While instructing private pilot trainees, I’ve identified an opportunity to improve the airplane checklists by inserting additional checks and reminders that the pilot also needs to accomplish, besides the aircraft-specific procedures.  The additional reminders are focused around three areas:

  • Risk Management – Using the PAVE checklist for structure, the trainee can walk through the risk areas prior to each flight.  Prior to each departure and landing, the trainee will learn to brief the approach, developing the ability to identify and manage risks such as engine failures and crosswinds.
  • Communication – Radio announcements and communication are a frequent stumbling block for trainees.  By integrating reminders and specific phraseology for the training aircraft, the trainee can use the checklist as a quick reference, building confidence in their radio work, and reducing the distraction of lengthy pauses while transmitting.
  • Maneuvers – Learning the procedures for steep turns, slow flight, stalls can feel like you are really behind the airplane.  Having the specific instructions for your training airplane can build confidence.  While you wouldn’t want to be referring to this checklist in the air while performing the maneuver, referencing it prior to and after a training lesson will develop retention and confidence.

I’ve created aircraft-specific checklists for the three models I teach in the most.  I’m looking forward to testing these with clients over the next few weeks and evaluating their value..  I’ll post updates here, and would appreciate your feedback as well.

Cessna 172S Checklist

Cessna 172M Checklist

Diamond Eclipse Checklist


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