Pilot certification relies on a single subjective flight exam to determine competency and safety. Evidence-based evaluation of an airman’s historical flight performance through flight recorder data may offer increased validity and reliability in training and in certification. This study examined commercial pilot students (N=13) training in Cirrus SR-20 aircraft in a collegiate flight training program. Each student’s performance of the steep turns maneuver before, during, and after a flight exam using digital flight recorder data was correlated with each other to examine the validity of single evaluation flight exams. The results indicate that each student’s average historical performance before a flight exam is a more accurate indicator of future performance than the flight exam itself. This study investigates the feasibility of utilizing digital flight recorder data to objectively analyze students’ flight performance.
Baranowski, M. J.,
& Dillman, B. G.
(2011). Pilot Certification: Converting a Historical Framework to Digital Data Utilization. 16th International Symposium on Aviation Psychology, 439-444.