Measurements, Risk and Finance: Making Decisions on Conformance (EMU 401)

This course covers measurement's influence throughout a product’s lifecycle (design, manufacturing, testing, certification), where it fits within a Management System (MS). Utilizing measurement data, the participant will be introduced to the technical and mathematical tools required to evaluate the probability of false accept and false reject decision risk for measurements used in conformity assessment decisions. The course will detail how this information can be used to balance the cost of managing the likelihood of occurrence against the cost of negative consequences resulting from an incorrect decision.



Course Content

Metrology and the Consequences of Bad Measurement Decisions.

  • The basics of metrology, measurements and risk.
  • The essential elements for “good” measurement decisions including factual case studies.
  • When more than one element fails. 

Evaluating Measurement Data to Reduce Decision Risk

  • Introduction & Concepts:
    • Measurements, uncertainty, and risk;
    • Why bad measurement-based decisions happen;
    • Visualizing measurement decision risk; and
    • History, evolution, and background to reducing measurement decision risk.
  • The basics of measurement decision risk analysis:
    • Basic probability concepts;
    • Consumer and producer risk; and
    • The quality of a measurement system.
  • Computing risks:
    • Influences on the general risk model (with differences between JCGM 106 & Z540.3);
    • Specific risk functions;
    • Global risk – Consumer risk; and
    • Global risk – Producer risk.
  • Methods for achieving acceptable risk levels:
    • Using the risk models;
    • Specific risk;
    • Global risk;
    • Achieving acceptable risk levels within the Quality Management System; and
    • Summary.


Participants should:

  1. Be familiar with measurement principles and techniques;
  2. Have a functional understanding of the principles of measurement uncertainty;
  3. Have received training in engineering, science, or mathematics; and
  4. Have a basic understanding of calculus, algebra, and statistics.


The participant will need to bring a laptop computer (PC or MAC) with Microsoft Excel or similar spreadsheet installed. Please note that the tablet and smart phone versions of Excel and other spreadsheets do not have the full functionality of the PC versions and the participant may not be able to utilize all the power of the spreadsheet covered during the training.

Target Attendees

This course is intended for a technical audience in the product development, testing (e.g., forensic, pharmaceutical, medical, product, etc.), calibration, operational services, to include:

  • Design, test, operation, and instrumentation engineers;
  • Quality engineers;
  • Researchers;
  • Scientists;
  • Metrologists; and
  • Senior technicians (e.g., manufacturing, testing, medical, etc.).

Learning Outcomes

After successful completion of the course, the participant will be able to:  

1. Identify the non-conformant element(s) in metrology-related failures and where it resides within the management system;
2. Recognize specific and global risk requirements in standards and how their differences may impact implementation costs;
3. List the four basic components of the General Risk Model (GRM) and how each influences the model;
4. Using a spreadsheet, develop a mathematical risk model to construct a decision rule; and
5. Develop a decision rule using techniques that balance the cost of metrology with the desired level of decision risk.



CEUs Awarded

1.4 CEUs Awarded*

Presentation Style

Lecture, discussion, and classroom exercises.


This course follows the principles outlined in the following documents:

  • JCGM 106:2012, Evaluation of measurement data – The role of measurement uncertainty in conformity assessment, BIPM 2012
  • ASME B89.7.4.1-2005, Measurement Uncertainty and Conformance Testing: Risk Analysis, ASME 2006


*American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA) is accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET) and is authorized to issue the IACET CEU.



PLEASE NOTE: Registration for public training courses will close 7 days prior to the start date.
A2LA can offer on-site training at your facility. For additional information about this option, please submit a quote request here.