Please be aware that FAA Order 8900.2A has been published with an effective date of March 31, 2015. The new version of this Order can be viewed by copying and pasting the following url into your internet browser address block: http://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/rgOrders.nsf/0/dd0ea7d9d5c40caa86257e3c0065887a/$FILE/8900.2A.pdf The new policy in Chapter 6 introduces the Mechanic Test Generator, an expanded version of the Oral Question Generator that includes random generation of practical projects resulting in a complete test. A 6 month implementation period has begun for all current DMEs to transition to the test system. DME applicants that are appointed after May 15th will be begin using the new system upon appointment. A web-based briefing provides the details of this new system. Please note: You must log in, register, and take the briefing in Google Chrome in order for the briefing to work properly. The briefing is available free of charge using this link: https://av-info.faa.gov/DsgReg/Sections.aspx?SectionID=4080 Copy and paste the above url into your Google Chrome browser window. In addition, be advised that the mechanic Practical Test Standard (PTS) has be revised as well to meet the new testing requirements. The PTS can be download from the FAA web site as well.
Overview of the new A&P oral and practical procedures
Complete A&P Test consisted of :
• 68 Skill Elements (projects)
• As many as 440 Oral Questions
A complete Oral and Practical test consisted of 68 skill elements including 24 that were considered 'core competency' elements, and as many as 10 oral questions from each of the 44 subject areas.
Matter Experts in Mechanic Certification. The goal was to standardize and simplify the overall testing process. The new system has been exhaustively tested by FAA Inspectors as well as current DMEs. The resulting test has been predetermined to meet the Practical Test Standards and regulatory requirements. This eliminates the need for DMEs to develop projects and for the FAA managing offices to review and accept those projects. The FAA will have the ability to assess applicant performance on a national scale, identify areas of weakness, and provide feedback for improvements to the Maintenance Technician training industry as well as improve FAA handbooks and other publications.
The mechanic test generator is a web-based system that randomly generates oral and practical tests. The tests are generated from an easily edited questions/projects pool which includes previously identified core competency requirements. There are a maximum of 24 Practical Projects for a full (A&P) Test as opposed to the currently required 68. DMEs report the results of the test in the system, although the back of FAA Form 8610-2 remains the official record. Any failures (Oral or Practical) result in a new random test in the failed section at retest. Additionally, any failed projects must be completed at retest.
The overall testing process is much simpler and allows new DMEs to become proficient and begin testing much sooner than before. A list of required equipment is provided that directly clarifies what the expectations are for each DME, and will make the ASIs job easier when performing oversight of DME activity or appointing a new DME.
• The current PTS dated June 2003 continues in effect for 6 months from the effective date of Revision A to FAA Order 8900.2.
• Chapter 6 of FAA Order 8900.2 Change 2 dated 07/24/2013 remains in effect and may be used for 6 months from effective date of Revision A to FAA Order 8900.2. Note: This applies only to Chapter 6, all other Chapters of the Order are effective on the date of the Order.
• DMEs are encouraged to transition to the test PTS, Policy, and Testing Process as soon as possible to ensure no interruption in testing.
• New DMEs appointed after the effective date of Revision A will start with the new Process.
DMEs will transition to new process by:
•Completing this briefing
•Notifying their Managing FAA Office that they have confirmed availability of all MTEL required equipment/tooling
•Managing FAA Offices may want to inspect DMEs’ equipment and test materials
•Managing FAA Offices will notify AFS-640
•AFS-640 will provide DMEs access to the new Mechanic Test Generator FAA Order 8900.2 states: “Applicants who apply for retesting within 60-calendar-days to the same DME who gave the failed test may, at the option of the DME, be tested in only the Subject Areas failed on the previous test provided applicant has successfully passed all other Subject Areas within that section. (New questions and practical projects may be included in the retest.) Retest practical projects must be at the same level as failed.”
**The expectation is that once the Designee transitions to the new system, all testing will be done under the new process.** The only exception will be for applicants who were tested and failed prior to the transition. If they return for retest to the same designee within 60 days they can be tested according to 10 the old process. This is at the discretion of the DME.
Here is a quick review of the PTS Changes:
1. Revised formatting throughout
2. Revised the Introduction
3. Removed the “*core competency” denotation; combined Objectives 2 and 3
4. Revised all subject areas to contain two objectives:
a. Objective 1- Knowledge
b. Objective 2- Skill
Review of FAA Order 8900.2A
• Letters of Authority are no longer issued; they are replaced by a letter called the Certificate of Authority Letter. In this revision, all previous references to an LOA are now referred to as a COA.
• DMEs must continue to meet qualification requirements in Chapter 6 after appointment. This may be reviewed at any time, but especially at Renewal.
• Termination for cause is a negative finding based on a designee’s performance. In the event that a reexamination of an airman under Title 49 of the United States Code (49 U.S.C) § 44709 becomes necessary due to an inadequate test performed by the designee, the managing FAA office must immediately terminate the designee.
• DMEs now must be specifically authorized the privilege of issuing temporary airman certificates on their COA Letter. The privilege may be removed and retained by the managing FAA office.
