The New-Generation Aviation Director

General Questions

What is the CAM Program?

The vision that NBAA has for the Certified Aviation Manager Program is to prepare and recognize business aviation professionals for management roles within a business aviation flight department. As a CAM, the candidate is attaining the NBAA standard for excellence in management within a career as a manager of a flight department. All successful candidates will be awarded a Certified Aviation Manager credential and the professional recognition for such an achievement.

What are the benefits of certification?

Certification demonstrates to employers, passengers, crew, members and others with a stake in the job performance of corporate aviation managers that the certificated person has been evaluated against standards designed to protect the interests of stakeholders and found worthy of certification. Certification is an objective, third-party review of education, experience and knowledge in corporate aviation management. This third-party view of the individual gives the industry a standard to measure the potential for this individual to be a successful flight department manager.

NBAA recognizes the CAM as being an individual who is prepared to move into management positions within an aviation department as a result of extensive study and preparation leading to a successful completion of a CAM exam. Additional benefits include an industry recognized title of CAM that can be associated with the person earning the recognition and using CAM in association with the individual title and position within the industry.

What are the requirements to take the CAM exam?

To qualify for the CAM exam, you must have worked in the business aviation industry for at least two years. In addition, you must have at least 100 points in the CAM application to qualify for the CAM exam.

What are the qualifications for the CAM Program?

To start the certification process you should first deter- mine if you are qualified to take the CAM exam and to be recognized as a CAM. To sit for the exam, you must complete an application and meet the minimum requirements to be certified. These minimums are based upon experience, education, training and professional development within the industry. The CAM Governing Board has determined that these eligibility requirements represent the combination of education, experience and training that would represent a level of professionalism that would make it likely that a well-prepared candidate would be successful when attempting the exam.

  • You must have a minimum of two years in some facet of business aviation which can be with corporate aviation, an aviation management company, an aircraft fractional ownership company, a commercial Part 135, charter, air taxi consultant and other related flight operations involving the business use of general aviation aircraft. After meeting the minimums, you should access the CAM application online.
  • You must score at least 100 points on the application. Fill in your job experience, education, training and professional development. Completing all of the application will give you a total score as each area counts towards points. (Keep in mind certain areas have maximum allowable points, such as experience maximums are 90 points.) If you score 100 points or more on the application, then you may qualify to take the exam. To qualify, you must complete all of the other application requirements including two letters of recommendation, submitting the application costs and by mailing in the paper version or completing the online application. At that point, the CAM Governing Board reviews the application and approves/disapproves the application.

What courses are required to earn a certificate?

For the CAM Program certification, you are not required to take any courses, only to pass the CAM exam.

How can I earn CAM application training points?

The CAM Governing Board recognizes training programs provided by many aviation industry and management organizations. You can earn points several ways and the options do get updated often. Taking a NBAA Professional Development Program (PDP) course will give you three points for every PDP objective that is met. In addition, the CAM Governing Board coordinates approval of various business aviation programs presented worldwide. For example, the Bombardier Safety Standdown is approved for one point toward CAM applications or recertification.

Several regional groups have sponsored approved CAM programs. The Georgia Business Aviation Association Annual Safety Day has been CAM-approved for several years in a row. Other regions around the country have had their programs approved, also. Attendance at professional conferences may also qualify for points. NBAA conferences including the Flight Attendants/Flight Technicians, International Operators, Leadership, Maintenance Management, Schedulers & Dispatchers. The Tax, Regulatory & Risk Management Conference will count as two points. The key focus is that the program is about business aviation management.

Does passing the exam ensure that the individual is competent to manage a business aviation flight department?

No, a certification program cannot guarantee competence in any profession. However, passing the certification exam does demonstrate meeting an industry established standard that along with other indications of professional status like references, experience, academic qualifications, reputation, awards and the like can indicate the person’s potential to succeed as a flight department manager.

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Questions About the Application

Once the applications and processing fees are submitted, is there a time limit for taking the test?

Once your application is approved, the applicant will have two years to complete the CAM exam before needing to submit updated information to NBAA. To sign up for the exam, applications must be received at least 45 days in advance of a scheduled testing date.

Once my application is approved, what is the next step toward taking the CAM exam?

Once your application is approved, you can begin the process of paying the exam fee and scheduling when you want to take the exam. The exam is offered by computer- based testing (CBT) format at over 250 testing centers nationwide. The computer based test CAM exam is offered monthly.

You mention that I will need two recommendation letters?

