Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

5533: Basic Uncertainty Concepts

This 2 hour webinar provides a very basic introduction to uncertainty calculations and reporting using the 8-step process published in NIST SOP 29 (NISTIR 6969), beginning with some definitions and concepts from the Guide to the Expression of Uncertainty in Measurement (GUM) with simple calculations. NOTE: The content is similar to what is covered in the Fundamentals of Metrology seminar and is a useful pre-cursor or review for content covered during the course and will include calculations and a short application quiz. The session will end with an optional 30 minute session for Questions and Answers.

Learning Objectives:

At the end of this session, using SOP 29 and course notes, participants will be able to:

  • DEFINE: standard uncertainty, expanded uncertainty, coverage factor, Type A methods, Type B methods;
  • DESCRIBE the importance of knowing and evaluating measurement uncertainty; ;
  • Be able to: SPECIFY, IDENTIFY, QUANTIFY, CONVERT, COMBINE, EXPAND, EVALUATE, and REPORT uncertainties for a simple scenario;
  • EXPLAIN the concepts of uncertainty and its relationship to metrological traceability;
  • IDENTIFY documentation requirements for uncertainty calculations within a calibration laboratory; and
  • IMPLEMENT an uncertainty budget based on concepts presented in NISTIR 6969, SOP 29 and the Guide to the Expression of Uncertainty in Measurement.

Materials & Supplies:



There are no prerequisites for this webinar. Knowledge of basic mathematics and statistics is expected.


Read NISTIR 6969, SOP 29.

Pre-Work Deadline:



Submit Student Notes (Highlights, Applications, and Application Quiz).

Post-Work Deadline:


Minimum Requirement(s):

Successful Completion includes pre-work, 100% attendance, full participation in the session activities, discussions, calculations and submission of Student Notes with correct answers on the Application Quiz.


Laboratory metrology staff who are new to uncertainty calculations or who would like to review the 8-step process of SOP 29. The session would also be useful for metrology staff who will be conducting on-the-job-training for new staff members.


The current fee for webinars is $199 and confirmed participants will be provided with payment instructions. The due date for payment is January 8, 2018. Registration fees for State weights and measures metrologists are funded by NIST OWM.


Georgia Harris
Office of Weights and Measures
Phone: (301) 975 - 4014
Email: g.harris [at] (g[dot]harris[at]nist[dot]gov)val.miller [at] ( (link sends e-mail))

Technology Requirement(s):

The webinar will be a live stream, so participants must have a constant connection during the webinar (hard-wired is preferred).

1.  Operating System (browser) configurations:

  • Windows XP (Explorer 8, 9, 10, 11; Mozilla Firefox; Google Chrome)
  • Windows Vista (Internet Explorer or Firefox)
  • Windows 7, 8, or 10 (Mozilla Firefox; Google Chrome; Internet Explorer)
  • Apple Mac OS 10.5x (Mozilla Firefox; Apple Safari; Google Chrome)
  • Ubuntu Linux (Firefox only)

2.  Media players

3.  Optional: If you have never attended an Adobe Connect meeting before:


NIST/Office of Weights and Measures

Created November 14, 2017, Updated July 23, 2020