Pacific Skies Aviation Training Methods
Private Pilot SyllabusFAA-approved, the Private Pilot Syllabus is the product of over 20 years of teaching and aviation experience, providing the foundation and practical instruction to our students.
The syllabus is in four stages, each with a stage check performed by a senior instructor. Stage One covers all the private pilot fundamentals. Stage Two addresses requirements such as cross country, night and flight by reference to instruments. In a revolutionary departure from traditional flight school training, Stage Three is when PSA students first solo. Pacific Skies believes that students are more prepared, confident and better able to act as "pilot in command" at this stage of their pilot development. During this stage, students also accomplish their solo cross country and in Stage Four, begin check ride preparation and earning a Private PIlot's Licence.
Regular stage checks are also a part of the PSA philosophy. A senior instructor is able to a provide independent evaluation and feedback of the student's performance, as well as helping the instructor continue to maintain standardization of instruction.
Each lesson is clearly laid out with objectives, preflight discussion topics and the tasks to be accomplished during the lesson. At times, not all the items in a lesson will be covered in the given time. Students keep a copy of their syllabus, either a hard or PDF copy, for the instructor to annotate. Thus everything is kept track of and can be covered at a later time. Homework and feedback can also be written down, as each lesson provides room for such. Competition standards allow clear assessment where everyone knows what is expected.
In addition, the syllabus contains guides which have also been made in-house. While not yet a full textbook, the guides provide practical and detailed explanations of local and PSA specific topics of the private pilot syllabus.
At the back of the syllabus document, is the Oral Exam Guide. Developed from many check rides over the years, it has proved to be a vital source of student material for our private pilot students.
PSA's Instrument syllabus follows the same format as the Private. From detailed lessons, guides to a comprehensive oral exam guide, it provides a solid foundation to instrument training. The syllabus is designed to utilize the AATD CRX MAX flight simulator, placing students in it for the first 15 or so hours. After that the student transitions to the aircraft and runs through the lessons again, most of the time at an accelerated rate, learning how to incorporate ATC and really world situations into their training. The other five hours are reserved for re-training or practice as the need arises. Usually about Holds and DME Arcs or anywhere the CFII notices extra time needs to be spent practicing a particular skill. This flexibility save the student time and money - fully utilizing the 20 hours of SIM time and also being the BEST place to practice basic skills.
Commercial Syllabus and Cessna 182 Transition Syllabus
The Commercial syllabus takes off where the Instrument leaves off. Again, following the same format with detailed lessons and guides which breakdown the complex systems of the Cessna TR182.
For those students wishing to not get their commercial certificate, there is an adjusted syllabus which culminates in a CE-182 checkout.
New to PSA this summer is the Multi-Engine syllabus. Following the same format as the rest of the PSA syllabus, it is comprised of detailed lessons, guides and a comprehensive oral exam guide for operating in a multi-engine environment.