There are a variety of electrical licenses in the state of Arkansas, and each one requires specific levels of training, education, and years worked. Unlike becoming a licensed plumber in Arkansas, which is regulated by the Department of Health, or an Arkansas general contractor, which is regulated by the Arkansas Contractors Licensing Board, electrical licensing is regulated by the Arkansas Department of Labor and Licensing.
To become a licensed electrician in the state of Arkansas you must complete an apprenticeship program, or meet the required classroom training and years worked. There are seven types of licensed electricians in the state of Arkansas:
- Master Electrician;
- Residential Master Electrician;
- Journeyman Electrician;
- Residential Journeyman Electrician;
- Air Conditioning Electrician;
- Industrial Maintenance Electrician;
- Specialist Sign Electrician.
Each type of electrical license has its own limitations and restrictions as designated by the administrative rules of the Arkansas Board of Electrical examiners. For many licenses, training and experience are required and must be approved by the Board. The Board does not consider training and experience in violation of Arkansas or any sister state’s registration requirements valid.
All work experiences must be documented with official transcripts, notarized letters, or affidavits from past and present employers. Official letters from other licensing boards must also be present if work was performed out of state. Letters and employment verification must be dated within six months of applying. Employment verification from the Social Security Administration may be required.
The approved ratio of supervision for work experience and training by the Board requires no more than three apprentices to one journeyman electrician, or one master electrician.
Arkansas Electrical License Reciprocity
If you are already a licensed journeyman electrician in the following states Arkansas will recognize a reciprocity agreement:
- New Mexico
- New Hampshire
- South Dakota
The state of Arkansas only provides reciprocal agreements for a master electrical license from the state of Oregon.
Applicants who seek reciprocity must be in good standing, have been tested in the sister state, and must have held their license in the sister state for at least a period of one year or more.
Arkansas Master Electrician License Requirements
A master electrician license in the state of Arkansas is an unlimited license classification that authorizes the individual to plan, layout, and supervise the installation, maintenance, and extension of electrical conductors and equipment. The requirements to become a master electrician include:
- A degree in electrical engineering with two years of construction or related experience; or
- Six years of experience in the construction industry with both residential and commercial, including two years experience as a licensed journeyman electrician; or
- Any combination of training and experience the Board may approve, such as formal electrical apprenticeship programs, on-the-job training that have been specifically approved by the board.
A residential master electrician license holder is an individual who is limited to performing electrical work for one- and two-family dwellings. This includes planning and supervising installation, maintenance, and the extension of electrical facilities. A residential master electrician may still perform electrical work on a commercial or another project with the supervision of a journeyman or master electrician, in the same manner and ratio as an electrical apprentice. The requirements for becoming a residential master electrician include:
- Three years of wiring experience in one- or two-family sized dwellings, including one year experience as a licensed residential journeyman; or
- Any combination of Board approved training and experience.
Arkansas Journeyman Electrician License Requirements
A journeyman electrician may install, maintain, and extend electrical conductors and equipment. An electrical journeyman license holder may not contract with the general public to plan, lay out, or provide supervision to the installation, maintenance, and extension of electrical conductors and equipment without employing at least, but not limited to, one full-time master electrician. The requirements to become a licensed journeyman electrician in the state of Arkansas include:
- Completion of a four-year electrical construction apprenticeship program that has been approved by the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Apprenticeship and Training.
- Completion of an appropriate apprenticeship program should include a “Notice of Apprenticeship Committee Action – Released for Test/Completion” form from the program. The form must be approved by the Arkansas Department of Workforce Education.
- Applicants that have completed apprenticeship programs in other states require certification from the Bureau of Apprenticeship and Training, or the state agency responsible for the oversight and completion of apprenticeship programs.
- If there are extenuating circumstances, the Board may approve an individual applicant without a Released for Test form.
- Applicants who have not completed a four-year electrical construction apprenticeship program must have eight years or 16,000 hours of electrical construction experience or training as approved by the board. Training and experience gained in the military may be included.
A residential journeyman electrician may install, alter, repair, maintain, or renovate electrical facilities, but is restricted to one- and two-family dwellings, and must be under the general supervision of a residential master electrician or a master electrician. Electrical work on commercial and other projects may be performed under the supervision of a journeyman or master electrician in the same manner and ratio as an electrical apprentice. The requirements to become a licensed journeyman electrician in the state of Arkansas include:
- Two years of wiring experience in one- to two-family sized dwellings
- A two-year combination of training and experience as approved by the board, including formal apprenticeship programs.
- A signed letter from a school or apprenticeship program verifying the applicant’s hours.
Arkansas Electrical Insurance Requirements
The state of Arkansas requires electricians to carry electrical contractors’ insurance, which includes liability insurance and workers’ compensation insurance.
Use the tool below to request a FREE insurance quote from our partner’s:
Other Licensed Electricians in Arkansas
There are three other electrical licenses offered in the state of Arkansas, each with its own needs and requirements.
An air conditioning electrician is an individual who is limited to the installation, maintenance, and extension of electrical conductors and equipment for the sole purpose of supplying heating, air conditioning and refrigeration units. The requirements of an air conditioning electrician license include:
- Two years of wiring experience with HVACR equipment; or
- Any Board approved experience and training as equivalent to two years of wiring experience with HVACR equipment.
- An HVACR electrician’s license issued by Arkansas municipality;
- An HVACR Class A or Class B license issued by the state HVACR Licensing Board.
An Industrial maintenance electrician is an individual who is limited to repair, maintenance, alteration, and extension of electrical conductors and equipment for electrical power and controls systems on, or within industrial, manufacturing, or similar type facilities. The requirements of an industrial maintenance electrician include:
- Four years of experience under the supervision of an engineer, master electrician, journeyman electrician, or industrial maintenance electrician in the maintenance of electrical conductors or equipment; or
- Any combination of training and experience that has been specifically approved by the Board including: formal apprenticeship programs, on-the-job training, public or private electrical training programs that may include armed forces, college, or vocational or technical schools.
