Passage Rate Calculations and Early Testing

A Member Asked,
Q: If a student completes the general portion of the program and proceeds to take the general written test (using an “authenticated document” issued by the school to demonstrate the student’s preparedness to take the mechanic general written test early, as provided in 147.31), and fails that test, but then proceeds to pass the general test once the student finishes the curriculum (using the certificate of completion as the authority to test), for purposes of calculating our passage rate, will those written tests be counted as a pass, a fail, or both?

A: The first failed general written test would not be used in the passage rate calculation (since it was not taken 60 days after graduation). The second passed general written test would be included in the passage rate calculation.
The program’s “minimum passage rate” (as provided for in 147.25) is calculated based on the test scores of students that test within 60 days after “graduation.” For purposes of the FAA regulation, the student’s “graduation date” is the date entered on the FAA Form 8610-2 and the student’s certification of completion (both of which are issued upon graduation of the airframe and/or powerplant curriculum). So, for the first general knowledge test, taken before “graduation,” would not be included in the calculation, but the second test, taken after graduation, would count.
Couple other considerations if we change up the scenario a bit:
What if the student takes an oral and practical early, as provided by § 65.80? The score would not count toward the passage rate because the student hasn’t “graduated” yet. Again, that “graduation date” is driven by the date on the 8610-2, and that form will state the proposed (i.e., future) graduation date, which would be the same date subsequently entered on the certificate of completion and any future 8610-2.
Side note: The student will not need a certificate of completion or an 8610-2 in order to take the written knowledge test. All the student will need is an “authenticated document” that demonstrates the student’s preparedness to take the test, which could be a certificate of completion but doesn’t have to be.
For more information on passage rate calculations, listen in on the recorded version of the June 30, 2022 webinar: