The NABCEP PV Design Specialist (PVDS) Board Certification recognizes the advanced experience and skill of PV system designers. This Board Certification demonstrates your proven ability to configure the mechanical and electrical design components of PV systems.


A minimum of twenty-four (24) prescribed hours of advanced training is required. Each candidate must have: 

  • 18 hours of advanced PV design principles and practices as outlined in the NABCEP PV Design Specialist Job Task Analysis (PVDS JTA). Course(s) must have been taken with an accredited institution.
  • 6 hours of the National Electric Code (NEC).

“Advanced” is defined as a course which provides instruction beyond the “basic,” “fundamental,” or “introductory” PV Installation design principles and practices. Courses should be designed for the Professional who is prepared to maintain a decision-making role in the installation, design or service of a PV system. 

Our NABCEP PV Design Specialist (PVDS) Certification Prep bundle saves you money and time in getting all of the hours and knowledge you need to pass the exam.


NABCEP recognizes that professionals in the field of renewable energy and energy efficient technologies receive their training and work experiences in a variety of ways. NABCEP Staff will review each application to determine compliance with eligibility criteria. 

To qualify to sit for the NABCEP PV Design Specialist (PVDS) Certification Examination, every Applicant, regardless of background, education or experience, will need to document:

  • Completion of a minimum of 10 hours of OSHA Outreach Training Program for the Construction Industry training (or provincial equivalent); AND
  • Completion of 24 hours of advanced training as defined in Section 4.5.2 below

(NOTE: These hours of training do not need to be in addition to apprenticeship or degree coursework if the requirements of Section 4.5.2 were met within the curriculum and timeframe); AND

Completion of designs for installations equaling at least 12 Project Credits 

Projects Credits are as follows: System size of 1 – 999kW = 2 Project Credits System size of 1MW and up = 3 Project Credits

See the NABCEP Handbook to confirm all of these details and for more details about:

  • Eligibility Requirements
  • Experience Requirements
  • Documenting Experience

Practice Exams

We offer a NABCEP PV Design Specialist Practice Exam. By taking the practice exam, you will have the opportunity to become comfortable with the format of the exam.