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Traditional Pathway

Technicians that choose the traditional NATE certification pathway will take two exams – the 50-question NATE Core exam and a 100-question Specialty exam.

The Core exam tests a candidate’s general knowledge, construction knowledge, and HVACR specific knowledge in the areas of:

  • Safety
  • Tools
  • Basic Construction
  • Using Basic Science
  • Achieving Desired Conditions
  • Taking Temperature and Humidity Measurements
  • Basic Electrical


Training Resources

NATE Training Academy

NATE has partnered with Interplay Learning to create NATE Training Academy, an online platform designed to provide technicians a way to train for NATE certification exams online at their own pace. The comprehensive online courses are all available on-demand and can be taken at any time. The interactive and immersive online courses include “field-like” 3D and VR simulations, videos, and knowledge checks. You can find more information about NATE Training Academy’s Core and Specialty exam preparation courses here.

Official NATE Study Guides

NATE has created study guides to help technicians prepare for the Core and Specialty exams. The paperback guides includes lots of graphics and practice questions at the end of each chapter. Study guides are available for purchase in the NATE Online Store.

Exam KATEs

Click here to view the Knowledge Areas of Technician Expertise (KATEs) for the Core Exam.

NATE offers multiple Specialty exams for technicians to choose from, and technicians will earn an Installation, Service, or Senior certification specialization depending on the exam the completed.

Click on the link below to view the KATEs for each of the NATE Specialty Exams: