National Credential
Credential: Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS)  In-Demand resource  GI Bill resource
Credentialing Agency: Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE)

The Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE), Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS) is an intermediate-level credential for technicians in the cable telecommunications industry for a cable provider, contractor or vendor. Candidates should be able to perform coaxial network troubleshooting, coaxial network preventive maintenance, and coaxial system design calculations. BDS candidates must have a minimum of five years of work experience in cable television network operations. Candidates must pass a written exam.

More information can be found on the certifying agency's website.

Renewal Period: 3 years

Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS)

The following Army Occupations provide training and/or experience that contributes to attaining this credential:

Personnel Category Occupation Occupation Type Related As Promotion Points Skill Level Star Proponent Funded Gap Analysis
Enlisted 1C Satellite Systems/Network Coordinator ASI other          
Enlisted 25C Radio Operator-Maintainer MOS other          
Enlisted 25L Cable Systems Installer-Maintainer MOS most  Promotion Points: This certification has been approved for promotion points. Click for more information. III      
Enlisted 25P Microwave Systems Operator-Maintainer MOS other          
Enlisted 25R Visual Information Equipment Operator-Maintainer MOS some  Promotion Points: This certification has been approved for promotion points. Click for more information.        
Enlisted 25S Satellite Communications Systems Operator-Maintainer MOS other          
Enlisted J2 Communications Cable and Antenna Systems Maintainer ASI most          
Warrant Officer 255N Network Management Technician WOMOS some        
Warrant Officer 255Z Senior Network Operations Technician WOMOS some        

Army Table Legend


Related As

The military occupations shown in this table are related to this credential in one of four ways: Most, Some, or Other.

Most: This credential is directly related to most of the major duties associated with the military occupation (at least 80%). Note that the credential may require additional education, training or experience before you are eligible for it.

Some: This credential is related to some tasks associated with the duties of the military occupation (related 80% to at least one or more critical tasks but less than 80% of all of the entire military occupation). Note that the credential may require additional education, training or experience before you are eligible for it.

Other: This credential is related to this military occupation, but is more advanced or specialized and therefore will likely require additional education, training, or experience.

Promotion Points Promotion Points icon

This credential has been approved for promotion points for this MOS towards promotion to Sergeant and Staff Sergeant. Clicking the Promotion Points icon will open a link to the promotion points fact sheet.

Skill Level Designation

Skill Level I: This skill level consists of all Soldiers in the ranks of Private (pay grade E-1) up to Specialist (pay grade E-4). Time in Service (TIS) is generally between initial entry and four Years of Service (YOS). This skill level is Entry-level positions requiring performance of tasks under direct supervision.

Institutional training:

  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level I
  • Basic Leader Course (BLC)

Skill Level II: This skill level is obtained when promoted to Sergeant (paygrade E-5). TIS is generally between 4-8 YOS. Positions requiring performance of more difficult tasks under general supervision; and in some instances, involving supervision of Soldiers in SL1.

Institutional training:

  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level II
  • Advance Leader Course (ALC)

Skill Level III: This skill level is obtained when promoted to Staff Sergeant (paygrade E-6). TIS is generally between 8-12 YOS. Positions requiring performance of still more difficult tasks and involving first line supervision of Soldiers in SL1 & SL2.

Institutional training:

  • Senior Leader Course (SLC)
  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level III

Skill level IV: This skill level is obtained when promoted to the rank of Sergeant First Class (paygrade E-7). TIS is generally between 12-18 YOS. Positions requiring relatively detailed knowledge of all tasks specified for a given MOS, normally involving first-line supervision of Soldiers in SLs 1, 2, and 3, and involving managerial duties.

Institutional training:

  • Master Leader Course (MLC)
  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level IV
  • Senior Enlisted Joint Professional Military Education (SEJPME) I Course

Skill level V: This skill level is obtained when promoted to the rank of Master Sergeant (paygrade E-8). TIS is generally between 18-22 YOS. Positions requiring direct and indirect leadership roles with expertise in company and battalion-level operations and competency across a given CMF, serving as members of a staff at every level in the Army, with a full understanding of the allocation of resources and their utilization in order to accomplish Army functions and missions.

