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Certification Exam Administration FAQs

What are the Exam Administration Requirements?

  • The exam candidate must have a designated computer space free from distractions to complete the exam.
  • The designated proctor must download the web-based testing software prior to the exam date (complete download instructions will be provided by APWA).
  • The designated proctor must be present during the exam to enter passwords and monitor candidate during testing.

Proctoring Options

Place of Employment
Take the exam at your place of employment with an in-person proctor.

It is recommended your proctor be someone at your place of employment that has no vested interest in you obtaining the certification. This could be a manager from another department, a representative from Human Resources or any other non-vested individual that will comply with the terms of the proctoring agreement. You will be required to identify your exam proctor when completing your Exam Application form. Change of proctors must be submitted to certification@apwa.net at least two (2) business days prior to the scheduled exam date and the requested substitution approved prior to the substitution being allowed. If you are unable to acquire a proctor from your place of employment, please contact us at certification@apwa.net or (816) 595-5274.

  • Choose a proctor within your company/agency to proctor your exam one on one.
  • The proctor should:
    • Not have a vested interest in your passing the exam (e.g., immediate supervisor or any other individual who may benefit from your passing the exam).
    • Be available and be able to remain in the room for the duration of the exam.
    • Agree to abide by APWA’s proctor agreement. (Information including the proctor agreement is sent to the proctor prior to the scheduled exam date.)

Testing Center
Choose a testing center in your area to proctor the exam.

  • APWA does not have a formal relationship with any testing centers; please use the National College Testing Association (NCTA) testing center locator to assist in locating a testing center in your area.
  • Identify your preferred testing center on your exam application and we will confirm compatibility with the Questionmark software used to administer APWA certification exams.
  • Individual testing centers may have additional fees associated with proctoring the exam, these fees and the scheduling of the exam are the responsibility of the candidate.

Record and Review Remote Proctoring
This automated system observes and records the exam session on video, for later review of propriety. The system flags potential anomalies which APWA will review prior to releasing results of exam.

  • Record and review proctoring requires a pc or laptop with a strong stable internet connection, google chrome, webcam, and microphone.
  • This option allows for the recording of your computer screen and test environment for the duration of the exam.
  • Only APWA staff and Certification Commission/Council members have access to the recorded content. This content is not shared.

On-site Proctoring for Groups
This allows APWA to assign Partner Proctors with the ability to facilitate exams for multiple eligible candidates at once. This is a great opportunity for large agencies, PWI or Chapters wanting to proctor APWA certification examinations.

What are the responsibilities of the proctor?

Full details will be emailed by APWA prior to the exam. In summary, prior to the exam it is the proctor's responsibility to:

  • Read, sign, and return the proctoring agreement at least five (5) business days prior to the testing date.
  • Ensure passwords are received in advance of the exam, and to contact APWA if the password is not received five (5) business days prior to the testing date.
  • Ensure the computer to be used meets the minimum computer requirements and has access to the Questionmark software.

During the exam it is the proctor's responsibility to:

  • Help with Exam Set Up
  • Ensure the candidate has access to the exam via the Questionmark software.
  • Ensure that the exam location is free of outside distractions and the candidate will have no disturbances or interruptions
  • Ensure compliance to examination rules and report any incidents:
  • Refrain from providing assistance regarding the interpretation of question content that the candidate may find unclear.
  • Ensure there is no copying of questions in part or whole. Report immediately to APWA any attempt to copy the questions.
  • Ensure the candidate has not brought any outside materials (including the content outline or other reference materials), a cell phone, or paper into the testing room/area. A silent, non-programmable, solar-powered calculator is allowed. There should not be access to any image capturing device in the testing room/area. The proctor may provide scratch paper if needed and all used scratch paper must be destroyed after the exam.
  • Remain in the room while the candidate begins exam. The proctor must ensure that no outside materials are brought into the testing area. After the candidate begins the exam, the proctor may leave the room but should ensure that the room is secured, and no violations can occur. Ideally the proctor will have visual access to the candidate throughout the testing period.
  • Allow restroom breaks, but ensure they are reasonable in length. Candidates should be reminded that the exams are timed, and the clock does not stop running if they walk away from the online exam.
  • Ensure candidates do not have access to a phone during the exam or any breaks from the exam.

After the candidate has completed the exam, it is the proctor's responsibility to ensure that the candidate has logged off completely.

What are the responsibilities of the candidate?

Full details will be emailed by APWA prior to the exam. In summary, prior to the exam, it is the candidate's responsibility to:

  • Ensure that all information on the exam application is correct (such as email address, proctor’s name, etc.) and that it is submitted by the postmark deadline for the desired testing block.
  • Ensure passwords are received (by candidate and proctor) approximately 10-14 business days in advance of the exam date.
  • Ensure that the proctor has received and followed all instructions sent to them by APWA.

During the exam, the candidate's responsibilities include:

  • Refrain from asking the proctor to explain or provide information regarding the interpretation of question content.
  • Refrain from copying questions, in part or whole. Report immediately to APWA any attempt to copy the questions.
  • Ensure you do not bring the content outline or any other outside materials, including scratch paper, into the testing area. You may bring in a silent, non-programmable, solar-powered calculator (may not use a cell phone as a calculator).
  • Refrain from bringing a cell phone or any other image capturing device into the testing room/area. Candidates are not allowed to have access to a phone during the exam or any breaks from the exam.
  • Manage your exam time appropriately, including restroom breaks. Candidates are not allowed to make phone calls during breaks. Exams are timed and the clock does not stop running if you walk away from the online exam.

There is a 3.5-hour time limit for the certification exam.

How will I receive my password?

The proctor and candidate each will be sent a confirmation message including the appropriate password via email approximately 10-15 business days prior to the scheduled exam date. Confirmation messages will be sent to the candidate and proctor’s e-mail address as listed in their exam application. APWA National is not responsible for undelivered passwords or related messages due to an invalid e-mail address in a candidate’s record. It is the responsibility of each candidate and proctor to ensure the e-mail address listed on the Exam Application form is current and correct.

What if there are problems the day of the exam?

If you have problems the day of the exam you should first contact us at certification@apwa.net you can also reach out to April Wardlow at (816) 595-5298 or Celeste Ortiz at (816) 595-5274. Calls will be answered Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Central time.