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Pilot shortage?

croakerfish

Well-Known Member
pilot
When I left my HT IP tour last year we were in fact beginning to introduce a simulated ATC environment in our new simulators, which could all be linked into a LAN party. There is a central control station that can alter weather etc for the whole circus. The plan was to have a couple CSIs playing ATC. I don’t know if it’s been fully implemented.
 

Swanee

Self aware since 2014
pilot
None
Contributor
All this discussion about scripts and the like lead me to believe that people are unaware, at least formally, of the different levels of learning that take place, or as it’s called now “phases of knowledge”. The Aviation Instructor’s Handbook Ch 3 is an excellent source of information when it comes to how students learn, and how to foster learning. I was taught this back when I was in college getting my CFI, but I never had any training on it in the Navy—even as a FRS instructor. Hopefully the primary FITU covers it.


Generally speaking, scripts serve to meet the lowest level of learning: rote memorization. Obviously the goal is to get students beyond that level and into an area of understanding and correlation. If a student can’t do a task off script, then they are still at the lowest level.

The interesting thing is that the individual services, and the DoD as a whole, has spent a lot of money on studying adult learning theory. Initially courses are designed with all of this in mind.

Every course is built upon the Knowledge, Skills, and Attitudes required of someone who is a graduate of that course.

The problem is that, as aviation automation increases, and the skills to use and monitor said automation becomes easier, the knowledge of the beeps and squeaks required is less, yet the attitudes remain largely unchanged.

The bean counters see the ability to cut the course in length. But you can't shorten attitudes. Attitudes are developed over time; are the results of the hundreds of sorties and touchpoints and interactions with every instructor, every scenario, a student has been through. Sure, the skills and knowledge may be less (the engine manages it's own fuel/air mixture), but the attitudes remain the same.

Yet the Services willingly overlook this in hopes of shorter times to train, and cost savings. ("Cheaper and Faster Johnson!" "Yes Sir!")

I saw this first hand in the USMC VMU community. Enlisted AVOs at one time went to a 16 week aviation and reconnaissance fundamentals course, followed by a 6 month RQ-7 initial AVO (air vehicle operator) and MPO (mission payload operator) course (think Primary/Advanced) to the 8 week RQ-21 AVO course at the FRD.

Now they come from MCT to the FRD, where they get 4 weeks of private pilot ground school, 4 weeks of ROC-V, then 8 weeks of the RQ-21 course. Attrition there is very high, and even when these kids graduate, they are lucky if they can even tell you what an RQ-21 looks like without the help of Google- much less show you how to fly one safely in the national airspace.



My brother is an instructor in the E-3. The most challenging thing they do in aerial refueling. He regularly now gets new copilots in the fleet who have never flown in formation with another airplane (you're going heavies- it's waived now) before their first time on the boom. He says that it's the most frightening thing he's done, and the most scared in an airplane he's been is trying to teach a copilot how to fly form and refuel both for the first time.



Bean counters don't like attitudes because they're hard to quantify. But I'd argue they're they most important thing.
 

Birdbrain

Well-Known Member
The interesting thing is that the individual services, and the DoD as a whole, has spent a lot of money on studying adult learning theory. Initially courses are designed with all of this in mind.

Every course is built upon the Knowledge, Skills, and Attitudes required of someone who is a graduate of that course.

The problem is that, as aviation automation increases, and the skills to use and monitor said automation becomes easier, the knowledge of the beeps and squeaks required is less, yet the attitudes remain largely unchanged.

The bean counters see the ability to cut the course in length. But you can't shorten attitudes. Attitudes are developed over time; are the results of the hundreds of sorties and touchpoints and interactions with every instructor, every scenario, a student has been through. Sure, the skills and knowledge may be less (the engine manages it's own fuel/air mixture), but the attitudes remain the same.

Yet the Services willingly overlook this in hopes of shorter times to train, and cost savings. ("Cheaper and Faster Johnson!" "Yes Sir!")

I saw this first hand in the USMC VMU community. Enlisted AVOs at one time went to a 16 week aviation and reconnaissance fundamentals course, followed by a 6 month RQ-7 initial AVO (air vehicle operator) and MPO (mission payload operator) course (think Primary/Advanced) to the 8 week RQ-21 AVO course at the FRD.

Now they come from MCT to the FRD, where they get 4 weeks of private pilot ground school, 4 weeks of ROC-V, then 8 weeks of the RQ-21 course. Attrition there is very high, and even when these kids graduate, they are lucky if they can even tell you what an RQ-21 looks like without the help of Google- much less show you how to fly one safely in the national airspace.



My brother is an instructor in the E-3. The most challenging thing they do in aerial refueling. He regularly now gets new copilots in the fleet who have never flown in formation with another airplane (you're going heavies- it's waived now) before their first time on the boom. He says that it's the most frightening thing he's done, and the most scared in an airplane he's been is trying to teach a copilot how to fly form and refuel both for the first time.



Bean counters don't like attitudes because they're hard to quantify. But I'd argue they're they most important thing.
So you’re saying the bean boys want quicker pilots (see: the various waivers that continue to shorten the time to train) but quicker pilots make worse pilots and it’s not worth cutting their training. Right?
 

Swanee

Self aware since 2014
pilot
None
Contributor
So you’re saying the bean boys want quicker pilots (see: the various waivers that continue to shorten the time to train) but quicker pilots make worse pilots and it’s not worth cutting their training. Right?
I'm saying that no one has figured out how to shortcut the Attitude portion of the training.

Cutting skill and knowledge training where it makes sense is an obvious choice. Fewer sims? Fewer lectures? I'm all about it. Less flight time in the airplane? I don't know how else to train an attitude.
 

CommodoreMid

Whateva! I do what I want!
None
Super Moderator
Contributor
Hollywood scripts are useful for brand new never done aviation before types as long as they have some instructor caveats with them. When I did primary we got one and one of our civilian instructors was good enough to explain it’s purpose and give us an example of a comms flow. They stuck to it religiously for the first sim so we could see it in action, but then they told us after that game on. We learned a good baseline and from there we could deviate, but of course that always requires good instructors.
 
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