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CFI ratings at ATP

johnpeace

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I'm going strong on commercial multi/single right now and expect to be done by Christmas. My goal is to be teaching as soon as possible at the small, pt61 school I am training at. I already work there as a dispatcher/scheduler/office staff.

They've never really trained a CFI. All the instructors are fairly inexperienced. It looks to me like my CFI ratings will take forever if I try to do them there. Work, homelife (wife & 2 yr old) are other distractions from study too.

I've talked to the folks at ATP or ALL ATPs or whatever it's called. They're pretty confident that if I come do the work and have the prerequisites out of the way, they can finish me up in 2 weeks. 2 hard, intense, eat/sleep/breathe training weeks...but 2 weeks nonetheless.

That sounds wonderful. Are there disadvantages? Is ATP looked down on from within the industry? Any truth to the term 'rating mill' I have heard tossed around?
 

chignutsak

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They will pass on the knowledge you need to get through your checkride. That's about all you can reasonably expect in two weeks. Anything else learned is up to you:) That's no knock on their instructors. They do what they say they will do, in an efficient manner. However, there's really no substitute to doing it gradually, under the wing of a highly experienced and tough CFI. Good luck in whatever you do.
 
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johnpeace

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However, there's really no substitute to doing it gradually, under the wing of a highly experienced and tough CFI.

OK, I kind of feel like I've spent the last year doing this. All throughout each phase of my training, I have been thinking of it as, 'how would I do this differently if I were the instructor, rather than the student'.

I have a hard time even seeing ATP as 'hurrying through' given the amount of time I have spent training to get to this point: all the hours of helping people with oral prep, sitting around the school arguing about FARs, participating in discussions here, etc.

I guess I haven't seen a plan for progression from COMM to CFI at my school...so it's sort of an unknown. Where, at ATP, I know that I'll train intensely and in a very focussed way toward the CFI checkrides. That seems like an advantage to me.
 

chignutsak

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I meant that it may be better for you to learn under the wing of a DIFFERENT highly experienced and tough CFI. Find someone who has a rep for teaching CFI's.
 

NYCPilot

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It doesn't really matter where you go to get the CFI. As long as YOU know the material, you will be fine. A lot of these places get you the rating in the time alloted, but may not cover everything. The examiners may be more lenient too. If you want to feel like you earned it, maybe do it with an FAA examiner. Some flight schools will only hire you if you've done at least one instructor rating this way.

My opinion is that you don't necessarily need to do it through an FAA guy to be a good instructor. You'll learn to fly and be more confident with your knowledge AFTER you start instructing. Don't expect to be a great CFI at your checkride.

You should set aside to study as much as you can. I spent a good 2 months preparing for my CFI certificates before enrolling in a program. The more prepared you are, the eaasier things will be. Flying is the easy part, it's being able to have a working knowledge of the book material that can be challenging. Also, don't expect to know it all, or be able to recall everything. As long as you know where to find the information, that should be fine.

What I did before attending was create notes from all of the FAA publications.

Pilots Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge
Pilots Flying Handbook
Instrument Flyuing Handbook
Fundementals of Instruction
FAR/AIM

Go through all of these and make notes that you can print out and place into a 3-ring binder.

You'll also want to make lesson plans for each required maneuver for the Private, Commerical and Instrument.

I GUARANTEE that after you've done all this, your book knowlege will be tight. The CFI certificate may be more on book knowledge than the maneuvers themselves. They usually don't expect you to be perfect, and any deviation from tolerances can be explained as a common error and why it happened and what you could do to prevent it. They want to see that you can teach.

You may also want to begin flying from the right seat. Get used to performing maneuvers from this side. Talk through every maneuver too. It also helps to learn the maneuver by verbalizing everything.


