Obtaining a Water Operator License
This guide provides vital information to assist you in obtaining your water operator license. Please click on the blue text for the weblink to the document.
Step 1: Determine License Required or Desired
1) Determine Licenses required for the Public Water System of interest click this link
2) Determine license desired from Attachment 1 of the Rules Pertaining to Water Operator Licensing
Step 2: Apply for Desired License
Complete and submit License Application
Step 3: Meet Mandatory Training Requirements
Ways to meet mandatory training requirements
Mandatory Training Course Schedule
Document Course Attendance by submitting course completion certificates:
Email to ADH.Water.Licensing@arkansas.gov as an attachment
Fax to 501.661.2032
Step 4: Preparation for License Exam
Needs To Know and other exam preparation materials
Treatment (2017 NTK Version)
Distribution (2017 NTK Version)
Includes PWS Regulations, Water Operator License Law & Rules
ADH PWS Compliance Course reference document
Course Presentation Materials
- Chlorine Residual Monitoring & Fluoridation
- Monitoring & Bacteriological Sampling
- Public Water System Rules & Regulations
- Surface Water Treatment Rule
- Disinfection By-Products Rule
- Ground Water Rule
- General Compliance Summary Requirements
- Exam Overview
Exam Formula Sheet (Identical to formula sheet provided during license exam)
Step 5: Sit for License Exam
Paper Based Exam (Must register 45 days in advance of paper exam session)
Pay $25.00 re-exam fee using fee invoice provided with exam results & repeat step 5 above.
Step 6: License Issued
Exam Passed and Experience Met – License Issued
Exam Passed and Experience Not Met – Operator-In-Training (OIT) Wallet Certificate Issued
To Convert OIT to License submit Experience Update Form
Additional Exam Preparation Information
1)Arkansas Public Water System Compliance Summary – This is a summary of water system compliance requirements related to complying with the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Department of Health public water system requirements and policies. The Summary is an exam reference, used during exam preparation and mandatory training courses. The “Drinking Water Compliance Course” uses this reference extensively.
a)Rules and Regulations Pertaining to Public Water Systems – (Appendix A of Compliance Summary) The Regulations ensure that public water systems provide ample quantities of safe, palatable water in compliance with the National Primary Drinking Water Standards. The Regulations are an exam reference used during exam preparation and mandatory training courses. The “Drinking Water Compliance Course” uses this reference extensively.
b)Water Operator Licensing Law and its Rules and Regulations Pertaining to Water Operator Licensing – (Appendix C and D of Compliance Summary) The Licensing Law and its Regulations are provided to offer you complete in-depth information pertaining to your chosen profession.
2)Treatment, Distribution, or Very Small System “Need To Know Criteria” (NTK) –The NTK is provided by the Association of Boards of Certification and is used to narrow down the areas of study. Included is the ABC Formula Sheet and math study aid to focus on needed areas of math preparation.
3)Reference Manual List – Provides information on the reference manuals referred to in the ABC Need To Know Criteria and information on how to obtain the manuals. The reference manuals are a critically needed exam preparation tool and are the primary textbooks used in the mandatory training courses. Many Public Water Systems already have the manuals.
4)Meeting Mandatory Training Requirements – Provides information on the requirements for the specific required mandatory training courses that must be attended or met utilizing the allowed alternate methods to meet the mandatory training requirements. The training must be obtained prior to sitting for the water license exam. Please review your records and the requirements to assure the requirements are met.
5)Mandatory Training Schedule – The training schedule, with contact information for the training providers, is provided to assist you in scheduling your mandatory training courses. Contact information is provided to assist you in registration for the courses or to be placed on the individual trainers’ mailing list.
6)Exam Schedule – The exam schedule is provided to assist you in determining the best time and location to take an exam. Please note, you must register for the exam 45 or more days before the exam session date. See exam registration forms.
The above information, the recommended referenced study manuals, and the mandatory training should provide you with the necessary materials and tools needed to properly prepare for and pass the exam. Of course, your level of commitment to exam preparation is the most important key to success.
The above materials, any other study materials or reference manuals will not be allowed into the test facility. A formula sheet identical to the one you have received will be provided at the exam site. Of course, a non-programmable calculator is allowed.
PREPARATION WILL BRING SUCCESS