Contractor’s License State Board Practice Exams
CLSI can guide you to the right contractor's practice exams and also refer you to the best seminars to help ensure that you pass the law and trade exams. And, here are our Top Ten Recommendations for how to prepare for your Contractors Exam and Masters or Journeyman Licensing Exams.
1. Find the list of books recommended by the State Contractor’s Licensure Board.
Then schedule personal study time and stick to it. Not having regular study sessions are so often neglected when it comes to preparation for a State Board Contractor's License Exam. Also purchase any and all books necessary, and READ them. In order to assist exam takers I've worked through the math problems related to the trade exams. And, most importantly, purchase the Code book and begin to understand the Code and to fully comprehend the reason for the Codes.
2. Contact your State Licensure
board for the application.
The preparation for a state Contractor, Master or Journeyman license
begins with your contacting the state licensure board to request
an application for a license and/or examination. When requesting
exam information be sure to ask for any and all recommended study
materials. Most exams are based upon a technical book or a Code
book. The investment in these books or materials, is invaluable
as a resource not only for exam preparation but as a good guide
in the contracting business. It always pays to learn from the experts.
3. Apply for the correct
When you apply for a "license" you'll need to know the
correct classification for which you need licensed.
For example, a contractor's license in Arizona,
Utah, Nevada, and New
Mexico requires the passing of two exams:
the trade exam and a business & law
In Colorado, there
is a statewide Plumbing license for Residential, Journeymen and
Masters and a statewide electrical license for
residential Wireman, Journeyman, and Masters.
In New Mexico there
are many Journeyman and Contractor license classifications. For
example, if you are an electrician only installing
low voltage wiring, you'll need a Journeyman Low Voltage License
(JES3), however, if you are a contractor soliciting business from
the public at large and NOT doing any of the work of installation,
you'll need a Contractor's License (ES3).
In Texas the Electrical
licenses have several classifications such as Journeyman, Master,
and Signs. The Air Conditioning license has
two classifications. The "A" license is unlimited tonnage
of airconditioning. The "B" license is limited to 25
ton systems or less.
In Utah there is a statewide Electrical and Plumbing license for
Residential, Journeyman and Masters.
Las Vegas, Nevada, Clark County requires an Electrical and Plumbing
Certificate similar to a journeyman license.
4. Have the full amount of documented experience required
for your classification.
We had a very knowledgeable businessman in our class recently to
study for his General Builders License. The classification required
5 exams that he promptly took and passed with no problem. He called
to let us know how much he appreciated our help in his licensing
process. A few weeks later he called to say that he did not have
enough documented experience to qualify for the license and his
application was denied. Being hasty in your licensing process may
cause you to over look a circumstance like this one that may seem
5. Fill out and send application for exam or license.
This step is a crucial step in the exam process. The worst thing
you can do is show up for an exam and you're not on the examiners'
schedule. The time loss and expense can be devastating. Do not
presume that someone else has registered you for an exam. If you
haven't received a confirmation from the examining agency, pick
up the phone and call them yourself to confirm your exam. Some
jurisdictions require the application to be notarized.
6. Purchase minimum recommended books.
Many exams are based on a code book. Modern construction techniques
for general Building, fire protection, painting, plastering, roofing,
concrete, masonry, Electrical and Mechanical are based on building
codes, electrical codes, mechanical codes and plumbing codes. Any
construction professional should have at least a library of one
book that contains a Code addressing his trade. The next level
of books that you should have in your library are books written
by construction professionals describing particular aspects about
your trade. It's really OK to learn from others in your industry
who've taken the time to document what they've learned. Access
to specific subject books has never been easier. Once you've obtained
a list of recommended books, search the internet for the titles.
7. Familiarize yourself with code books and other books
After purchasing your books, OPEN THEM long before any exam. We've
had many in our classes wait until the day of the exam to open
their books only to find out that an open book exam can be much
more difficult than a closed book exam. An open book exam requires
you to look up information in a book to find a particular section
or table to answer a question. If you are not familiar with how
to look up or read a table, precious minutes tick away reducing
your chances of selecting a correct answer. I agree that opening
a code book, reading and understanding it is about as exciting
as watching paint peal. However, with a little practice you can
learn to use a code book as a valuable tool.
8. Utilize exam study guides
One of our frequently asked question is "Can you recommend
any additional study material?" If you search the technical
bookstores or bookstores that specialize in construction related
books you will find books that are written just for exam preparation.
In my opinion these study guides are great training tools for learning
both the trade and the types of questions that can be asked on
the exam. This is especially true for the study guides published
in conjunction with the Code. These tutorials have been written
with some key features that won't be found in other publications.
Exam questions written in our tutorial have appeared on past and
present exams. Questions that are based on a Code requirement have
the Code reference shown along with the question so you can easily
look up the section in the Code. Questions that are referenced
from other recommended books have the reference as well. Questions
that require math have the solution. Unlike other study guides,
these state specific tutorials will prepare you for the exam. Contact
clsi.com for more information on available tutorials.
9. Attend exam preparation
seminars and classes.
You should look for a class that covers thoroughly the information
that will appear on your specific exam. The content of any class
would not be complete if references to books on the list of recommended
books were not given as a part of the class time. Any construction
math, electrical math or plumbing math should be explained in
easily understood terms. Contact us for more information
10. Consider CBT Exam Preparation.
Computer-based training is fast becoming the chosen preparation
format for the construction professional. Software can be purchased
that when installed on your desktop or laptop you can study at
your convenience. The format is question with multiple choice
answers. You can give yourself tests and you can study as much
as you like. This type of exam preparation is cost effective
because you can arrange your schedule to study without having
to be away from the office or project site to attend class. This
type of exam preparation is not for everyone, but if convenience
is what you're looking for, then CBT is for you. Contact us
for more information.