What level of license do I want?
Wondering where to start? The first thing you need to do is understand the scope of the licensing options and the level of experience needed to qualify to test for that level of license (Limited, Unlimited, etc). In NC, all that information is located in PSI’s Electrical Contractors Examination Candidate Information Bulletin. (See additional state requirements here)
Do I have the needed experience?
After you’ve taken some time to read through the bulletin and have a clear sense of what you are wanting to do with your license, determine if you have the experience required to take the exam. The bulletin will help you with adding up your hours of experience (Primary vs Secondary experience). If applicable, *consider completing the licensing application located in the back of the bulletin.
Time to study for the exam.
Once you have determined the level of license you’d like to test on and if you’d qualify to take the exam, now is a good time to start preparing yourself for the test. JCR Productions offers lots of study materials and workshops to help you succeed on your exam.
The North Carolina bulletin will outline the content on which you will be tested (i.e. 9 questions on bonding and grounding, 4 questions on overcurrent protection, etc.) and the reference materials you will need to study. Learners come through JCR’s Exam Preparation course at various times in this process based on their comfort level in using the NEC®, their practical experience in performing calculations based on the NEC®, and their desire commitment to dedicate time for learning skills need to be successful. We do not aim for you to just pass, we aim for you to excel both on the exam and in your career!
A few of helpful tips:
- Make sure you have the most recent copy of your state’s information bulletin. These have the ability to change quickly and quietly so accessing the bulletin directly from PSI (or the test administrator) is generally the best option.
- Make sure you have the correct reference and study material and know if you will be able to bring it into the exam. Knowing what you will be able to do ahead of time will help you as you study. In the past, North Carolina did not allow you to bring in ANY material. But now North Carolina (as of February 2021) requires you to bring a current NEC and NFPA with you into your exam. Keep updated on North Carolina’s changing guidelines here.
- Do not memorize answers to sample test questions. This is a murky trap that students fall into as they try and absorb too much information too fast versus understanding the process of finding the answers to the questions within the code.
- Develop a study plan (kind of like an exercise routine) and commit to sticking to it. One hour each day of study will generally result in higher intellectual development (and will help you stay more mentally and emotionally grounded) than cramming in the material but ultimately, everyone has varying familiarity with the material and formal tests…so, your study plan depends on you being honest and realistic with yourself!
- *Be mindful that once your application has been approved by the NC State Electrical Board, you will be within a 90 day time limitation to take your exam. Time your studies and workshop attendance appropriately within your timeframe.
If you need help in doing the paperwork to apply for your licensing exam, contact Lisa Adams with Licenses Etc at 239.777.1028. She charges flat rates for preparing license applications in over 30 states.