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SP900308  
#1 Posted : 05 February 2016 14:54:29(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

APS members, you may not have had time to digest this yet, but I would be interested to see: 1. What you think about the new CMaPS process and status; 2. If you'll be going for it and, if so what you believe the benefits to be; 3. If you feel the prefix 'C' is a 'smoke and mirrors' exercise for APS to sit more level with other Associations / Institutions that have 'C' as a prefix. Or if you believe it's an innocent effort to add an extra level of credibility that would align with the old CDM2007 Appendix 5 Criteria (high risk / complex projects). I look forward to any feedback. Simon
Alfasev  
#2 Posted : 05 February 2016 16:28:18(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Alfasev

I will be going for it as in my experience the APS is more recognised than IOSH in the construction industry. I am not saying the APS is any better than IOSH. I do not think the exams will be too difficult if you prepare but like most people I rather not do them. I hope the APS hold free webinars on each subject for those, like myself, who cannot get any funding. I believe their eventual aim is to obtain charter status, which is not a bad thing.
realist  
#3 Posted : 13 February 2016 13:13:20(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
realist

I agree the use of C in front is too me mis-leading and is normally left for Chartered Status which the APS couldn't achieve. In regards it will have a higher standing I cannot see it. The exams which I recently took one but accidently clicked on the occupational health , I did continue the exam ran out of time. The questions were predominantly about statistics although the statistics are for the bean counters the exam in my opinion were to biased to this. Now if you want to stop killing people then it is how we do this and not the ratio between one type of death and another. We know you are more likely to die from an occupational disease than an accident. lets get away from trying to make exams to make people research mountains of statistical data and concentrate in the practical ways to prevent exposure. As for the APS I shall try the working at height exam and hope it is about designing out risk , the biggest risk still in new builds is architects putting mans safe systems as a first option instead of designing out risk. Going back to APS I think it is a dying organisation, I think Nebosh construction certificate is better than anything the APS can do.
John M  
#4 Posted : 14 February 2016 12:00:51(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
John M

Like "Realist" above, I cannot see any progression for APS with this misleading "status". I resigned from APS last year after 13 years membership. Yes, CDM 2015 also played a part in the decision to resign as I would not be comfortable with any duties badged up as a Principle (or any) Designer. An increasing number of employers are selecting those that can show ability and proven experience over those that can master the tick box exercises and who obtain questionable "qualifications". Jon
SP900308  
#5 Posted : 15 February 2016 13:40:02(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

Interesting comments! I took the work at height exam this morning and, with no active clock on the exam page, ran out of time. I confess the exam did stretch my knowledge and a reliance on sources of information was necessary (as is the real world). I now need to discuss with APS when to retake. I also confess to thinking the exam (20 questions multi-guess over 30 minutes) would've been reasonably easily achievable, I stand corrected! I'd be interested to get feedback from my APS colleagues that have also now attempted the exams. Simon
paulw71  
#6 Posted : 15 February 2016 13:45:18(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
paulw71

SP900308 wrote:
Interesting comments! I took the work at height exam this morning and, with no active clock on the exam page, ran out of time. I confess the exam did stretch my knowledge and a reliance on sources of information was necessary (as is the real world). I now need to discuss with APS when to retake. I also confess to thinking the exam (20 questions multi-guess over 30 minutes) would've been reasonably easily achievable, I stand corrected! I'd be interested to get feedback from my APS colleagues that have also now attempted the exams. Simon
In my opinion its a con. 90% weighted towards people who pay for the £100+ APS CPD seminars and not towards an overall knowledge of the subject being examined.
realist  
#7 Posted : 15 February 2016 14:49:21(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
realist

HI all I have spoken to the APS this morning in relation to the exam for occupational health. This exam is being re-looked at especially the heavily weighting on the statistics. I agree with other comments the APS in my opinion is starting to become a joke. Specialist construction knowledge I beg to differ if you are going to do exams concentrate on how we can design out risks and how we can improve safety. Many on hear I am sure have NEBOSH Construction certificate far better than the aps cmaps. I personally have NEBOSH Construction , General Certificate , Diploma, Ohsas Lead Auditor , CISRS scaffold inspection card , plus numerous others but most importantly 35 years of safety experience marine, manufacturing and 13 years in construction. Note the SKET principle. This Is a far higher level of knowledge than cmaps. APS in my opinion is a dying organisation.
Bradford32246  
#8 Posted : 15 February 2016 16:49:16(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Bradford32246

