CFI lesson plans

I know the different opinions on buying versus writing own lesson plans. IF you were going to buy them what are some of the better ones you’ve seen. I’m less interested in why you wouldn’t but then.


Maybe I’m just old but I have never even heard of buying CFI lesson plans. Now that I know they exist it wouldn’t have made a difference when I was instructing since I never would have used them. Instructing is communicating information. As long as I understand the information that needs to be conveyed I frankly can do a better job of it using my own words vs someone else’s. If I don’t understand the info than it’s incumbent on me to learn it.



I never bought lesson plans, but I did print some that I found online which got me through the check ride, but I never used them after that. I found it more beneficial to use the ACS/PTS and ATP’s self study lessons to build my plans.


I was under the impression that I would need to show up to a checkride with a lesson for every topic in the pts. Maybe I’m mistaken? I am just starting out. Wondered if anyone had run into really good ones. My instructor told me he doesn’t have a strong opinion if I buy or not but if I buy I should study every piece of information and have a reference next to everything. Encouraged me to share openly they are purchased and then show how I have studied the material in an acceptable way to teach it.

Here is an example:


I do not see anything wrong with purchasing the lesson plans, as long as you can show that you have thoroughly studied them and made them your own.


Hey Nathan,
I completed the CFI Academy ground school a few weeks ago down at IWA and I can say that the consensus is that its always best to review and adapt any set of lesson plans so that you are comfortable teaching the material and are sure they contain all the information you are expected to convey per the PTS and the associated references. The Backseat Pilot is helpful (in fact, I believe it is the basis for the lesson plans made available via ATP during CFI academy), however, they really do need to be reviewed with a fine toothed comb before you print them out and decide to use them for the checkride. As an example, they are based off the Diamond Twin Star so all of the systems and AOA 2 Lesson Plans basically need to be re-written for the Seminole.

You’ll find that everyone pools together and helps out with this but the overall theme is you should do whatever you are most comfortable with. If building them from scratch gives you the confidence you need to present the material, do that. If adapting another set of plans is helpful for you, go for it. It ultimately all boils down to your teaching the material in the checkride and making sure it is complete & accurate.

Also, don’t worry - there are so many resources available to you at CFI Academy!


Thanks everyone. I purchased backseat pilot. I have been reading the material in detail and annotating everyline on every lesson plan book, page, paragraph so I can turn directly to any piece of information in addition to personal osmosis reading.

Something else to consider. Buy a copy of the ASA Oral Exam guide by Michael D. Hayes. It closely mirrors the ACS/PTS published by the FAA.

I am a huge fan of the ASA Oral Exam Guides. I even still look over mine from time to time, especially the instrument one.