Recommendation letters should be from an aviation professional who can speak to your experience, talents and potential as a CAM. In all cases the letters must have a signature from the provider and a means to identify who the individual is, their professional position and contact information so they can be contacted for further details if needed.

How do I address the letters of recommendation?

Address the letters to:

Tyler Austin
CAM Governing Board Administrative Director NBAA
1200 G Street NW, Suite 1100
Washington, DC 20005

Include “CAM Letter of Recommendation” on the outside of the envelope. These letters are considered evidence of the applicant’s interest, dedication and involvement in the field of business aviation. These letters may also be e-mailed to

Points required for CAM application – experience issues?

Part 121 and military experience count in the points total and you generally would receive four points per year since it is not a business aviation fight department position.

How do I add more blocks onto the application to add more jobs and experience?

For the hardcopy version of the application, print out extra copies and fill in the information, and consider including a resume as it will help to reconstruct your employment history.

I do not have enough points to qualify for the exam because I am limited to 90 points maximum toward experience. What is my next option?

A few items that will help in reaching 100 points for the CAM application include: completing formal education requirements (i.e., associate or bachelor’s degree), attending NBAA PDP courses, getting an ATP, A&P or IA, attending other approved industry functions that help with management preparation like NBAA’s Leadership Conference, Maintenance Management Conference, Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference, Flight Attendants/Flight Technicians Conference and/or Business Aviation Safety Seminar.

How long will NBAA keep my application?

Your application will remain on file with NBAA for two years. After two years, if the applicant is going to take the exam he/she must provide NBAA with updated contact and employment information and pay a fee to renew the application prior to scheduling. NBAA maintains applications for up to seven years after submission if there is no activity with the applicant.

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Questions About the Exam

What is the CAM exam like?

The CAM exam is a 175-question, multiple-choice exam. Candidates have three and one half hours to complete the exam in one sitting. The basis of the exam revolves around the core areas identified in a detailed task analysis. The five core areas tested include: leader- ship, human resources, operations, technical and facilities management and business administration.

Who is the approved exam provider for the CAM exam?

ISO Quality Testing is NBAA’s contract psychometric testing provider. The CAM exam is offered year-round at over 300 testing centers nationwide. Learn more about scheduling your CAM exam.

How do I sign up for CAM exam?

A payment to NBAA of $975 for members and $1,250 for non-members is required to initiate the exam. Contact NBAA at 202-783-9000 or Once NBAA receives the payment, the applicant will be provided log in and password information for contacting the testing center to determine the schedule availability. The testing provider will coordinate with the applicant to determine details, such as the date and time for taking the exam. They will also assist in any schedule changes or problems that may arise in taking the exam.

Where are the CAM exams given?

The CAM exam is offered year-round at over 300 testing centers nationwide. Learn more about scheduling your CAM exam.

What is the passing score of the exam?

The CAM program uses scaled scores from 200 to 800, like the SATs, and anchor the passing point at 500. The cut score is determined by a method of analysis of each question and how it relates to the overall view of the exam. The score candidates are required to achieve in order to pass the exam was determined using the Angoff Method, the most widely used and highly defensible criterion-referenced method. In implementing the Angoff Method, NBAA worked under the guidance of professional testing provider.

The method has two phases, data collection and decision. Data for determining the score was collected when the test was assembled. A group of business aviation professionals – subject matter experts (SMEs) – determine the passing score by estimating the percentage of minimally competent candidates that would answer each question correctly. The passing score is the average of the sums of the SMEs probability estimates.

What are the costs to take the exam?

The exam costs $975 for NBAA members and $1,250 for non-members, per applicant qualified to take the exam. To schedule an exam, this fee must be received prior to receiving the log in and password information for scheduling an exam.

When will the next paper CAM exam be administered?

The CAM Governing Board does not offer the CAM exam via paper exam administration.

What is the schedule for the next exam to be administered?

The computer based test CAM exam will be offered monthly. If other test options are needed, contact NBAA at 202-783-9000.

What if I miss my scheduled exam date?

A re-examination fee of $125 is required before rescheduling a missed exam. For example, if you schedule your CAM exam for Oct. 31 and you have to cancel or do not show up for an exam appointment sometime between Oct. 26 and Oct. 31, you will have to pay a re- examination fee of $125. Work with the exam provider to reschedule the exam prior to the exam date to avoid paying this fee.

When will I find out the test results from the recent CAM exam that I completed?

