Certification Update: Over 600 People Apply to Take CWEA’s New Computerized Tests

By Chris Lundeen
Dir. Member & Leader Services

The week of January 5, 2009 marked the first week CWEA offered its Technical Certification Program via Computer-Based Testing, after 71 years of paper-and-pencil tests.  Sixteen wastewater professionals took the test at the Pearson VUE testing center of their choice…8 took a Collections Systems Maintenance test, 6 took a Wastewater Treatment Plant Maintenance test, 1 took an operator [Industrial Treatment Plant Operations?] test, and 1 took a Laboratory Analyst test.  At least one person took the test in 4 of the 6 vocations.  CWEA staff is connecting with these early test-takers to get feedback on their experience. 

Ken Mendum of the Yorba Linda Water District and a member of CWEA’s Santa Ana River Basin Section took CWEA’s very first CBT exam (Collections Systems Grade 1)…and passed.  We asked him what he thought of the computer-based testing delivery and if there was anything to change or add.  Ken’s answer:   “it was very user friendly.  I would leave it like it is as I found no problem with it.”  We asked if he had any difficulty navigating through the exam.  Ken’s answer:  “None whatsoever.”

Read more about Ken’s experience after the jump…

 

Here’s more feedback from Ken, our first test-taker:

  • He scheduled his exam by phone with Pearson VUE using their 800 number.  Ken told us that “It did not take long and it was painless.” 
  • He “had to do some leg work to find the testing room” but the “parking was good” at the site.  
  • He said the test proctor was friendly and helpful and got him started on his test 10 minutes early. 
  • He described the testing environment as “a small room with about 8-10 computers.  There was only one other person in the room with me so it was very quiet.”
  • There was a little confusion about what he could bring into the exam room so Ken suggested clarifying that in our literature. 

So far, 606 wastewater professionals have applied to take the test in the first CBT testing window (January to March 2009).  Of those applicants, 232 have already scheduled a date at a Pearson VUE testing center.  So far 40 applicants have applied for the next testing window – April to March 2009.

For more information about our new computer-based tests go to www.cwea.org/cbt or contact us at 510-382-7800 x106.

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Alec Mackie

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