I've taken the Health exam twice (and failed) and the Work At Height exam once (and failed). In reality the questions are not hard although the structure of the questions leaves something to be desired. A couple of questions went something like "how many painters died in 2005?" what on earth this has to do with the management of risk I'll never know. Does it really matter how many painters were killed in 2005 (one is too many) or "how may new cases of deafness were assessed in 2014?" (yes we know that noise thats too loud can cause deafness) I have sent an email to APS in the following vein: "I’m currently completing a masters degree where the pass rate for each module of 40% I have now taken the Health exam twice and the work at height exam once and the same figure of 55% has popped up twice as a fail. What is the pass mark for these exams? Clearly as a professional with many year H&S experience under my belt and updated CPD provision, I’m finding it hard to stomach that I have now failed two APS exams. That either says something about my own ability or it says something about the way the questions have been structured or written (the latter is my view). I am strongly considering my future as a member of the APS (9 years I think it is so far) as this process is quite demoralizing"
paulw71  
#9 Posted : 15 February 2016 16:55:13(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
paulw71

Bradford32246 wrote:
I've taken the Health exam twice (and failed) and the Work At Height exam once (and failed). In reality the questions are not hard although the structure of the questions leaves something to be desired. A couple of questions went something like "how many painters died in 2005?" what on earth this has to do with the management of risk I'll never know. Does it really matter how many painters were killed in 2005 (one is too many) or "how may new cases of deafness were assessed in 2014?" (yes we know that noise thats too loud can cause deafness) I have sent an email to APS in the following vein: "I’m currently completing a masters degree where the pass rate for each module of 40% I have now taken the Health exam twice and the work at height exam once and the same figure of 55% has popped up twice as a fail. What is the pass mark for these exams? Clearly as a professional with many year H&S experience under my belt and updated CPD provision, I’m finding it hard to stomach that I have now failed two APS exams. That either says something about my own ability or it says something about the way the questions have been structured or written (the latter is my view). I am strongly considering my future as a member of the APS (9 years I think it is so far) as this process is quite demoralizing"
As I said previously it is solely weighted towards people who pay to attend the APS CPD seminar where I have no doubt these spurious statistics will be dished out to attendees in the handouts. Its a blatant moneymaking ploy by the APS with nothing at all to do with "Improving the Knowledge level of Members" or "Improving Ill health in construction".
Bradford32246  
#10 Posted : 15 February 2016 17:04:32(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Bradford32246

Agreed. I fear their membership will suffer given the route they are taking. 70% pass mark apparently for these exams.
SP900308  
#11 Posted : 15 February 2016 21:28:14(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

That's very interesting feedback! I'm too surprised at the exam and took the opportunity to email the APS and table my feedback. I'm not really in a position to attend the CPD events now unless I pay myself (not likely based on previous events attended - sometimes hit or miss!). I didn't expect the exams to be easy but I did expect them to be more generally focused. In fact the exam required you to review available information sources which is a time-consuming exercise (unless you have an exceptional ability to retain information, or know everything and anything relating to work at height. For example: what is the minimum load rating for an eyebolt..... If, Paulw71, as you say the exams are a particular focus of the CPD roll-out, the process could become about as credible as the CITB's CSCS test... read the book / attend the CPD session, answer the questions. What confuses me most is that the conversion exam from CDM2007 to CDM2015 was a basic exercise that made available an 'extremely' generous amount of time. Simon
boblewis  
#12 Posted : 16 February 2016 12:35:21(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
boblewis

But the answer for the eyebolt is easy - It depends on which type of eyebolt and whether the load pull is angular or a straight line so the true answer regardless of the APS is 3 orange lemons given the information provided. The APS still call themselves the lead body for construction safety - Enough said
Moss18458  
#13 Posted : 16 February 2016 15:12:03(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Moss18458

Interesting to read all comments. I also took one of the tests yesterday, the Working@Height exam. failed it -getting 12 correct from 20 questions. I can agree with some of the comments on the APS linkedin forum - many of the questions are badly worded. a further example of the exam is a question where you had to select 'which two of the following' when indeed the exam would only permit the selection of one multi-choice answer.. now to re-sit the exam the cost, im informed by APS membership will cost me £10, dont think i shall bother.
Rus1969  
#14 Posted : 16 February 2016 15:32:39(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Rus1969

I am going to admit I sat the APS Working at Height test this morning, no surprise I failed (12 out of 20), not going to pay for a re-sit, some very badly worded questions in there! Not too worried CMAPS means nothing to me or my peers!
SP900308  
#15 Posted : 16 February 2016 17:08:39(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

Not much love for APS right now! I too had the 'select two answers from the below...' question, which threw me somewhat, but one question provided a scenario along the lines: You are constructing a penthouse suite, it is on stilts, set back three metres on all sides from the edge of the building, with gullies running in from all corners, what is the safety method of maintaining the gullies? Obviously trying to visualise the concept took a few moments (especially with the APS' approach to question writing). I scored 60% but only answered around 13/14 of 20 questions. Pretty grim result but seems to align with other contributions on this thread. I also may not bother with the Certified status! Simon
Hayward41560  
#16 Posted : 16 February 2016 17:56:33(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Hayward41560

