Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.


Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock () or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Academy Standards

Section 1 – Academy Administration

Section 1 standards are intended to ensure the applicant organizes, staffs, and manages the training process.

A1.01     The academy has established vision, mission, goals, and objectives. Advisory: None.

A1.02     The academy establishes, promulgates, and reviews directives, policies, and procedures. Advisory: None.

A1.03     The academy has documented an established organizational structure. Advisory: None.

A1.04     The academy clearly defines, in writing, the responsibilities, authority, and accountability of personnel involved in managing, supervising, and implementing training. Advisory: Position descriptions or similar documents exist.

A1.05     The academy determines the short and long-term training needs of its customer base. Advisory: The intent of this standard is to determine such things as facility requirements, workload requirements, staffing levels, or projected student throughput.

A1.06     If full-time instructional staff or training facilities span multiple organizations, a written agreement/policy is in place specifying the authority and responsibilities of each party. Advisory: Potentially not applicable.

A1.07     When conducting inherently dangerous training as identified by the agency, the academy ensures that a risk assessment process identifies and mitigates training risk. Advisory: Potentially not applicable.

A1.08     The academy has implemented facility security measures for its academy. Advisory: Controls are in place for such things as facility access, protection of property, and identification of individuals.

A1.09     The academy establishes environmental, fire, and occupational safety guidelines for training facilities, and compliance is documented annually. Advisory: Inspections are completed to ensure training is conducted in facilities that are safe from environmental, safety, and fire hazards. Evidence may include copies of inspection reports or completed check sheets.

A1.10     The academy has in place and reviews a Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP). Advisory: The plan documents how to continue/resume operations in response to an unforeseen catastrophic event.

A1.11     If a computerized training record system is used, the academy ensures protocols are followed for computerized training-related records. These protocols include security access, backup, and storage of files and equipment. Advisory: Potentially not applicable.

A1.12     The academy controls the dissemination of sensitive and need to know information. Advisory: This includes personal information, law enforcement sensitive information, Privacy Act, Freedom of Information Act, and other forms of sensitive, but unclassified information.

A1.13     The academy projects and tracks expenditures for each training program. Advisory: None.

A1.14     Training equipment is properly maintained in accordance with organizational policy or industry standards. Advisory: None.

A1.15     The applicant suspends or discontinues training activities that become hazardous due to exigent circumstances. Advisory: The intent of this standard is to address such things as inclement or adverse weather conditions, accidents, equipment failure, power outage, etc.

A1.16     The applicant complies with applicable licensing and copyright laws. Advisory: None.

A1.17     The applicant maintains records for each offering of the training program. At a minimum each record will include:

  • Curriculum content (syllabus, lesson plans and other training materials);
  • A listing of all instructors and other instructional personnel indicating the actual class in which each presented or participated;
  • Inclusive dates the program is conducted and actual dates and times when each segment of training occurs;
  • Roster of participants in each iteration; and
  • If electronic records are maintained, there are procedures for security, including access, storage of files, backup, and equipment.

Advisory: The last bullet is potentially not applicable.

A1.18     The applicant maintains records for each student attending the program. At a minimum each record will include:

  • Documentation that verifies the student met all prerequisites for attending the training course;
  • A complete record of the students’ training evaluations (grades, scores, final results);
  • Inclusive dates the program is conducted and actual dates and times when each segment of training occurs;
  • Documentation of any exceptions or waivers requested or granted to the student; and
  • Documentation that verifies the student successfully completes the training course.
  • If electronic records are maintained, there are procedures for security, including access, storage of files, backup, and equipment.

Advisory: The last bullet is potentially not applicable.

A1.19     The applicant follows procedures for the physical security, management, retention, release, and destruction of training-related records. Advisory: None.

A1.20     If physical activity is a required part of the curriculum, the agency has a medical clearance process. Advisory: Potentially not applicable.

A1.21     The applicant provides notification, adjudication, and redress for allegations of student misconduct. Advisory: None.

Section 2 – Academy Staff

Section 2 standards are intended to ensure training staff receive the training and management oversight necessary to provide effective training.

A2.01     The applicant provides written information and an orientation to training staff that include:

  • Agency and academy mission and vision
  • Program goals and objectives
  • Code of conduct
  • Violations and consequences of prohibited conduct
  • Organizational Structure
  • Safety rules/regulations and procedures

Advisory: None.

