What is Accelerated Flight Training?

What is Accelerated Flight Training?

by Jamie Beckett

A term that has come into common usage in recent years seems obvious, but its true meaning remains a mystery to many. It’s easy to remember. It sounds important. Yet, few flight students know what it really means.

 Accelerated flight training. Does it mean we fly faster? Does it require bigger, more expensive aircraft? Is it like speed dating but with airplanes and testing centers?

 The true meaning of the term is simple and to the point. But even then, a fair amount of wiggle room exists. Accelerated flight training simply means, training more often. And that means flying more often.

 Rather than one or two lessons a week so common in flight training at a local flight school, accelerated flight training involves three, four, or even five flights per week. More lessons completed more quickly generally leads to the completion of FAA requirements for any given certificate or rating in less time than could be accomplished by one or two lessons per week. The overall training is the same, but the timeline is compressed.

 That’s accelerated flight training in a nutshell.

 However, this simplistic view can lead a new student to assume that flying four or five times a week at their local flight school will result in a successful accelerated flight training plan. And it might, but it is more likely that it won’t.

 True accelerated flight training involves a structured program that incorporates an established training syllabus. A plan of action that guides both the flight student and the flight instructor through every flight lesson and puts them on a path to success that saves time and money while minimizing frustration and unnecessarily repeated lessons. Even worse, it avoids sending a student off for testing without training them on one or more tasks the student will need to demonstrate proficiency at in order to succeed.

 That is a real problem for some flight training providers. It robs students of time and money while shaking their confidence. None of those are desirable outcomes.

 A good, well planned, successfully implemented accelerated training program starts with the management of the flight school. It flows down to the chief instructor, then to the instructors flying the line, and ultimately on to the student. Everyone involved is on the same page, using the same program all the time.

 It involves the dispatch team, employees who are responsible for issuing airworthy airplanes to students for each lesson. It includes the maintenance crew who are responsible for having those aircraft ready to go in top notch shape every day. It even involves the finance office to verify that tuition related issues won’t unexpectedly put a halt to a student’s progress because of a paperwork issue.

 Accelerated flight training can be a highly desirable option for career minded flight students. It has the potential to lessen the overall cost of training by shortening the number of calendar months required. A benefit that also earns the student their qualifications to enter the job market more quickly. It enhances retention of knowledge and skills by using them repeatedly and often as reinforcement. And it tends to create a camaraderie between students, encouraging them to form study groups and work collaboratively to support each other’s success.

 Accelerated flight training works. For those considering a career in the air, accelerated flight training may represent the fastest, least expensive path to reach to your goal – being paid to fly.