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Hi all and welcome back to my second blog as I continue my training journey with AFTA. At the end of my last update in October I had just finished my PPL exams and was preparing to enter ATPLs; I was not mistaken when I thought it would be a steep learning curve!

The ATPLs are split into three different rounds/ modules, with each module consisting of different subjects and at the end of the three rounds you will have covered all of the required 13 subjects.

Each module consists of around 5 full weeks of direct classroom time, a week to cover the in-house consolidation exams, a study week to prepare for the IAA exams and then the IAA exams themselves. Much like the PPL exams, you are required to pass the in-house consolidation exams before progressing onto the IAA exams; these make sure that you are suitably ready and prepared for the real thing, especially important given that you are limit on how many times you can sit a subject and are limited to the total number of sittings you can take overall, so its better to be well prepared!

This module consisted of 4 subjects; Air Law, Operational Procedures, Aircraft General Knowledge and Instruments. There is a fairly significant jump up from PPL knowledge with a huge increase in the volume of information required covered in a very short space of time, but with focus and the right aptitude and attitude, it can be as little as a 6-month period to push through. The normal day starts at 0900 and finishes in the late afternoon, with a number of students remaining in the academy after this to self-study. Every student in ATPLs will tell you that the majority of your free time over the evenings and weekends need to be spent studying to get over the academic mountain!

Just before the IAA exams we had the chance to visit the AFTA 737 simulator at the Little Island training facility, this provided a great opportunity to see a lot of the systems in practise having a look at everything from the stall warning systems to how an auto-land would be seen from the cockpit.

For me, I have just completed the 4 IAA exams for this module and now eagerly await the results. The Christmas and new year holidays have giving me a chance to get back home to take a small break and to start preparing for the next module. I hope you all had a good holiday break and I look forward to catching up with you all later in 2023!