A2.02     The applicant monitors and mentors newly assigned instructors. Advisory: None.

A2.03     The applicant ensures and documents that instructors receive basic instructional skills training. Advisory: None.

A2.04     The applicant ensures instructors maintain current expertise in the subject matter through operational participation, field observation, or specialized training. Advisory: None.

A2.05     The academy requires all training staff to successfully complete required training on EEO, Sexual Harassment, and other mandated training. Advisory: None.

A2.06     The applicant adheres to instructor qualification guidelines for all types of instructors utilized. Advisory: None.

A2.07     The academy verifies and documents that only approved instructors are used for program delivery. Advisory: None.

Section 3 – Academy Training Development

Section 3 standards are intended to ensure academy training programs are developed, implemented, and reviewed using an industry-recognized systematic approach to training.

A3.10     The academy uses an industry-recognized, systematic approach to training development. Advisory: None.

A3.11     The academy maintains an archiving system for all program and curriculum development documents. Advisory: None.

A3.12     Practical evaluations and written examination question banks are developed, approved, secured, administered, and maintained for all programs. Advisory: None.

A3.21     Learning objectives are sequenced to facilitate student progress from one level of skill and knowledge to another. Advisory: None.

A3.22     Students are evaluated on each learning objective. All written examination questions and practical evaluation criteria are referenced to one or more learning objectives. Advisory: An objective-to-test item matrix may be used to demonstrate this relationship.

A3.31     Lesson plans describe learning activities in sufficient detail to ensure consistent delivery of instruction. Advisory: None.

A3.32     Lesson plans, training guides, and other training materials are reviewed and approved prior to their use. Advisory: None.

A3.41     Prior to formal delivery of training, the program is pilot tested using a sample of the target population generating data to support evaluation and potential revision. Advisory: The pilot requirement addresses new or revised programs. Periodic revisions to lesson plans do not require a full pilot.

A3.51     The applicant sets the pass/fail (cut) score consistent with the purpose of the credential and the established standard of competence for the profession, occupation, role, or skill. Advisory: None.

A3.52     When written examinations are used, multiple versions must be available and evaluate the same objectives. Advisory: An objective-to-test item matrix is one way of showing this. Potentially not applicable.

A3.53     When different versions of practical evaluations are used, the evaluated objectives must remain the same. Advisory: An objective-to-test item matrix is one way of showing this. Potentially not applicable.

A3.61     The academy compiles, reviews, and reports the results of student reaction surveys (Level 1 of the Kirkpatrick model or an equivalent). Advisory: None.

A3.62     The academy ensures that training programs are comprehensively evaluated within a five-year period and revised if necessary. A comprehensive evaluation consists of, at a minimum, Levels 1-3 of the Kirkpatrick model or an equivalent. Advisory: None.

Section 4 – Academy Training Delivery

Section 4 standards are intended to ensure processes are established and used to for effective delivery of training.

A4.01     Students have access to learning resource materials and program-related equipment and receive training in its proper use. Advisory: None.

A4.02     The applicant provides appropriate training space, equipment, and materials identified in the training documents to support programs. Advisory: None.

A4.03     The applicant provides an orientation to students that include:

  • Course goals and objectives
  • Training schedules
  • Performance expectations
  • Practical evaluation and/or written examination requirements
  • When training is contducted in person, students receive information on fire and emergency procedures, and safety rules and regulations
  • Code of conduct rules and requirements
  • Disciplinary procedures

Advisory: .05 (5th bullet) is potentially not applicable.

A4.04     The applicant adheres to its policy for student remediation and retesting. Advisory: This standard does not apply to prerequisite requirements.

A4.05     If professional role players are used, the academy has a process for acquiring, preparing and evaluating them. Advisory: Potentially not applicable.

Section 5 – Academy Distance Learning

Section 5 standards are intended to ensure processes are established and used for effective electronic or blended training.

A5.01     The academy utilizes resources, platforms, instructors, and support services appropriate for distance education. Advisory: None.

A5.02     The applicant provides an on-line learning orientation program that includes policies on academic integrity specific to the on-line learning. Advisory: None.

A5.03     On-line courses and examinations employ appropriate protocols to verify student identity. Advisory: None.

A5.04     Technical assistance is available to instructors and on-line students. Advisory: None.