How to Become an Instructor Trainer - ACA

For ACA Instructors

How to Become an Instructor Trainer

ACA Instructor Trainers

ACA Instructor Trainers (ITs) are the gatekeepers of the ACA’s National Instruction Program. They are responsible for the training, evaluating, and inspiring paddling leaders and aspiring instructors, which leads to growth of the community of paddling instructors nationwide and abroad.

ITs evaluate Instructors and Instructor Candidates to ensure they meet certification criteria. Instructor Trainers conduct Instructor Development Workshops (IDWs), Instructor Certification Examinations (ICEs), Instructor Certification Workshops (ICW: combined IDW & ICE), Endorsements, and Instructor Updates. Instructor Trainers are certified to certify candidates in their discipline at or below their level of IT certification, and are subject to all conditions, policies, and procedures developed by the Safety Education & Instruction Council (SEIC) and the SEI Department.

How to Become an Instructor Trainer

General Requirements for ACA Instructor Trainer Certification

Instructor Trainer Candidates must:

  • Be at least 21 years of age
  • Hold current ACA membership and SEIC registration
  • Be an active ACA Instructor in the appropriate discipline for at least two years
  • Have taught and properly reported at least two skills courses at their desired level of Instructor Trainer certification within the past four years
  • Instructor Trainers should have advanced paddling and teaching skills relative to their level of certification and possess excellent overall knowledge of paddlesports

Instructor Trainer Certification Process

Per the SEIC Policy Manual Chapter 3 (LINK), to become an ACA Instructor Trainer, an ACA Instructor must:

  1. Submit the Instructor Trainer Candidate (ITC) Registration Form to the SEI Department
  2. Complete the Instructor Trainer Candidate Online Self Study
  3. Receive email confirmation from the SEI Department that you are eligible to begin the Instructor Trainer process prior to conducting your first co-teach of an IDW/ICE or ICW
  4. Participate in an Instructor Trainer Development Workshop (ITDW) or co-teach an IDW and ICE with either an IT or an ITE. An ITDW is required for newly developed disciplines
  5. Prior to leading an IDW/ICE, the IT Candidate and the supervising ITE will both confirm with the SEI Department the IT Candidate’s eligibility for certification
  6. After co-teaching an IDW/ICE or completing an ITDW, IT Candidates must satisfactorily lead at least one IDW and ICE, with assistance and direct oversight by an Instructor Trainer Educator (ITE). The final leading of an IDW and ICE may be repeated as needed for successful completion of the IT mentoring process;
    • IT candidates cannot be “continued”
    • Only one IT Candidate can receive Co-Teach credit for each IDW/ICE
    • Only one IT Candidate can receive Lead Teach credit for each IDW/ICE
  7. When the IT Candidate has led an IDW and ICE under the direct supervision of their mentoring ITE, the IT Candidate shall submit an official IT Application Form within 30 days of the ICE completion to the SEI Department. In addition to a letter from the mentoring ITE, two additional ACA Instructor or Instructor Trainer recommendation letters are required. At least one of the two additional letters must be from an Instructor or IT in the IT Candidate’s discipline.
  8. The IT Candidate’s application will be reviewed by the SEI Department, with final certification approved by majority vote of the SEIC Standards Committee and the appropriate discipline chair.

Instructor Trainer Candidate Resources

Note: In addition to annual ACA membership dues, the SEIC dues for an Instructor Trainer are $110 per year.

Please contact the SEI Department if you have any questions about the ACA Instructor Trainer process.