six_sigmaOne Sigma, two, three, four, five, and oh six sigma. Reminds me of a joke…”How many leaders does it take to implement a six sigma program?” Answer later.

So how do you get in the game if you want to learn more about six sigma? First you have to get educated, then tested, then proven!  So the criteria needs to offer online capability, self pace capability, and both Green and Black Belt programs. While many that we looked at do offer the actual certification (test and certificate), the cost structures normally are broken down in two parts. The first part is the classroom training portion, and the second is the examination and certification.

Below are a number of videos that might help the decision process. Another place to look might be a site dedicated to accredited online degrees or . While they focus mainly on degrees, they’re both good spots to see programs that are accredited, and then you can search deeper on their sites for individual courses.

The Six Sigma Approach

Let’s first listen to a few leaders on why they prefer a six sigma approach.
Here’s why some senior leaders like the six sigma and lean six sigma approaches.

Details of Six Sigma

Do you have a good overview of six sigma – Click Here to see a nice overview from Breakthrough Management Group’s online offering (from BMG University). It’s about 9 minutes but very well done.

eckesvideostart_whiteThe Online Top Shelf

Classes are taught by best-selling Six Sigma author and consultant George Eckes, whose clients have included Motorola, General Electric, Hewlett-Packard, Volvo and others. Mr. Eckes is the founder and principal consultant for Eckes & Associates, Inc., a consulting group specializing in results-driven training.

BMG University also offers a a very strong online program for a cool $4950 including about 180 hours of online training, but you’ll still have to pay to take the test.

But just remember, whatever program you take, you’re going to need at least 2 working project examples to apply the six sigma DMAIC approach. So what’s it going to be, Lean or regular?

Mid Tier Solution

ASQ (American Society for Quality) is a strong organization dedicated to promoting quality in the workplace.  You can join the organization for as little as $75 (Students for $25) and then get six sigma training discounts.

55 hours of training will cost you $1350 – but there’s no audio . $3100 will get you the deluxe program – This course is a multimedia, interactive learning experience with audio lectures, slide shows, virtual classroom discussion, online notebook, toolbox, quizzes, glossary, and help feature. Media components are designed to consume minimal bandwidth and are not blocked by most firewalls. Included with the course is the book DOE Simplified by Anderson & Whitcomb and Design-Ease® software from Stat-Ease®.

Certification is not included and will cost you an extra $420 ($260 for members). -Re-certification due every three years.

Green Belt Certification is also available for $335 ($175 for members) and lasts a lifetime.

The Discount Outlet – aka “the Diploma Mill”

We checked out Expert Rating, a professional certification organization. The Six Sigma (Green Belt) Certification is the most popular type of six sigma certification. The ExpertRating Six Sigma Certification (Green Belt) is intended for people who are new to the concept of Six Sigma, or for experienced professionals who would like to get themselves formally certified. This course requires no prior knowledge on the subject.

The Six Sigma (Green Belt) course includes all the tools, techniques and concepts related to Six Sigma and has been developed keeping in mind the requirements most modern day industries. Price: $99 for Green Belt – $199 for Black Belt. Learn more.

Here’s what Villanova U Offers for their online program

What You’ll Study for the Green Belt Program
The Beginning of Six Sigma

What is Six Sigma
The History of Six Sigma and the Prominent People in Six Sigma
DMAIC Methodology Overview
The Project Charter

Data Collection Plans

The Project Scope of a Team and Team Dynamics
Teams – Paradigm Shifts
Determining Customer Needs and Requirements
Quality Function Deployment and the House of Quality
Critical to Quality Tree and Kano Model
Process Mapping and SIPOC

Data Collection Plans Part I, II,III
Calculating the Baseline Sigma
Quincunx Process Analysis
Types of Data

Root Cause Analysis
Basic Data Analysis and Basic Process Analysis
The Big Picture
Root Cause Analysis and Hypothesis Testing

7M Tools

Measures of Central Tendency and Standard Deviation
Determining Project Solutions
Prioritization Matrix
Affinity Diagrams
Metrics and 7M Tools
Interrelationship Diagrams

Control Charts
Maintaining Solutions
Introduction to Control Charts and Their Construction
XmR Chart and Pre-Control
Attribute Charts – p Charts
Other Attributed Charts – np, c, and u

Process Capability

Process Capability
Distributions and Reliability
Weibull Distribution, Chi Square Distribution and Multi Var
Point and Interval Estimation

Other Tools and Techniques

Design of Experiments
Building Charts
Ten Questions Regarding Six Sigma
Course Wrap Up

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