The CDIO Initiative has adopted 12 standards that describe CDIO programs and enable schools to evaluate themselves with respect to the CDIO goals. These principles, or best practices, distinguish the specific qualities of CDIO programs and their graduates.
The CDIO Standards define the distinguishing features of a CDIO program, serve as guidelines for educational program reform, create benchmarks and goals that can be applied worldwide, provide a framework for continuous improvement, form the basis of a program's self-evaluation, and provide academics and employers with attributes that distinguish graduates of CDIO programs.
The CDIO standards may also form a framework for certification. The CDIO Initiative is in the process of developing a set of rubrics that a program may use for certification purposes.