OWM has various online resources that can be used for training and continuing education, both in a formal setting and through self-study. The resources are free to download, print, and share to best meet individual needs. Here we highlight those that are newly added along with links to existing resources. Check back to this page regularly to learn about our new resources.
Writing with the SI
The accepted convention of scientific and technical writing is to use the International System of Units (SI), commonly known as the metric system. Becoming more familiar with proper SI writing style will help add clarity to work correspondence and build confidence when communicating measurement results.
OWM Traceability Review Guidance
The NIST Office of Weights and Measures maintains a laboratory Recognition program that “recognizes” the ability of State weights and measures laboratories (and a limited number of additional legal metrology laboratories) to provide metrologically traceable measurements and comply with the requirements of ISO/IEC 17025:2017 (through NIST Handbook 143 processes). The guidance provided in this article is specifically directed to the laboratories encompassed by the OWM legal metrology program.
“Making Sense of the “Min” Marking on Class I and Class II Scales” by Rick Harshman. This article addresses common questions about the marking of “Min” that appears on some Class I and II Scales.
Knowledge Checks are a new product created to help readers test their knowledge of information covered in our technical articles.
OWM has developed a small number of “Study Guides” to assist inspectors and service personnel wanting to further their professional development. These are not intended to provide for comprehensive individual professional development in a given inspection area but, rather, are guides for identifying and using resources already available on the NIST Web Site. These can be used for independent study or by organizations as part of their overall development of inspection or service staff.
The Office of Weights and Measures (OWM) has waived some online webinar training fees and are currently available free of charge. In-person Seminar fees have not changed. OWM encourages our community to participate in this professional development opportunity to build and extend their technical skills. All of our scheduled events can be found at calendar of events.
|Legal Metrology Devices Program||Fees Waived||Fees Charged*|
|Laws and Regulations Program||Fees Waived||Fees Charged*|
|Lab Metrology Program||Fees Waived**||Fees Charged*|
|Metric Program||Fees Waived||Fees Charged*|
**Seminar that have been reformatted into online sessions have fees that are NOT waived as they are not considered traditional webinars.
Laboratory Metrology. In the area of Laboratory Metrology, the Regional Measurement Assurance Program meetings will be held as webinars this year to prepare the states for their Annual Recognition Submissions this fall. These webinars started the week of April 20, and will finish the week of October 20. Participants should sign up for the session appropriate for their region. The agenda for the webinars can be found at:
Field Inspection. OWM began providing 2-hour webinars on the topics of “Examination Procedure for Price Verification”, “Overview of the Package and Labeling Regulation”, and “NIST Handbook 133 – Checking the Net Contents of Packaged Goods”. OWM has also added two new webinars, “Weights and Measures Inspection – Evidence, Search and Seizure, and Due Process” and "NIST Handbook 133 - How to Test Animal Bedding". Webinars in these topics will continue based on demand from the community.
Metric and Measurement Topics. Webinars on Measurement Systems and Metric Resources have been added starting August 12, 2021, and will be offered on a regular basis. K-12 educators may be particularly interested in “Info Session: Metric System Estimation” and “Info Session: Metric Education Resources”. These classes will be held during regular business hours, and on weekday evenings and Saturday afternoons to accommodate educators’ schedules.
The following is a link to a course on NIST Handbook 44 that is designed for use as self-study. It describes the history, organization, and intended use of NIST Handbook 44. It also provides instruction on NIST Handbook 44 terminology; how to locate specific paragraphs; use of the National Conference on Weights and Measures Final Reports to understand the application of specific sections; and use of requirements in conjunction with the NIST Examination Procedure Outlines.
While this course is particularly relevant for newer inspectors, it is also valuable for more experienced inspectors to enhance their understanding and use of the NIST Handbook 44 and could also provide opportunities for discussion amongst field staff using web conferencing tools, if available. Note Chapters 2 to 5 of this course each include a quiz (along with answers) on the learning concepts covered in the chapter.
We have a small number of videos posted on the NIST OWM website illustrating field inspection and laboratory metrology procedures
Field Inspection: A video on inspecting retail motor-fuel dispensers is available at the following link. This can be viewed as a continuous video in its entirety or you can view specific sections of the video to review certain parts of the inspection process such as how to properly wet the test standard or how to read the results on the standard.
Laboratory Metrology: We have a video which demonstrates calibration methods for volumetric standards using the volume transfer method. Select the YouTube video under items 18 or 19 on the list at the following website.
Laws and Regulations: The NIST OWM and the Mulch and Soil Council have prepared a webinar based on “NIST Handbook 130, Method of Sale and NIST Handbook 133, Section 3.10. Test Procedure for Packages of Mulch and Soils Labeled by Volume”. This test procedure is for both mulch and soil. Mulch is commonly tested but the test procedure and equipment work for soil products as well.
Getting What You Pay For . Ever wonder if that gallon of gas you're getting is REALLY a gallon? Or what about the weight of your produce purchase? Learn more about how you know that you're getting what you pay for in this video series.
NIST OWM staff have developed newsletter articles on a variety of technical topics over the years. Many of these articles are available for review or download on specific topics. Articles organized by topic area such as “weighing” or “packaging and labeling” or “metrology” or other technical areas can be found at the following address:
Complete newsletters published from 2010 to present can be found at the following address:
As always, our staff is available to provide guidance and interpretations on technical issues related to legal metrology. For reference, our technical staff contact list is available on our web site.