test.  

The agreement is available to review in the following languages:
English | Chinese | Japanese | Korean

The key points of the agreement are:

  • The answers you provide on this examination are the result of your own legitimately acquired skills and knowledge.
  • You have not and will not provide or accept any improper assistance before, during or after this examination attempt.
  • You are the person registered for this examination attempt (that is, you are not allowing someone to take this examination for you).
  • You will follow all login and exam launch instructions and make no attempts to utilize programs or software outside of those required to launch and complete the exam.
  • You will comply with all rules and regulations applicable to registration, administration, scoring and reporting of the examination as set forth by SAS and by a test delivery provider or proctor, including, without limitation, fully and truthfully cooperating with any investigation into testing irregularities.
  • You will not disclose, copy, photograph, or share in any manner any SAS Global Certification Program exam questions or answers in whole or in part; and
  • You consent to SAS Institute Inc. sharing your personal information with its certification vendors to the extent necessary to provide and fulfill services associated with this certification exam.

A Statement on Non-independent Test Taking

Non-Independent Test Taking (NITT) occurs when a test taker receives assistance, either from a person or materials, which is not a standard and acceptable type of assistance available to all test takers. This assistance leads to answer responses provided by the test taker during the exam that are not necessarily their own. NITT can take various forms. The more common forms are listed here, but we suggest reading the SAS NITT Policy for a deeper understanding of what types of behaviors to avoid.

  • Taking written or digital notes into a testing center or having them present and accessible during an online exam.
  • Looking at another tester’s exam
  • Communicating with another person by any means during your exam
  • Allowing another person to take your exam for you, in-person, remotely or by any other means (commonly referred to as ‘Proxy Testing’).
  • Gaining pre-knowledge of exam questions. (Review the SAS NITT policy for deeper explanation of “pre-knowledge”)

The Use of Data Forensics to Identify testing irregularities

SAS employs data forensics to detect statistically anomalous exam results and may use this as a basis for security violation actions. Per the SAS Certification Candidate Agreement (§6.2), “SAS may conduct a statistical analysis of exam results at any time to monitor for abnormal scores, indications of inappropriate activity, or that a score does not represent a valid measurement of a candidate’s actual skills and knowledge.”

The forensic data analysis considers a variety of factors of the testing result and is based on extensive academic and professional research. All flagged exam results are meticulously reviewed prior to a revocation decision being made. Based on this thorough review, SAS can make the NITT decision with certainty. 

If SAS determines in its sole discretion that exam results are abnormal, inappropriate actions or activities have occurred, or that you have undertaken or participated in any action that compromises the integrity and/or confidentiality of an exam or the SAS Global Certification Program whether intentional or unintentional, remedial action may be taken including, but not limited to, invalidation of exam scores, revocation of credentials, a temporary or permanent ban from participating in the program, or prosecution under applicable civil and criminal law.

A few important points on Data Forensic Analysis:

  • Forensic analysis is an ongoing process which makes it possible that an exam can be reviewed and revoked at a time later than the original testing date.
  • The SAS data forensic process is based on several factors and many years of research. To prevent candidates from bypassing our statistical indicators, SAS does not provide specific details about the methods used to determine an anomalous result.

What happens if a candidate violates the SAS Global Certification Agreement

The SAS Global Certification Program takes violations of the Certification policies very seriously. Penalties for violations vary by type of violation and circumstances. Violations can result in revocation of certifications, invalidation of exam results, temporary suspension, or permanent ban from the program. Refunds of testing fees will not be granted when a violation is detected.

For the sake of candidate privacy, the SAS Global Certification Program will only communicate with the certification candidate whose result was found to be anomalous. Any invalidation or revocation decisions will not be discussed with a third party, including but not limited to an employer, manager, professor/instructor, academic institution, etc. Only those individuals involved in the process of revocation will be privy to any related information on the test result. The relationship between the testing candidate and the SAS Global Certification Program is established through the candidate agreement and the SAS global program will communicate exclusively with the candidate.

Candidates can appeal an invalidation or revocation decision by submitting a request to certification@sas.com within 30 days of receiving the Security Violation Notice.

Authorized Study Materials

For most testing candidates, violations of the SAS Certification Candidate Agreement should not be of concern. We recognize most candidates study and test in acceptable ways and adhere to all policies and procedures related to the exams. Additionally, most candidates wish to avoid any potential actions that could lead to a violation. SAS does receive questions related to what types of materials are considered unauthorized study materials. In the SAS NITT policy document, the concept of exam pre-knowledge and unauthorized materials is discussed.

Here are the key points when considering what study materials may be suspect.

First, you should carefully consider test questions provided as study material. Look for indicators to suggest the material may contain actual exam test questions.

Any one of the following may be an indicator that the materials are not authorized: 

  • Are many other IT (Information Technology) companies certification exams included on the site? 
  • Are there various SAS tests, covering distinctly different product areas, being offered on the site? 
  • Are there claims the questions are “exact test questions” or the “same as the certification exam”? 
  • Does the website make any guarantees about passing the exam?
  • Are the materials advertised with terms like Brain-dumps or Dumps? 
  • Are actual educational study materials provided as a study guide? 
  • Have your peers indicated that the materials are exact test questions? 
  • What comments do others make about the test (in person or on the web)? 

The only study materials (which contain questions) that can be considered authorized by SAS are those linked to at www.sas.com/certification.  For a specific list of preparation materials, by exam, visit the SAS Exam Prep page. If you are unsure about the legitimacy of study materials, you can email the SAS Global Certification Program at certification@sas.com.    

Verifying Credentials

SAS has several ways for institutions, hiring managers and interested parties to verify the authenticity of a Certification. Paper certificates and score reports can be an indicator of a certification, but they should be validated by one of the following methods:

  • Digital Badge – Every SAS Certification issued received a digital badge. These badges are often displayed in email signatures and shared across social media sites. By clicking on a badge image, it will open a webpage displaying the badge information including the recipient, date of issue and additional metadata related to the badge requirements. Badges that have been invalidated or revoked will not display this information when clicked.
  • Transcript – All candidates that hold SAS certifications can log in to their SAS Certification Manager Account and create a transcript with a verifiable link that can be emailed to a third party. This can be requested as a means of validation.
  • Certification Verification System – Every SAS Certification awarded has a certificate number listed on the PDF of the Certificate. That number can be requested from the candidate and entered to verify the certification is valid.

SAS Certification Security Tipline

Help us protect the value of your credentials. Have you been offered inappropriate help on your exam? Have you come across materials that may violate SAS Certification policies? If you wish to check on whether certain materials would be considered authorized? Contact us certification@sas.com.

We will investigate your concerns and you will remain anonymous.