Our certification series often speaks to mechanical engineers – but today, we’re talking to you about the things you care about. I recently took the Associate Electrical Exam and I figured you all might appreciate some pointers. Follow along!
Overview of the Exam
The Certified SOLIDWORKS Associate – Electrical Exam is designed to test your knowledge of the tools and understanding of the principles of Electrical Engineering. Some of the topics that the exam covers include:
- Electrical theory
- SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics
- SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D
- Electrical design
Total Questions: 50
Exam Length: 60 minutes
Minimum of 35 points required to pass
Experience Preparing and Taking the Exam
In preparation for taking the CSWA-E exam, I wanted to make sure I was completely ready to take the exam. I first reviewed the SOLIDWORKS Exam Guide and Practice Test, which is a great reference for what to expect on the CSWA-E exam.
Learning Goals and Tips
To begin, I would suggest reviewing the CSWA-E section within the SOLIDWORKS Certification Catalog.
There you will find the note, “The interactive use of SOLIDWORKS is not necessary for this exam since this is not a hands-on test,” which should give you a hint (shhh) of the type of test to expect. The practice test is a great resource to familiarize yourself with what to expect, so review the concepts carefully!
One of the concepts you will encounter during the practice test will pertain to SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics project settings. The below screenshot details the location of the overall project settings. These settings are project-specific and will control the project discipline, unit standards, main language, and default configurations. While there are a wide range of settings with the program, some that may be utilized more frequently include: text features, ANSI/IEC libraries, attributes, project formulas and project templates.
Also, you will want to have some basic electrical knowledge to prepare you for electrical schematics. You can find many helpful websites and resources online to build your electrical knowledge. The new tutorial panel (seen in screenshot below) within the SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics added in 2019 is also a great resource and can be found in the SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematic’s Help Menu. This tutorial panel includes links to helpful how-to videos that review the exercises from the Electrical Schematic book you will received prior to attending the Electrical Schematics training course.
Lastly, you will need to know how to install SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics and Electrical 3D before taking the CSWA-E exam. In the screenshot below, you will see the Installation Manager settings for SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics and SOLIDWORKS 3D. The exam will require installation settings which you will first need to identify the location of where the SOLIDWORKS electrical data will be stored. This location will specify where your electrical data, projects, and all your project specific data is located.
Next, the Collaborative Server must be installed on the same system that hosts the Microsoft SQL Server database. For example, if the collaborative server is installed on the local machine, the machine name, such as LOCALHOST must be used. The port number 26666 is used for SOLIDWORKS electrical. To provide uninterrupted bidirectional communication, make sure that port number 26666 is available on the system where the Collaborative Server is installed. Finally, you must be sure to correctly name the SQL server using the localhost. The SQL Server must be named with the “collaborative server name” first, then the name of the server that SQL is or will be installed on. See the below default example: localhost\TEW_SQLEXPRESS. If you do not have SQL installed, SQL Express comes with this installation. The Installation Manager will install it for you on the server specified. Use the default user password which is set to SQLpwd4ew.