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Section 1 Aircraft Dispatcher Training Curricula

3-1606. GENERAL. This chapter contains aircraft dispatcher training and qualification requirements and information, direction, and guidance for Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) personnel responsible for the evaluation and approval of aircraft dispatcher training curriculums. Each flag or domestic operator must qualify and use certified aircraft dispatchers to exercise operational control over its flights. Each flag or domestic operator must also obtain FAA approval of aircraft dispatcher training curriculums. Furthermore, each operator must ensure that its training program is complete, current, and in compliance with the regulations. This section contains definitions relevant to aircraft dispatcher training, a schematic depiction of aircraft dispatcher training programs, and guidance for inspectors concerning the training requirements and curriculum development for the five categories of training applicable to aircraft dispatchers. Unless otherwise specified in this chapter, the term “operator” applies equally to an applicant for a certificate and to an existing certificate holder.

3-1607. DEFINITIONS. The terms used in this chapter concerning training programs are consistent with their use in Chapter 19 of this volume, “Training Programs and Airman Qualifications.” The definitions of these terms are tailored specifically to aircraft dispatchers as follows:

· Training Program: A system of instruction which includes curriculums, facilities, instructors, supervisors, courseware, instructional delivery methods, and testing and checking procedures. A training program must satisfy Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 121 training program requirements and ensure that each aircraft dispatcher remains adequately trained and current for each aircraft and kind of operation which the operator conducts.

· Categories of Training: A classification of training based on who will receive the training and on the purpose of the training. There are five categories of training that apply to aircraft dispatchers: initial new-hire 14 CFR part 121, sections (§§) 121.451 and 121.422), initial equipment (§ 121.422), transition (§ 121.422), recurrent (§ 121.427), and requalification (§§ 121.422 and 121.427). Each category of training consists of one or more curriculums.

· Curriculum: A complete training agenda for one or more aircraft types; for example, a B-727 transition curriculum. Each curriculum consists of several curriculum segments.

· Curriculum Segment: An integral phase of training which can be separately evaluated and individually approved, but does not by itself qualify a person in the aircraft dispatcher duty position. The three curriculum segments relevant to aircraft dispatcher training are : basic indoctrination, ground training, and qualification. Each curriculum segment consists of one or more training modules.

· Training Module: A self-contained unit of instruction within a curriculum segment which contains descriptive information, elements, or events which relate to a specific subject. For example, an initial new-hire ground training curriculum segment must contain a training module (composed of “elements”) pertaining to meteorology. As another example, a basic indoctrination curriculum segment must include a module pertaining to appropriate provisions of the 14 CFRs . A training module includes an outline, appropriate courseware, and instructional delivery methods.

· Checking and Qualification Module: Qualification curriculum segments containing the competency check and operational familiarization modules referred to as subjects in Part 121.

· Element: The rudiment of the subject matter in a training, checking, or qualification module that is subject-oriented. For example, a module of a basic indoctrination curriculum segment may include such elements as aircraft nomenclature and organization of the operator’s general operations manual (GOM).

· Event: The rudiment of the subject matter in a training, checking, or qualification module that is task-oriented. An event encompasses the use of a specific procedure or procedures. During a training event, a student has the opportunity for instruction, demonstration, and/or practice using specific procedures. During a checking or qualification event, the evaluator has the opportunity to determine a student’s ability to correctly accomplish a specific task without instruction or supervision.

· Courseware: Instructional material developed for each curriculum. This is information in lesson plans, instructor guides, computer software programs, audiovisual programs, workbooks, aircraft dispatcher manuals, and handouts. Courseware must accurately reflect curriculum requirements, be effectively organized, and properly integrate with instructional delivery methods.

· Instructional Delivery Methods: Methodology for conveying information to a student. For example, this may include lectures, demonstrations, simulations, audiovisual presentations, programmed instruction, workshops, and drills. Training devices, aircraft, and computer work stations are also considered to be instructional delivery methods.

· Testing and Checking: Methods for evaluating applicants as they demonstrate a required level of knowledge in a subject, and as they apply (if appropriate) the knowledge and skills learned in instructional situations to practical situations.

