Pesticide Applicator Training

A private applicator is one who applies pesticides on property owned or rented by the individual or his or her employer for the purpose of producing an agricultural commodity. Private applicators are not allowed to perform commercial (for hire) applications to more than 500 acres per year. Applicators that apply pesticides on more than 500 acres for hire must take the commercial pesticide applicators exam.

To re-certify as a Private Pesticide Applicator, you must take the private pesticide applicator exam. This can be done at one of training sessions offered by Dane County Extension or you may take the self-study option and take the exam at your convenience at the Dane County Extension office. If you attend a training session, you need a 50% to pass the exam, if you take the self-study option, you need a 70% to pass.

Whether you choose to attend a training session or the self-study option, a training manual needs to be picked up at the Dane County Extension Office, 5201 Fen Oak Dr, Madison, WI 53718. The cost is $30, which includes the manual and pays for the certification for five years.

If you would like to take the self-study option, simply pick up your manual and study. When you feel ready to take the exam, schedule a time with Claudia Wiederholt at the Dane County Extension office, 608-224-3704.

If you would like to attend a training session, pick up your manual at the Extension office ahead of the training session and register for one of the sessions listed below.  To prepare for the training session, I would recommend reading “How To Pass The Exam” starting on page ix. Bullet points are found at the beginning of each chapter and discuss the main topics of the chapter. It may also help to familiarize yourself with the “Table of Contents” in the manual, as the test is open book.

On training day bring along:

  • Your manual
  • Hand held calculator
  • Your social security number
  • #2 pencil
  • Scratch paper


You will receive your certification from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (WDATCP) within 4-6 weeks after you have completed the exam. This certification is valid for five years.

If you don’t meet the minimum score of 50% for the training session or 70% for the self-study option, you will be notified as soon as possible by the WDATCP. You may then contact the Dane County UW-Extension Office to schedule a time to retake the exam.

2019 Private Pesticide Applicator training sessions in Dane County were held on January 29 and February 14, 2019

Individuals unable to attend a training session can still contact the Dane County Extension Office to take the exam as a self study option.

Details for the 2020 training sessions and registration information will be finalized and posted in this page by mid- December 2019.

Questions?  Call Dane County Extension Office: 608-224-3700


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