I was just about to start the Work at Height online test and reading the feedback from members I'm pleased I had a look on this forum. Looks like I need to look at lots of stats and pull tests etc. Thanks for the heads up. Regards Ian
SP900308  
#17 Posted : 16 February 2016 22:06:16(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

Ian, I think your best bet is to: 1. Have a timer next to you (not provided by APS); 2. Have BS8560:2012 to hand; 3. Spend some time on the NASC website reviewing scaffolding best practice; 4. Review high-rise glazing installation methods / systems; 5. Get an assistant to review sources of information so you don't waste too much time doing so... 6. Remind yourself of the Hierarchal principles of WAH; 7. Cross your fingers and get your £10 ready! You may just have a chance! By all accounts the alternative to the above would be to attend the APS CPD sessions and omit all of the above!
Hayward41560  
#18 Posted : 17 February 2016 12:40:08(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Hayward41560

Great advice Ill take it on board and have my £10 ready just in case Regards Ian
Stedman  
#19 Posted : 17 February 2016 15:10:36(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Stedman

SP900308 wrote:
Not much love for APS right now! I too had the 'select two answers from the below...' question, which threw me somewhat, but one question provided a scenario along the lines: You are constructing a penthouse suite, it is on stilts, set back three metres on all sides from the edge of the building, with gullies running in from all corners, what is the safety method of maintaining the gullies? Obviously trying to visualise the concept took a few moments (especially with the APS' approach to question writing). I scored 60% but only answered around 13/14 of 20 questions. Pretty grim result but seems to align with other contributions on this thread. I also may not bother with the Certified status! Simon
Simon, In the real world, if I were asked to assess this, I would ask to see the drawings! A silly question but were any drawings provided for this exam?
SP900308  
#20 Posted : 17 February 2016 15:32:40(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

Hi Stedman, nope, no drawings available, no countdown timer available and not enough time available! Although, they say in multi-guess, always go for option C. Maybe that would have been as valuable an exercise? Simon
Stedman  
#21 Posted : 17 February 2016 16:13:04(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Stedman

SP900308 wrote:
Hi Stedman, nope, no drawings available, no countdown timer available and not enough time available! Although, they say in multi-guess, always go for option C. Maybe that would have been as valuable an exercise? Simon
So the correct answer would be, 'without a drawing an informed roof access assessment cannot be undertaken'. I certainly would be undertaking written assessment without a drawing, nor would I expect a professional colleague of mine to do the same!
SP900308  
#22 Posted : 24 February 2016 14:44:08(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

Good afternoon all, Just to advise you that I just re-took the APS height exam and I was flabbergasted when I read that they had increased the exam time from 30mins to 60 mins! I passed this time round in 25 mins but really question the value of the process and how much thought went into it? Unless of course the re-take provides you with more time - which raises even more concern? Simon
walker  
#23 Posted : 24 February 2016 15:32:58(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
walker

Gives you plenty of time to consult Mr. Google
SP900308  
#24 Posted : 24 February 2016 15:52:30(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

Walker, indeed, Although, I just took the health exam and the questions were in the order of: "how many painters died in 2005 from occupational disease - a) 206 b) 224 c) 229 d) 236?" "what was the second highest registration of occupational cancer in construction in 2004" Now, I understand the principles behind the questions. However, this is a "fact finding" exercise and therefore not a demonstration of core knowledge (which I thought was the whole point!). Searching specific information takes time. I scored 60% with the above (I almost achieved that in my NEBOSH Dip!). Advice to others, have available all HSE accident/ill-health statistics for construction industry from 2005 to date. Focus on dusts and asbestos related diseases. Simon
walker  
#25 Posted : 24 February 2016 16:02:24(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
walker

I'd be amazed if any of the painters were involved in construction. Metal finishing and Car refinishing I could easily believe.
SP900308  
#26 Posted : 25 February 2016 22:13:18(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

Had a frank email exchange with APS Technical Standards Manager today. I expressed my views of the new CMaPS process and exams to him 'constructively'. However, he was determined to defend the process, almost arrogantly! Unfortunately I believe that clients and recruitment consultants will see the CMaPS category as the next most important thing and many will have to jump the hoops for the sake of it. I cannot see any value in the process and see no credibility with it at all. I suggested they look at IOSH's graduate process if they wish to seek 'demonstrable' skills, knowledge etc. They said they are not trying to achieve what IOSH is? I suggested that may be the fundamental issue! Simon
Stedman  
#27 Posted : 26 February 2016 17:14:39(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Stedman

