Overview of Technician Certification


Do your techs wear an EGSA Certification patch?
There are two uniform patches worn by EGSA-Certified Technicians. They are the Apprentice and Journeyman certification logos. That logo (regardless of the technician level) sends a clear message that this Tech and his Employer are special. The tech has proven his skill and knowledge by passing a rigorous test; his Employer is committed to excellence and high standards. Certified Technicians can proudly use the title “EGSA Certified Electrical Generating Systems Technician.”

Administered for EGSA by Ferris State University (FSU)
Think things move pretty fast in today’s business world? Think how fast they’ll be moving one, five or even 10 years down the road. That’s why you need every advantage to stay on top.

It’s no secret that technology is becoming more complex—not less—and that makes today’s On-Site Power Generation System a lot more expensive. End-users—your customers—don’t want just anybody with a basic knowledge of mechanics to install and maintain their sensitive and expensive equipment, especially if the generated power is emergency back-up for life critical systems! They want to be confident that all work has been performed by qualified personnel. Suppliers want assurance that skilled technicians are performing maintenance and repairs to guard against unnecessary returns or warranty repairs. 

As Good as Your Word
In the past, your word was the only assurance that your technicians are skilled and knowledgeable. But now, through EGSA’s Electrical Generator Systems Technician Certification Program, there is a way that you can back up those words with objective evidence of your technicians’ proficiency. 

EGSA offers you a big advantage: Industry-wide, we have an objective and accurate exam to determine generator technician proficiency and whether that technicians is a beginner or an intermediate level. That means that the same standards will be used to measure the skills and knowledge of technicians from Maine to Manitoba and Mexico. Technicians from the Caribbean and Europe have also become EGSA certified.

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Who may take the EGSA Certification Test?

Apprentice-Level Certification:

Applicants for this level, upon completion of a passing exam grade, can satisfy these 3 areas:

  1. A new Apprentice-level technician hired by a company that performs service on EGSA-Type equipment; 
  2. A 2 or 4 year College that offers course in these areas can now use the EGSA Apprentice level exam (and Study Guide) level test as part of their curriculum to prove that they are offering the training needed to fulfill what EGSA Member companies require; and 
  3. The Military can test their technicians to qualify them for jobs as they get out of the service and seek employment.

Journeyman-Level Certification

Technicians applying for the Journeyman exam MUST HAVE A MINIMUM OF 3 YEARS’ EXPERIENCE AS AN ELECTRICAL POWER GENERATOR EQUIPMENT TECHNICIAN. To be confident that they will pass the test, techs must have a comprehensive knowledge of basic electricity, the functions of a gen-set’s mechanical and electrical components, the interactions and relationships among components and an understanding of various elements of the installation, service, maintenance, and repair of gen-sets and On-Site Power generation systems.

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How do I become certified?

The first step is to complete the application (download here) and mail or fax it with your payment to Ferris State University to schedule a test. The second step is to take the test. If you achieve an acceptable overall passing score, you will have earned your EGSA Certification (Apprentice or Journeyman).

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When and where do I take the test?

Ferris State University, through its agreement with EGSA, conducts the test throughout the year. After you register, the test will be scheduled at your convenience at a testing site near your home or workplace. The test will be supervised by a professional proctor for the duration of the test period.  Techs may be asked to help identify appropriate proctors and testing sites.

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How do I register to take the test?

Simply download an application (download here), fill it out and mail it to Ferris State University at the address on the application form. Be sure to include payment when you submit your application (Apprentice or Journeyman).

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What's on the test?

Click here for an overview of what's on the test.

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How do I prepare for the test?

Click here for an overview of how to prepare for the test.

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What is the passing score?

To pass the Apprentice test, you will need to achieve an overall score of at least 68% correct.  To pass the Journeyman test, you will need to achieve an overall score of at least 80% correct.

The Electrical Generator Systems Technician Certification Examination tests the knowledge of the applicant in a wide range of subjects relating to on-site power generation including: Basic Electricity, Prime Movers, Generators/Alternators, Engine Generator Instrumentation and Controls, Governors, Automatic Transfer Switches and Voltage Regulators.  The Journeyman test expands this range to include:  Multiple Generator Switchgear & Controls, Auxiliary Support Systems, System Communications, Troubleshooting System Problems and Startup/Commissioning.  The approprate study guide covers all the topics that will be tested.

So that you have an opportunity to assess your relative areas of strength and limitation, EGSA will report scores for each of the above areas and will indicate what a 'passing score' on that section might have been.

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How much does the test cost?

Complete information on test application fees may be found here.

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Can I cancel the exam and have the money refunded?

APPLICANTS—and only applicants—are the only parties who can cancel their scheduled participation in the testing process, and must do so in writing , subject to the following timelines:

  • 30+ Days - Applicants who cancel 30 days or more in advance of their scheduled test may do so without penalty. Applicants who cancel during this period will be offered the choice of a full refund of fees or having the fees applied to a future test.

  • 29 days or less - Applicants who cancel 29 days or less in advance of their scheduled test will not receive a refund.

The agency conducting the test will not cancel a scheduled exam unless an act of nature makes it impossible to conduct testing. Tests cancelled for this reason will be rescheduled. Applicants who were scheduled for that exam will be offered the choice of having their fees refunded in full or applied to another test.

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What happens if I pass the test?

CONGRATULATIONS! You will be an EGSA Certified Electrical Generator Systems Technician and you may proudly use that title and take pride in your accomplishments. The effective date of your Certification is the date that you took the exam. And you can demonstrate your achievement to others by wearing EGSA Certified Electrical Generator Systems Technician uniform patches and baseball caps and using logo items that are available through Ferris State University.

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How can I order uniform patches and logo items?

Uniform patches, baseball caps, and decals for use on service vehicles, toolboxes, etc. are available only to those technicians who have passed the Certification test.  Information on how to order uniform patches may be found here.

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What happens if I don’t pass the test?

In order to become certified you must achieve an overall passing score of 75% or higher. If you fail to achieve an overall passing score, you must retake the entire test. You may retake the test at any time and we encourage you to do so. But you must register again and pay the appropriate fees.

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When will I receive my test results?

Test results will be mailed to the applicant within 45 days of the examination date at the address they provide.

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What do I receive to prove that I am EGSA Certified?

When you pass the Certification test, you will receive a certificate noting your status as an EGSA Certified Electrical Generator Systems Technician. In addition, you will receive a wallet card and an insignia for your uniform sleeve or pocket. Additional patches can be ordered from Ferris State University.

Click here for information on ordering uniform patches.

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How do I maintain my Certification?

You should recertify every three years (Apprentice) or five years (Journeyman). Recertification involves taking an exam that reflects the latest technology and practices. Not only does recertification offer proof that you have maintained and updated your skills and knowledge, it also shows that the entire process remains a meaningful part of your professional activities. Like the initial Certification process, Technicians who are recertifying will register to take the test and pay the then current fee to do so. For additional information, click here.

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When do I take the Recertification Test?

Certification credentials are valid for three years (Apprentice) or five years (Journeyman). This ensures that certified professionals are up-to-date in this rapidly changing industry. If the validation period has expired, it's time to register to take the Recertification Test. For additional information, click here.

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