Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association
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Tips for Successful On-Line Pesticide Testing

The Illinois Dept of Agriculture has gone to great lengths to provide a legitimate opportunity for applicators and operators to take their pesticide exams on-line this year.  Please review these tips below to help ensure a successful experience if you need to test this year:
1.  The on-line exams use a proctoring service called "Proctor U" which monitors your computer activity to ensure the integrity of the testing.  This is necessary in order to comply with USEPA criteria for pesticide testing.  Do not count on licenses being extended like they were at the end of 2019; you need to prepare to take the exam and in-person testing opportunities are very limited.  

2.  To see the computer requirements for Proctor U, click here.  If you do not meet these requirements, you will need to find a computer that has the necessary features, and/or a location with the necessary broadband speed.  

3.  You will need to make an appointment with Proctor U for each exam you need to take.  Therefore, we recommend you start now in order to give yourself time to get appointments scheduled to take the exam(s).  There are 22,000 applicators and operators due to test this year, but IDA assures us that Proctor U has the capacity to handle the demand.  

4.  Click here to for the instruction page on how to start the process of enrolling in Proctor U.  You will need to create an account through the University of Illinois system, and then schedule an appointment with a proctor who will go on-line with you to "test" your computer system to make sure it has the necessary features and speed for a successful testing experience.  

5.  Once you pass an on-line exam, the process for renewing your license with IDA will be the same as always.  IDA will be notified of your passing the exams and issue you an application for a pesticide applicator or operator license and you will need to send it back to IDA with the required fee.  Reminder:  licenses are good for 3 years, so once you pay the 3-year fee you are set for 3 years.  

6.  IDA does plan to offer some in-person testing opportunities, but until the Stage 4 mitigations are lifted it will be difficult to accomplish much if any in-person testing since facilities cannot "host" gatherings.  Even when in-person testing is offered, the number of people per class will be severely limited.  But, you can still sign up for in-person testing through the IDA's website which is here.  If IDA has to cancel the in-person classes, they will notify anyone who has signed up of the change in plans.  

We realize that on-line testing is going to be an uncomfortable process for many people.  However, we recommend you give it a try because it will likely be the way of the future.  If you have problems or concerns, please contact IFCA at 309.827.2774 and select the prompt for Jean, John, KJ or Jason and we will do our best to assist you.