Electronic Testing

The CAP exam is offered in an electronic format through Prometric’s global network. For more information on testing with Prometric, visit https://www.prometric.com/isa

When can I take the CAP electronic exam?
Each year, the CAP exam is available electronically during three testing windows. Each exam testing window will have a deadline for applications to be considered for testing in that window. Eligible candidates will only be able to test during the testing windows.

As of 1 January 2011, the candidate eligibility window, or testing window, has been extended to twelve (12) consecutive months. Once your application fee is paid, testing must be completed within your assigned twelve-month testing window which is based on your application fee date. Please allow five (5) to ten (10) business days to receive your eligibility code.

In order to schedule an exam, you will need to pay your application fee by the specified application deadline for your preferred exam testing window.

You may reschedule your exam by using the Prometric portal and the rescheduled date must be during your approved testing window.

You may retest for a fee per retest as many times as needed within your 12-month exam testing window; however, you must allow thirty (30) days between your exam dates. 

If you do not successfully pass the CAP exam within your twelve-month testing window, you must reapply for the exam by submitting a new application fee. Afterwards, you will be given a new twelve-month testing window based on your application payment date. 



What are the fees?

Application fees

  • $347 ISA Member
  • $467 Affiliate Member/Community Member/List

There are no group discounts for certification application fees.

Reschedule Fees with proper advance notification
Candidates may reschedule an exam appointment during their eligibility window by accessing ISA’s landing page at Prometric’s website if they contact Prometric at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled exam time in the United States or Canada and at least 5 days prior to the scheduled exam time outside of the United States or Canada. No reschedule fee will apply.

Region Advance Notice Required
United States/Canada 48 Hours Prior to Scheduled Exam Date
Non-United States/Canada 5 Days Prior to Scheduled Exam Date

Reschedule Fees without proper advance notification
Candidates who do not sit for their scheduled exam and do not give proper advance notice of intent to reschedule their exam will incur a fee of $135.

Retest Fees
You may retest for a fee per retest as many times as needed within your 12-month exam testing window; however, you must allow thirty (30) days between your exam dates.  If you are outside the twelve-month eligibility window, full application fees will apply. 

No-Show and Late Arrivals
For candidates who fail to appear for a scheduled exam, or arrive more than 15 minutes after the scheduled start time, fees will apply. See Reschedule fees without proper advance notification. You must reschedule your exam within your twelve-month eligibility period.

What forms of payment does ISA accept for the application fee and/or private testing fees?
ISA will accept check, certified check, money order, PayPal payment, or wire transfer in US Dollars. Make checks payable to ISA. For wire transfer account information, please contact ISA Customer Service. The following credit cards are accepted: AMEX, Discover card, Master Card, and VISA. Purchase orders are not accepted.

Is the application fee refundable?
CAP fees are NOT refundable. It is the responsibility of the applicant to thoroughly review the requirements for the examination. No refunds will be made for applicants who do not appear for testing on the appropriate test date. If, however, ISA cancels the exam date you registered for, and you cannot reschedule, a refund may be offered.


Application and Documentation

There is no application.  However, during the payment process, the applicant must self-certify that  they 1)

  • Are fully compliant with the certification criteria, qualifications and conditions for which you are applying; and 2)  
  • Acknowledge that they may be subject to a random verification audit and will fully agree to provide the supporting documents proving your qualification.

Will I receive notice of my eligibility status?
Allow up to ten (10) business days after paying your application fee to receive your eligibility code for electronic exam scheduling. For private site exam candidates, you will be contacted by ISA within two weeks of receipt of your application.


CAP Application Audit Process

How will I know if I have been audited?
Any CAP applicant selected for audit will receive notification via email and/or US Mail at the address of record. It is the applicants' responsibility to maintain their current, preferred address with ISA to ensure notifications are received.

Why was my application selected for audit?
All CAP applications are subject to audit. A random selection of CAP applications will be chosen for audit.

How do I complete the necessary audit documentation?
If your application was selected, you will be required to verify your employment history, position of responsible charge, and education as it relates to your application eligibility. Review the CAP Audit Documentation for more information.

How long do I have to submit audit documentation?
Applicants who are audited must complete the CAP Audit Documentation and return it with all necessary documentation to ISA within sixty (60) days of audit notification. Failure to do so will result in revocation of your application and certification.

This appendix should be completed only if you are notified by ISA that your CAP application is being audited. Please review the audit requirements so you are aware of what documentation you will need to submit in the event that your application is audited.

What if I am unable to provide the necessary documentation?
If you have already passed the CAP exam your certification will be revoked. See Application and Documentation (above) to review what information is required.


Examination Process

When are candidates notified of their certificate status?
Prometric will email results to the candidate after completion of the exam. If a candidate passes, a digital certificate will be sent within ten (10) to fifteen (15) days of the exam date. Failing candidates receive a percentage of each domain on how they performed on the exam by email. The percentage is not used to calculate their testing result.

What if the candidate does not receive their testing results by email from Prometric?
Prometric will email pass or fail results after completion of exam.  If you do not receive it within 24 hours, please contact them at https://scorereports.prometric.com and provide Prometric confirmation number that you received when you scheduled the test and your last name.

How is the passing score set for the CAP exams?
A modified Angoff Method is used to determine the pass point for each form of each exam. The modified Angoff Method uses expert judgements to determine the difficulty level of the exam. The easier the exam, the higher the pass point. Likewise, the more difficult the exam, the lower the pass point.

