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Frequently asked questions about FAA academy

How long is the academy?

It depends on what track you are and whether you take basics or not.

  • Basics: 25 days
  • Initial Tower: 37 days
  • Initial En Route: 60 days

What is the pay at the academy?

Per the job announcement, $22,888.00 to $28,626.00. You also get per diem of $95.60 (annualized $34,894). Combined, the annualized salary at the academy is $57,782-$63,520.

What is per diem?

Per diem is an extra, untaxed pay to account for government related travel. The 2017 rate is $58.20/day for lodging, and $37.40/day for meals & incidentals, for a total of $95.60/day.

Where can I find the class schedule for the academy?

The FAA maintains a course catalog, here is each class' specific list:

The catalog changes occasionally and breaks the links. If the above links don't take you to the correct page, go to the search page and put in the course numbers listed above.

Do we get holidays off?

The academy is closed on federal holidays.

Where can I find housing at the academy?

Here is the FAA's Housing FAQ.

There are also providers listed in the resources.

How are you graded?

You must complete each course at the academy with at least a 70% to pass. At the your track class (enroute or terminal), facility selection takes place in order of highest-to-lowest score.

The grading is broken down by the following:

5 Block tests - 1% each.
End of course test - 5%.
Two Ground Control simulator evaluations - 15% each.
Two Local Control simulator evaluations - 30% each.
Map test - 2%
Aircraft characteristics - 4%
Knowledge test 1 - 4%
Knowledge test 2 - 5%
Checklist test - 5%
Two non-RADAR problems - 7% each
Three D-Side problems - 22% each

What is the pass rate?

For 2016, the terminal pass rate was approximately 78%, and en route 64%. In 2017, the pass rate for both tracks is significantly lower, closer to 50%.

What about Basics?

Not everyone is requried to attend basics. Prior experience hires and CTI graduates (hired under open bid pool 1) will not have to attend. However, you may have the option of voluntarily attending.

Basics is 25 days long. There are 5 block tests, and an end of course test where a 70% is required to pass. Please see the Overview of Basics thread for an summary of what to expect.

What is the dress code?

Neat, clean and will reflect a professional learning environment. Examples include casual slacks (e.g. khakis, cords), dress slacks, dresses, skirts, blouses, dress shirts, casual shirts with collars or banded/turtle necks and/or sweaters. Jeans will be permitted as long as they are not torn, frayed, patched or have holes of any kind. Shoes shall be neat and clean.

How much time do I get to report to my facility?

Dependant on the distance from the academy to your duty station. Each facility card on the site lists the alloted travel days. You also get 64 hours of change-of-station leave, which you may take prior to reporting to the facility upon approval from your facility's manager.

Change of station may be used anytime within two years of being assigned to a new facility.

How do I select my facility?

After passing evaluations, each class is given a list of facilities to choose from. The facilities are drawn from the priority placement lists, and offered slots will be double the class size (a 10 person class would be offered the top 20 slots to choose from). The selection order is based on your class ranking (highest score first). There will be "mandatory" facilities on the list, and if not chosen at some point, the lowest scores in the class will go to one of the mandatory slots.

Updated 21-Dec-2017

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