SP900308 wrote:
Had a frank email exchange with APS Technical Standards Manager today. I expressed my views of the new CMaPS process and exams to him 'constructively'. However, he was determined to defend the process, almost arrogantly! Unfortunately I believe that clients and recruitment consultants will see the CMaPS category as the next most important thing and many will have to jump the hoops for the sake of it. I cannot see any value in the process and see no credibility with it at all. I suggested they look at IOSH's graduate process if they wish to seek 'demonstrable' skills, knowledge etc. They said they are not trying to achieve what IOSH is? I suggested that may be the fundamental issue! Simon
Simon, The APS organisation also worries me, especially the way that they now appear to be defining the scope 2015 CDM Regulations and developing what arguably appears to be a franchise. The use of 'C' in CMaPS also concerns me as that could easily imply something else other than Certificated.
6foot4  
#28 Posted : 12 October 2017 11:48:42(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
6foot4

So, roughly 18 months on, I'm presuming that most who passed the first two exams to get CMaPS must now aim to complete the next two before the end January deadline.  I will share my experience having completed the 4 required.

I passed the Health and Communication/Cooperation first time (this was the 60min duration, but I was done in less than 30min and was able to double check). 

I then got my CMaPS certificate and didn't bother again, as you do when you have a 20 months or so to sort it out.  I had several reminders and decided this week to get it out of the way.

I attempted the asbestos one first. 100% in 15 minutes and zero preperation. I was feeling fairly confident as a result. So 3 in the bag with 1 to go, this seemed really straight forward.  With 3 to choose from, I thought work at height was a safe bet to attempt without preparation. I was wrong - a good fail with 9 out of 20.  Several questions were hard to interpret effectively.  Rather than paying for a re-sit, I though I would try the Fire Safety.  Closer this time, with 11 of 20, but once again, zero preparation other than making sure I had some of the guidance to hand and I messed up 2 questions by not reading the guidance quickly enough - my fault. I also did not have the joint code which clearly has several questions that require you to refer to it.  I nearly decided to resit the Fire Safety and enquired and was told it's a £10 re-sit fee but that I could still attempt the Temporary Works exam (which is not my best topic to be fair).  Result! 80% after zero preperation but some good googling and use of the referenced guides and I pushed the 60 minutes to the max, but was nevertheless able to carry out a re-check - my adrenaline was pumping after and it was a bit of a rush. Phew!

Overall, I'm actually glad I attempted the 6 exams - whilst I don't see the relevance of everything asked these  have been useful for stimulating my thinking.  Including the 2 exams I failed, out of the 120 questions I answered, I achieved a collective score of 91 out of 120 or a 76% average.  The postives for me were that I had to work under pressure to get the answers and actually even with an open book approach it's not a given that you will pass.  Negatives are that its an open book and can be open to abuse.  Also I would question the relevance of knowing some of the statistics or numbers.

Yes it is a pain, but the exams are free first time around.  Attempt them and then make your mind up.  The results are instantaneous too - see it as a learning experience if anything.

I'm not a rabid APS member.  The last meeting I went to was in 2013 I think.  The only reason I currently maintain membership is because of industry recognition.  Fair play to them for building up a bit of a brand. Do I get sufficient value out of the membership? Probably not.  I can't remember the last time I read their newsletter or practice notes - saying that though, there was/is an awful lot of valuable stuff in there. 

Woolf13  
#29 Posted : 12 October 2017 12:15:58(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Woolf13

Hi,

I have recently completed all four exams to maintain my CMaPS status. I concur with a lot of the comments already made. However, my main observations would be this:

Positives:

  • Good to test knowledge and have exams to attain the highest designation - personally I think this should be every three years which would be good for CPD, but also to re-focus you. A little pressure every now and then....
  • Good that APS are wanting to set a standard and give you a choice of specialist areas - personally it should be specialist as the aim is to demonstrate to potential clients you as an indiviual have a level of demonstrable SKET 
  • Open book is good as just like in the real world if you were looking for a real technical answer 9/10 you would refer to a technical document
  • Being time bound also focuses your efforts which is not a bad thing

 Negatives:

  • Once the four exams are completed APS will rely on normal confirmation of CPD
  • The difference between the exams was totally disproportionate. Health - easy under 20 minutes. Asbestos - easy under 20 minutes. The work at height only had an intial 9% pass rate for a reason
  • The leadership exam one docuement to refer to yet the work at height a total of 14 documents open - how is that correct. Which means people could get the same CMaPS status by completing exams which are far easier than others

The work at height exam should be set at that level as it is specialist exam. However, my complaint is there should be other exams equally of that level. For example, APS should set a mandatory (which they do with health), two relatively diffcult exams and then one which really pushes your limits in a specialist chosen area.

SP900308  
#30 Posted : 12 October 2017 12:27:17(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
SP900308

I still have nothing positive to say about the exams, CMaPS status or APS in general.

Just paid another £175 for my membership retention which is far too much for what you get. Digest magazine I'm convinced runs the same story each month and CPD evidence question is comical.

Haven't atended an APS event for a few years now and in no rush to do so!

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