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FAQ > GroundSchool Canada Theory Exam Prep
Converting Transport Canada Pilot Certificates to FAA ones (or vice versa) ...

The following information is for those asking about the conversion of a Transport CANADA Pilot certificate and/or rating into an equivalent US/FAA certificate and/or rating.

FAA PILOT? At the request of Transport Canada (who feel that their tests are so easy that they'd really prefer you'd study for them using their own recommended materials), we DO NOT provide test prep material to help you pass the FAA to Transport Canada test(s). If that is what you are after, please contact the TC office in Hamilton ON who will direct you to the exact study materials they want you to study for your test. We do, however, provide materials for Canadian (Transport Canada) pilots to convert to USA/FAA (read more about this below!).
LOOKING FOR CAREER OR LEGAL/QUASI-LEGAL ADVICE? We make test prep apps and related material. We are not a flight school or career consulting service. If you have questions about what test(s) you should take for the progression of your career, what option(s) are available to you given your flight experience, where and what you should do to apply for X Y or Z, etc, out of an overabundance of caution, we cannot help you. While we deal tangentially with such issues, we do not necessarily stay up to date with the latest legal licensing requirements and we'd hate to give you what turned out to be incorrect or old information. If you have a career-type question about the process of converting from a TC to FAA certificate or anything related to your career in general that is of a legalistic nature, we recommend that you contact the FAA International Field Office in New York City (sometimes called the "International FSDO"). There are specialists there whose job it is to be conversant with the rules and to give you answers that you can rely on as "from the horse's mouth." If it turns out you need to take a knowledge test (as will often be the case), we welcome you to try our apps as described below. Thank you for your understanding!

YES, we do provide a full range of products for those wishing to convert their TC licenses into USA FAA ones. This means:

  • Transport Canada PPL into FAA Private Pilot Certificate (airplane and heli!)
  • Transport Canada Instrument Rating into FAA Instrument Rating (airplane and heli!)
  • Transport Canada CPL into FAA Commercial Pilot Certificate (airplane and heli!)
  • Transport Canada ATPL into FAA ATP Certificate (airplane* and heli!)

* If you're a professional airplane pilot, you will notice that our ATP prep contains several FAA to Canada Aeroplane tests. Most pilots will want to prepare for and pass the ATP Multienegine Airplane conversion test.

Holders of a given Canadian license/rating who want to convert to the equivalent FAA certificate need to

  1. take and pass the necessary 'conversion' written test given by the FAA through a series of testing centres
  2. submit a bunch of paperwork to the FAA

We cannot help you with #2. However, our software and apps can help you prepare for any of the "Canada to FAA" written tests. You can take as many as you need though most pilots will likely need to take one or two at most. If you are not sure what test to take, please contact the FAA (suggestion: FAA International Field Office IFO Jamaica NY) as only they can provide you with the exact guidance on this. Please understand that unfortunately we are not in a position to be able to provide specific legalistic or quasi-legalistic guidance for individual pilots. If you are concerned about *which test* you should take, please don't ask us or any other private company. The FAA is just a short phone call away and they will give you an answer that you can count on.

Ok, that said, what do you need to study for the test?

Our GROUNDSCHOOL FAA Series of programs (PC, Mac) and apps (iPhone/iPad, Android) is 100% what you need to prepare for the tests. Let's say you are a CANADIAN CPL (Commercial Pilot) holder wishing to convert to a US/FAA Commercial Pilot Certificate. In that case:

  1. Go to www.FAATEST.com (also known as www.dauntless-soft.com/products/groundschool). This is the homepage for our FAA Test prep products
  2. Select 'Commercial Pilot'
  3. Select the platform you are interested in - PC, Mac, iOS, Android, etc. Download (and purchase) the app / program as appropriate.
  4. In the GroundSchool FAA Commercial Pilot test prep app or software you will see a list of included tests. For example, "Commercial Pilot Airplane", "Commercial Pilot Helicopter, etc." The one you are looking for is "Commercial Pilot Airplane Canadian Conversion" or "Commercial Pilot Helicopter Canadian Conversion." These are the tests that you are looking for. Study the questions presented there. Be sure to study the EXPLANATIONS as well as the FAA may throw variations in when you take your actual test, though in general the questions should be familiar to you.
  5. Once you have studied the questions well, go and take the actual test at a testing centre. As far as we know, for Canadian Conversion exams, no "signoff" is required - just make an appointment at a testing centre and go and take the test.
"But I heard the test has only (pick a number.. say, 48) questions."