It's still possible to do it locally if its more convenient. You could do things with a CFI who has less than 2 yrs. / 200 given and get signed off by one who does. If you work on the book knowledge on your own and even fly on your own from the right seat, you could pretty much do all the training yourself, and just finish up with an instructor.
 

nosehair

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chignutsak said:
I meant that it may be better for you to learn under the wing of a DIFFERENT highly experienced and tough CFI. Find someone who has a rep for teaching CFI's.
Yeah, this is best when it is possible, but it also sounds like you are/have been preparing yourself, which is what we must sometimes do, and sometimes a "mill" is the only way a person can go. The "mill" is not so bad if you know it is a mill, and you are just getting a "license to learn" and keep that mindset when you start teaching.
 

BLing

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Study your a$$ off before you go and expect to be studying and flying from about 7am till about 11pm while there. Thats what I did and got all mine done. Its really a good deal and you will learn a lot regadless of what people say. Look into Sheble Aviation as well! PM me with any questions.
 

Tram

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BLing went through the program a few months ago, so he can tell you all about it.. :)
 

jaxpilot

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I went through the 2 week program earlier this year. I think its more the individual person than the program they went through. As long as you have the knowledge (that you shouldve learned thru your previous training) its more a matter of learning how to teach and then just doing the maneuvers from right seat. I would do it again.
 

moxiepilot

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well, you basically asked what the disadvantages are and if it is a rating mill. i'd have to agree with others that they do what they do effectively. let me put it in the context of a wine though. their product is like aging a wine for two weeks. some things take time man. at this point of the game i feel out of respect for your future students to know the materail rather than hurry up and get a rating. You're in a new ballgame now
 

pilotkppsg

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I'd do it

chignutsak said:
However, there's really no substitute to doing it gradually, under the wing of a highly experienced and tough CFI. Good luck in whatever you do.

I don't entirely agree w/ that. While they will push you throught the ratings quickly to get you out on time and on budget, it will get you done. I did the CFI program there 2 years ago, after doing there program I taught at both a mom and pop part 61 school and a big 141 program (never worked for ATPs or any school remotely similar to them). As of when I was hired by both Express Jet and ASA (Oct 13th), I had signed off 39 students, ranging from privates, instruments, comms., multis, 3 CFIs and a few CFIIs/MEIs and I've only had one failure; ONE out of 39 with more than 10 different FAA pilot examiners (one of my initial CFI guy busted on steep turns). So I think I did purdy well as an ATP-trained CFI. I always hated it when people said that "I bought my ratings," I eventually just quit arguing and let my numbers speak for themselves. So do the program, come ready to rock and roll and be ready to teach the material to your students before you set foot on ATPs property, because they will run you through the ratings quickly
 
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check6

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I'm currently an active CFII with no opportunities for Multi-time at my flightschool so I'm considering the 15 hour MEI course at ATP. I had a friend who went through it and said you work hard, but you finish it up quick. ATP has some sort of rep I'm sure, but I actually had an instructor who went to the school, and was one of the best instructors I had for my training.
 

BLing

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check6 said:
I'm currently an active CFII with no opportunities for Multi-time at my flightschool so I'm considering the 15 hour MEI course at ATP. I had a friend who went through it and said you work hard, but you finish it up quick. ATP has some sort of rep I'm sure, but I actually had an instructor who went to the school, and was one of the best instructors I had for my training.

Just go to ATP or Sheble to get it done. Its all what you are willing to put into getting done. If you have good study habits, you will succeed
 

MTpilot

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Just do it!

If the place you are working for now doesn't have a problem with you going to ATP for your CFI, and will hire you when you get back, then just go for it, you can learn to be a good CFI in the airplane, just like everybody else.

Just remember all your students are trying to kill you, and you'll be fine.
 

Goose Egg

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johnpeace said:
They've never really trained a CFI. All the instructors are fairly inexperienced.

Red flag! Red flag! From what it sounds like, ATP or Shelbe or the like is your best bet, and I say that as a guy who did all his training part 61. I did my CFII at a place that really had no experience in doing that kind of training, and I really struggled through it. Find somewhere that has a lot of experience training CFIs. Do the accelerated training if you must.

Is there anyone even legal to do your initial CFI at your FBO?

-Goose
 
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