The CITB Health, safety and environment test help raise standards across the industry. It ensures that workers meet a minimum level of health, safety and environmental awareness before going on site. It should be used as a stepping stone, encouraging employers and their workforce to develop their knowledge even further.
You will need to show that you have knowledge and understanding across the areas listed below if you want to pass your Health, safety and environment test. These are all areas that are relevant to anyone wishing to work in a construction environment. There is technically no minimum pass mark (though you should aim for at least 47 out of 50). but each section has it's own scoring. This has been designed in the test structure to show that you can demonstrate good knowledge across all of the core subjects.
The knowledge questions are grouped in chapters and sections, following the same structure that is used in all core CITB publications.
Accident reporting and recording: when, how and why accidents need to be reported and recorded.
First aid and emergency procedures: what you should do in case of an emergency, and what your employer must make available.
General responsibilities: what you and your employer need to do to ensure everyone is working safely on site.
Environmental awareness and waste control: your responsibilities on site, how waste should be managed and how to conserve energy.
Personal protective equipment: why personal protective equipment (PPE) is important, why you should wear it and who is responsible for it.
Health and welfare: common health issues on site and how to avoid them. Providing welfare facilities and support on site.
Dust and fumes (respiratory hazards): how to work safely, protecting yourself and those around you from exposure to respiratory hazards. What health conditions may arise from exposure to dust and fumes.
Noise and vibration: why it is important to minimise exposure to noise and vibration in the work place. How you should protect yourself and those around you.
Manual handling: why and how it is important to handle all loads using a safe system of work. What key areas you need to be aware of when handling loads.
Electrical safety, tools and equipment: how to work with different types of tools safely, and what you should do if the tools you are using have not been examined or are faulty.
Fire prevention and control: what you should do if you discover a fire, and which fire extinguishers should be used on what type of fire.
Safety signs: what type of safety signs you will see on a construction site, and what they are informing you of.
Working at height: what types of equipment you will use working at height, and how to use them correctly.
Excavations and confined spaces: why it is important, and how to work safely in a confined space or excavation, and what you should do if exposed to certain hazards.
Hazardous substances: how you can identify a hazardous substance, and what control measures should be in place to enable you to work safely.
Site transport safety and lifting operations: how site vehicles and pedestrians should work together on site.
If you are preparing for a specialist CSCS test you will also be asked questions on your specialist activity. There are currently 12 specialist CSCS tests available including:
All CSCS tests last for 45 minutes and have 50 multiple-choice questions. There are two different types of question, behavioural case study questions and knowledge questions.
These are designed to test how you would respond in different health and safety scenarios on a construction site.
They are still multiple choice questions and you will be faced with 3 case studies at the begining of your exam that you will need to answer.
They are based on fictional scenarios that you could face working on a construction site. If you need more information please look at the setting out film from the CITB book.
The knowledge questions cover 16 core areas (presented in Sections A-D) that are included in all the tests. These questions are very factual. For example, They ask you to identify fire extinguishers and signs. There is an additional knowledge question bank for each specialist CSCS test.
You do not need a detailed knowledge of the exact content or working of any regulations. However, you will need to show that you know what is required of you, the things you must do (or not do), and what to do in certain circumstances (for example, upon discovering an accident).
Legislation in Northern Ireland and Scotland differs from that in the rest of the UK. For practical reasons, all candidates (including those in Northern Ireland and Scotland) will be tested on questions using legislation relevant to the remainder of the UK only.
Health, safety and environment legislation, regulations and best practice will change From time to time, but CITB makes every effort to keep the CSCS test and the revision material up to date
You can read about the CSCS Test pass mark here for detailed information.
Prepare using the recommended revision materials, working through all the knowledge questions.
The easiest way to book your CSCS test is either online or by telephone. You will be given the date and time of your CSCS test immediately and offered the opportunity to buy revision material (for example a book, DVD, download or app). You should be able to book a CSCS test at your preferred location within two weeks.
To book your CSCS test:
When booking your CSCS test you will be able to choose whether to receive a confirmation by email or by letter. It is important that you check the details (including the type of test, the location, the date and time) and follow any instructions it gives regarding the test.
You can also choose to receive an SMS text message or email reminder 24 hours before your CSCS test.
For those instances where a CSCS test is required at short notice, it may be possible to turn up at a centre and take a CSCS test on the day (subject to available spaces). However, it is strongly advised that you do not rely on this option.
If you do not receive a confirmation email or letter within the time specified please call the booking line to check your booking has been made.
We cannot take responsibility for postal delays. If you miss your test event, you will, unfortunately, forfeit your fee.
To book a CSCS test you should have the following information to hand.
To sit a Health, safety and environment test you will need to visit a CITB-approved test centre. There are three different types of centre.
All CITB-approved test centres charge the same price for a Health, safety and environment test.
The Cost of the CSCS Test is £21. After passing your CSCS test, you will be able to apply for your CSCS Card at a cost of £36.
All CSCS tests can be booked with English or Welsh voice-overs.
Bulgarian, Czech, French, German, Hungarian, Lithuanian, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, Romanian, Russian, Spanish.
An interpreter can be requested if assistance is required in other languages.
The operatives CSCS test can be booked with British Sign Language on screen. If you need assistance in the other tests a signer can be provided.
If you need any other special assistance (such as a reader, signer, interpreter, or extra time) this can be provided but you will need to book through a dedicated booking line 0344 994 4491.
There is a dedicated Welsh booking line 0344 994 4490.
To cancel or reschedule your CSCS test, you should go online or call the booking number at least 72 hours (three working days) before your test. There will be no charge for cancelling or rescheduling the test online at www.citb.co.uk/testingservices outside the 72 hour period. Reschedules and cancellations made via the telephone booking line will incur an administration fee.
On the day of the test you will need to:
On arrival at the test centre, staff will check your documents to ensure you are booked onto the correct test. If you do not have all the relevant documents you will not be able to sit your test and you will lose your fee.
The tests are all delivered on a computer screen. However, you do not need to be familiar with computers and the test does not involve any typing. All you need to do is click on the relevant answer boxes, using either a mouse or by touching the screen.
Before the test begins, you can choose to work through a tutorial. It explains how the test works and lets you try out the buttons and functions that you will use while taking your test.
There will be information displayed on the screen, which shows you how far you are through the test and how much time you have remaining.
At the end of the test, an optional survey gives you the chance to provide feedback on the test process.
You will be provided with a printed score report after you have left the test room. This will tell you whether you have passed or failed your test.
If you fail your test, your score report will provide feedback on areas where you got questions wrong.
It is strongly recommended that you revise these areas thoroughly before re-booking.
You will have to wait at least 48 hours before you can take the test again.
A Health, safety and environment test pass is often a requirement when applying to join a construction industry card scheme. Different schemes exist in different trades and professions. Membership of a relevant scheme helps you prove that you can do your job and safely do it. Access to construction sites may require a relevant scheme card.
Once you have passed your test, you should consider applying to join the relevant card scheme if you have not done so already. However, please be aware that you may need to complete further training, assessment and/or testing to meet their specific entry requirements.