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  The Fiber Optic Association, Inc.
the international professional association of fiber optics
July 2024

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The FOA is an international non-profit educational association that is chartered to promote professionalism in fiber optics through education, certification and standards. FOA is also an internationally recognized certifying body for fiber optics. Read more.

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FOA News

Read The Latest FOA Online Newsletter 

The July FOA Newsletter has a number of important announcements and articles. First, FOA has just published a new edition of our textbook on basic fiber optics, used in training for the CFOT certification.

FOA Reference Guide To Fiber Optics
The latest version of the FOA Reference Guide To Fiber Optics is different enough we call it a new edition. Many of the updates are for new technologies which are reshaping the fiber optic industry like coherent transmission, BI fibers, etc. We've also added a section on the fiber optic workforce which has much relevance because this book is used to train those entering the workforce.

We've also worked on making the book more readable, adding formatting that eases reading and a new comprehensive index.

And there are the usual links to articles worth reading and answers to tech questions.

Inflation was an issue, but the price only goes up $2 to $29.95 for the paperback and $12.95 for the Kindle version.

We also have a very important article about the changing nature of singlemode fiber. Until recently we've had regular G.652 fiber and G.657.A bend-insensitive fiber, but the industry major players are changing their designs so most singlemode fiber is becoming more like G.652.A1.

And there is lots more!

Read about it in the FOA Newsletter.

New Edition of FOA Basic Fiber Textbook
Important Change in Singlemode Fiber
Do You Trust Your OTDR?
Super C-Band Expands DWDM Spectrum
Single Pair Ethernet
What Does Rural Construction Look Like?
Broadband Politics In America
Int'l Bandwidth Use Reaches New Highs
Fixed Wireless vs FTTP
Experienced Instructor = Memorable Class
Cable Techs In A State Park

Read about it in the latest FOA Online Newsletter    

2024 At FOA - Heading For 100,000

As you can see from the graph below and the numbers to the left, FOA has added a lot of new certified techs in 2023 and so far this year. Look closely - FOA should reach a milestone this year - 100,000 certified techs - about a year before FOA's 30th anniversary! Those milestones are indications of how well accepted FOA certifications are worldwide.

FOA Certifications

The New BLS "Telecommunications Technicians" Web Page Is Live. 

Created with the assistance of FOA, the US Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook web pages offer job descriptions  for fiber optic and wireless techs and better job statistics that put some reality in discussions about how many more fiber techs the US needs. It also provides a reference for grants applications.

The New BLS "Telecommunications Technicians" Web Page.

Fiber U

Fiber U Offers Free Online Self-Study Programs And A "Fiber U Certificate of Completion" For All FOA Certification Courses.

Fiber U Courses cover all topics on fiber optics and are designed as preparation for taking a classroom course or taking a FOA certification exam.

Fiber U MiniCourses - Learn something useful in an hour or less.
New Fiber U MiniCourse Fiber Optic Project Management  

More at Fiber U.

Latest FOA Book: Fiber Broadband - Popular With Broadband Planners

FOA Guide To Fiber BroadbandThis book is not the typical FOA technical textbook - it is written for anyone who wants to understand fiber broadband or fiber optics or the Internet. It's also aimed at managers involved with broadband projects, teachers who want to include communications technology in their classes or anyone who just wonders how all this stuff works.

The Fiber Optic Association Guide To Fiber Broadband  

Paperback ($12.95) and Kindle ($9.95) versions available from Amazon or most booksellers. Kindle version is in color!

Nobody knows more about fiber broadband than the Fiber Optic Association. Check out our Fiber Broadband Resources Page. If you are working on an IIJA/BEAD program contact us for a special package of educational materials for your staff.

More Translations of FOA Textbooks And Online Learning

FOA is a very international organization and it works hard to accommodate the language needs of everyone. We have been translating our books and website into the languages most requested and we added more textbook translations.

Spanish Editions
Guía de Referencia de la Asociación de Fibra Óptica (FOA) Sobre Fibra Óptica: Guía de estudio para la certificación de la FOA  Amazon
La Referencia de Cableado para Predios de la FOA: Guía para Certificación de la FOA   Amazon
La Asociación de Fibra Óptica Manual de Fibra Hasta el Hogar : Para Planificadores, Gestores, Diseñadores, Instaladores y Operadores De FTTH  Amazon
Guía de Referencia de la FOA sobre Diseño de la red de fibra óptica: Guía de Estudio para la Certificación de la FOA Amazon

And the FOA Reference Guide To Fiber Optics:

French Edition
Le Guide de référence de la FOA pour la fibre optique et et guide d'étude pour la certification FOA: Guide d'étude pour la certification FOA  Amazon

Portuguese Edition
Guia de Referência sobre Fibra Óptica da FOA : Guia de Estudo para a Certificação da FOA  Amazon

The subjects of these books are also translated in the FOA Guide online.

