The Written Examinations

Introduction

 

Once you have your 8610-2s signed and authorized to test, the next step is passing the FAA written examinations.

There are three Aviation Maintenance Technician written examinations, AMG - General, AMA - Airframe, and AMP - Powerplant. The General examination is required if you are seeking your airframe, powerplant, or airframe and powerplant certificate.

Providing you complete the certification cycle within a 24 calendar month period, you will only be required to take the General examination once. This means, if you have a single certificate, airframe, or powerplant, and want to add the other rating, you will not be required to take the general exam a second time.

 

Description of Knowledge Test(s)

All test questions are the objective, multiple-choice type. Each question can be answered by selection

of a single response. Each test question is independent of other questions; therefore, a correct response to one does not depend upon, or influence, the correct response to another. 

The minimum passing score for each written examination is 70 percent.

The Aviation Maintenance Technician - General exam contains 60 questions, and you are allowed 2 hours to complete the test.

The Aviation Maintenance Technician - Airframe and Aviation Maintenance Technician Powerplant exams contain 100 questions each, and you are allowed 2 hours to complete each test.

 
 

Knowledge Areas on the Tests

Aviation maintenance technician tests are comprehensive because they test your knowledge in many subject areas. The subject areas for the tests are the same as the required AMTS curriculum subjects listed in 14 CFR part 147, Aviation Maintenance Technician Schools, appendices B, C, and D. However, the subject area titled "Unducted Fans" (in appendix D) is not a tested subject at this time. 

AMG - General 

A. Basic Electricity

B. Aircraft Drawings

C. Weight and Balance

D. Fluid Lines and Fittings

E. Materials and Processes

F. Ground Operation and Servicing

G. Cleaning and Corrosion Control

H. Mathematics

I.  Maintenance Forms and Records

J. Basic Physics

K. Maintenance Publications

L. Mechanic Privileges and Limitations

AMA - Airframe

Airframe Structures

A. Wood Structures

B. Aircraft Covering

C. Aircraft Finishes

D. Sheet Metal and Non-Metallic Structures

E. Welding

F.  Assembly and Rigging

G. Airframe Inspection

Airframe Systems and Components

A. Aircraft Landing Gear Systems

B. Hydraulic and Pneumatic Power Systems

C. Cabin Atmosphere Control Systems

D. Aircraft Instrument Systems

E. Communication and Navigation Systems

F.  Aircraft Fuel Systems

G. Aircraft Electrical Systems

H. Position and Warning Systems

I.  Ice and Rain Control Systems

J. Fire Protection Systems

AMP - Powerplant

Powerplant Theory and Maintenance

A.  Reciprocating Engines

B.  Turbine Engines

C.  Engine Inspection

Powerplant Systems and Components

A.  Engine Instrument Systems

B.  Engine Fire Protection Systems

C.  Engine Electrical Systems

D.  Lubrication Systems

E.  Ignition and Starting Systems

F.   Fuel Metering Systems

G.  Engine Fuel Systems

H.  Induction and Engine Airflow Systems

I.   Engine Cooling Systems

J.  Engine Exhaust and Reverser Systems

K. Propellers

L. Unducted Fans (Not Tested)

M. Auxiliary Power Units

Knowledge Examination References

Textbooks

Aviation Maintenance Technician General Handbook - FAA - H - 8083-30

Aviation Maintenance Technician Airframe Handbook - FAA - H - 8083-31, Volume 1 & 2

Aviation Maintenance Technician Powerplant Handbook - FAA - H - 8083-32, Volume 1 & 2

Airplane Flying Handbook - FAA - H - 8083-3

Inspection Authorization Test Guide - FAA - G - 8082-11

Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM)

Dictionary of Aeronautical Terms

14 CFR Parts 1, 3, 21, 23, 39, 43, 45, 47, 65, 91, 147

Advisory Circulars (AC) 21-12, 23-21, 23.1309-1, 43.9-1, 43.13-1 

FAA Tracking Number (FTN)

Prior to taking any of the knowledge tests, you will need an FAA Tracking Number (FTN). This FTN will follow you throughout your aviation career. You will obtain your FTN by creating a profile in the Integrated Airman Certificate and Rating Application (IACRA) system at iacra.faa.gov. This FTN will be printed on your Airman Knowledge Test Report(s) (AKTR).

