Detailed Information On Initial Flight Training
Each type of license or endorsement has different requirements. Here is a basic outline of how we can walk you through the process of getting your Private Pilot license. Many people believe they have to go to a ground school or even a college with a flight program to get their license, but that is not so! As Certified Flight Instructors (CFI”s) we are authorized to give training for certificates, ratings and endorsements prior to a flight test given by a Designated Pilot Examiner (DPE),
as required by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). With dedication to studying in your own time, that”s all you need. If you have trouble finding time or quiet at home for studying, or if you struggle to learn through self-study, we do plan on starting some ground schools that will also be available to help you out.
We start with all the basic maneuvers: straight and level, climbs, turns, and descents. We then progress right into the maneuvers that you will be tested on in the check ride: steep turns, low flight, stalls, and so on. Once you have a good understanding on those maneuvers, we work on landings. Once you have the landings down (no pun intended!) you will then solo – fly the airplane by yourself! I typically like to have my students fly solo a couple flights after the first one to practice the maneuvers on their own to build confidence in flying by themselves. Next we will move into cross country flying starting with two instructional cross country flights and then two solo cross country flights. We will, at some point, do a night cross country flight (instructional only), and some instruction and solo flight at an airport with a control tower. Finally, we will spend time preparing for the check ride.
As far as tests go, there is a 50 question, written, multiple-choice test; this is what a ground school or self-study would prepare you to take. This test just needs to be completed before the check ride. I do recommend waiting until the end of your flight training to take it due to the nature of the training and being able to do some of the things on the test in the actual airplane. Real life experience will help you pass this test easier.
You are also required to obtain a basic medical exam and receive a medical certificate from an FAA approved clinic or doctor called an Aviation Medical Examiner (AME). We can discuss this requirement more and give recommendations for where to go. This needs to be done before you can fly solo.
The check ride (the final test with an examiner) will start with an oral test that takes approximately one hour, depending on how prepared you are. That is followed immediately by the flight test. Upon successful completion of the flight test you will be issued your private pilot certificate! Ultimately, your success and how long this process takes depends on your schedule, commitment and study habits. We will be there every step of the way to help you learn what you need to know and answer all your questions, too!
For further reading about general aviation, we recommend two of the best known organizations: