Why has the training system been updated?
The need for an Integrated Training Project (ITP), as well as the need to address various related isses, have been identified during the 2015, 2017 and 2019 GFA member surveys, evidence that our training system hasn’t been updated for many years.
By Patrick Barfield
Chair of the GFA Operations Panel
Consequently, the updated ITP aims to modernise and standardise post-solo to GPC training by integrating instructing and coaching which also satisfies the S2F program goal to reduce membership churn by creating a more defined pathway for post-solo, cross-country training. Under the ITP, all students from their first flight to GPC will have performance standards for each of the 44 units of competency. This is important to ensure that all pre-solo training will establish a sound foundation for post-solo training up to the award of the GPC.
What was the process to update the ITP?
A combined team of volunteers from the Soaring Development and Operations Departments has been working on the Integrated Training Program over the past three years, each devoting hundreds of hours of their own time to draft, update, review and publish a suite of training materials. For their dedicated work, the GFA presented the Hoinville award to Patrick Barfield, Greg Beecroft, Terry Cubley, Matt Gage, Dennis Medlow, John Orton, Steve Pearson, Peter Temple, Jenny Thompson and John Welsh.
What’s changed with the ITP?
The ITP provides more information for Trainers and students in a more structured format to facilitate pre-flight preparation and briefing and improve training effectiveness and efficiency. Human Factors, Threat and Error Management topics, comprehensive post-solo and cross-country training material is now available and relates to modern high-performance gliders with electronic instrumentation.
The following document mapping shows the new training resources for Trainers and students that have replaced the previous documents.
What changes are there with the GPC logbook?
The new GPC logbooks have been printed and are being sent to all Students who purchased GFA logbooks in the last 6 months. Clubs and other pre-GPC pilots can order a GPC logbook from the GFA shop. Students can keep their original logbooks and either copy the information into the new GPC logbook or just follow on from their next flight. As a one-off exercise, Trainers will transcribe completed units of competency into the new GPC Logbook.
Glider Pilot Training Records will no longer be used as the content is included in the GPC Logbook. Clubs with stocks of unused GPTR will receive free replacement GPC logbooks.
The logbook contains pre and post-solo syllabus progression flowcharts showing the sequence of training with pre-requisite and complementary units. PowerPoint theory lessons have been produced for Trainers to deliver to students on a one-on-one or group basis. In a future ITP update, instructor-delivered theory lessons will be replaced by self-paced training which will allow students to learn, and be assessed on, the prerequisite knowledge in their own time.
On every day a student flies, the GPC Training Card will record their progress through each element of competency. When all elements under a unit have been completed, the student will be signed off as competent in that unit. The Training Card will give Trainers and students a clearer understanding of their progress towards first solo and GPC achievement than in the current training system.
The GPC logbook retains the same format for recording flights and comments. If the Trainer has specific comments in relation to units, there is a new comments section where Trainers can record specific comments in relation to Units of Competency which may be useful for students and their next Trainers.
How will we transition to the ITP?
When the ITP is launched in December 2021, all the necessary training materials will be easily accessed in a single training page of the Gliding Australia website rather than having to search for information in multiple locations.
All clubs are expected to transition to the ITP over the next 12 months. All Trainers will receive gap training in how to use the new training materials and what instructional sequences have been standardised.
When the ITP is in use for training pilots up to GPC, the operations and soaring development departments will work on train the trainer competencies and syllabuses for instructors and coaches. Following this work, on advanced flying training syllabuses for aerobatics, wave flying, ridge soaring, self-launching sailplane endorsements and cross-country/touring endorsements.