Flight Instructor Training: How to Become a Flight Instructor

If you take flight instructor training, your focus will be to teach students about flying airplanes. As a flight instructor, you would instruct students on airplane instruments, private piloting, navigation and airplane rules and laws. You would perform flight checks as per the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations. An option of teaching either single or multi- engine lessons would be available, depending on the type and degree of your training.

Educational and Training Requirements

  • Complete training as a private pilot and then obtain a license.
  • You must be 17 years or more to obtain the license. You would acquire the license after clearing the FAA check ride.
  • Clear your medical and knowledge examinations.
  • Appear for orals and practical flight exams and demonstrate the skills you have acquired during the ground course.
  • Under the visual flight rules (VFR), you have to display your solo flight and cross-country flying capabilities.
  • Obtain a rating for your instrument. For this, you have to fly using the instrument flight rules (IFR). Get acquainted with flying in less favorable weather conditions like rains and fog.
  • Obtain a license as a commercial pilot.
  • Clear the second-class medical examination.
  • At 18 or more years of age, gain a total flight time of 250 hours.
  • Pass the practical flight, oral and knowledge exams.
  • Teach students the fundamentals of piloting.
  • Enroll for a certified flight instructor (CFI) course. This course covers flight techniques, error corrections and promoting student’s learning. Teaching responsibilities and flight safety are also a part of the curriculum.
  • According to FAA regulations, maintain your medical status and performance level.

Future Facts and Prospects

  • Taking courses that provide additional qualifications leads to advancement in this profession. You have the option of undertaking these additional courses while teaching these same basic courses.
  • There are opportunities to become a chief instructor or director at a flight training school.
  • You may also become an FAA flight examiner. This would enable you to assess and license students.
  • With adequate experience, you may switch to corporate airlines.
  • The need for flight instructors is bound to increase with anticipated growth in cargo and no-frills airlines.

For more insight on job opportunities as a flight instructor, visit http://www.aviationemployment.com.

Tips for Becoming a Good Flight Instructor

  • Irrespective of the circumstance, always be composed and maintain emotional control.
  • Be organized and well prepared for daily lessons.
  • Respond to students' queries with authority and, when not sure, investigate the correct answer.
  • Provide accurate pre- and post-flight briefings in each lesson.
  • Encourage and track your students’ progress.
  • Efficiently manage the training sessions and analyze trouble spots when flight lessons are canceled.

As a flight instructor, you are expected to mould students into knowledgeable and safe pilots.