Fiber U Basic Fiber Optics Online Course In Spanish.
El curso de autoaprendizaje en línea "Fibra óptica básica" de Fiber U ahora en español
Curso Básico de Fibra Óptica de Fibra U en español.

FOA FTTH Handbook Plus FTTH Updates in FOA Guide and Fiber U

FOA has been busy updating our FTTH technical and learning materials, online learning course at Fiber U and even published the materials in a new book. Great timing for all the FTTH projects we see right now!

FTTH Handbook
For Planners, Managers, Designers, Installers And Operators Of FTTH - Fiber To The Home - Networks

FOA FTTH Handbook FTTH Handbook in Spanish

FOA's FTTH Handbook: We've gathered all our information on FTTH from the FOA Guide and past issues of the FOA Newsletter and edited it into a 112 page "FTTH Handbook." We even added a section on planning and managing FTTH Projects. The Fiber Optic Association Fiber To The Home Handbook is available from Amazon in print and Kindle editions.

FOA YouTube Video Describes On-The-Job Training (OJT) And How To Use Fiber U To Make OJT Better.

OJTOJT is the well-known term for "on-the-job training." Workers learn on the job under the supervision of experienced co-workers. FOA has been asked many times how its resources like Fiber U can be used to help employers and their employee trainees involved in OJT. The interest in OJT has been so high, especially during the difficult year in 2020, that FOA has worked with employers and employees to formalize an OJT program and create training aids to help employers develop qualified techs using OJT.

The FOA Fiber U “OJT-To-Cert” program  includes both fiber optics and premises cabling (copper, fiber & wireless), so it covers techs working in both outside plant and premises jobs.

The FOA Fiber U OJT program combines online study at Fiber U with OJT with mentoring by experienced co-workers and their supervisor to help new employees develop into FOA-certified technicians in only one year.  Like other FOA programs, the OJT-To-Cert program is free. The FOA provides directions for use of the free Fiber U online training programs and we provide a log for the trainee to keep track of their progress. The only cost is the two fiber U certificates of completion and the FOA certification exam at the end of the program.

Learn more about the FOA Fiber U “OJT-To-Cert” program.

FOA Loss Budget CalculatorTry The FOA's Online Loss Budget Calculator

FOA has written many articles about loss budgets, something everyone involved in fiber optics needs to know and needs to know how to calculate. We've created a online Loss Budget Calculator that does the work for you. Just input your cable plant data and it calculates the loss budget. It works on any device, especially smartphones and tablets for field use and even allows printing the results.

Bookmark this page (especially on your smartphone): FOA Loss Budget Calculator Online

For Schools and Instructors

If your organization is interested in becoming an FOA Approved School, see New School Requirements and Application Procedures and Requirements For FOA Training Programs

If you are a current FOA Approved School, here is the School Update/Renewal Form.  

Classroom Resources For STEM Teachers In K-12 And Technical Schools

STEM teachers resources

Teachers in all grades can introduce their students to fiber optic technology with some simple demonstrations. FOA has created a page for STEM or STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) teachers with materials appropriate to their classes. Fiber Optic Resources For STEM Teachers.

FOA also has a new YouTube Video on "Careers in Fiber Optics" and a "Careers In Fiber Optics" Website. See below.

Lennie careers
FOA has a YouTube Video on "Careers in Fiber Optics" and a
"Careers In Fiber Optics" Website.
Interested in exploring a career in fiber optics? FOA has created a YouTube Video and a webpage that describes what a fiber optic worker does, where they work and how to get started. It's mainly aimed at high school students but it's relevant to anyone interested in changing careers also. Go here for the Y
ouTube Video on "Careers in Fiber Optics" or the  FOA Careers In Fiber Optics webpage.

FOA Jobs
FOA "Finding A Job" Website
We get many questions from CFOTs, students at FOA-Approved schools and others contemplating getting into the fiber optic business regarding jobs in fiber optics - and how to find them - so we’ve created a new web page to share some information we've gathered about jobs in our industry. The information is designed to help you understand what jobs are available in fiber optics, how to find them and apply for them.

Looking For A Job In Fiber Optics?

