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FAQ Applications

Our aim is to help our members reach their full potential through professional growth and development. We also provide resources for members to apply for positions and connect with like-minded professionals. Become part of the NVWEA family today and start making a difference in your career.

Why are there 110 questions on my certification exam?

Each standardized exam form for Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator and Collection System Operator includes 10 extra unscored questions that have not been used on previous versions of the exam. These are known as “pre-test” items and allow ABC to gather valuable data about the new items before they are included as scored items on future exams. Pre-test items are unidentified and scattered throughout the exam to ensure candidates answer them with the same care in which they address scored items. The pre-test items are not included in the candidate’s final score.Credentialing standards provide for two hours to complete a 100 question exam. Nevada allows three hours. Even with the 10 added questions, more than adequate time is provided to complete the exam.ABC’s exam development process ensures that qualified candidates are validating pre-test items. It also ensures Nevada’s ongoing participation in shaping future standardized certification exams.

What College Courses Count Towards CEUs for Initial Education and Renewals ?
College Courses Earning Full Credit  (1.5 CEUs per semester credit):
College Chemistry - up to 12
Mathematics area: Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry, Statistics - up to 12 CEUs. Does not include basic, introductory, or business math
Biological Science area: Microbiology, Pathogenic Bacteriology, etc. - up to 9
General Physics - up to 9
College Chemistry - up to 12
Engineering courses: Fluid Mechanics, Hydraulics, and Engineering courses not directly

College Courses Earning Half Credit  (0.7 CEU per semester credit):
Technical Writing - up to 3
Public Speaking - up to 3

Training opportunities - Visit the Events Calendar and the Training section of the website.

What is Wastewater Restricted Certification?
If an examinee takes and passes a grade I exam but does not meet all of the education and/or experience.
Once the Restricted Operator meets the requirements an upgrade form must be completed and signed by their supervisor.  

What is an Operator-In-Training Certificate?
If an examinee takes and passes a grade I exam but does not meet all of the experience and education requirements they will receive an operator-in-training certification.  To be eligible to receive a grade I certification the applicant must:
Take and pass the grade I certification exam
Have 1 year of full time experience
Submit documentation of 50 hours of related training
Submit a copy of their high school diploma/equivalent
Once the operator-in-training meets the requirements an upgrade form must be completed and signed by their supervisor.  In addition to the upgrade form, the required education documentation must be submitted.

Does Nevada accept reciprocity?
Reciprocity will be considered from applicants holding valid certificates from all certification programs in the United States and Canada.  The applicant must meet all current education and experience requirements.  Upon approval of the applicant’s qualifications, reciprocity will granted one grade lower than the equivalent grade currently held by the applicant, with the exception that if an applicant currently holds the equivalent of a grade one certification that reciprocity will be granted at grade one. *exceptions if you have received the ABC 2017 Standardized exam or greater, then you may be granted reciprocity without going one grade lower. *
The applicant must meet all current education and experience requirements.
Certificates issued by reciprocity will be designated as such.
Applicants who are granted reciprocity one grade lower than they currently hold may obtain certification at the equivalent grade by applying for and passing the certification exam at that grade.

How do I apply to take a computerized exam?
When applying to take a exam  there is a section to mark to take the computer,once your exam applications have been reviewed and approved you will receive an exam approval letter.
The exam approval letter will provide:
The contact information for the testing service AMP.
Your identification number.
Instructions for applying to take the exam.
You will be assigned a 90 day range of dates.  You can schedule your exam any time during the 90 day period.

Please note that when you contact AMP to schedule your exam you will be asked to pay and additional fee directly to them with a credit card. *This fee covers AMP’s administration costs*

Are you a veteran?
If you have served in the military in any of the MOS’ listed in the US EPA From M.O.S. to J-O-B: A Guide for Applying Military Occupational Specialties (M.O.S) to Civilian Drinking Water and Wastewater Operations you may be eligible to receive additional experience toward your certification.
If your MOS was a US Navy Rating:  Utilitiesman (UT) or US Air Force Specialty Code: 3E4X1 – Water And Fuel Systems Maintenance you may be eligible to receive full credit for the duties that you performed.
This is currently limited to Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator, Collection System Operator and Plant Maintenance Technologist certifications.
Veteran Exam Reimbursement
The Nevada Water Environment Association has been approved through the LACAS program.  Qualifying veterans can now have their certification exam application fees reimbursed by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
If you are a veteran who has taken a certification examination any time after 8/20/13 you may be eligible to have your certification fee reimbursed by the Deparment of Veterans Affairs.  Here is the application to request reimbursement:

Application for LC Reimbursement
The completed applications need to be mailed to the Western Region address located on the second page.

Application for LC Reimbursement

The completed applications need to be mailed to the Western Region address located on the second page.

How many CEU's do I need to renew my certification?
  •  Grade I – 5 contact hours (0.5 CEU)
  •  Grade II – 10 contact hours (1.0 CEU)
  •  Grade III – 15 contact hours (1.5 CEU)
  •  Grade IV/V – 20 contact hours (2.0 CEU)

What is the Initial education requirements?

Operators seeking new or upgraded certifications are now required to meet minimum initial education requirements for each grade level, all of which must be wastewater related (as determined by the Certification Board). The education requirements are cumulative and include the previous grade’s education (e.g. Grade IV certification requires the Grade III education requirements plus two additional post-secondary courses). A post-secondary course is a college level course comprised of at least 36 hours of instruction (classroom, correspondence, or online) that the Certification Board deems relevant (i.e. wastewater treatment, chemistry, biology, math, etc).

  •  Grade I – 50 hours
  •  Grade II – 100 hours
  •  Grade III – 100 hours and two postsecondary courses
  •  Grade IV – 100 hours and four postsecondary courses

What are the Wastewater experience requirements?

Operators seeking certification are required to meet specific minimum experience requirements for each grade level. The experience must be relevant, as determined by the Certification Board. Operators can no longer obtain certification at grade levels higher than the classification of the plant where they are employed.

  •  Grade I – 1 year operating experience at a Class I (or higher) facility

  •  Grade II – Grade I certification and 2 years of operating experience, with at least 1 year at a Class II (or higher) facility

  •  Grade III – Grade II certification and 3 years of operating experience, with at least 1 year at a Class III (or higher) facility

  •  Grade IV – Grade III certification and 4 years of operating experience, with at least 1 year at a Class IV (or higher) facility

What are the Plant Classifications?The NAC plant classification table was revised as part of the regulation change. The updated table more accurately reflects relevant treatment technology for each operator certification grade, and is less reflective of flow. The majority of facilities in the state will maintain their existing plant classification.

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