By Deane Barker on March 2, 2005

Brainbench – Predicting Employee Success: Don’t like the certifications Microsoft offers? How about this:

Looking for the best way to measure, improve and promote your career skills? Brainbench provides the opportunity to earn certifications in over 600 of todays leading skills.

While I can’t vouch for this particular outfit (can anyone? I’m curious to know if they’re any good), I’m very much in support of the idea of independent certification authorities.

The class and certification list is broad. There’s some stuff in there you don’t find many classes on: Python 1.5, Timberline, Solomon, VBScript, etc.



  1. I’ve taken Brainbench tests and received certificates. I did this years ago when they first launched and offered them for free. I still take tests when they offer them for free and are relevant to my use. The tests are very challenging. They are open book / internet but are timed. And the questions are such that unless you know what you are talking about even having google in the other window might not be fast enough. I think you get 1.5 minutes per question.

    If you are looking for a quick and inexpensive way to qualify someone for a particular job BrainBench is a good resource. We are hiring a new office assistant. I may ask them to take a test on BrainBench when the 30 day “trial” period is up just to see where they stand and if we can move them on to bigger and more important things than filing.

  2. I have taken a couple of tests from brainbench. My current job required me to take a brainbench test before I was hired. They offer a wide varity of subjects, as you know. And while the tests are ‘open book’ the questions are timed and the only chance you have to get a good score is 1. really know the subject or 2. know where to find the exact answers very quickly.

    On subjects that I am well versed I did great. On the subjects that I figured I could just look up most of the answers I failed. The brainbench tests, in my opinion, are a great measurement of a persons real work skills.

  3. Last job I hired a bunch of programmers. A colleague recommended using Brainbench to select people. I had nearly 100 engineers working for me down on Wall Street. I told HR, don’t send anyone up unless they’re in the 95th percentile on Brainbench.

    What I got was a load of second-rate engineers. I don’t know how they fooled the system, but it was a complete waste of time. I would never use Brainbench to select employees again.

    I believe that the tests are challenging. I’ve heard it from many people. But somehow this doesn’t translate to the best get the best scores. Somehow the system is abusable.

  4. i think brainbench is great. they really know their stuff. the computer adaptive tests are great. it challenges a skill levels

  5. Is there any brainbench certification courses and test available for the WEB USABILITY …guys please suggest me :)

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