The EASA License (formally known as JAR Private Pilots Licence (PPL)) is valid throughout much of Europe and is recognised world wide.
It entitles the pilot to fly in reasonable weather during daylight. Further training is required to operate more complex types such as those with a retractable undercarriage or more than one engine. Additional qualifications are required to fly in poor weather conditions and at night.
The course for the EASA License includes a minimum of 45 hours flying (excluding the Skills Test) in a suitably equipped aircraft.
During the course you will fly for at least 45 hours excluding the skills test. The lessons follow a properly structured course and will usually cover a specific exercise as its core with revision of previous exercises as required.
Included in the 45 hours are a minimum of 10 hours solo flying for which you will be briefed to fly specific exercises by your instructor. Your solo flying will culminate in your “Solo Qualifying Cross Country” flight in which you will fly from Lee-on-Solent to Gloucester and Blackbushe, landing at both airfields, before returning to Lee-on-Solent.
Each lesson consists of four parts. The first part is known as the “Long Briefing” in an ideal situation this would be given to you in a classroom by a dedicated ground instructor, in reality this is not normally a financially viable proposition and students elect to cover it by private study. We have specific text books available to cover these briefings. It is important that you understand these long briefings before you come to fly, if you have any doubts about the exercise you must let us know so that we can help you before you come to fly.
Immediately before you fly you will be given a “Pre-flight Briefing” by your instructor which will be a brief recap of the long briefing but also relating to the type of aircraft that you are flying. It will also include brief details on the area in which you will be flying and the prevailing weather conditions. The pre-flight briefing lasts no longer than 15 minutes. This briefing must not be used as a substitute for the long briefing.
The “Air Exercise” is where you put the theory that you learned in the long brief and revised in the pre-light briefing into practice. Don’t be surprised if on an odd occasion when you get airborne you mind goes blank and you think that you’ve forgotten everything that you had learnt, it happens to all of us occasionally. Your instructor will guide you through the exercise and you will soon be flying the aircraft like a professional.
After your flight you will receive “de-brief” or “post flight discussion” from your instructor which will normally take no more than 5 minutes. He will discuss any salient points that have arisen from your flight and discuss any queries that you might have. You will be guided on what long briefing(s) to prepare and what ground school subjects you should be studying.
Most air exercises take about 45-50 minutes and with the relevant briefings will be accommodated in the 1½ hour slots. Towards the end of the course some of the cross country flights will require longer periods, we allow 4½ hours for the dual and solo qualifying cross country flights so that you will not be rushed.
The course culminates in the PPL “Skills Test” the aeronautical equivalent of your driving test. The test, usually conducted by one of our in house examiners usually takes between 2 and 2½ hours. You will be thoroughly briefed and prepared for this by your instructor.
During your course you will be required to pass the following exams, they are sat in house and are multi choice. Preparation is usually by private study under the guidance of your instructor. Specific text books and interactive CD’s are available for each subject.
Dedicated ground school courses are available either for groups of students or on a one to one basis. Your instructor will guide you through these but if you have any problems you should discuss them with the Chief Flying Instructor. The exams are spaced in a logical sequence through the course, every effort will be made to structure a course tailored to your individual needs.
On days when the weather is not fit to fly you are recommended to come in and spend some time with your instructor covering some of the grounds subjects.
Aviation Law and Operational Procedures. This covers some of the legal constitutions in a very basic manner, more importantly from a safety point of view it covers the rules of the air and can broadly be compared to the Highway Code. This exam must be passed before your first solo flight.
Communications. This covers the use of the aircraft radio and its associated phraseology. You will be flying from several airfields utilising different forms of Air Traffic Control sharing the local airspace with a variety of aircraft ranging from small other light aircraft through Search and Rescue Helicopters to large Airliners. Listening to the radio for the first time it may all sound like “gobbledygook” but with some patience and practice you will soon understand what other pilots and controllers are saying and be able to use the radio with comfort. This exam must also be passed before your first solo.
Meteorology. This covers the study of weather systems and their effects on flying including forecasts and actual weather conditions. You must pass this exam before your first solo cross country flight.
Navigation and Radio Aids. This covers the understanding of maps and how to use them to plan your flight finding your way from one airfield to another including the use of radio beacons. This exam must also be passed before your first solo cross country.
Flight Planning and Performance. This covers the loading of the aircraft to ensure that it is not overweight and that its load i.e. pilot, passengers, fuel and baggage are evenly balanced. It also covers ensuring that that the runways being used are long enough for take off and landing taking into account the prevailing conditions. This exam must be passed before your skills test.
Aircraft General and Principles of Flight. This covers some of the basic details of aircraft construction and the principles of the simple piston engine. Also covered are the basic principles of how an aircraft flies. This exam must be passed before your skills test.
Human Performance and Limitations. This covers some of the basic human physiology and its relationship with flying. This exam must also be passed before your skills test.
Time Limitations. After you have passed the first exam you must pass the rest within eighteen months, after that you have a further twenty four months in which to complete your flying training. This gives you a total time of 3½ years from sitting your first exam to completing the course. In the unlikely event of running out of time it is simply a matter re-sitting the earlier exams.
Radio Telephony Practical Exam
This is test which combined with the communications written exam leads to the issue of a licence permitting you to use the aircraft radio once your Private Pilots Licence has been issued. Practical training on the use of the aircraft radio is included with your normal flying training. Specific practical training will be given if required.
Some of the above subjects may appear to be some what formidable but, provided that a little effort is made, they are all well within the capabilities of the average person. If you do have any difficulties then let us know, our instructors are here to help you.
Syllabus & Exercise Numbers
The following is a guide to the order of the exercises and the flight times involved. It is based on ideal conditions. However it is a guide only, the times will vary with individual students and the order of some exercises may be changed to accommodate prevailing weather conditions and maintain continuity of your training.
- Exercise 1 - Aircraft Familiarisation
- Exercise 1e - Emergency Procedures
- Exercise 2 - Preparation for Flight and Action after Flight
- Exercise 3 - Air Experience
- Exercise 4 - Effects of Controls
- Exercise 5 - Taxiing
- Exercise 5e - Taxiing Emergencies
- Exercise 6 - Straight and Level
- Exercise 7 - Climbing
- Exercise 8 - Descending
- Exercise 9 - Turning
- Exercise 10a - Slow Flight
- Exercise 10b - Stalling and Spin Awareness
- Exercise 11a - Spin Avoidance
- Exercise 12 - Take-off and Climb to Downwind
- Exercise 12e - Take-off Emergencies
- Exercise 13 - Circuit Approach and Landing
- Exercise 14 - First Solo
- Exercise 15 - Advanced Turning
- Exercise 16 - Forced Landing Without Power
- Exercise 17 - Precautionary Landing
- Exercise 18a - Navigation
- Exercise 18b - Navigation at Minimum Level
- Exercise 18c - Radio Navigation
- Exercise 19 - Instrument Flying
Recommended Student Equipment List
- Pilots Flying Logbook
- AFE Manuals
- PPL1 - Flying Training
- PPL2 - Aviation Law, Operational Procedures and Communications
- PPL3 - Navigation and Meteorology
- PPL4 - Principles of Flight, Aircraft Knowledge Flight Planning and performance
- PPL5 - Human Factors
- Navigation Computer
- Chart Scale
- Map 1:500,000
- Marker Pen
- Navigation Plog
- Nav Bag (Optional)
- Headset (Optional)