Institutional training:

  • United States Army Sergeants Major Academy (USASMA)
  • Structured Self-Development (SSD) level V

Skill level VI: This skill level is obtained when promoted to the rank of Sergeants Major (paygrade E-9). TIS is generally between 22-30 YOS. Positions requiring organizational leadership roles with multi-dimensional expertise in units and teams on division, corps, and Army staffs, integrated with Joint, Interagency, Intergovernmental, and Multinational (JIIM) partners with a full understanding of the Force Generation process, operations at all echelons, and how the Army runs.

Star Credential Star icon

Star credentials are MOS enhancing, as designated by the Proponent. MOS enhancing credentials are directly related to an MOS or ASI, are taught either partially or completely as part of a Program of Instruction (POI), and improve the MOS technical proficiency.

Proponent Funded Funded icon

This icon indicates credentials which Soldiers may have funded through their MOS proponent. Some proponents offer credentialing opportunities in conjunction with military training and/or as part of MOS development beyond the training base.

Gap Analysis Has Analysis icon

A detailed analysis comparing the credential requirements to the military occupation has been completed. Click on the gap analysis icon to view the analysis page.

Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS)

Eligibility Requirements ()

Note: This credential may have multiple options for becoming eligible. Listed below are the minimum requirements based on the minimum degree required. To view other options, see the Eligibility tab.

  • Credential Prerequisite
  • Experience: 5 years recommended
  • Education
  • Training
  • Membership
  • Other
  • Fee

Exam Requirements ()

  • Written Exam
  • Oral Exam
  • Practical Exam
  • Performance Assessment

Renewal Period: 3 years

  • Continuing Education
  • Exam
  • Continuing Education OR Exam
  • Fee
  • Other

Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE)
140 Philips Rd.
Exton, PA  19341-1316
Phone: (800) 542-5040
Fax: (610) 363-5898
Email: jwelch@scte.org

Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS)

Candidates must have five years of focused experience in cable television network operations.

The Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS) credential has the following other requirements:

Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS)

  • Systems Architectures
    • Basic principles used to design and map the coaxial portion of the HFC network.
    • Network acrchitectures related to RF signal distribution.
  • Distribution Components
    • Active devices used in the coaxial portion of the HFC network.
    • RF and optical nodes
    • Passive devices used in the coaxial portion of the HFC network.
    • Coaxial cable used in the HFC network
  • Signal Types
    • Characteristics of analog signals: NTSC, pilot carriers and PAL
    • Characteristics of digital signals: digital fundamentals, components of the digital signal, digital multiplexing, Out of Band (OOB) signaling and channel mapping.
    • Upstream signal types
    • Modulation schemes: analog and digital.
    • Analog forward/reverse and digital forward/reverse
    • Cable network impairments: noise, distortions, interfering signals, and reflections.
  • Troubleshooting and Maintenance
    • Test equipment used during cable network maintenance and troubleshooting.
    • Divide and conquer (also called the isolation or half-split) method of troubleshooting.
    • Analog and digital signal impairments.
    • Basic cable plant sweeping techniques.
    • Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and how rules apply to Performance Requirements and Proof of Performance (POP) Tests.
    • Considerations when maintaining and troubleshooting the forward and return plant.
    • Status monitoring and its purpose as a tool for maintenance.
    • Cable network preventive maintenance considerations.
  • Construction
    • Cable and equipment used in cable telecommunications construction, and its proper handling and testing.
    • Aerial cable placement considerations, including inspection, clearances, and installation.
    • Cable placement considerations, including open trench, boring, and plowing installations.
    • Underground enclosures used in cable plant construction.
    • Cable plant bonding and grounding practices.
    • Coaxial cable preparation and connectorization.
    • Process of coaxial cable activation and testing for new construction.
  • Field Safety
    • Industry standard safe work practices, for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and other job-related tools and equipment.
    • Industry standard safe work practices with respect to vehicle use.
    • Industry standard safe work practices with respect to work zone safety.
    • Industry standard safe work practices with respect to the work environment.

There are a number of resources available to help you prepare for the Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS) examination:

An additional resource is Safari Books Online, a searchable digital library that provides online access to thousands of books, training videos and conference sessions. See the Educational Resources page here on COOL to learn how to get free access.

Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS)

Renewal Period: 3 years

The Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS) credential has the following recertification information:

  • BDS certification is renewable every three years. BDS certification holders must earn 12 Recertification Units (RUs) to maintain certification without having to re-take the exam.

    Additional information about recertification is available on the SCTE Certification Maintenance page.

Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS)

Additional considerations for the Broadband Distribution Specialist (BDS) include: