What is a Sport Pilot Certified Flight Instructor (CFIS)?An FAA Sport Pilot Certified Flight Instructor (CFIS) has privileges similar to other FAA certificated flight instructors (CFI); however, he or she may only instruct in the category of light- sport aircraft in which he or she is qualified and operates under FAR 61 Subpart K (Sport Pilot) rather than Subpart H (Private Pilot). A CFIS may also perform proficiency checks to add a category or class to the certificate of an existing Sport Pilot per 61.321 and Sport Pilot CFIS per 61.419.
Prerequisites to be a Sport Pilot Certified Flight Instructor (CFIS)The applicant must hold a sport pilot or higher pilot certificate with the category and class privileges as appropriate to the flight instructor privileges sought. The candidate must be at least 18 years old. NOTE: If an FAA medical has been revoked, denied, withheld, or suspended, this requires a special issuance to clear the medical, before the driver’s license may be used as the medical eligibility. Any limitation on the driver’s license or FAA medical must be followed. This applies to all pilots and flight instructors.
Flight experience requirementsAirplane and weight-shift-control category instructors need 150 hours of flight time as a pilot, which must include at least:
- (i) 100 hours of flight time as pilot in command in powered aircraft,
- (ii) 50 hours of flight time in category,
- (iii) 25 hours of cross-country flight time,
- (iv) 10 hours of cross-country flight time in category, and
- (v) 15 hours of flight time as pilot in command in category that is a light-sport aircraft.
Additional instructor skillsSport pilots must build additional skills in the Fundamentals of Instruction and Technical Subject Areas. All the sport pilot tasks must be mastered to:
- Perform the maneuvers and procedures at a higher level than the sport pilot tolerances.
- Have instructional knowledge of tasks (how to instruct).
- Have knowledge of common errors and be able to identify, analyze, and correct mistakes.
New Sport Pilot Certified Flight Instructor (CFIS) candidate requirements
- Hold at least a Sport Pilot certificate.
- Receive training and endorsement from Sport or Private Pilot CFI to take the computer based knowledge test and the Fundamentals of Instruction (FOI) knowledge tests. The computerized Prepware can also provide the training and on-line endorsements for both these knowledge tests.
- Pass both the FOI knowledge test and CFIS knowledge test for specific category.
- Meet ALL Sport Pilot CFI requirements per 61.407 through 61.411. It should be noted that Spin training is required per 61.409 (m) for airplanes and sailplanes which can be done in a non-LSA aircraft certificated for spins.
- Obtain and log training within 60 days before practical test with an authorized instructor and obtain endorsement for practical test from Sport or Private Pilot CFI in log book and on FAA 8710-11 form.
- Pass CFI sport practical test with DPE/SPIE. Click here to find a DPE. (Chose from the “Examiner Listing” at bottom of page.)
- Receive Sport Pilot CFI Certificate and log book endorsement for category/class of aircraft used for Practical test.