A specialist sign electrician is an individual who is limited to installation, maintenance, and repair of electrically illuminated or operated signs and gaseous tubing for illumination, as well as making all connections to an approved outlet of sufficient capacity within 25 feet of the sign to be constructed. The requirements of a specialist sign electrician include:
- At least two years working and performing the work of installing, maintaining and repairing electrically illuminated or operated signs and gaseous tubing for illumination, as well as making all connections to an approved outlet of sufficient capacity, for an electrical sign company, or a licensed electrical licensee.
- Any combination of training and experience approved by the board and equivalent to the above.
Applications and Exams of Arkansas Electrician Licenses
Applications for all classes of licensure must include the Arkansas Electrician Application form. The application and all of its supporting documents must be submitted to:
Arkansas Board of Electrical Examiners
Arkansas Department of Labor
10421 West Markham
Little Rock, AR, 72205-2190
Applications must be received by the Board five business days in advance of the date of the scheduled meeting of the Board, or of the Screening Committee. The dates of the Board and Screening Committee meetings can be found on the Board Events and Calendar. Following the meeting of the Board or Screening Committee, a list of approved and eligible applicants will be issued.
The examinations to receive an electrical license will be offered at least every six months, and is proctored by Prov, Inc. The State of Arkansas Electrical Exams vary in cost by two methods of taking the exam. Computer-based tests cost $80.00, and traditional paper and pencil exams cost $56.00.
Exams may be scheduled:
- Online from the Prov homepage,
- By phone at (866) 720-7768
- By mail to one of the testing centers located in Conway, El Dorado, Fayetteville, Fort Smith, Little Rock, Paragould, and Searcy, AR.
- Through Fax (386) 518-6419
For further testing questions contact Prov at:
5200 NW 43rd Street
Gainesville, FL 32606
By phone at (866)-720-7768, or by fax at (386) 518-6419.
If an applicant has completed an apprenticeship program and fails the exam, the applicant will continue to be approved for subsequent examination of the same class without further action by the board. If an applicant has experience and education, but has not completed an apprenticeship program and fails the exam, the applicant may be required to complete up to two years of an apprenticeship program before being approved to retake any subsequent exams.
Arkansas Electrical Apprenticeship Requirements
To qualify for an apprenticeship program the applicant must:
- Be 18 years or older,
- Have a high school diploma or GED,
- Have a valid driver’s license and reliable transport,
- Be able to pass a general aptitude test covering reading and math skills,
- Be able to pass a drug test,
- Submit a copy of high school or college transcripts showing you passed a standard algebra class.
The electrical contractor or master electrician who is employing the apprentice to work at the trade must register the apprentice with the Board, the Department of Career Education, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration, Office of Apprenticeship (OAT), within 30 days. The apprentice must be enrolled and attend school no later than the first full semester following the date of hire.
Registering as an apprentice with the Arkansas Board of Electrical Examiners includes the following:
- An application form approved by the Board
- Pay a registration fee of $10.00
- Proof that the applicant is enrolled in and attending, or preparing to attend at the next full semester, a school or training course that has been certified by the OAT.
The apprentice registration certification is valid for one year, and expires on the last day of the month, one year from issue. The Apprentice registration certification may be renewed by a payment of $10.00 and documentation of current enrollment and attendance of a training program certified by the OAT.
Arkansas Electrical Apprenticeships
Unless the applicant has completed eight years or 16,000 hours of electrical construction experience and training, they will need apprenticeship experience to earn a journeyman’s license. There are two ways to complete an apprenticeship; union or non-union/through a trade school.
An apprenticeship with a union provides both employment and training to complete the electrical journeyman requirements over the four years or 8,000 hour time completion. Unions in Arkansas include:
- El Dorado Electrical JATC
- Jonesboro Electrical JATC / IBEW 1516
- Fort Smith Electrical JATC
- Little Rock Electrical JATC
Arkansas Electrical Trade School
To complete the qualifications to apply for a journeyman license, an applicant will need to accumulate four years of experience with 800 hours of technical instruction. Classroom and lab-based instruction from a technical school will be applied toward the classroom hour requirements for journeyman license, but will need to be accompanied by on-the-job training.
Arkansas State University Beebe
Address: 71 Cleburne Park Road, Heber Springs, Arkansas 72543
Contact: (501)362-1274, [email protected]
Tuition: $300 per year
University of Arkansas Fort Smith
Address: 5210 Grand Ave, Fort Smith, Arkansas 72913-3649
Contact: (479)788-7784, [email protected]
Address: 3000 West Scenic Drive, North Little Rock, AR 72118
Arkansas College of Electricity
Address: 2805 S. 1st St, Rogers, AR 72758
Contact: (479)636-2633, [email protected]
School: Public, but the electrical program is only open to students apprenticing under an approved electrical contracting business.
Arkansas Construction Education Foundation
Address: Classrooms and campus at a variety of locations.
School: Public, but the electrical program is only open to students apprenticing under an approved electrical contracting business.
Arkansas Professional License Search
Many pursue electrical licenses through on-the-job training. To receive credit for the hours you have worked, the state of Arkansas requires that you are overseen by the appropriate licensee. It is good practice to consult the Arkansas electrical license search to ensure that all jobs and opportunities are guaranteed oversight by a qualified and professional licensee.
For More License and Career Guides
To find out how to become an Electrical Contractor in another state, start here.
For information on other trades in Arkansas, click on a link below to learn more about the licensing requirements: