About the CPCS renewal test

For a CPCS Blue Competent Operator Card holder to renew their card, they must take and pass the CPCS renewal test.

All Blue Card holders who have not renewed their card since 1 October 2013 must take the renewal test.

If you added a new category within two years of your card expiring, then you don't need to pass that category's test module when you renew your card. However. you will need to take and pass those module(s) in subsequent renewals.

Where to take the test

The test can be taken at any existing centre that offers the HS&E test including the Pearson VUE test centres. This means the HS&E test can be booked and taken at the same time as the CPCS renewal test.

When to take the test

You need to take the test before your existing Blue Competent Operator Card expires.

You also need to pass each category's module before the category can be renewed and/or added to your card.

You can take up to five CPCS renewal test modules in a single test slot at a CPCS test centre. One test slot costs £25, and includes the cost of the card being produced.

Vouchers can be bought in advance and used to pay for the test.

If you take more than five modules, it will cost £25 for an additional test slot (for up to five more modules). 

If you take your test at a mobile test centre it costs £50 for up to five modules. Vouchers cannot be purchased in advance for a mobile test.

Use Module Matcher to determine how many modules need to be booked, and also how much you will be charged for the test.

To book a CPCS renewal test, you can either:

  • book online
  • call the booking line on 0344 994 4488
    (there are different phone numbers for corporate bookings or special assistance - see Contact us for further details).

On the day of the test, you need to:

Staff at the test centre will check your documents when you arrive. You will not be able to sit your test if you don’t have the relevant documents, and you will lose your fee.

The CPCS renewal test is a computer based test, and all you need to do is click on the relevant answers by touching the screen or using a mouse.

Before the test starts, there is an on-screen tutorial which explains how everything works and lets you try out the buttons and computer.

The test is broken down into plant specific modules. There are up to 15 questions per module.

Once the test starts, you have 15 minutes to answer the 15 multiple-choice questions in a module.

After the test

Once you have completed the test, there is an optional online satisfaction survey available to provide feedback on the test you have taken. You can also complete the survey after you have left the test centre.

A score report for each module will be printed straight after you have completed the test. This will tell you if you have passed or failed each module.

The score report will also provide you with feedback on any areas where you might benefit from more learning or revision.

Once you have passed the necessary module(s) of the CPCS renewal test, you can apply to renew the Blue Cmpetent Operator Card for the categories that you hold associated with this module.

If you fail your test, we recommend you do more revision of the factsheets, and rebook your test for a later date.

To help you prepare and revise for the test, we have published a set of module-specific revision factsheets.

Each factsheet comprehensively but concisely covers all the subject areas within the module. The test questions are drawn from information contained in these factsheets.

These revision factsheets are free of charge, and can be downloaded from the Module Matcher

The test makes sure that the card holder has kept up their knowledge of each plant category or group of categories.

The renewal test is split into modules, one for each category of plant machinery. The modules test for the essential knowledge that is expected of experienced plant operators. The content of these modules cover a range of topics and have been developed to meet the needs of the various construction plant and trades.

Each module is CPCS plant specific, and has 15 randomly selected multiple choice questions. You have to answer each module within 15 minutes.

You will need to make sure you book and prepare for the right one(s).

Use the Module Matcher to find out which modules are available to take in the renewal test

The Module Matcher has been designed to help CPCS card holders work out which modules they need to take before booking the CPCS renewal test.

One test slot will allow you to take up to five modules.

If you have or are renewing between one to five categories, you only need to book one test slot.

If you are renewing more than five categories, you need to book an additional test slot(s).

Use Module Matcher to determine how many modules need to be booked. The tool will also advise how much you will be charged.

If you do not pass the renewal test, you must book another test slot and retake the test. A new test fee will need to be paid when you retake a test.

Where several categories are being renewed, as long as one module has been passed and all other CPCS renewal criteria are met, the Card will be renewed. Modules which you haven't passed yet can be taken at a later date.