Exam results will be mailed to the candidate within 30 days of the exam date. This period allows for the CAM Governing Board to receive the results and ensure the exam is performing as expected.

How do I prepare for the CAM exam?

A good place to start is to review the application. You can download the printable application PDF file at www., which will give some idea of the questions and source material used for preparing the exam. In addition, NBAA offers a CAM Study Guide containing resource material to help prepare for the exam. The CAM Study Guide includes sample questions, listing of source documents and explains some ways to prepare for the exam. Other things you can do to help prepare for the CAM exam include using key references. Go over the reference list for books that focus in on areas you feel you need to be improved on. As you study, consider how you would write a question for the exam.

What if I fail, can I retake the exam?

Opportunities for re-testing are available. The candidate must wait at least one month before retaking the exam. The fee for re-testing is $350 per testing event. The individual would be allowed two re-testing opportunities and then the candidate must re-apply through the initial application process.

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Questions About the study Guide

How do I get a CAM Study Guide?

The CAM Study Guide provides a description of the CAM exam domains, a list of suggested reference material and 100 sample questions. This on-line resource is now available in a subscription based format. The cost for a 6 month subscription for NBAA members is $150 and $200 for non-members. We also offer a 1 year subscription and the cost is $200 for members and $250 for non-members. On-line access can be ordered at:
Order the CAM Study Guide

How to I ensure I have the latest edition of the CAM Study Guide?

The online CAM Study Guide is the most up-to-date version. Updates are made to the guide periodically.

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Questions About Recertification

What about recertification?

The CAM Governing Board established that recertification should include a point system requiring four points of credit to be completed every 36 calendar months on the anniversary of the initial exam or the CAM exam. The intent of the recertification program is to help ensure CAMs are staying current with industry issues relevant to the CAM domains and maintaining the highest standards possible toward proper management credentials within business aviation. To recertify, a fee of $300 for NBAA members and $500 for non-members per recertification is required and due prior to the three- year expiration of the CAM certification.

What are some recertification options that I can use this coming year?

Points can be obtained by completing NBAA Profession- al Development Program-approved courses, by attending conferences related to management issues within a flight department personnel. Attending a PDP course would be two points for each objective taught and attending a conference would be one point per conference. CAMs may also retake the CAM exam for recertification.

Examples of approved NBAA conferences include: Leadership Conference, Maintenance Management Conference, Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference, International Operators Conference, Flight Attendants/ Flight Technicians Conference and Business Aviation Safety Seminar.

In addition, points can be earned by volunteering to serve on the CAM Governing Board Testing Committee. Based upon participation, points can be earned writing accepted test questions for the CAM exam. Attending a Testing Committee meeting all day is one point. Participating in online item writing conference calls and writing at least six “accepted” test questions will earn you one point for each six questions.

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Other Frequently Asked Questions

How do I update my CAM information listed on the NBAA website roster of current CAMs?

To update your information, visit My NBAA Profile. If you need assistance, please contact

How did CAM Program and PDP begin?

Both the Certified Aviation Manager Program and Professional Development Program are voluntary and you are not required to participate. NBAA has designed these programs as a way to raise the standards for improving and developing future leaders in business aviation. The PDP is the management education to pre- pare for future management roles. The CAM credential recognizes those who have achieved this level of management and NBAA is recognizing that achievement.

The Certified Aviation Manager Program was developed in 2003 with over a decade of previous work to get the program started. Along with experience, the exam is the culmination of the career development in preparing for management – an industry recognize standard. It can also help current managers begin a succession program for recognizing future leaders within their department.

What additional costs factors should be considered regarding the CAM certification?

Most CAM candidates find study references and important part of preparation for the examination, so the costs of those should be considered. Other expenses may include the effort to travel, registration to events or NBAA PDP courses to gain CAM application points or CAM recertification points. You may have to travel to a location to take a course or you may have to pay an online course fee.

How did NBAA arrive at the prices for the various components of the CAM Program?

NBAA undertook a careful analysis of the costs associated with the program, both in terms of fees paid for goods and services and administrative costs. NBAA found the costs were consistent with those forecast in the feasibility study it conducted several years ago. In setting the prices, NBAA attempted to keep the interests of its membership in mind and ensure the best quality program could be developed that would set the industry standard. At this time NBAA is funding the program, but the business plan approved by the NBAA Board of Directors allows for the program to reach financial independence. Based upon the results of several feasibility studies and surveys of the NBAA membership, this cost of $975 per exam is set to achieve that goal.

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