College - Author 1

College of Architecture and Environmental Design

Department - Author 1

Construction Management Department

Degree Name - Author 1

BS in Construction Management



Primary Advisor/Subject Matter Expert (SME)

Daniel Knight, College of Architecture and Environmental Design, Construction Management Department


The California contractors licensing exam tests aspiring contractors on their knowledge of the construction industry on other legal and trade topics. This paper is a case study that evaluates the contractors licensing exam and its ability to evaluate contractors. It concludes that the test itself is not responsible for increasing quality due to it being a simple process of memorization, but that California’s strict licensing requirements correlate to lower percentages of negative reviews. Various contractors from California were interviewed to understand their opinions of the licensing exam and how the knowledge from the exam related to their time in the industry. The licensing process in California could be improved by revising the exam to better reflect knowledge needed in the construction industry and to better test contractors and their ability to work in the construction industry. These changes would better serve consumers and help to improve standards and increase quality in the California construction market.