After completing your multiple choice test, you'll immediately begin your practical exam. This hands-on portion will require you to disassemble and reassemble an iPhone SE, IPhone 6 or newer model—alternatively a Galaxy S6 or newer model—from memory. You are not allowed to reference any disassembly procedures.

Baseline

Power the device on and demonstrate that it works: 

  • Power on the device
  • Demonstrate the LCD works
  • Demonstrate the digitizer works

Then turn it off and get started.

Disassembly

Disconnect and remove the following components from the device:

  • Display assembly
  • Battery
  • Main board (logic board / motherboard)
  • Headphone jack (or headphone jack assembly)

Reassembly

Reassemble the device. Prove the device functions:

  • Power on the device
  • Demonstrate the LCD works
  • Demonstrate the digitizer works

Score

Think of this as a driving test. You start with 100 points—and lose points for mistakes or poor form. Points will be taken off depending on the severity issue. Here's the breakdown of points lost per mistake occurrence: 

  • Part left over after reassembly (-20 to fail)
  • Device does not function (see above) on first attempt after reassembly (-20 to fail)
  • Incorrect tool usage (0 to -10)
  • Needless disassembly (0 to -10)
  • Improper workspace or tools (-10 to -20)
  • Work not visible (0 to fail)
  • Case damage (-10 to fail)
  • Unprofessional device or part handling (0 to -10)
While taking the test, candidates will have a video preview of what our video proctor is capturing. The preview should look something like this.

While taking the test, candidates will have a video preview of what our video proctor is capturing. The preview should look something like this.


Practical Exam FAQ

If I damage the device but have the needed replacement part on hand, can I make the repair and pass the test?

No. 

What does "Incorrect tool usage" mean?

You know what the right tool for the job is. Even if you get away with flirting with danger during your day job (i.e. using a metal tool on plastic case components), this is an exam. Demonstrate you know what the right tool is for the job. If you aren't satisfied with that answer, check out iFixit guides and use similar tool types.

Does speed count?

Yes and no. The entire test has a 2 hour time limit. Most finish the multiple choice exam within an hour. That leaves you with an hour to complete the practical exam.

What kind of device handling is unprofessional?

Our trained exam scorers know how a competent technician works. We do lots and lots of repair—so we know exactly how many times you can drop a screw or try to use the wrong tool before it's a reflection of poor abilities.

Can I use screw mats with instructions or disassembly guides printed on? 

No! "From memory" means exactly that. You may not use any printed materials, disassembly guides, etc. to help you remember how to do this repair. This is a test, after all. If you take notes during the repair notes or use a (re)writable surface or magnetic project mat, that's fine. 

If the device doesn't work after reassembly, can I take it apart again and try to fix any mistakes? 

Yes. You'll lose points, but not so many that you'll fail solely from this mistake. Also, keep in mind your time limit. 

I failed my hands-on test. Can I appeal?

You can do that. But it's a bit of a process. Appeal to exams@ifixit.com within 10 days of failure notification (we delete old video recordings). All appeals are judged by our oversight board (comprised of repair business owners and technicians—not by iFixit staff). This is a closed process that is not open to your involvement or arguments. It is simply a second review. We will notify you of the board's decision.

What does "work not visible" mean? 

We're thinking of this as a driver test, remember? We need to be riding in the passenger seat, not the trunk. We need to see your work. During your test, you'll have a preview of the video recording, so you will be able to tell if you are working off camera. If the device goes out of frame and our judges determine it's possible the device was swapped out, you will fail instantly.