A Quick Guide to the Firefighter Exam

A Quick Guide to the Firefighter Exam

Firefighting is a challenging and rewarding career, one that requires both physical strength and mental fortitude.

However, if you’re thinking of becoming a firefighter, then you’ll need to pass the firefighter exam.

This written examination is often regarded as complicated. However, it gets quite easier if adequate preparations are taken.

This blog post will give you all the detailed information you need to know about the exams so that you can start studying today!

Why Is the Firefighter Exam Important?

Scoring high on the firefighter examination is very important. There are two main reasons behind this. Firstly, there are only a handful of test dates for the written firefighter exam every year.

Secondly, not many firefighters are enrolled through this entry-level examination as the sector is already quite saturated.

So, you must cut through the crowd to enroll, and the only way is to score high.

What Will You Find on the Exam?

Okay, so let’s take a brief look at what you can expect from the exams. Although not many people expect it, you’ll be tested on basic math.

Other than that, there will be reading and listening comprehension.

To test your psychology, there will be spatial orientation and reasoning as well.

Please note that you don’t need any firefighting skills or knowledge to sit for the exam.

However, you will need to prepare extensively beforehand.

Knowing the proper format of the exam will prepare you mentally.

It will also help you strengthen whatever you’re weak at. So, know the exam date and make an appropriate road map.

Applying for the Firefighter Examination

Applying for the Firefighter Examination

Unlike most other tests, you can’t actually set a test date. Instead, the authority will set the date and inform you via posters or email notices.

If they decide to take the test in April, then you have to sit for the test in April. If you fail to take the test on the key dates, you’ll have to wait for the next firefighter examination application opening.

Even though this issue about the written examination date might complicate things, there are some good sides to it.

As there will be a fixed written test date, you’ll be able to take time and prepare yourself accordingly.

This way, you can use the complicacy to your advantage. You’ll find the test date on the written exam poster.

You’ll also find other important examination information, such as score release date and payment information on the poster.

You’ll find answers to additional questions on the website of the concerned civil service.

You can submit payment online directly through your bank account. After the payment, click ‘apply’, and that should be sufficient.

Once you complete the application and submit fees, you’ll receive a successful payment confirmation email. Make sure to check your spam mail folder as the mail often moves to spam.

Also, provide detailed information, or your application might get rejected.

If you’ve successfully submitted the payment but still haven’t received any mail, you should contact the civil service unit of the concerned fire department. After this, you’ll go straight to the preparation phase.

Test Format

The test format stays the same across all boards. You can expect the test scores to range from 100 to 150. All the questions will be in multiple-choice question format.

The test takers always avoid questions that can lead to a potential bias or controversy.

Furthermore, the test will be conducted for two to three hours. Time management is one of the most deciding factors as they’ll stop the test even if you fail to complete the test.

Thankfully, the preparation itself doesn’t require much financial investment. If you’re confident, we’d recommend going for a written test prep book.

There are also various sites with tons of online resources that will help you through the journey.

You can also enroll in a prep course or contact professional instructors if you aren’t confident enough. But first, let’s take an in-depth look at each of the sections that you’ll be tested on.


Here, the candidates are asked to go through a reading or listening comprehension. In the end, you’ll have to answer some memorization-based questions.

For example, names of places, people, certain actions mentioned in the comprehension, etc.


Expect to face very basic math questions that focus mostly on fractions, decimals, basic algebra, geometry, percentages, etc. You’ll be able to cover most of these by going through a relevant study guide.

Spatial Orientation

Spatial Orientation

In this test, the candidates will be asked to identify the location of an object with respect to another.

It may also ask simple questions like how a person can go from one point to another in a picture, map, or maze.

Mechanical Aptitude

This written test will test how well the candidates understand gears and mechanisms. You’ll have to face questions about screws, gears, levers, etc.

This requires a bit of preparation as you must learn how the gears work first.

Deductive and Inductive Reasoning

These are the most complex sections of the entire written test. In deductive reasoning, you’ll be provided a lot of important information and asked to deduce a result out of that information.

On the other hand, inductive reasoning provides bits and pieces of data and asks you to figure out the scenario.

As these are very tough and there’s no specific study guide to solving them, we recommend taking a practice test on these daily.

That’ll help you build up the strategy for solving these.

Test Day

You’ll need to maintain some rules on the test day. Bring a valid photo ID like your driver’s license, to begin with.

Without one, you won’t be allowed to sit for the test. The test is taken only at the ELPAT test location, so make sure you reach on time.

You’ll find the state ELPAT test location on the poster beforehand.

What Should the Next Steps Be

What Should the Next Steps Be?

You’ll have to sit for a CPAT test or physical ability test once you’ve completed the ELPAT test. After that, some regions require you to sit for the Biddle test, which is another physical ability test but easier.


The firefighter examination is designed to test the abilities of firefighters in order to determine if they’re eligible for the civil service.

There are many resources and additional information available to help you prepare for the exam, including practice tests and study guides.

The best way to prepare for the exam is to be familiar with the material that will be covered on the firefighter test and to practice, practice, practice!


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