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Old 04-29-2012, 10:00 PM   #21  
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Do I recommend the program? absolutely..
Do you really think you retain knowledge by having it "force-fed" over a short period of time? I'd offer that "accelerated programs" are worthless. Yes, maybe you can get to standards over a few weeks, but I'd also expect that performance and ability would degrade in the weeks after just as fast as it was learned.
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Old 04-30-2012, 02:58 AM   #22  
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Do you really think you retain knowledge by having it "force-fed" over a short period of time? I'd offer that "accelerated programs" are worthless. Yes, maybe you can get to standards over a few weeks, but I'd also expect that performance and ability would degrade in the weeks after just as fast as it was learned.
Especially if not reinforced over a period of time with actual use in the 'real world'.

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Old 04-30-2012, 02:56 PM   #23  
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You can have somebody that took 2 years to get all their certs that still doesn't know anything and somebody that might've took 90 days that is much more knowledgeable. You have to judge each individual well as an individual. I know me personally I strive to be the best so if I know I lack in a particular area I am going to study that much more harder and pick that many more brains. I have met guys that have been instructing for decades and I couldn't stand flying with them. I had an instructor that went to ATP (multiple actually) and they were a lot more enjoyable to fly with. One of the most knowledgeable instructors I ever flew with had 60,000 hours with about 40 or so were on floats. She definitely knew her way around an airplane.
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:31 PM   #24  
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You can have somebody that took 2 years to get all their certs that still doesn't know anything and somebody that might've took 90 days that is much more knowledgeable. You have to judge each individual well as an individual. I know me personally I strive to be the best so if I know I lack in a particular area I am going to study that much more harder and pick that many more brains. I have met guys that have been instructing for decades and I couldn't stand flying with them. I had an instructor that went to ATP (multiple actually) and they were a lot more enjoyable to fly with. One of the most knowledgeable instructors I ever flew with had 60,000 hours with about 40 or so were on floats. She definitely knew her way around an airplane.
You sure?
The world record is 64,000 hours so you would be flying with a real celebrity if that instructor had 60,000 hours.
Alabama man loves to fly and it shows - CNN
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Evelyn Bryan Johnson, 100 years old has the record for most hours for an female and oldest living pilot.
She has logged 57,635.4 hours. Her male counterpart is John Edward Long with more than 64,000 hours.
Evelyn Johnson - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ed_Long_(aviator)

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Old 04-30-2012, 04:51 PM   #25  
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You can have somebody that took 2 years to get all their certs that still doesn't know anything and somebody that might've took 90 days that is much more knowledgeable. You have to judge each individual well as an individual. I know me personally I strive to be the best so if I know I lack in a particular area I am going to study that much more harder and pick that many more brains. I have met guys that have been instructing for decades and I couldn't stand flying with them. I had an instructor that went to ATP (multiple actually) and they were a lot more enjoyable to fly with. One of the most knowledgeable instructors I ever flew with had 60,000 hours with about 40 or so were on floats. She definitely knew her way around an airplane.
I have yet to meet a pilot through an ATP-like program that was a very well rounded aviator. To their credit, they can produce a product over a remarkably short period of time. However personally find I find the quality of the product to be lacking.
Certainly there are the few 2 year duds out there who compare poorly to a few 90 day wonders. But that's kind of like comparing which of two turds more resembles a flower.
To strive for the best is a good trait, more pilots should strive for that. But remember, no matter what you strive for, you don't know what you don't know until you know it.

just my tarnished 2 pennies
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:51 AM   #26  
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I have yet to meet a pilot through an ATP-like program that was a very well rounded aviator. To their credit, they can produce a product over a remarkably short period of time. However personally find I find the quality of the product to be lacking.
Certainly there are the few 2 year duds out there who compare poorly to a few 90 day wonders. But that's kind of like comparing which of two turds more resembles a flower.
To strive for the best is a good trait, more pilots should strive for that. But remember, no matter what you strive for, you don't know what you don't know until you know it.

