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The education committee of the American Farrier’s Association (AFA) hopes that a pre-certification workshop it has developed will result in more members passing certification tests on the first try.
Committee Chairman Mitch Taylor says the committee began developing the concept after finding that only 15 to 20 percent of test takers were passing on the first try.
The intensive, two-day pre-certification workshop emphasizes the practical portion of the tests, with a comprehensive study guide specifically designed to help people pass the written test.
Taylor, owner and instructor of the Kentucky Horseshoeing School in Mt. Eden, Ky., says the guide is not just the compilation of practice tests, but a structured study guide that takes the student through anatomy, pathology, gaits and gait faults and includes worksheets and study sheets for both the written and practical portions of the exams.
The actual workshop is slanted toward the more practical portion of the exam, but Taylor says if a student reads the guide and fills out all the worksheets before attending the workshop, a 2-hour review is generally enough to enable most shoers to pass the written portion.
Workshop instructors will have a variety of teaching aids on hand that can be examined and passed around by participants. These include miniature horse legs, slides and dry hoof specimens. The specimens are courtesy of Allie Hayes of Horse Science/Horse Sense of West Boxford, Mass. Shoes will be placed on these dry hooves to demonstrate an “AFA shoe fit.” Examples of all…