Preparing to Pass the Master Electrician Exam in Your Licensing Jurisdiction

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Passing your licensing jurisdiction’s master electrician exam is the final step to earning the master electrician license you’ve been working toward all these years. Here at ElectricianSchoolEDU.org we cut through the confusion to give you the information you need:

  • Master electrician exam requirements in your state and local jurisdiction
  • What local, national and international code is used for the basis of the master electrician exam in your jurisdiction
  • Exam preparation resources through third party exam prep services
  • Master electrician license reciprocity with neighboring states
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Codes Used as the Basis for Master Electrician Exams

The National Fire Protection Association’s National Electrical Code (NEC) forms the basis for standards and regulations for electrical work in all 50 states. Currently, 45 states – or at least some of the local jurisdictions within these states – require electricians to pass an exam that covers the NEC as the final step to earning a master electrician license.

Though the NEC is the national standard for electrical code, there is no single, nationally recognized exam for master electricians. Instead, individual jurisdictions are responsible for determining the content that appears on their master electrician exams, or if an exam is even required at all.

Licensing laws differ from state to state. Depending on how a state has structured its licensing jurisdictions, licenses may be issued through one licensing authority that covers the entire state, or separate licenses may be required at the county or even city level. The local jurisdictions have the final say when it comes to exam requirements for a local master electrician license and can modify, remove, or add to a code that is adopted at the state level.

Master electrician licensing exams also often include content specific to electrical code established through the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and the International Code Council. Together, these three organizations develop the various codes that virtually every licensing jurisdiction bases its master electrician exam content on:

  • National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
    • National Electrical Code (NEC)
  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
    • National Electrical Safety Code (NESC)
  • International Code Council (ICC)
  • International Building Code (IBC)
  • International Fire Code (IFC)
  • International Energy Conservation Code (IECC)

Because master electricians often also work as contractors, your jurisdiction’s master electrician exam may also cover state code, including:

  • State and city business laws
  • Bidding regulations and practices
  • Insurance requirements
  • Contractor regulations

Master Electrician Exam Preparation Services

At this point in your career your copy of the NEC is probably torn, smudged, and coffee-stained. It’s time to break it out again to brush up on the proper theory, practices, and procedures contained within the NEC as you prepare to take the master electrician exam in your jurisdiction. Even if you decide to make use of one of the third party exam prep services listed below, you are encouraged to go through its well-worn pages to refresh your memory. You can find the most recent 2017 version of the NEC on the NFPA’s website.

You can find additional third-party resources that aren’t affiliated with the NFPA or NEC that will help you prepare for your master electrician examination:

The following state exam and code standards were made available from the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA). While states may have adopted a particular code such as the NEC, local jurisdictions may have the liberty to make any modifications, replacements, or omissions to the code.

Here you’ll find the master electrician (or equivalent) exam requirements in each state, along with the national and international code the licensing board bases their exam questions on.

States that recognize “reciprocity” with other states allow those that already hold master electrician licenses in one of the reciprocal states to be granted a license without having to go through additional training and education.

Alabama

  • Only electrical contractor licenses are issued; exam required
  • Standards adopted from the NEC, IBC, and IFC
  • Reciprocity with Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia

Alaska

  • Only journeyman, residential electrician and contractor licenses issued; exam required
  • Standards adopted from the NEC and NESC
  • Reciprocity with Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming

Arizona

  • Only electrical contractor licenses issued; exam required
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with California, Nevada, and Utah

Arkansas

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee

California

  • Only general electrician and contractor licenses issued; exam required
  • Standards adopted from the California Electrical Code (based on the NEC), the California Building Code (based on the IBC), and the California Fire Code (based on the IFC)
  • Reciprocity with Arizona, Nevada, and Utah

Colorado

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Arkansas, Idaho, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming

Connecticut

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the state’s Consumer Protection Department and Electrical Board of Occupational Licensing, both of which incorporate identical or similar elements as the NEC
  • No reciprocity