• A designee must not allow anyone other than an ASI to observe a test unless specifically authorized in writing from the managing FAA office.
• DMEs may not conduct tests at locations other than those listed on the COA Letter unless authorized in writing from the managing FAA office. Requests to test at another location must be made in writing to the DME’s managing FAA office at least 7 days in advance. If conducting tests outside the geographic boundaries of the managing FAA office, DMEs will still route the certification file to their own managing FAA office.
• DMEs may not test two applicants at the same time.
Review of Policy Changes
All downloaded and/or printed tests must be secured prior to testing and either secured or destroyed after testing is complete. The generated tests must not be used for any other purpose other than those privileges identified on the COA Letter.
The pretest interview, oral and practical tests, and all provided technical data and other supporting information must be in the English language.
The required Minimum Tool and Equipment List is provided in figure 6-2P DME testing processes have been separated from Designated Parachute Rigger Examiner information in Chapter 6 for clarity.
Testing Flow Chart
First, DMEs will conduct the pretest interview (Applicant Eligibility); next, the DME will accept (or deny) the application; once the DME has done that, they will notify their Managing FAA Office; after that, the DME will download a test from the Mechanic Test Generator; now the DME will Test the Applicant; when the DME scores the test, in all cases, whether the applicant Passes, Fails, or is Not Tested, the DME will then record the results on FAA Form 8610-2 and the Planning Sheet; finally, the DME will post the test results to the test generator.
• The DME must accomplish the pretest interview face-to-face, by telephone/fax, through email, or by other methods.
• The applicant must have two Complete and Correct FAA Form 8610-2s.
• The applicant does not require a Block V signature if they are a graduate of a Aviation Maintenance Technician School (AMTS) or hold a Military Certificate of Eligibility.
• The Aviation Safety Inspector (ASI)/DME will have the applicant fill out the Pilot’s Bill of Rights (PBR) acknowledgement (refer to FAA Order 8900.1, Volume 5, Chapter 5, Section 2) prior to filling out FAA Form 8610-2.
Notifying the Managing Office
• DME must notify their managing FAA office, in writing, before conducting all oral and practical tests. This can be done by email, fax, or other written means acceptable to their managing FAA office. Their managing FAA office will establish specific procedures for this notification.
• DMEs must use the knowledge (oral) and skill (practical) elements downloaded from AFS-640’s website (https://avinfo.faa.gov/DsgReg/Sections.aspx?OrgID=1) to administer the oral and practical tests
• Tests must not be copied or reused
• A new test must be generated for each test given; Example: original issuance, retest, added rating
DMEs are required to use questions and projects obtained from the Internet based Mechanic Test Generator
• Select and generate required tests and then download the applicable types of tests to be administered.
• Each test is downloaded for each specific applicant and must not be copied or reused
Note that each test is produced for a particular applicant. The planning sheet is the first page of the test. The planning sheet has prepopulated randomly-selected Projects and Questions. Seven Oral questions are provided for each Subject Area. Each test that is produced may not be reused.
Failure is at the SECTION Level. Oral and Practical portions are tested and scored separately. When a SUBJECT AREA is failed, all testing in that SECTION shall be terminated. All other Sections that HAVE NOT been failed may continue to be tested.
Progressive Tests Must Not Be Given. Progressive testing is defined as testing which continues for more than 4 sessions in a 4-day period. The end of a session is defined as any break in testing that is more than 2 hours.
Both designees and ASIs share the responsibility for determining if applicants meet the English language requirements. ALL TESTS ARE GIVEN IN ENGLISH ONLY!
• The applicant must retest the entire Section (for Oral and Practical)—even if they had passed portions of the Section.
• For Applicants who failed the Practical Test under the new testing process, the system will carry over the last failed Project in a Section to the retest.
• Also, the previously failed Project must be completed first on the retest.
This is an example of how to mark the new PTS Planning Sheet for an Oral Test that has been passed. Circle the knowledge question identifiers that are asked, and also place an X on any of the identifiers that the applicant answers incorrectly. Circle “Passed” at the top of the sheet, if the applicant passes. Instructions for scoring the test are included on the back of each Planning Sheet.
Record of Results
Changes include: Entering the Question and Project Identifiers in the appropriate boxes for Section(s) Failed. Also indicating the Section(s) and Subject Area(s) failed in the Remarks block.
For failures, the “QUESTION. NO.” and the “PROJECT. NO.” boxes are now filled out.
Post Test Results
• Post the results of your test in the Mechanic Test Generator. Use the back of the FAA copy of FAA Form 8610-2 when posting results to the Generator.
• DMEs must post results within 7 calendar days.
New O&P Generated Test
• DME will enter Name first and last and date of birth. Then click search, if the applicant is in the system already by another DME his test results will show up.
• If not in the system the DME will click Create New Applicant
• New Applicant will allow middle name and Jr,Sr. etc to be entered.
• Lastly, click create TEST or Edit
This section will indicate: Initial, added rating or retest click which one you are accomplishing.
Select which sections to select questions for: General, Airframe, or Powerplant
All O&P test results will be entered on the TPE web site indicating pass, fail, or not tested including failed practical projects by number.