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
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 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.
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.
and Qualification Module: Qualification curriculum segments containing the
competency check and operational familiarization modules referred to as
subjects in Part 121.
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
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.
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
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/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
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
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
· 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
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
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
5) Part E is an example of a specific
Figure 3-106, Schematic Depiction of Aircraft Dispatch
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:
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:
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.
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
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
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.
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
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.
3-1611 through 3-1625.