Effective aviation training must provide pilots with the knowledge and skills they need to make appropriate operational decisions and to implement those decisions. Pilots must not only learn information, they must be able to retrieve that information and apply it effectively in the operational environment. In this paper, we report an evaluation of a computer-based training (CBT) program designed to impart factual knowledge and to enhance pilots’ abilities to make appropriate operational decisions regarding in-flight icing. To accomplish these goals, the educational design of the CBT relied heavily on current work in cognitive science on learning and decision-making. To evaluate the effectiveness of this approach, an experiment was conducted. Professional pilots’ factual knowledge of icing and decisions in operational situations were evaluated. Then the participants received one of three educational products: the original CBT including interactive exercises, a CBT lacking the interactive exercises, or an icing text. After completing this training, the pilots’ factual knowledge and operational decisions were again evaluated. In addition, subjective evaluations of the materials and evaluations of the pilots’ previous training experience were obtained. Results indicate that the pilots learned more from the CBT and rated it more highly than the other materials and their previous training. This suggests that computer-based training based on current knowledge of learning and decision-making can be unusually effective and that the effort required to produce these products is justified.
& Barshi, I.
(2007). Effective Computer Based Training in Aviation: an Evaluation of the NASA In-Flight Icing Program. 2007 International Symposium on Aviation Psychology, 426-431.