Computer-based simulation as an adjunct to Ab initio flight training

Kerry A. Dennis, Don Harris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Citations (Scopus)


Two groups of ab initio student pilots were given training on a flight simulation package running on a desk-top computer prior to performing some basic flight maneuvers in the air. One group interacted with the computer using a representative set of flight controls. The other group used only the computer's cursor and function keys. Both groups exhibited superior performance compared to a control group who had no computer-based training. Students with prior training who used representative flight controls also experienced lower in-flight workload. The results suggest that PC-based flight simulators do not aid in the psychomotor skills required to fly a light aircraft. Their benefits lie elsewhere. However, even very low levels of simulator fidelity can be beneficial in the initial stages of pilot training.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-276
Number of pages16
JournalThe International Journal of Aviation Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Applied Psychology


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