Where Are The Jobs In Fiber Optics? This FOA YouTube Video talks about all the applications for fiber optics, what the jobs involve and the qualifications for the workers in the field. If you are currently looking for a job in fiber optics, here is the FOA's guide to jobs web page. The FOA Jobs Web Page has been updated and a new page added on Using your FOA Training/Certification to Find the Right Job in Fiber Optics

If you have job openings, let us post them on FOA on LinkedIn.


Free From FOA: NECA/FOA 301 Fiber Optic Installation Standard

NECA 301 Because of its importance to users, contractors and installers of fiber optic networks, The FOA and NECA have agreed to make the NECA/FOA 301 Fiber Optic Installation Standard available free from FOA.
Standards usually cover components and systems and how to test them, but rarely get into installation issues. This standard is derived from FOA educational material put in standards form and approved by ANSI as an American National Standard. It's specifically written to be used in contracts to define "installation in a neat and workmanlike manner."   Go to
NECA/FOA 301 Fiber Optic Installation Standard to learn more and download your free copy.
FOA videos  FOA Videos

The FOA has created a special FOA channel on YouTube, thefoainc, where we've posted over 110 instructional videos and lectures for everyone's use. We've got lectures on premises cabling and fiber optics and  hands-on demonstrations about fiber optics and communications cabling - yes, even "Cat 5"!

FOA channel on YouTube, thefoainc

FOA on LinkedIn

FOA on LinkedIn - a community, jobs and technical discussions

FOA - official company page on LinkedIn

FOA - covers FOA, technology and jobs in the fiber optic marketplace

Grupo de La Asociación de Fibra Óptica FOA (Español)
FOA Fiber Optic Training - open to everyone, covers fiber optic technology and training topics

FOA School Instructors - a closed group for instructors and administrators at FOA-approved schools

FOA Reference Books (Printed or Kindle eBooks!)

The FOA has it's own reference books for everyone working in fiber optics - contractors, installers and end users as well as for use as textbooks in classes at educational institutions. They are available as printed books or Kindle at much lower prices than most textbooks since we self-publish and sell online, cutting out the middlemen. Click on the book images for more information. The Reference Guide To Fiber Optics is also available in Spanish and French (print and online) and Portuguese (online only.)
FOA Reference Guide to Fiber Optics book
FOA text in Spanish FOA Text in French FOA Reference Guide to Premises Cablng book  FOA Reference Guide to OSP Fiber Optics book FOA Reference Guide to Fiber Optics Design book  FOA Reference Guide to Fiber Optic OSP Construction book  FOA Reference Guide to Fiber Optics Testing book  FOA Reference Guide to Fiber Optic OSP Construction book
Fiber Optics (4 languages), Premises Cabling, OSP fiber and construction, Network Design, Testing and FTTH

FOA Guide To Fiber Broadband
The FOA Guide To Fiber Broadband is not the typical FOA technical textbook - it is written for anyone who wants to understand fiber broadband, fiber optics or the Internet. It's also aimed at managers involved with broadband projects, teachers who want to include communications technology in their classes or anyone who just wonders how all this stuff works.

Click on any book for more information about it.

Getting Started Guides
Lennie    Uncle Ted
These two guides are simple introductions to the subjects. They will explain the applications, jargon, components and installation in a quick overview.
Lennie Lightwave's Guide to Fiber Optics (online) and available as PDF download or a free iBook on iTunes  
Uncle Ted's Guide to Communications (Premises) Cabling   (online) and available as a PDF download or a free iBook on iTunes  

Lennie Lightwave's Guide - Printed Edition

FOA has reprinted "Lennie Lightwave's Guide" on its 25th anniversary in a special print edition.

Lennie 25th Anniversary
Many of you have used the current online version of Lennie's Guide on the FOA website. Now you can have a slick printed version - real paper and colored pictures - you can hold in your hand and read. Leave a copy on your desktop to impress your friends, or on the table in your company's reception area instead of out-of-date magazines. Give them to your customers and employees to help them learn fiber optics. Use it to prepare for FOA certifications.

You can get your own copies of
Lennie Lightwave's Guide at, only $9.95 each US$.

Looking For "Hands-On" Fiber Optic Training With FOA Certification?
You can find a list of FOA approved schools that offer CFOT® certification here on the list of FOA approved schools. 

Certification Renewal
FOA Certified persons must renew their CFOT® or CFOS certifications when they expire. Please make sure we have your current address. Download the renewal form, or renew online.


The Fiber Optic Association Inc. (FOA) is the international professional association of fiber optics. FOA is chartered to promote fiber optics through education, certification and standards.

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