· Training Hours: The total amount of time necessary to complete the training required by a curriculum segment. Training hours must provide opportunity for instruction, demonstration, practice, and testing, as appropriate. This time must be specified as a specific number of hours on the curriculum segment outline.

· Programmed Hours: The hours specified in Part 121 for initial new-hire, initial equipment, and recurrent categories of training. Programmed hours are specified in curriculum segment outlines in terms of training hours.

· Training/Checking Month: The base calendar month during which an aircraft dispatcher is due to receive required recurrent training or a competency check. “Calendar” month means the first day through the last day of a particular month.

· Eligibility Period: Three calendar months: the calendar month before the “training/checking month,” the “training/checking month,” and the calendar month after the “training/checking month.” Training or checking completed during the eligibility period is considered to be completed during the “training/checking month.”

NOTE: If the training or checking occurs during the eligibility period, the “training/checking month” remains the same. A request to change the “training/checking month” to balance the training workload, must be coordinated with the principal operations inspector (POI) and annotated in the individual airman’s training record. This change must occur before the eligibility period.

· Initial Approval: The conditional authorization of an operator to begin instruct ion to qualify personnel under a specific curriculum or curriculum segment pending an evaluation of training effectiveness. This authorization is given in the form of an initial approval letter and must contain a specific expiration date for the conditional authorization.

· Final Approval: The authorization of an operator to continue training in accordance with a specific curriculum or curriculum segment (see Volume 3, Chapter 32, section 2, paragraph 3-3156).

3-1608. TRAINING PROGRAMS: A SCHEMATIC DEPICTION. Some elements of a training program are depicted in figure 3-106 to show the relationship between the total training program and the categories of training, curriculums, curriculum segments, and training modules.

A. Modular Approach. The illustration in figure 3-106 is representative only and is intended to present a framework for the modular development of a training program. By using this “modular approach,” the POI has various strategies available for the evaluation of training effectiveness and for the planning of long-term surveillance. These strategies are discussed in other sections of this chapter.

B. Figure 3-106 This depiction is divided into five parts as follows:

1) Part A depicts representative components which, when combined, constitute an operator’s overall training program. These components differ in that some must be specifically approved by the FAA (for example, curriculums), while others are accepted as essential supporting parts (such as facilities and equipment).
2) Part B illustrates the five categories of training that are recognized by the FAA for aircraft dispatchers.
3) Part C is an example of a curriculum for the aircraft dispatcher duty position. This example depicts an aircraft dispatcher initial new-hire training curriculum.
4) Part D is an example of a specific curriculum segment, which illustrates that it consists of several training modules. This example is the aircraft dispatcher basic indoctrination training curriculum segment.
5) Part E is an example of a specific training module.

Figure 3-106, Schematic Depiction of Aircraft Dispatch Training Programs

3-1609. CATEGORIES OF TRAINING. There are six categories of training, of which five are applicable to certified aircraft dispatchers: initial new-hire, initial equipment, transition, recurrent, and requalification . The factors which determine the appropriate category of training are the student’s previous experience with the operator and the student’s current qualification status in relation to the specific airplane. Operators may develop and have approved several different curriculums for a specific aircraft in each category of training. While the regulatory requirements for course content may be identical for two different categories of training, the emphasis and depth of training required in each curriculum varies. When discussing training requirements, FAA inspectors should be specific regarding the category of training discussed and should use the nomenclature described in this handbook. Since use of this common nomenclature improves standardization and mutual understanding, POIs should encourage operators to use this nomenclature when developing new training curriculums or revising existing training curriculums. The five categories of training applicable to aircraft dispatchers are briefly discussed in the following subparagraphs:

A. Initial New-Hire Training. Operators must use the initial new-hire category of training to qualify personnel who have not had previous dispatcher experience with the operator. Initial new-hire training applies to certified dispatchers who have never worked for the operator and to personnel employed by the operator in a position other than aircraft dispatcher. This category includes initial new-hire basic indoctrination training, training in basic aircraft dispatcher duties, and training specific to one or more aircraft types. Since initial new-hire training is usually the employee’s first exposure to specific company methods, policies, and procedures, it must be the most comprehensive of the five categories of training. Operators may organize initial new-hire training in a number of ways. Two common and acceptable methods follow:

