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Training and Safety Tip: Passing the written

Find a test preparation program that works with your learning style, whether online, a book, an in-person ground school, or some combination. Dedicate time to learn and understand the material. The FAA’s test questions are not publicly available, so you can’t memorize questions and answers. You must know the material.

Most test prep programs offer practice exams to help check your progress. Take one exam as a baseline, look for the subject areas where you are weak, and focus your study efforts on those areas. Then take another exam; rinse and repeat until you’re getting 80 percent or better on two or more exams in a row.

On test day, show up at the testing center with your identification, endorsements or proof of course completion, acceptable test taking materials, and the exam fee. After the test provider demonstrates how the exam process works, you’ll begin the test.

Go through the exam three times. On the first pass, answer every question you know the answer to. The second time answer any questions requiring calculations that you didn’t do in the first round. Finally, address any questions not answered in previous rounds by eliminating the obvious wrong answer and picking the best answer from the remaining two. Answer all the questions, even if you’re not sure of the answer. If it was a poorly phrased question and the FAA determines there is no credible answer, you may be able to get credit for that question. This proven test-taking strategy usually results in scores in the 90- to 100-percent range.

After the testing center grades your exam while you wait, you get that prized piece of paper—the Airman Knowledge Test Report. Keep that paper safe because you need to bring it with you to your checkride—a photocopy won’t do. The report lists any knowledge areas where you were deficient, and your instructor will review them with you before your checkride.

Good luck and fly safe!

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