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WAQTC Qualification Program

Frequently Asked Questions

Who Should Attend This Program?
What is the Purpose of This Program?
What changes are occurring to the program for 2017?
What Should I Expect from This Program?
How Much Does it Cost?
How Long Does the Certification Last?
When Can I Take the Exam?
Where Can I Register For The Exam?
Where Can I Register For The Training?
What If I Do Not Pass the Exam the First Time?
How Can I Reschedule or Cancel My Registration?
Where Can I Take the Exam?
How Can I Get a Copy of My Certificate?


Who Should Attend This Program?

Engineering Technicians and Engineers responsible for sampling, testing and inspection for quality control of soils and aggregate.


What is the Purpose of This Program?

The Federal Government set a deadline of June 29, 2000 that requires any person performing QA/QC on State or Federally funded transportation projects to be “qualified”. As a result, CDOT, in conjunction with GROUND Engineering Consultants, Inc. and Kumar & Associates have implemented the WAQTC soils qualification program.

The purpose of this program is to meet the federal requirements and ensure that individuals responsible for the QA/QC aspects of highway transportation projects are qualified to perform soils test procedures in accordance with the applicable test methods and consistent test procedures.

As of January 2005, CDOT will provide technicians with a qualification for inspection of soils. This will be included in the WAQTC qualification.


What changes are occurring to the program for 2017?

CDOT has released a new version of its 203 Specification for Excavation and Embankment.  The new specification defines requirements to utilize different moisture conditioning, compaction techniques, and testing requirements for different soil classifications and material types.  Therefore, CDOT’s new version of written exams for Soils, Excavation, and Embankment Inspection will have a heavy emphasis on soil classification and laboratory testing procedures used to classify soils.  Another goal of the new written exams is to test examinees on their knowledge and understanding of the new 203 Specification.  In addition to the revised written exams, CDOT will also require examinees to demonstrate their ability to run laboratory tests related to soil classification, and they will be required to identify the different AASHTO Soil Types using similar procedures to ASTM’s Visual Manual Procedure.  These new practicals will be in addition to those already required  for WAQTC’s Embankment and Base and In-Place Density Certification.

To assist individuals seeking certification for WAQTC Embankment and Base and In-Place Density, and CDOT’s Soils, Excavation, and Embankment Inspection, CDOT is now offering a training day each month prior to Certification Day.  Attendees will receive an overview of all exam material, testing procedures, and will have the opportunity to see each required Practical Exam demonstrated, with question and answer sessions.  We encourage anyone intending to certify to participate in the training program.  The cost for training is $50, and lunch is provided. Training will begin at 8:00 AM at the CDOT certification center at 4670 Holly Street, and will run until approximately 4:00 PM.

The most significant change to our Soils Certification program – we will no longer provide any overview, power point presentations, or training on Certification Day.  Examinees will come to our center, immediately take the written exams without any overview, and proceed directly to the laboratory for Practical Exams.  We strongly encourage entry level technicians, new employees to the industry, and first-time examinees to attend the training.  We also encourage veterans to the industry that are re-certifying to attend the training to learn CDOT’s new requirements for soils testing and embankment construction.


What Should I Expect from This Program?

The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) qualifies soils and embankment inspectors through WAQTC’s Embankment and Base and In-Place Density modules.  This portion of the certification program involves written and performance exams on the WAQTC Materials.  In addition to the WAQTC qualification materials, CDOT desires to have our inspectors familiar with construction practices, geological conditions, testing procedures, and construction specifications that are unique for Colorado.  The second portion of CDOT’s soils and embankment qualification process includes demonstrating a familiarity of the materials contained in in our Soils, Excavation, and Embankment Inspection Manual by passing another written exam with questions related to the manual’s content.  This exam is open-book.  Additional performance exams are also required to demonstrate ability and knowledge to complete other soil tests beyond that which are required to qualify for WAQTC Embankment and Base and In-Place Density certification.

