Guaranteed Pass Scheme - Find out more Book Online Today

CITB Site Safety Plus Scheme rule changes


What construction training managers and self employed site managers need to know.

Introduction of written exam answers means the delegates understanding and application of English language is now essential.

Site Safety Plus (SSP) provides the construction industry with a suite of courses for health and safety awareness and career development to help maintain a safe workforce. These courses are designed to give everyone from operative to senior manager the skills they need to progress through the industry. However, the format of the course materials and exam to qualify has changed significantly. The new process is much more rigorous and as a result the failure rate in January 2018 has increased dramatically.

We explain the CITB changes and how they will impact upon your SMSTS and SSSTS courses, and why those taking refreshers need to be prepared.

Changes to the Site Safety Plus courses and Health, Safety and Environment (HS&E) tests came into play January 2018. The rule changes are already impacting on SMSTS and SSSTS delegate pass rates across the UK. Especially for those sitting ‘refresher courses’ for a second or third time in their career – because the new exam format is taking delegates by surprise.

Pre-course Delegate Assessment

Delegates must have the...

  • physical ability
  • communication skills
  • literacy
  • numeracy
  • and the required experience and skills ensure they are competent to attend and complete the course.

Course Requirements

All SSP Courses must be taught in English. All delegates must present photographic ID on the day of the course exam.

  • Driving License
  • Passport

All sessions must be attended in sequence and without full attendance the certificate cannot be awarded. No delegate is allowed to attend more than two courses of split attendance. If this is not possible the delegate must enroll on a new course and retake the full course. If the course is a ‘Refresher’ then their current credentials must be within the allowed period and not expired.

Exam Requirements

SMSTS course & SMSTS refresher course

  • 20 multiple choice questions including 5 safety critical which must all be answered correctly to pass
  • 5 written answer questions


SSSTS course & SSSTS refresher course
SSSTS Assessment Exercise: Delegates have to produce a risk assessment and method statement for a typical construction task. (Marks out of 100. Not applicable to refresher).

  • 22 multiple choice questions including 4 safety critical questions which must all be answered correctly to pass
  • 3 written answer questions


A written exam format means the delegates understanding and application of English is essential.

The delegate is no longer assessed by multiple choice questions alone, there are now an additional number of short written statements to also complete. This is to demonstrate their understanding of the issues faced in the exam questions posed. These statements are then marked objectively on the quality of answer of the issues faced, the relevant health & safety law and how they ensure compliant and safe working practices. Where a delegate submits an answer which may deemed borderline by the course leader, they may be interviewed to explain their answer further. Therefore the application of both the delegates spoken and written English will be a major factor in their ability to successfully complete the course.