IMPORTANT NOTE: Make certain that the name you use creating your profile is your legal name                                              exactly as it is printed on your identification

Scheduling the Knowledge Test

The FAA testing provider authorizes hundreds of test center locations that offer a full range of airman knowledge tests. For information on authorized testing centers and to register for the knowledge test, visit faa.psiexams.com/faa/login.

For more information, contact:

PSI Services LLC

844-704-1487 or email: examschedule@psionline.com

Taking the Knowledge Test

On your test day, you will need to provide proper identification and test authorization at the testing facility.

Acceptable Forms of Identification:

Acceptable Forms of Authorization

All Applicants 

Identification information must be -

  • valid

  • current

Identification must include ALL of the

the following information -

  • photo

  • date of birth

  • signature

  • physical, residential address

U.S. Citizens & Resident Aliens

  • An identification card issued by any U.S. state, territory, or government entity (e.g., driver permit or license, government identification card, or military identification card)

      OR

  • Passport

      OR

  • Alien residency card

Non - U.S. Citizens

  • Passport

      AND

  • Driver permit or license issued by a U.S. State or territory

      OR

  • An identification card issued by any government entity

  • FAA Form 8610-2.

  • A graduation certificate or certificate of completion from a Certificated Part 147 school.

  • (JSAMTCC) Form CG-G-EAE-4, Certificate of Eligibility (COE) 

  • A failed, passing, or expired AKTR

Use of Test Aids and Materials

You may use aids, reference materials, and test materials within the guidelines listed below if actual test questions or answers are not revealed. All models of aviation-oriented calculators may be used, including small electronic calculators that perform only arithmetic functions (add, subtract, multiply, and divide). Simple programmable memories, which allow addition to, subtraction from, or retrieval of one number from the memory, are permissible. Also, simple functions such as square root and percent keys are permissible.

The following guidelines apply:

    1.  You may use any reference materials provided with the test. In addition, you may use scales,                 straightedges, protractors, plotters, and electronic or mechanical calculators that are directly                   related to the test.

    2.  Manufacturer's permanently inscribed instructions on the front and back of such aids (e.g.                       formulas, conversions, and weight and balance formulas) are permissible.

    3.  Testing centers may provide a calculator to you and/or deny use of your personal calculator based

         on the following limitations:

         a.  Prior to and upon completion of the test while in the presence of the proctor, you must actuate                the ON/OFF switch and perform any other function that ensures erasure of any data stored in

              memory circuits.

         b.  The use of electronic calculators incorporating permanent or continuous type memory circuits

              without erasure capability is prohibited. The proctor may refuse the use of your calculator

              when unable to determine the calculator's erasure capability.

         c.  Printouts of data must be surrendered at the completion of the test if the calculator                                  incorporates this design feature.

         d.  The use of magnetic cards, magnetic tapes, modules, computer chips, or any other device                      upon which prewritten programs or information related to the test can be stored and retrieved                  is prohibited.

         e.  You are not permitted to use any booklet or manual containing instructions related to the use

              of test aids.

    4.  Dictionaries are not allowed in the testing area.

    5.  The proctor makes the final determination relating to test materials and personal possessions you

         may take into the testing area.

Dyslexic Testing Procedures

If you are a dyslexic applicant, you may request approval from the local Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) or International Field Office (IFO) to take an airman knowledge test using one of the three options listed.

    Option 1.  Use current testing facilities and procedures whenever possible.

