Establishment of Airman Certification System Working Group

The following excerpt is taken from a January 29, 2014 posting in the Federal Register. If you have an interest in the Airman Certification Training and Testing process and wish to get involved in making this process more effective, then this may be for you.

“The FAA assigned the Airman Testing Standards and Training Working Group (ATSTWG) a new task arising from recommendations of the Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee (ARAC).

The ATSTWG recommended ways to ensure that the FAA’s airman testing and training materials better support reduction of fatal general aviation accidents. The FAA and the Aviation Industry jointly seek to improve airman training and testing by establishing an integrated, holistic airman certification system that clearly aligns testing with certification standards, guidance, and reference materials, and maintains that alignment. The new task is to establish an Airman Certification System Working Group (ACSWG) that will provide expert assistance and industry views to the FAA’s Flight Standards Service (AFS) on the development, modification, and continued alignment of the major components of the airman certification system. The ACSWG will be comprised of aviation professionals with experience and expertise in airman training and testing, and technical experts having an interest in the assigned new task. The FAA would like a wide range of members, to include individuals with experience in the part 61, part 121, part 135, part 141, and part 142 communities, to ensure that all appropriate aspects of airman testing and training, including best practices, are considered in the development of its report.

If you wish to become a member of the ACSWG, please write Van L. Kerns, Manager, Regulatory Support Division, FAA Flight Standards Service, AFS 600, FAA Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center, P.O. Box 25082, Oklahoma City, OK 73125; telephone (405) 954–4431, email van.l.kerns@faa.gov expressing such desire. Describe your interest in the new task and state the expertise you would bring to the ACSWG. All requests must be received by February 28, 2014.

The ARAC and the FAA will review the requests and advise you whether your request is approved. If you are chosen for membership on the ACSWG, you must actively participate by attending all meetings and providing written comments when requested to do so. You must devote the resources necessary to support the ACSWG in meeting any assigned deadlines. You must keep your management chain, and those you may represent, advised of the ACSWG’s activities and decisions to ensure the proposed technical solutions do not conflict with your sponsoring organization’s position, when the subject is presented to ARAC for approval. Once the ACSWG has begun deliberations, members will not be added or substituted without the approval of the FAA and the ACSWG Chair.”

The collaboration of FAA and industry to improve the airman training and testing process is significant. It will allow training experts, in the various parts of the aviation industry, to consolidate “best practices” that will make the airman certification process seamless. Their work will make an applicant’s preparation for a certificate or rating congruent. In the future, when an applicant prepares for the knowledge test, he or she will also be preparing for the practical test as well; all parts of the process will be related.

Volunteering for this effort should not be taken lightly. It will require a great deal of work, but the end product will make the sacrifice worth the time and energy expended. This effort will have an impact on the aviation training process, which will impact the safety culture of the industry. If you have the skills required for this endeavor, don’t waste time volunteering. Thank you for your involvement.

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