1) Operators may limit initial new-hire training to one specific aircraft type. After the new-hire aircraft dispatcher is qualified, the operator may then conduct transition training to qualify the aircraft dispatcher in other aircraft.
2) Operators may design initial new-hire aircraft dispatcher training curriculums that qualify the new-hire aircraft dispatcher to dispatch all aircraft in the operator’s fleet. An initial new-hire curriculum designed in this manner should contain both general and aircraft-specific training. For example, an initial new-hire aircraft dispatcher curriculum for B-727 and DC-9 aircraft could contain a general module on hydraulic systems, a module on the specifics of B-727 hydraulic systems, and another module on the specifics of DC-9 hydraulic systems.

B. Initial Equipment Training. Operators must use the initial equipment category of training to qualify an aircraft dispatcher who has previously trained and qualified as an aircraft dispatcher on one group of aircraft and is now qualifying on an aircraft in another group. The areas of emphasis in initial equipment training are the following:

· The general characteristics of the aircraft group

· The unique features of the specific aircraft

· The unique dispatcher duties related to the aircraft group and specific aircraft type

C. Transition Training. Operators must use the transition category of training for an aircraft dispatcher who has previously trained and qualified as an aircraft dispatcher on an aircraft type and is now qualifying on another aircraft type of the same group. The two areas of emphasis in transition training are the following:

· The unique features of the specific aircraft

· The specific dispatcher duties for that aircraft

D. Recurrent Training. Operators must use the recurrent category of training for an aircraft dispatcher who has been trained and qualified by the operator, and who must receive recurrent training and a competency check within the appropriate eligibility period to maintain currency. The area of emphasis in recurrent training is on aircraft dispatcher duties.

E. Requalification Training. Operators must use the requalification category of training to requalify an aircraft dispatcher who has been trained and qualified by the operator, but who has become unqualified due to not having satisfactorily completed recurrent training, a competency check, or operational familiarization within the appropriate eligibility period. Part 121 does not specifically address requalification training for dispatchers.

F. Summary of Categories of Training. The categories of training are summarized in general terms as follows:

1) All personnel qualifying as aircraft dispatchers who have not been previously employed by the operator as a dispatcher must complete initial new-hire training.
2) All currently qualified dispatchers who are being assigned by the operator to a different aircraft group for the first time must complete initial equipment training.
3) All currently qualified dispatchers who are being assigned by the operator to any different type aircraft within the same group on which they have not been previously qualified must complete transition training.
4) All aircraft dispatchers must complete recurrent training within the appropriate eligibility period.
5) All aircraft dispatchers who have become unqualified must complete requalification training to re-establish qualification.

3-1610. CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT. The operator is required to develop, obtain approval for, and maintain only those curriculums that will be used. For example, operators who operate only one group of airplanes are not required to develop initial equipment curriculums. Operators who train new-hire dispatchers on all aircraft they operate during initial new-hire training are not required to have a transition training curriculum. Such an operator would only need a transition curriculum if a new type of aircraft were added to the fleet.

A. Aircraft Dispatcher Qualification. Each person that is required to train under a specific curriculum must complete that curriculum in its entirety. When a person has completed the training and checking specified in a curriculum, that person is qualified to dispatch those aircraft types specified in the curriculum in Part 121 revenue service.

B. Multiple Curriculums. Operators may develop more than one curriculum for each applicable category of training. Each curriculum may be tailored to a specific group of students. An initial new-hire curriculum developed for students with little or no previous airline experience must be more extensive than a curriculum for students with previous airline experience. For example, an abbreviated curriculum for initial new-hire training may be used in merger or air carrier acquisition situations. In such cases, 14 CFR 121.405 allows for a reduction in program hours.

RESERVED. Paragraphs 3-1611 through 3-1625.