    Option 2.  You may use a Franklin Speaking Wordmaster to facilitate the testing process. The                                  Wordmaster is a self-contained electronic thesaurus that audibly pronounces typed-in

                      words and presents them on a display screen. It has a built-in headphone jack for private

                      listening. The headphone feature must be used during testing to avoid disturbing others.

    Option 3.  If you do not choose to use the first or second option, you may request a proctor to assist

                     in reading specific words or terms from the test questions and supplement material. In the

                     interest of preventing compromise of the testing process, the proctor must be someone

                     who is non-aviation-oriented. The proctor must provide reading assistance only, with not

                     explanation of words or terms. When this option is requested, the FSDO or IFO inspector

                     must contact the Airman Testing Standards Branch (AFS-630) for assistance in selecting

                     the test site and proctor.

Prior to approval of any option, the FSDO or IFO inspector must advise you of the regulatory certification requirement of being able to read, write, speak, and understand the English Language.

Cheating or Other Unauthorized Conduct

Computer testing centers are required to follow strict security procedures to avoid test compromise. These procedures are established by the FAA and are covered in FAA Order 8080.6. Conduct of Airman Knowledge Tests. The FAA has directed testing centers to terminate a test at any time a test proctor suspects a cheating incident has occurred. An FAA investigation will then be conducted. If the investigation determines that cheating or other unauthorized conduct has occurred, then any airman certificate or rating that you hold may be revoked, and you will be prohibited for 1 year from applying for or taking any test for a certificate or rating.

Knowledge Test Tips

Communication between individuals through the use of words is a complicated process. In addition to being an exercise in the application and use of aeronautical knowledge, a knowledge test is also an exercise in communication since it involves the use of written language. Since the tests involve written rather than spoken words, communication between the test writer and the person being tested may become a difficult matter if care is not exercised by both parties. Consequently, considerable effort is expended to write each question in a clear, precise manner. Make sure you read the instructions given with the test, as well as the statements in each test item.

 

When taking a test, keep the following points in mind:

  • Answer each question in accordance with the latest regulations and guidance publications.

  • Read each question carefully before looking at the answer options. You should clearly understand the problem before attempting to solve it.

  • After formulating an answer, determine which answer option corresponds with your answer. The answer you choose should completely resolve the problem.

  • From the answer options given, it may appear that there is more than one possible answer, however, there is only one answer that is correct and complete. The other answers are either incomplete, erroneous, or derived from popular misconceptions.

  • If a certain question is difficult for you, it is best to mark it for review and proceed to the next question. (sometimes other test questions and/or answers can trigger your memory to an answer of a marked question) After you answer the less difficult questions, return to those you marked for review and answer them. The review marking procedure will be explained to you prior to starting the test. Although the computer should alert you to unanswered questions, make sure every question has an answer recorded. This procedure will enable you to use the available time to maximum advantage. 

  • When solving a calculation problem, select the answer that most nearly matches your solution. The problem has been checked by various individuals and with types of calculators; therefore, if you have solved it correctly, your answer will be closer to the correct answer than any of the other choices.

  • All unanswered questions will be marked incorrect so be certain that each question has been answered. Even if you don't know the answer to a question... GUESS, you still have a 33-1/3% chance of guessing correctly.

Your test will be graded immediately upon completion and your score will display on the computer screen. You will be allowed 10 minutes to review any questions you missed. You will see the question only, not the answer choices or your selected response.

 

After your review period, you will receive your Airman Knowledge Test Report (AKTR), which will state your score. 70% or better is required to pass each knowledge test. The AKTR will also have a "learning statement code" for each question missed. A copy of each of your Airman Knowledge Test Reports will be provided to the Designated Mechanic Examiner (DME) when you take your Oral and Practical Examination.

Learning Statement Codes

The expression 'learning statement,' as used in airman testing, refers to measurable statements of knowledge that a student should be able to demonstrate following a defined element of training. In order that the individual learning statements may be read as complete sentences, they should be assumed to be preceded by the words: "Upon the successful completion of training the student should be able to..."

