Professional Info




Radon Measurement Technician Course Curriculum (1)

One-Day Course

Revised July 1, 2001

A minimum of eight hours of classroom instruction time is required for this course. A maximum of two hours is allowed for a 75 question closed book examination. Only after a student finishes the classroom portion of the course, may he/she sit for the examination. The class room work and the examination may be completed on the same day or the examination may be completed on a subsequent day.

A student must answer at least 70.65% (53 of 75) examination questions correctly to obtain a passing grade.

Determining the amount of time allocated to the various sections of this curriculum is not mandated; this determination is left to the discretion of the instructor. It is not mandated that all eight hours of classroom instruction be completed in a single day. However, to provide guidance for the instructor, the course curriculum indicates the approximate number of examination questions that will be associated with each section of the curriculum.

The course instructor must maintain a classroom attendance log for each student, which accounts for the time the student spent in the classroom.

I. Basic Concepts (9 questions)


Radiation - alpha, beta, gamma


Inert gas

Uranium (mineral) > Radium (mineral) > Radon (gas) > Progeny (solids)

Radon progeny

Units: pCi/l, WL, Bq/m3, WLM

Typical concentrations indoor/outdoor

Action level

Gas transport:

From soil: diffusion, permeation, mixing/dilution

From water: dissolution/aeration

Sources: soil, rock, building materials, water

Radon entry into house

(1) Based on "A Radon Curriculum for Professional Home Inspectors," presented by Stephen Shefsky and Robert Juliano at the 1998 AARST International Symposium.

II. Health Effects (9 questions)

Gas > progeny > (attachment) > lungs > alpha radiation > lung cancer risk

Dose-response model

Evidence of radon link to lung cancer (miner studies)

Residential studies

Extrapolating mines to homes

Radon-in-water > aeration > inhalation > lungs > known risk

Radon-in-water > ingestion > stomach/intestines/bloodstream > risk (?)

Synergistic effect with smoking

Risk at EPA action level

What level is “safe”?

Comparative risks: auto accidents, drowning, other radiation exposures, etc.

If you don't know the answer refer client to EPA or State

III. Radon Test Methods (9 questions)

Test purposes: screening, follow-up/confirm, diagnostic, post-mitigation, maintenance, research/other

Duration: long term, short term, grab

Strategy: passive, active

Integrating vs. continuous

Screening protocol goals

Devices: passive/ active, short term/long term

Passive: Short Term: AC, LS, ES

Active: Short Term: CR, CW

Passive: Long Term: AT, EL

IV. Test Placement and Conditions (19 questions)

Variation: diurnal, seasonal, spatial, weather-related, occupant-related

Placement: level, room, location, how many

Minimum distances

Closed House Conditions

When required? When recommended?

Requirements for Closed House Conditions

Notifying occupants

Interference/tampering: detecting, avoiding

Test invalidation

Data reported to lab with test kit

EPA Protocol for real estate transactions

Interpretation of results

Measurement error /uncertainty

Large buildings, schools


(Recommended) Radon-in-water sampling

V. Mitigation (5 questions)

Mitigation strategies: basics

Radon from soil:

Soil depressurization: greatly reduces radon entry into house

Ventilation: dilutes radon that has entered the house

Other: sealing - usually doesn't work by itself

Radon from water:


GAC filtration

Comparative performance and costs

Difficult situations

Don't offer mitigation strategies, let mitigators determine strategies

All houses can be fixed - cost is the issue

Radon resistant new construction

Post-mitigation testing, system monitoring, and maintenance

VI. Relation with Client (9 questions)

Dialogue with client

Risk communication


Interpretation of results for client

Based on radon test results, what should be done next?

Do nothing, retest, or call mitigator(s)

If unusually high radon concentrations, urge client to call EPA or state for advice

What follow-up is required?

Real estate transaction

Re-test when?

Who pays for mitigation?

Negotiation and escrow possibilities


VII. Relation with Laboratory (5 questions)

Choosing lab

Levels of service

Division of responsibilities

Quality assurance responsibilities

Blanks, duplicates, spikes, calibrations

Quality assurance plan

VIII. Role of Government (5 questions)

Federal: EPA

States: unregulated and regulated

Regional review of state laws

Real estate disclosure laws

Radon outreach programs

EPA Publications:

Citizen's Guide to Radon

Consumer's Guide to Radon Reduction

Home Buyers and Sellers Guide to Radon

IX. Tester's Health and Safety, Professional Conduct, and Ethics (3 questions)

Testing in houses with known high radon concentrations

Professional Conduct


X. Additional Courses, Continuing Education, and Credentials (2 questions)

Advanced measurement methods

Analytical services and quality assurance

Radon in water

Radon mitigation standards; and inspecting mitigation systems

Video courses

AARST programs

NRSB Certification

Other Certification Programs