just my tarnished 2 pennies
Yes, judge me based off the program I attended, not my abilities or real world flying experience Sounds like a great plan... I kid, but seriously, don't be in a hurry to judge people based off where they went to school - everyone has their reasons for doing things the way they do, and we all met the same PTS standard on our checkride days. (Hopefully.) I have met smart/stupid Riddle pilots, UND pilots, ATP pilots, and those who came from small part 61/141 flight schools. I would be highly surprised if you could find an actual correlation (And still, that doesn't mean causation..) between quick school and flying ability.
Regarding do you retain the knowledge... Well. In my case I wasn't rushed through ATP as fast, 5 months to do their 3 month program due to some delays with instructors, and so the pace was frenetic at times but it helped me. Certainly in terms of learning physical skills, muscle memory, etc are all strengthened when you learn every day vs once a weekend. I initially got my private pilot the "once a week or every other weekend" method and the retention was far worse. Did I need to brush up on some instrument stuff before my CFI interview... Yup I was a little rusty on a few things. But I knew what I was weak on, and I studied it, and got the job. And teaching students you are constantly reviewing everything anyway.
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Old 05-01-2012, 05:46 AM   #27  
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and we all met the same PTS standard on our checkride days.
In my experience, no. I've met more than one DPE that doesn't really enforce the rules, and I've noticed this more with these types of schools. Your experience may be different, but something like the highly structured program of UND maintains the standards to a much higher extent. I know ATP is also "highly structured", but the goal is different, no matter how much one wants to think otherwise. Goal is "as fast as possible". 5 months is not quite "as fast as possible", so that does favor you a little better, but when I was CFIing I also noticed that putting people on 5-6 times a week and sometimes more than once a day doesn't usually benefit them, because there's little chance to "improve" and step back to make changes. Just weekend doesn't cut it either obviously. As much as people hate on UND for being "pilot puppy mills", I think they actually try to do the right thing and enforce standards and make a quality product that they are judged on. Doesn't mean huge parts of FAA training aren't "broke", but I think the "AsfastTrainingasPossible" type schools are far worse.
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Old 05-01-2012, 01:08 PM   #28  
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I can't confirm that's how many hours she has in her log book. I know she has been flying over a 100 hours a month mostly in floats for the past 30 or so years. I am not really sure if she even really keeps a log book anymore. Most of her time now is spent teaching floats and doing checkrides. I know she was telling me a bunch of crazy stories but it might've been 60,000 between her and her husband. Either way I know she has 20,000 or so on floats. She was very knowledgeable and I really did learn a lot for her.

As for the where you go to school piece. I judge the instructor based off the instructor. I hope that when I become an instructor I am judged off my abilities and not where I went to school. When I passed my first check ride the examine told me he was giving me a license to learn. I will never forget that and am always open to constructive criticism. Hopefully, when I land my job in the bush I can prove that not all pilots (especially bush) are not cocky and arrogant. I treat every flight the same way and am never in a rush. When I start reaching that point I know it's time to look in the mirror and evaluate what went wrong and why I was rushing. Normally one things snow balls into another. I would certainly be foolish to think that ten years from now I will know everything about aviation. I certainly love to read lots of books though.
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Old 05-01-2012, 06:39 PM   #29  
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Yes, judge me based off the program I attended, not my abilities or real world flying experience Sounds like a great plan... I kid, but seriously, don't be in a hurry to judge people based off where they went to school - everyone has their reasons for doing things the way they do, and we all met the same PTS standard on our checkride days. (Hopefully.) I have met smart/stupid Riddle pilots, UND pilots, ATP pilots, and those who came from small part 61/141 flight schools. I would be highly surprised if you could find an actual correlation (And still, that doesn't mean causation..) between quick school and flying ability.
Regarding do you retain the knowledge... Well. In my case I wasn't rushed through ATP as fast, 5 months to do their 3 month program due to some delays with instructors, and so the pace was frenetic at times but it helped me. Certainly in terms of learning physical skills, muscle memory, etc are all strengthened when you learn every day vs once a weekend. I initially got my private pilot the "once a week or every other weekend" method and the retention was far worse. Did I need to brush up on some instrument stuff before my CFI interview... Yup I was a little rusty on a few things. But I knew what I was weak on, and I studied it, and got the job. And teaching students you are constantly reviewing everything anyway.
Generalizations being what they are, I can and I will judge a pilot based on what I know about these schools from my experiences. This doesn't mean I'm always going to be right. These experiences are based on flying in an area inundated by puppy mills (I have instructed at a few as well). Many of my clients are former students of the various zero-to-hero courses who've later turned to me to retrain them properly in areas that were lacking.
In a perfect world everyone should at least be held to PTS, but in the real world that certainly doesn't ring true, and to believe that is somewhat naive. Here's something to ponder when choosing a flight school. Do you really want to train at a school that only trains to PTS? Far worse are the schools that only train you to pass a checkride with an in-house or pseudo in-house DPE.
These fast paced courses also rely heavily on rote learning as opposed to striving for the student to reach a level of correlation. This low level of learning will also to the lowest retention of knowledge. But that's not the flight schools problem once the school is finished with the student now is it?
I certainly agree with you that the once a week approach to flight training is not a good situation. However training every day, or several times a day can be just as detrimental to a student. If you think of the mind as a muscle, you realize that just as any muscle, it needs proper rest to for it to gain mass (knowledge in this case). In the fitness world this is a known biological fact. As you instruct, you'll be amazed sometimes at the result you can get when you insist a student take a few days off from training when they have reached a learning plateau. Many times that is far more effective approach than powering through with more training. Of course taking days off does not suit the pilot factory agenda. Just sayin'...
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Old 05-01-2012, 06:47 PM   #30  
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On a side note, the only person I ever had to fail on a simple rental check-out in our 172 was an ATP trained flight instructor.
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