 

After the completion of your airman knowledge test, you will receive an Airman Knowledge Test Report (AKTR)The AKTR will have the applicant's name, FTN assigned, date of the test, test score, grade (pass or fail), how many attempts at that knowledge test, and expiration date of the test. (Tests are valid for 24 calendar months from the date of the test.)

The test report will also list the learning statement codes for the questions that are answered incorrectly.

Example: Learning statement code AMG001 is for General subject Aircraft Drawings and pertains to the applicant's "ability to draw/sketch repairs/alterations"

 

The applicant should match the code with the learning statement codes for all subject areas to review areas of deficiency to gain further understanding of the subject as a whole. This also greatly enhances the applicants' ability to answer the oral questions during the oral and practical examination. 

Validity of Airman Test Reports

Airman Knowledge Test Reports are valid for the 24-calendar-month period preceding the month you complete the practical test. if the Airman Knowledge Test Report expires before completion of the practical test, you must retake the knowledge test.

Retesting Procedure

If you receive a grade lower than 70 percent and wish to retest, you must present the following to testing center personnel:

  • You may retake the test after 30 days from the date your last test was taken by presenting your failed Airman Knowledge Test Report.

  • You may retest sooner than 30 days if you present your failed Airman Knowledge Test Report and a signed statement from an airman holding the certificate and rating you seek certifying that you have been given additional instruction in each subject failed and that you are now ready for retesting.

NOTE: The certifying airman's signed statement must also include the airman's rating and certificate                      number.

If you decide to retake a test you passed in anticipation of a better score, you may retake the test after 30 days from the date your last test was taken. The FAA will not allow you to retake a passed test before the 30-day period has lapsed. Prior to retesting, you must give your current Airman Knowledge Test Report to the test proctor. The score from the last test taken will be the official score.

Studying for the Writtens

In theory, it is expected that every individual has an in-depth knowledge of each subject being tested. However the reality is, even with 2 year AMT programs, it is difficult to retain every element that may be presented on the written examinations. The knowledge test questions as well as the oral questions come from the 8083 series Aviation Maintenance Technician Handbooks. So it's suggested that you have copies of those five textbooks for reference. They are available for purchase in the Study Materials section of this site.

There are many study guides and software programs that can prepare a person for written examinations. Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts. Since the tests are multiple-choice questions, the reality is, you will read a question and correct the answer several times, and remember it at some point. With that said, use that to your advantage. Try to streamline your studies by focusing on each question and only the answer (not the incorrect answers).

If you read a question and want to know additional information about that particular subject then refer to the textbook for depth explanations. The digital books are easy to query by using the search feature in the book.

If you are using a software program that has practice exam capability then make certain that you make 90% or better before you attempt to take the actual written test. The software randomly creates the practice tests and I'm not certain the Algorithm for selecting the questions is the same as the PSI testing platform, so consistently scoring over 90% on your practice tests will increase your chances of scoring 70% or better on the actual test.

Test Prep Programs

There are several "Test Prep" programs that combine instruction explaining the test questions and some practical training. These programs are generally one to two weeks in length and some include testing on-site. I've tested many applicants that have attended these programs and they have had mixed results. It still comes down to self-discipline and personal study habits.

 

In addition to the cost of the course, you have the cost of being on leave, hotel, and meal expenses. All this adds to the pressure to get finished in a short period of time.

Study Guides Available

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

There are several companies that have a combination of printed study guides, test prep software, or completely online prep sites. The most common ones are ASA, Jeppesen, and Gleim. I've known many applicants that have successfully used each of them. The software and online versions enable a person to take practice tests in each subject, section, or whole examination. If you utilize one of these methods you should consistently score a 90% or better on your practice tests prior to attempting the actual test at the PSI testing site. The advantage of self-study is the ability to study at your own pace and test at a local to your home or base PSI site. This saves money on hotel costs and not having to take leave or vacation.