In order to obtain a locksmith certification, you typically need to pass some type of written test, and meet certain other requirements. The exact requirements can depend on the country you live in, and even different jurisdictions within the same country can have varying expectations. Some jurisdictions have experience or training requirements that you need to meet, while others will refuse to certify people who have recent convictions for certain violent crimes and property-related offenses. If you meet all of the requirements in your jurisdiction, you will typically need to pay a fee, and then complete a competency examination in order to receive a locksmith certification.
Locksmiths usually have extensive training in the theory behind various locking mechanisms in addition to practical experience. Some locksmiths design new locking mechanisms, or re-key old locks, while others pick locks for people who have misplaced their keys, law enforcement agencies, and towing companies. If this is a career that you find interesting, you will typically need to obtain a locksmith certification or license. There are a few exceptions to that rule, such as building maintenance workers and people who cut new keys in fixed locations.
The first step in earning a locksmith certification is to make sure that you meet all of the requirements set by the licensing authority in your area. If you have been convicted of certain crimes, you will be prevented from working as a locksmith in many areas. Some areas also have experience or educational requirements you will need to meet, while others simply ask that you take and pass an examination.
If there are experience requirements in your area, you will typically need to find work as an apprentice or assistance locksmith. Educational requirements can be met in a number of different ways, including technical school courses and online distance learning options. Prior to signing up for any locksmith certification course, it is a good idea to verify that it will meet the educational requirements imposed in your local jurisdiction.
Before you take the certification or licensing exam, you may want to inquire about what information the test covers. Many jurisdictions base their tests on specific books, or other training materials, and knowing which books are used can help you study the right information. After you are comfortable with your level of knowledge and experience, you can apply to take the locksmith certification exam. Passing this test will qualify you to work in your area, though you will typically need to obtain a new certification if you move to a different state or country.