Facial Action Coding System (FACS)

Intensive 5-day workshops with Erika L. Rosenberg, Ph.D.​

The purpose of the workshop is to learn the FACS system, as per the manual published in 2002. The students and instructor will work through the entire manual and coding examples. This workshop will prepare participants for certification in the FACS Final Test. Final testing is not part of the workshop, as it is designed to be self-administered and self-paced . Introduction to procedures for obtaining and taking the FACS Final test will be explained on the last day of the workshop.


The workshop is a 5-day intensive course, requiring a serious commitment in time and energy. Each day is a combination of informal lecturing, hands-on expert guidance and feedback on recognizing, categorizing, and scoring facial action using this comprehensive, anatomically based system.

Daily attendance is necessary for completion of the manual and sufficient mastery of the coding process, homework coding is assigned throughout the week, and coding quizzes are administered regularly.

By the end of the week attendees who have completed all the work will be well prepared for the FACS final test for certification. FACS certification testing is done independently, but information and instructions for the Final Test will be distributed on the last day of the workshop.


L'examen du FACS

The FACS final test contains 34 video clips of real-life interaction, which test-takers complete in a self-paced fashion. It is recommended that people do it over the course of several sittings, often over several days.

Individual items can take up to 20 minutes to code on first glance, plus one needs time for reviewing all items. In order for a final test to be part of the workshop, one would need at least 3-4 extra days, but it makes no sense at all to do it in a class session.

It would not be comfortable for the participants, and there is no role for an instructor. Most importantly, as one can appreciate more after learning FACS, everyone has their own pace of coding. Some people need 2-3 days to do the test (as it is not recommended that you do more than 2 hours coding a day), while others might take a week.

Even after the workshop, some people need a little practice time before they are ready to take on the test, while others are ready for testing immediately. It is not possible to administer the final test in a classroom session in a 5-day workshop. Currently, the Paul Ekman Group, LLC administers all FACS final testing, which is done online.

The teachers

Erika L. Rosenberg, Ph.D.​

Erika Rosenberg, Ph.D. is a world renowned expert in the study of facial expressions of emotion and has worked with FACS since 1988. She trained extensively with Paul Ekman (senior author of the FACS system), has published articles and books using FACS, originated the 5-Day FACS workshop, has trained hundreds of people worldwide in the use of FACS, and has played a key role in the development and revisions of FACS training materials.

Additionally, Dr. Rosenberg consults with scientists, artists, and the media on the use of FACS in a variety of contexts including innovative applications in computer science. Dr. Rosenberg was Scientific Consultant on the Fox TV show