STUDENT INSTRUCTIONS

September 4, 2014

BACKGROUND

The NAFTA Pesticide Applicator Core Certification Exam (Exam) tests the “core” knowledge requirements that all pesticide applicators must know to safely and effectively apply pesticides.

The following test administration procedures and instructions are designed to assure that all candidates are provided the same opportunity to demonstrate their abilities and to prevent some candidates from gaining an unfair advantage over others due to testing irregularities or misconduct.

1.      HOW AND WHEN EXAMS ARE ADMINISTERED

1.1.   Exams can be taken in two different formats: electronic or paper based format. Candidates must advise the exam administrators which format they wish to use upon scheduling an appointment. NOTE: The paper based exams are only available in Vermilion.

1.2.   Exams are administered by appointment only. Candidates who must change the scheduled appointment must make prior arrangements with the regulatory agency, i.e., Lakeland College.

1.3.   Candidates who do not appear to take the exam for which they are scheduled must re-apply for another exam and forfeit the fee for the exam they missed.

1.4.   A category specific exam can be administered the same day as the core exam, however an exam session will not exceed four total testing hours.

1.5.   Candidates cannot review the exam questions after the exam is scored.

1.6.   The time allotted to write the entire core exam is 90 minutes.

1.7.   The Pesticide Applicator Exam may not be attempted more than two times in a six-month period unless specific additional training and approval has been provided by Lakeland College.

2.      ARRIVAL AT THE TESTING CENTRE

2.1.   Upon arriving at the testing center, the candidate must produce one official government-issued photo identification. Current and un-expired photographic identification will include:

a.       Driver’s license with photograph

b.      Passport with photograph

c.       Military identification with photograph

NOTE: A temporary driver’s license or any other temporary form of identification even if it includes a photograph will NOT be accepted.

2.2.   Candidates must store all electronic devices (telephones, alarms, pagers, PDAs, computers, cameras or other electronic devices), notes, purses, or wallets in their vehicle.

2.3.   Coats/outerwear will be placed outside the exam room. Candidates should remove all personal effects from their coats/outerwear and store them in their vehicle.

3.      BEFORE YOU WRITE THE EXAM

3.1.   By using the assigned passcodes, the candidate is indicating that they:

3.1.1.      Will answer to the best of their ability and will not obtain assistance in any manner (electronic, verbal or written);

3.1.2.      Will NOT provide or share the contents of the exam with another person.

3.2.   The proctor will identify the time limit for each exam being taken and provide the materials noted under 5.3.1.v.

4.      CONDITIONS FOR WRITING THE EXAMINATION

4.1.   EXAM ROOM CONFIGURATION

4.1.1.      The exam room will be configured as follows:

4.1.1.i.       For paper based exams, a clock or other timing device will be provided or mounted in the room so candidates can monitor their progress against the time allotted to write the exam. For electronic exams, a clock will appear on the computer screen.

4.1.1.ii.        A workstation will be provided that is adjustable so candidates have an reasonable opportunity to obtain an ergonomic work area.

4.1.1.iii.      The environment surrounding the workstation will approximate a normal office environment. That is, ambient temperature 22-240C (70-750F), sufficient light to illuminate the workstation, and a reasonably quiet atmosphere.

4.1.1.iv.      Where the exam is electronically delivered, the computer setup will not detract from completing the exam.

4.2.   OTHER CONDITIONS

4.2.1.      Breaks will not normally be provided, however if candidates must take a break, the proctor will supervise the candidate to ensure they are not coached or obtain assistance while on the break. No additional time will provided to make up time lost during the breaks.

4.2.2.      No eating, drinking or smoking will be permitted during the exam writing session.

4.2.3.      The proctor will not provide any answers regarding content of the exam.

5.      WRITING THE EXAM

5.1.   Candidates are encouraged to answer all test questions, even the ones for which they are uncertain of the answer (no penalty for guessing).

5.2.  It is the candidate’s responsibility to report to the proctor during the examination any unusual problems (such as a slow running computer) encountered during the writing period. This allows for proctor verification of the problem(s) and possible exam time adjustments by Lakeland College – Pesticides Department if the problem is deemed valid.  Only proctor verified and reported technical examination problems will be addressed.

