Government of Nova Scotia Government of Nova Scotia Nova Scotia, Canada


Water: Operator Certification


Our exams are provided through the Association of Boards of Certification (ABC).

The exams are developed specifically for Canadian operators and are provided in metric units of measurement.

ABC has developed "Need to Know" documents that describe the core competencies covered on the exams and explains exam specifications. Reference material that can be used to prepare for the exam is described in the Need to Know documents.

ABC Need to Know Guides

Eligibility requirements for writing the exams can be found on the Certification Program page. To qualify for writing an exam an operator must demonstrate they meet the requirements of the program by completing and submitting an Operator Certification Exam Application Form. Completed forms can be submitted by fax or mail or email (contact information provided on form).

Class I to IV exams must be written at one of the scheduled NSE exam sessions. Any applications received after the application submission deadline, or any received applications that are incomplete at the time of the deadline, will be rejected. The exam schedule and application submission deadlines can be found here:

Operator Certification Exam

Operator Certification Exam Locations

December 16, 2020 at
Shelburne Room - Rodd Grand Yarmouth
417 Main Street, Yarmouth

Operator-in-Training Exams

Online exams are available for operators in training. To apply, complete the application. You’ll receive an email to confirm your application is complete, and you’ll be sent a link to complete the test. There is a $27.50 fee to take the exam.

You’ll get an invoice once you’ve applied.

Exam Fees

Operator-in-Training Exam: $27.25*
Certification Exam (Level I-IV): $100.00*
*no tax is charged

When attending an exam session an examinee must:

  • Present their letter of eligibility.
  • Present a picture ID.
  • Provide their own calculator and one or two soft lead pencils.
  • Provide payment. Cash or credit cards NOT accepted. Cheques or Money Orders can be made payable to the Nova Scotia Minister of Finance.

All resource material will be provided with the exam.

Operators are allowed to write up to a maximum of 8 months prior to meeting the experience qualifications, however should the operator pass the exam the certificate will be held until all requirements are met and documented. This option allows operators to take advantage of exam sessions near their community.

Appeal of Exam Mark

For security reasons, the examination material is not open to public inspection or subsequent review by the candidate. For this reason it is important for examinees to provide comments regarding any question(s) they believe contain errors in content on the Question Comment Form provided during the examination. ABC will review specific candidate comments relating to the examination at the request of NSE. Should the question contain an error, the overall mark will be re-evaluated with that question(s) excluded.

Examinees that wish to appeal an exam result may do so in writing within 30 days of receiving their exam results. An appeal of an exam result can only be considered if a Question Comment Form was completed, and only those questions indicate on that form will be reviewed. Candidates will be notified in writing of the result of the appeal. An application for an appeal can be sent to the address provided on the exam application form.