Delaware

  • Must pass an exam to become a general and limited master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, and Wyoming

District of Columbia

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • No reciprocity

Florida

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alabama, Georgia, and North Carolina

Georgia

  • Only electrician journeyman and contractor licenses issued; no exam required
  • Reciprocity with Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, and South Carolina

Hawaii

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC

Idaho

  • Must pass an exam to become a master journeyman electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming

Illinois

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • No reciprocity

Indiana

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • No reciprocity

Iowa

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • Standards adopted from the NEC and IBC
  • No reciprocity

Kansas

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions; passing the Block and Associates master electrician examination results in statewide eligibility for a master license
  • Standards adopted from the Kansas Fire Prevention Code, with state-owned buildings being subject to the NEC standards
  • No reciprocity

Kentucky

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards are adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Ohio

Louisiana

  • Must pass the Master Electrician 701 exam
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Utah

Maine

  • Must pass an open-book exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Oregon, and Vermont

Maryland

  • Must pass a state code exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the Maryland Building Performance Standards (MBPS) and the Maryland Building Rehabilitation Code (MBRC), both of which are in line with the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Delaware and Virginia

Massachusetts

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the Massachusetts Electrical Code that is itself based on the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Maine, New Hampshire, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington

Michigan

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the Michigan Electrical Code, which is based on the NEC
  • No reciprocity

Minnesota

  • Must pass an exam to become an “A” master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC, the NESC, and the Minnesota State Building Code
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming

Mississippi

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • No statewide adopted code
  • Reciprocity with Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Tennessee

Missouri

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • No statewide adopted code; local code standards are based on the NEC
  • No reciprocity

Montana

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming

Nebraska

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming

Nevada

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • No reciprocity

New Hampshire

  • Must pass a written or oral exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC and NESC
  • Reciprocity with Maine, Massachusetts, and Vermont

New Jersey

  • Only journeyman and contractor licenses issued; no exam required
  • Reciprocity with Delaware

New Mexico

  • Only journeyman and contractor licenses issued; no exam required
  • No reciprocity

New York

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • No statewide codes adopted, local codes may be based on the NEC
  • No reciprocity

North Carolina

  • May need to pass an examination to become an unlimited electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • Standards adopted from the North Carolina Building Code Council, which are based on the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia

North Dakota

  • Must pass a written exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming

Ohio

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Kentucky and West Virginia

Oklahoma

  • Must pass a written exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming

Oregon

  • Must pass a written exam to become a general supervising electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC and Oregon Electrical Specialty Code
  • Reciprocity with Arkansas, Idaho, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, Utah, and Wyoming

Pennsylvania

  • May need to pass an examination to become a master electrician in some local jurisdictions
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity may be recognized locally, for example Allentown has reciprocity with other cities in Pennsylvania and all of Connecticut

Rhode Island

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC and the Rhode Island State Building Code
  • No reciprocity

South Carolina

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Utah

South Dakota

  • Only journeyman and contractor licenses issued; exam required
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • No reciprocity

Tennessee

  • Tennessee’s equivalent to a master electrician is a contractor with a CE classification, which requires an examination
  • Standards adopted from the NEC and State Fire Marshall Regulation No. 15
  • Reciprocity with Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Michigan

Texas

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Master electrician reciprocity with Louisiana

Utah

  • Must pass a written and practical exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Master electrician reciprocity with Idaho, Oregon, and Wyoming

Vermont

  • Must pass a written and oral exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Maine and New Hampshire

Virginia

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC and ICC
  • Reciprocity with Maryland and North Carolina

Washington

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Massachusetts, Minnesota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming

West Virginia

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with North Carolina, Ohio, and Virginia

Wisconsin

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC and Chapte-16 Electrical of the Wisconsin Administrative Rules
  • No reciprocity

Wyoming

  • Must pass an exam to become a master electrician
  • Standards adopted from the NEC
  • Reciprocity with Alaska, Colorado, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, New Hampshire, New Mexico, and Oklahoma