Military Competency

Thanks for listening!

On today’s show I give a brief introduction and then get straight to the content.  I discuss details on aviation military competency (Basic and instructor).  I also give you military minded aviators a brief overview of the FAA’s structure.  Finally I give some tips on civilian aviation organizations you can join. Please feel free to contact me at

FAA Structure

Basic Mil Comp

One of the easiest things you can do, right now, no matter how much time to go until your ADSC, is to knock out your military competency tests and get your FAA ratings.

Every USAF rated pilot, who has a Form 8 can use that to get their FAA commercial / instrument rating.  You do need to complete the military competency exam first, however, and Sheppard Air provides excellent study material.

Once your tests are complete you can choose between the FSDO and a DPE to complete the process.  The FSDO (the FAA equivalent to Group Stan/Eval) can do it for free, but there is often a long wait, especially at busier offices.  A DPE, however, can often get to you within a day or two but charges a nominal fee.

To find a military competency DPE near you follow this link.  The picture below is what you should see.


What if I never flew single engine in the AF?

  • Lets say you flew T-37s, T-1s and KC-135s, and have never had a checkride or form 8 in a USAF aircraft.  If this is the case, when you complete your military competency you will just have multi-engine privilages meaning you will need to do a single engine add-on.  Although this is a more involved process, it’s not all that difficult.  Basically, you will follow the same steps listed below for a single engine instructor add-on except you will use the Commercial Pilot Practical Test Standards for Airplane.

Instructor Mil Comp

Once you have completed your basic military competency and have your commercial instrument FAA certificates you can get your instructor competency

Finally, although Sheppard Air covers it on their website, I will address it here.  If you wish to complete your MCI (Military Competency Instructor) and have never held a single engine instructor Form 8 in the USAF, you will need to take a practical test (checkride) to add single engine privileges to your FAA instructor certificate.  This means you need to do the following things:

  1. Download and study the Flight Instructor Practical Test Standards for Airplane.  Focus your studies on what is listed in the Additional Rating Task Table for single-engine add-on (see image below)
  2. Find a single engine plane for rent. It doesn’t have to be a complex aircraft, just your basic Cessna 172 at the flying club will work.
  3. Find an instructor, experienced in preparing military pilots for this add-on checkride and practice with them.  I would recommend going up with an instructor initially and making sure you know how to do the maneuvers correctly.  Then you can rent the airplane on your own and practice.  You will need to log at lest 3 hours with a CFI and have them endorse you to take the practical.
  4. Take the practical checkride.  I would advise you find a DPE who is accustomed to working with military aviators.  There are some knowledge gaps between USAF and civilian pilots and if your DPE has no experience in/with the military they may not be so understanding.

Below is the Additional Rating Task Table, which is found in the Instructor PTS (download link above).  Most active duty instructor pilots will hold a instructor form 8 in some sort of multi-engine aircraft (C-130, C-17, B-52, etc.)

Additional Task Table

FAA Safety Team

Here is the website for the FAASTeam and the WINGS pilot proficiency program.

Check out their courses and seminars.  There are several seminars in every region throughout the year that are great places to go out and meed active GA pilots.