Basic Ground Instructor questions
I recently received my PPL in January after, let us just say it took a long time getting there. Since we are all hunkered down, I was looking at getting my 14 CFR part 61 Certification in Basic Ground Instructor after reading about it on the FAA site. Several people advised me to just get the Advance but I don't have my instrument rating yet. Two questions as I am unclear the difference between the two test requirements that are required. I understand there is the BFI test and the second is a FOI (Fundamentals of Instruction) test if I don't have a teaching background. (I wonder if they'll take my Army instructor time at CGSC as credit?). First, Is the BFI one the same knowledge test I took for my PPL? Second, what books on the FAA site cover the FOI materials?  I'm looking at the Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge (FAA-H-8083-25B), and the Weight & Balance Handbook (FAA-H-8083-1B).  Both on the FAA site. Amazon sells them but they are cheap knock offs in B&W.  There is a whole library of stuff on that site to choose from.
I appreciate any insight on this test.
3 Replies
You can obtain a Ground Instructor certificate with Basic rating by passing the Fundamentals of Instruction (FOI) and Ground Instructor-Basic (BGI) written tests and presenting the results with an 8710-1 to the FAA.  This will give you the privileges enumerated in 61.215(a), basically to train people for the written tests for Sport, Recreational, and Private, plus the ground portion of a flight review.  The BGI test is essentially a rehash of the Private written.  The FOI covers the contents of the Aviation Instructors Handbook (available as a .pdf download on the FAA site you mentioned).

You don't need the FOI if you're a licensed teacher at 7th grade or higher, or teaching at an accredited college/university.  Your past military instructor experience doesn't qualify unless Command and General Staff College is an accredited institution of higher learning (I don't think it is) and you're currently teaching there.

The Advanced rating includes the privileges of Basic plus authorization to train people for the Commercial written.  The AGI written is a rehash of the Commercial Pilot written.  It does NOT include privileges for Instrument -- for that you need a GI-Instrument rating.  To add that to your GI certificate you take the IGI written which is a rehash of the Instrument-Airplane written.

You don't need any pilot certificates or ratings for any of the GI ratings.  Someone who's never even been in an airplane can get them all just by studying and taking/passing the writtens.
Appreciate the feedback. I'm sure I'll have ample enough time with the quarantine to get ready for both tests :)
I regularly note to members one very unusual fact about your newly obtained ground instructor certificate - it is the one certificate, and probably the only one, whose privileges you are NOT permitted to exercise once obtained. If all you have done is walked out of the FSDO with a ground instructor certificate in hand, you are not qualified to use it until you meet any of the below requirements: 

This assumes you are not already a flight instructor, as is the case with the OP. Let me explain. FAR 61.217 states that to perform the duties of a ground instructor, you must be able to show that you were employed or active as a ground instructor or flight instructor during the preceding 12 calendar months. This is highly unlikely since you just earned the certificate and privilege! Another option is the completion of a flight instructor refresher course within the same time period. Otherwise, an instructor endorsement could meet the requirement as well.

Those are the recent experience requirements, and you must meet at least one in order to exercise the privileges of your newly issued ground instructor certificate.