A collaboration between
British Culinary Federation
Culinary Association Wales
Federation of Chefs Scotland

Mentor's Procedure

Applied Ability Awards
Practical Exams for Professional Chefs, Designed and Delivered by Chefs


  1. Once your participation in the Triple A has been confirmed - and an invoice issued - you may immediately enrol your candidates. To do so you need:
    1. the AAA Syllabus, which details the skills and attributes expected from either the AAA Foundation Chef and AAA Chef;
    2. the only fill-in paperwork, which is the combined Registration & Skill Scan.
  2. To be sure you have the latest versions, download both items from the AAA website


  1. Look at the Syllabus, decide which of the two levels – AAA Foundation Chef or AAA Chef – your candidate should target.
  2. In discussion with your candidate fill in the Skill Scan & Action Plan for the level chosen. Your shared goal is to ensure that once the Action Plan is complete the candidate is exam-ready in all areas, any of which may be tested in the AAA exam. Please write clearly, fill in all boxes required and make sure the three signatures are provided.
  3. Make copies of the completed Scan & Plan for you and your candidate. Email one copy to Jill Matthews AAA Manager at . Also give your candidate a print copy of the Syllabus covering the level chosen.
  4. We will confirm receipt by email, also sending a Username and Password for your candidates allowing them round-the-clock access to the ‘Tests & Demos’ area of the AAA website, which contains:
    1. practice tests in preparation for the Knowledge Test element of the exam. Note, questions set in the actual online exam will be a random selection from the practice tests and will cover all parts of the Syllabus.
    2. filmed Skill Demonstrations that illustrate many aspects of the Syllabus.
  5. You will also receive your own login to the lsquo;Tests & Demos’ area of the AAA website, which includes a record of the tests your candidates have taken, with scores achieved, plus the skill demonstrations they have watched. NB It is strongly advised that all Chef Mentors log in to review their candidate's progress regularly as this forms an essential part of their preparation for success on Exam Day


  1. Now work through your Action Plan tasks in line with the schedule you have agreed with your candidate.
  2. We recommend that you and your candidate review progress once a week for 10 to 15 minutes.


  1. No less than five weeks before the chosen exam you will be asked to confirm that your candidate is exam-ready. At that point you should feel your candidate is suitably prepared in all the skill areas – if not then you have one opportunity to EITHER defer their exam to one of your remaining exam options at no additional cost OR if your candidate was entered for the AAA Chef exam, you may enter them for the AAA Foundation Chef exam (subject to vacancies) with a view to them progressing to the upper level after a fresh application.
  2. No less than four weeks before the exam you will be advised of the precise date and venue.
  3. Two weeks before the AAA Chef exam, which is a recipe-based test, candidates will be emailed the exam recipes. Exams at AAA Foundation Chef level are task-driven, and candidates will receive only an indication of the exam content, which is emailed one week before the exam.
  4. Note, should a candidate drop out at any point prior to the exam-ready confirmation you should immediately let us know so that you can register a substitute candidate at no additional cost. The new candidate must take the exam within the same time period allowed for the original candidate, and a fresh Scan & Plan must be completed.
  5. A cancellation or deferment that occurs after confirmation and less than five weeks prior to the exam, including candidates who fail to attend on the day, will be counted as a used place (unless, at our discretion, we conclude otherwise e.g. in the case of illness or accident).
  6. Candidates who do not pass the exam and wish to re-take may do so, but will need to re-enter the process afresh with an updated Scan & Plan submitted for each candidate.
  7. Candidates achieving AAA Foundation Chef and progressing to AAA Chef should also register afresh, this time submitting the Scan & Plan for AAA Chef.


  1. Exam results will be advised within two weeks of the exam date and the Award certificate issued shortly afterwards. Candidates will either Fail or Pass.
  2. The pass rate for AAA exams is 70% for the practical component (3.5hrs), 60% for the Knowledge Exam (60 mins or 40 mins at Chef level) and 70% for the Aptitude Interview (20 mins). All three components must be achieved to secure a successful pass.


  1. Other than for block bookings, exams take place in early March and May and late September and November.
  2. Your exam places must be utilised within the four exams following your start date i.e. the date your company is invoiced. Fees for exam places not taken up in the time available are not refundable.
  3. The time available for preparation always includes a minimum of three-months before the first of the four exam choices. The following table illustrates the schedule and options:
  4. Please note: the ultimate measure of the Triple A lies in the professional judgement of your fellow, senior chefs, who will spend over three hours observing and tasting the work of your candidates. The two Chef Examiners will not be overly concerned with the finer detail of a dish or technique, which are the means to an end and not the end in itself. That end is to achieve the benchmark standard set and maintained by the profession itself and so gain the professional recognition the Award represents
August to November March, May, September, November
December and January May, September, November, March
February to May September, November, March, May
June and July November, March, May, September

If you have queries or comments at any point please contact the AAA Office: Jill Matthews AAA Manger, Mob 07818001503. Email jillaaachefs@btinternet

AAA Mentors Procedure 3.5.17