Practical testing adds value to the certification process by validating a candidate’s skills proficiency, professional competencies and knowledge. It is essential that the ACF, as a certification body, verify all professional chef credentials including experience, cognitive knowledge and practical culinary skills. The mandated competencies are commensurate with the expected level of skill for each certification level.
Practical Exam Operations Administrator Handbook
Policy & procedures for exams
Certification Evaluator Handbook
Policy & Procedures for Certification Evaluators
Test Administration FAQs
Frequently asked questions about administering an ACF practical exam
List of Certification Evaluators
Used to select evaluators
Request to Schedule Exam
Used to notify National of exam scheduling for setup & marketing
Practical Test Site Application
Used to request test site approval
Practical Test Site Requirements
Used to verify Test Site requirements
Candidate Score Sheets
Official Score Sheets for all levels
CEC Evaluator Score Sheet
CEC Practical Exam Evaluator Score Sheet
Candidate Critique Form
Written summary of accomplishments & deficiencies for all candidates
Used to receive candidate feedback
Summary Score Sheet
Official signed report listing final scores and pass/fail results
COI & Confidentiality Agreement
Must be signed and on ACF file for Test Administrator and Evaluators
Practical Exam Incident Report
Used to report injuries, problems
Apprentice Sign-In & Critique
Used to monitor apprentices
Practical exams include four domains with weightings:
Domain I: Sanitation Skills (Acceptable or Unacceptable)
Domain II: Organizational Skills (20%)
Domain III: Craftsmanship Skills (40%)
Domain IV: Finished Product Skills (40%)
The ACF has devised a standardized nationwide evaluation process of professional culinary skills and its stewards—Volunteer Chapter Leaders, Test Administrators, Evaluators, Trainers and Staff—ensure that these standards are upheld on a daily basis in accordance with the NCCA Standards of Professional Certifications.
If you are planning to host a practical exam, please complete the Request to Schedule Exam form and return it to ACF National at least eight weeks prior to the exam date. The information provided on this form is used to setup online registration and to promote your exam.
If this is your site’s first exam, additional information and site approval will be required. Please review the New Practical Test Site Requirements and submit the New Practical Test Site Application.
Every exam requires three approved Certification Evaluators for up to six candidates. Use this 3:6 ratio if additional candidates are being simultaneously tested. Only one of the three evaluators may have an affiliation with an exam candidate (see Handbook). Use the list of approved Certification Evaluators to identify evaluators for your exam.
To stay current, Certification Evaluators must attend an annual refresher course and evaluate at least one practical exam every two calendar years.
Click here to contact the ACF Certification Department.