Since 1986 PTDI has safeguarded trucking excellence by certifying those trucking schools that go the extra mile. 

North America's trucking schools have depended on us to keep them at their best.

Go beyond basic compliance and ensure your school rises above the competition.


PTDI Can Help Your School

PTDI standards raise the level of quality of your program. 

From behind the wheel hours, to instructor development, to facilities and student satisfaction. Your school will benefit from the standardized curriculum.  We can help get you there if you are not already. 

In the new landscape of the ELDT, PTDI Certification gives you the market edge.  Demonstrate to students, carriers and insurers that you exceed basic government compliance.



      • Improves the efficiency and effectiveness of your school operations.
      • Certification utilizes curriculum standards developed by the industry and recognized as the gold standard in driver education.
      • Ensures your program meets government requirements and serves as validation.
      • Increases your school's credibility within the industry.
      • Encourages better trainers, consistent and reliable training.
      • Increases the quality and quantity of future employment opportunities for your students.  



Coming soon - comprehensive school certification guide

School Frequently Asked Questions

What is the process for becoming certified?

Take the readiness survey.  Review the standards and curriculum.  Complete the initial application.  After you've applied, you will need to have a visit to review your program.  Decide between a physical onsite visit or virtual visit and complete the correct form based on your choice.  After the visit is conducted the Certification Commission reviews the report and makes a decision.  Find out more and see a diagram of the entire process.

Why do you offer certification and not accreditation?

Accreditation is typically used for institutions.  For instance, your College is accredited.  PTDI offers certification of a specific program or course to ensure the level of quality has been verified by an outside third party.  Find more on the certification page.

Why do I need certification if I must comply with the government's ELDT regulations?

The ELDT is a response to the truck driver training industry poorly regulating itself.  In fact, the ELDT is largely based on PTDI standards.  The ELDT requires all training programs meet the regulations in order to be listed on the FMCSA's Training Provider Registry.  This levels the playing field.  The minimum will be expected.  Distinguish your program from the competition by showing you don't just meet the minimums, you exceed them! 

How much does certification cost?

Initial certification costs depend on whether you select a physical onsite visit or a virtual visit.  Certifying more than one program or multiple locations can impact the cost as well.  The flat fee covers all the costs of initial certification.  Annual fees also vary based on the same factors.  See the price breakdown on the certification page.

Am I eligible for certification?

In addition to meeting the PTDI standards, the program for which you are seeking certification must have graduated a minimum of fifteen (15) students within the twelve (12) months preceding the application (or for start -up schools, within the first 12 months of operation.)  We encourage you to complete the pre-qualification survey on our home page to evaluate your program's certification readiness.

What are the types of schools that offer PTDI certified courses?

Publicly-funded institutions such as community colleges and technical schools; private institutions, and carrier schools.

I am planning to open a truck driving school. How can PTDI help me?

We suggest that you start by reviewing the standards.These give you a good basis for starting your school. The curriculum standards detail what should be taught and the certification standards give minimums for administration, instructors, facilities, equipment, record keeping, etc. These standards are minimums as determined by the industry. You will need to find out what entity in your state licenses or approves schools and whether instructor licensing is required. You might want to see
whether a carrier would partner with you to provide support and/or equipment.

What does a site visit entail?

Site visits can by either physical, in person or virtual.  Physical onsite visits require preparing documents and records for the reviewer.  Virtual visits require submitting the documentation online.  In both cases the reviewer will look at your facilities, equipment, vehicles, classrooms, and more.  To do this virtually, a video conference on your phone (such as Skype, Google Hangouts, etc) will be needed.  Prior to the visit, you will have a call with the reviewer to discuss the logistics.

Where do I submit my annual report?

PTDI reports are submitted electronically, online.  This can be done on the reports page.

Do the standards require 104 hours of classroom time?

The standards require a minimum 104 hours of a combination of classroom and lab time. Lab time includes such activities as pre-trip inspections, instructor demonstrations and simulator training. Also, up to one third of classroom time may be properly documented independent study (which is not the same as homework.)

What are the Behind the Wheel hour requirements?

Behind the Wheel time means the student has direct control of the vehicle.  Assuming 60 minute hours, PTDI requires 44 hours of BTW instruction.  Of the 44 hours, 12 must be on the highway.  The remaining 32 hours can be any combination of range and highway BTW time.  A minimum of 1 hour must be at night.  Six hours must be on the highway with a loaded trailer of 15,000 pounds.

Where can I find training materials?

PTDI has helped develop training materials and partners with Cengage to produce and distribute the publications.  You can find them  on the training materials page.

PTDI  ~  501(c)3 Not-for Profit  ~  2460 W. 26th Ave., Suite 245-C, Denver, CO  80211

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