The following is a basic outline of the modified Angoff Method (some details have been omitted):

  1. A group of Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) independently rate each exam question within a given form of the exam. The ratings are defined as the probability, or likelihood, that an acceptably (minimally) competent person with the requisite education and experience will answer the question correctly. An acceptably (minimally) competent person is defined as someone who adequately performs all job functions safely and requires no further training to do so.
  2. The SMEs review each exam question as group. A statistical consensus is reached for the difficulty rating of each exam question.
  3. After the data are refined, the final step is to calculate the mean, or average, of all the test question ratings. This becomes the overall pass point estimation.

When do I need to arrive at the test site?
For electronic exams, candidates should arrive at the exam location no later than the scheduled exam time. For private exam sites, candidates must report to the exam location 30 minutes prior to the start time of the exam to sign-in and receive instruction. 

What should I bring with me to the exam site?
The following is a listing of items you need to bring to the exam site. A calculator will be provided on the computer for those taking the exam electronically.

Electronic Exam candidates:
Your Confirmation Letter from Prometric and a government issued photo ID

Private Exam candidates:
Your Confirmation Notice from ISA
A government issued photo i.d.
A non-programmable self-powered or battery-operated calculator
Two (2) number 2 pencils

Are there any materials I cannot bring to the exam?
All exams are closed book for both electronic and private site exams. No reference material will be allowed in any exam room. A calculator will be provided on the computer for those taking the exam electronically so electronic exam candidates will not be allowed to bring one in. A location for personal items such as a pocket book, palmtop, mobile phone, or pager will be made available to you. Please note that storage space will be limited.

Is there a grievances/appeal process in the event I am not awarded CAP certification?
If an ISA CAP applicant feels he/she was wrongly denied certification, original or renewal, from the CAP program, then he/she has the right to appeal. To review the Grievances Appeal Process click here.


Resource Materials

What study materials are available to help me prepare for the CAP program?
A study guide is available for the CAP exam and provides practice with similar types of questions as those found on the CAP exam. A Guide to the Automation Body of Knowledge is a complete overview of all technical topics covered by the CAP program. Learn more about these valuable CAP study resources, including how to purchase them, by visiting www.isa.org/books. Contact ISA at +1 919-549-8411 for further information.

Are there any preparatory courses for the CAP program?
A CAP Review Course is available as a preparation course for taking the certification exam. This course is offered by ISA and can be offered at your location. ISA also offers an automation professional curriculum of courses as well as distance education to assist those preparing for CAP. An ISA Training Service Consultant can give you more information. Simply e-mail Matt Rothkopf at mrothkopf@isa.org for more information on ISA Training Courses.



If I need to reschedule the date for which I initially registered for an electronic exam, what do I need to do?
You may reschedule your exam by going to ISA’s landing page at Prometric’s website and using the information from Prometric’s confirmation email.  The rescheduled date you choose must be within twelve (12) months of the application date. You must reschedule an exam more than 48 hours before the exam date for an exam in the United States or Canada, or more than 5 days for any other Prometric testing option. Candidates who do not sit for their scheduled exam and do not give proper advance notice of intent to reschedule their exam will incur a fee of $135.

If I need to reschedule the date for which I initially registered for a private site, what do I need to do?
If you need to reschedule your private exam date with less than 45 days before the exam date due to a situation which prevents you from taking your exam as scheduled, the fee is $135. You may only reschedule one time, and the rescheduled private date you choose must be within twelve (12) months of the initial exam date. There is no fee if you reschedule your exam prior to 45 days before the exam date. Please mail the reschedule form with payment to ISA.



Is there a time period that must pass before I can retest?
Yes, you must allow thirty (30) days from the last exam date to retest within your twelve-month eligibility period.

Is there are retest fee?
Yes, the retest fee is $190 for members and $205 for non-members per retest. You must submit the retest fee and the form each time you want to retest, and you only pay the retest fee rather than the entire application fee.

How many times can I retest?
You may retest as many times as needed within your twelve (12) month eligibility period, but with the thirty (30) day waiting period, by paying the fees below. Retest fee is required each time you retest.



How will I know I need to recertify?
ISA sends renewal reminders in the forms of emails and postcards, however, it is the responsibility of the certificant to pay the recertification fee at the appropriate time. Please ensure that you keep your contact information updated with ISA so that you will receive these notifications.

What is the recertification fee?

  • Recertify by PDPs (without an exam)
    • $270 ISA Member
    • $340 Affiliate Member/Community Member/List 
  • Recertify by exam
    • $310 ISA Member
    • $420 Affiliate Member/Community Member/List

What is a Recertification Audit?
A random selection of renewal applications will be audited, and those certificants will be required to provide verification of the points listed on the application.



How do I get a copy of my CAP certificate in case I lose it or if my supervisor wants one?To access a copy of your certificate, find the email that was previously sent to you from Accredible, our digital badge provider.  That email contains information and instructions related to accessing your digital certificate.  For more assistance contact ISA Customer Service.

How is CAP different from the Control Systems Engineer (CSE) program?
The CSE is a professional engineering (P.E.) license that can only be presented by a State Board of Engineering in the US CSE is a legal license to practice engineering and the exam focuses on control systems. CAP is a certification program that documents a candidate's knowledge not only in control systems but in the broader area of automation. CAP will be offered and recognized internationally.