Certification day will generally adhere to the following schedule:

  • 7:30am to 8:30am – WAQTC Exam
  • 8:30am to 9:00am – Break
  • 9:00am to 10:00am – Soils Inspection Exam
  • 10:00am to 10:30am – Break
  • 10:30am to 4:00pm – WAQTC Performance Exam (in lab)

All times are approximate, and may vary due to class participation.

Participants may elect to take only the Soils Inspector portion of the certification to become inspectors, however CDOT does require that any individual certifying for WAQTC Embankment and Base must also pass the Soils Inspection portion of the exam. 

Prior to arriving at the examination, you should download and review the WAQTC Embankment & Base/In-Place Density manual

Download Manual (PDF format, 4.4mb)

The manual will provide you with the WAQTC field operating procedures based on AASHTO test methods. These field operating procedures provide you with the necessary information to equip yourself to pass both the written and performance aspects of the examination. It will also include the Soils Inspection Manual.

 


How Much Does it Cost?

In order to cover the cost of the Colorado portion of the WAQTC Pooled Fund, the cost of the complete exam (Embankment & Base and Soils Inspection) for 2016 will be $130.00 for courses held in Denver, and $180.00 for courses held elsewhere. There is no cost difference for the Soils Inspection certification if taken alone. Each exam requires a minimum of 10 participants and is registered on a first come basis, with preference given to companies providing proctors. Payment is due at the time of registration. While we do allow substitution of participants at any time without notification or additional cost, no refunds will be issued for enrollment, retake or reschedule fees for any reason.


How Long Does the Certification Last?

Currently, initial certification is for three years, and subsequent certifications last five years. Certifications issued prior to 2008 may have been issued for a different duration, so depending on when you took the exam, your certification may be for a different length of time. Please check your certificate for your expiration date.


When Can I Take the Exam?

Courses are offered on a monthly basis. Please continue to the Exam Registration Form for a list of available dates.


Where Can I Register For The Exam?

Click the link below to register. You will be required to pay the course fee at the time of enrollment by credit card or PayPal account (CDOT Employees will not be required to pay at the time of enrollment).

Exam Registration Form


Where Can I Register For The Training?

Click the link below to register. You will be required to pay the course fee at the time of enrollment by credit card or PayPal account (CDOT Employees will not be required to pay at the time of enrollment). Training will begin at 8:00 AM at the CDOT certification center at 4670 Holly Street, and will run until approximately 4:00 PM.

Training Registration Form


How Can I Reschedule or Cancel My Exam?

Click the link below to reschedule your exam (training reschedules are not currently allowed). Please note that reschedules cannot be made within 48 hours of the course, and no refunds or credits will be made for no-shows. If your reschedule request is submitted online at least 48 hours prior to the exam date there will be a $30 charge. You will be required to pay the reschedule fee at the time of enrollment by credit card or PayPal account (CDOT Employees will not be required to pay at the time of enrollment).

Course cancellation is not available, but your company may substitute a current registration with an alternate participant at no additional charge. No notification of the substitution is necessary. You may simply send the alternate participant to the exam.

Exam Reschedule Form


What If I Do Not Pass the Exam the First Time?

If the participant does not pass the written exam, he/she may retake the written exam the same day at no additional charge (first time retest only). Failing participants need to return to a future scheduled class at full charge.

If the participant passes the written portion, but does not complete or pass the practical portion on the date of the exam, he/she may return to one future exam for a $55 charge to retake the practical portion. Retakes will be administered at the CDOT Materials Lab at 10:30AM on the date of the exam. Click the link below to sign up to retake the practical portion. You will be required to pay the registration fee at the time of enrollment by credit card or PayPal account (CDOT Employees will not be required to pay at the time of enrollment).

Exam Retake Form

Where Can I Take the Training and Exam?

Both the training and exam are given at the CDOT Materials Lab Training Room, located at: 4670 Holly Street, Denver, CO 80216-6408. Click here for a map & directions provided by MapQuest™.


How Can I Get a Copy of My Certificate?

Use the following link to request a duplicate copy of your certificate. A duplicate copy of the certificate will be sent within 2 weeks.

Duplicate Certificate Request

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