The debate regarding the effectiveness of computer-based software for pilot training and proficiency has been ongoing since such software first became available. While studies on the efficacy of such software have been and continue to be conducted, pilots are in large number utilizing such packages. A nationwide survey was conducted to determine how the Microsoft Flight Simulator (MFS) software package is being used by pilots for both initial private pilot training and for maintaining proficiency once certificated. Over 650 survey respondents evaluated the effectiveness of MFS in 14 areas of pilot operations. It was found that over 40% of respondents used the software package during their private training, and that 85% of respondents now use the software package to help maintain their proficiency. These findings indicate that student and private pilots have embraced MFS as a useful training and proficiency aid.
Beckman, W. S.
(2013). The Effectiveness of Microsoft Flight Simulator as a Training Aid for Private Pilot Training and Proficiency. 17th International Symposium on Aviation Psychology, 38-43.