5.3.   ELECTRONIC DELIVERY

5.3.1.      For electronic exam delivery:

5.3.1.i.               A double-login procedure will be established where the candidate logs in with their provided ID followed by their unique password;

5.3.1.ii.             Both the ID and passwords will be unique to an appointed exam writing session and will be valid for only the day and time that the exam scheduled. The candidate’s password will be generated and delivered to the proctor via email.  

5.3.1.iii.            A practice exam will be provided to the candidate prior to starting the core exam to familiarize them with the functioning of the computer program. The time spent writing the practice exam will not be counted towards the core exam writing session, however a reasonable time limit of 20 minutes will be set for writing the practice exam.

5.3.1.iv.           For electronic delivery of the exam, the proctor will ensure the login process is successful, start the practice exam and provide directions to the candidate regarding how to:

·        Designate the answer to a question;

·        Change a previously designated answer;

·        Access and use links within a question;

·        Move back and forth from question to question;

·        Engage and disengage the “time remaining” function on the program.

5.3.1.v.  The proctor will provide scratch paper, a pencil, an eraser and a calculator.

6.      DISMISSAL FROM THE EXAM

6.1.   The proctor may dismiss a candidate from the exam for any of the following reasons where the candidate:

6.1.1.      admits that they are not the candidate designated to take the exam;

6.1.2.      does not comply with the Declaration Form or proctor instructions;

6.1.3.      creates a disturbance, is abusive or otherwise uncooperative;

6.1.4.      gives or receives help or is suspected of doing so;

6.1.5.      attempts to record test questions or make notes;

6.1.6.      is observed with notes.

6.2.   For electronic exams, where a proctor has dismissed a candidate:

6.2.1.      the proctor will immediately notify the Lakeland College of the incident and relate (verbally and follow-up with a written statement) the reason(s) candidate was released.

6.2.2.   the proctor will forward all test scores to Lakeland College who will hold them until further investigation.

6.3.   Where a candidate has been dismissed for suspected misconduct:

6.3.1.     Lakeland College will notify the candidate and allow them the opportunity to provide additional information.

6.3.2.      Lakeland College will contact the regulatory agency (Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development - ESRD) and provide a summary of why a proctor has dismissed a candidate.

6.3.3   ESRD may undertake a confidential review of the circumstances giving rise to the questionable score validity.

6.4.   If it is determined that there is sufficient cause to question score validity, ESRD may cancel the score(s) and advise Lakeland College to inform the candidate and the proctor.

6.5.   Where a candidate has been dismissed for irregularities, scores may be withheld and/or cancelled because of circumstances beyond candidates’ control, such as defective equipment or mistiming. In such cases, candidates will be informed and offered an opportunity to retake the exam. In addition to the reason(s) listed above, ESRD may advise Lakeland College to withhold or cancel exam results if, upon investigation, violation of policies outlined in this publication is found to have been committed.

6.6.   Where a candidate has been dismissed for misconduct or irregularities due to violation of policies, they may not write for at least 2 years after Lakeland College has formally dismissed them.

7.      AFTER WRITING THE EXAM

7.1.   After the candidate has completed the exam, the proctor will request that the candidate to complete an evaluation form. The time required to complete the evaluation form is in addition to the time allotted for the examination.

7.2.   The proctor will collect all scratch paper, pencil,  calculator and evaluation form for both paper and electronic exams..

7.3.   For electronic-based exams, the proctor will sign off the computer and shut it off.

8.      THE SCORE REPORT

8.1.   A score report will be generated for each exam written that includes:

8.1.1.      Overall mark indicating whether it is a pass or fail mark.

8.1.2.      A breakdown of the marks achieved in each key concept of the exam.

8.2.   Paper-Based Exam Delivery (available only at Lakeland College – Vermilion campus)

8.2.1.      Lakeland College will mark the exam, and generate the score report.

8.2.1.i.               If a candidate has passed, a certificate will be generated.

8.2.1.ii.             A results letter and the certificate (where applicable) will be mailed to the candidate.

8.3.   Electronic Exam Delivery

8.3.1.      Upon completion of an electronic exam:

8.3.1.i.               The proctor will print the score report;

8.3.1.ii.             Where a score report indicates the candidate has successfully passed the exam Lakeland College, within 10 working days under normal circumstances,  will generate and send a certificate to the candidate.

8.3.1.iii.            If the candidate is unsuccessful, a results letter will be mailed to the candidate.