Private Pesticide Applicator Program

The Montana State University Pesticide Safety Education Program coordinates the certification needs and trainings of private applicators wishing to apply restricted use pesticides across the state.  Applicators can receive both their initial private applicator license and credits to renew an existing license at the Carbon County Extension office.

To become certified as a private applicator for the first time, you must either attend an approved six-hour initial training program or pass the open book Initial Private Pesticide Applicator exam with at least a grade of 70 percent. This test is offered at all local county Extension offices and must be administered by an authorized representative of the MSU Pesticide Safety Education Program (generally the local county Extension agent).  The manual used for the test is also available at the office it is recommended that you come in and pick up a manual to study a few weeks before you plan to take the test.  This manual can also be used as a reference during the test so it is best to formularize yourself with the book before sitting down to take the actual exam.  

All applicators must accrue six recertification credits by the end of their certification cycle. Carbon County began a new cycle this year (2013); therefore, the next deadline for recertification credit in this county will be 2017. Recertification credits can be obtained by attending approved training sessions, taking an online quiz or taking a closed-book exam at the local PAT office. An applicator may elect to take a closed-book exam (pass with a score of more than 70 percent) at any time during the fifth year of the certification cycle to qualify for the next cycle.

Do not procrastinate or you may be caught at the end of the cycle without any program credit opportunities in your local area. You have five years to attain six recertification credits. All program credit opportunities available in Montana are on the ‘Private Applicator Training’ link on the Montana Pesticide Safety Education Program (PSEP) Web site( If you have any questions regarding other program opportunities contact the Carbon County Extension office.

Click here to view the entire Montana Private Applicator Program MontGuide