With our test preps, you study only exactly what you need - nothing more, and nothing less.

On the day that you go to the test centre to take the FAA knowledge test to convert your Canadian license to an FAA certificate or rating, you will indeed only be presented with a few dozen questions (the exact number varies a bit depends on which test you take). However, this doesn't mean that you only need to study and memorize a few dozen questions! If it did, then it wouldn't be much of a test, would it? The question pools that the Canadian Conversion draw from are smaller than the entire test pools. Our preps reflect this accurately. However they are still several hundred questions. This means that inside of our apps, once you select which "Canadian Conversion" test you want to study for, the questions will be filtered to only those that apply to the Canadian Conversion test. This will typically be considerably smaller than the "full" question bank that a typical USA/FAA pilot will need to study. However, even the Canadian Conversion question lists are several hundred questions each. For an exact current account of how many questions there are for a given test, please visit the GroundSchool FAA test prep Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section of our website.

This means that a typical pilot will have to spend several sessions and multiple days to prepare for the test. The tests are not particularly hard, but if you don't spend the time to learn the material and study from large, representative, and fully explained question banks like we offer, you will probably fail. Don't fear it, but don't blow it off, either. Use our apps conscientiously and take sample tests using our app (our apps allow you to take unlimited practice tests). Once you can score at least in the mid-80s consistently, you will almost certainly pass the real thing with flying colours.

"I heard the test is only on Air Law.."

"Air Law" is a term that you know from Canada. It is not a term that really appears in the FAA universe. There is the general concept of (FAA Federal Aviation) "Regulations", but this isn't exactly equivalent to what is typically covered in Canada Under "Air Law."

So, it's possible to get the wrong impression by thinking of the tests as only covering "Air Law." The reality is that the tests cover quite a bit more than just what are generally referred to in the USA as "Regulations" and there's also no particular exact mapping from the Canadian term "Air Law" onto what's on the tests, either. What is on the test also tends to vary, as the FAA at times adds or removes question based on its view of special emphasis areas and also the reality that they're sometimes a bit loose as to what questions they assign to what tests, so occasionally you find unexpected questions in the tests as well. The test banks we provide tend to accurately reflect the actual tests; we take a slightly conservative approach to help ensure that you are over-prepared rather than under-prepared, but not crazily so such that we are wasting your time. We also gratefully welcome feedback from test takers to give us insight into how we can improve our preps, though we remind test takers that just because you didn't happen to get a question on topic X from the test bank doesn't necessarily mean that the next guy won't.

Quick Links to get you started:

  • To convert your Canadian PPL to a FAA Private Pilot Certificate, get our GroundSchool FAA Private and Recreational Pilot App and/or Software and select the PRIVATE PILOT CANADIAN CONVERSION TEST preps (Airplane and Helicopter) therein. Direct Link: www.dauntless-soft.com/products/groundschool/private.asp
  • To convert your Canadian Instrument Rating to an FAA IR, get our GroundSchool FAA Instrument Rating (IFR) App and/or Software and select the INSTRUMENT RATING CANADIAN CONVERSION TEST preps (Airplane and Helicopter) therein. Direct Link: www.dauntless-soft.com/products/groundschool/ifr.asp
  • To convert your Canadian CPL to an FAA Commercial Pilot Certificate , get our GroundSchool FAA Commercial Pilot App and/or software and select the COMMERCIAL PILOT CANADIAN CONVERSION TEST preps (Airplane and Helicopter) therein. Direct Link: www.dauntless-soft.com/products/groundschool/commercial.asp
  • To convert your Canadian ATPL to an FAA ATP Certificate, get our GroundSchool FAA Airline Transport Pilot ATP App and/or software and select the ATP CANADIAN CONVERSION TEST preps (Airplane and Helicopter) therein. Direct Link: www.dauntless-soft.com/products/groundschool/atp.asp Most professional aeroplane pilots will want to prepare for the (Canada to FAA conversion) multiengine airplane test.

Finally, please understand that the questions in the "conversion" tests are always changing. We do our best to keep on top of things, but we cannot always guarantee 100% accuracy (any test prep provider who claims they can is not being honest.) We would very much appreciate your feedback after your test, especially if you encounter questions that were not in our prep (many pilots discover that 100% of the questions or something very close to them were in our prep - however, when the FAA dumps in new questions, you may encounter some new ones). Any specific guidance about the specific questions you may have seen would be VERY APPRECIATED by our editorial staff.