Scenario Based Training
Scenario based training enhances flight training by focusing on both the decision making skills (good judgment) and the mechanical skills (moving the stick and rudder) needed to fly the glider. By using scenarios, students learn more and retain more.
To generate a scenario use these simple guidelines
- Generate 2 to 3 sentences that set the stage
- Make the scenario plausible
- Create a single event or task per scenario
- Use pictures or videos as available to augment the scenario
Then list a set of discussion points to focus the discussion and ensure that no major topics are forgotten
- What factors influence the pilots decision?
- What options does the pilot have in dealing with this situation?
- How should the pilot prioritize those options?
Using these guidelines you can create scenarios to suit your needs. Example scenarios are:
- You are flying a club glider and you have just been reminded that you have 3 minutes left before your hour is up. Descending through 1300 ft AGL you hear these radio calls:
- Glider club traffic, one-India 2 minutes finishing from the NE, glider club
- Glider club traffic, niner-Xray 2 minutes finishing from the N, glider club
- Glider club traffic, golf-one 2 minutes finishing from the N, niner-xray in sight, glider club
- What should you do now?
- How long and/or wide is the runway?
- What other landing options are there?
- If you open the spoilers, can you land safely before those other gliders get here?
- Have you practiced a full spoiler landing?
- If you just flew through a thermal, can you 'wait them out'?
- How is your club/FBO going to respond if you are late getting back?
You are the wing runner and the glider is hooked up with the slack removed and you are leveling the wings when the launch is delayed due to a runway incursion. The glider pilot opens and later closes the canopy during this delay.
- What action(s) should you take before giving the takeoff signal?
- What action(s) do you expect the glider pilot to take?
- How are the wing runner and glider pilot communicating?
- How can the wing runner confirm the canopy is closed and locked?
- How does the wing runner confirm other traffic have not become a hazard?
- How does the wing runner confirm the runway is now clear for this launch?
You are giving rides to a group of friends. As you are getting settled in for the 4th launch, the wing runner says "another glider is on downwind". You decide to expedite this launch so the runway will be clear for the other glider.
- During the ground roll you realize that your shoulder straps are not fastened!
- What action(s) do you take?
- What other checklist items did you miss?
- Is your lap belt secured?
- Is there room to abort now?
- Have you practiced that abort before?
- Where will that other landing glider go?
- Where will the tow-plane go?
- What will your friend say?
You and your instructor decide to practice a simulated emergency where you loose sight of the tow-plane during the tow. At an appropriate altitude you will tell your instructor "I am beginning the simulation". Once your instructor agrees, you will pull the release and execute your pre-planned maneuver.
- You must pre-determine how you would respond at several different altitudes.
- You must brief the tow-pilot on this maneuver before the launch starts.
- What is the runway length and/or width?
- What is the wind and weather like?
- What traffic considerations come into play?
- What are some possible actions at various points (ground roll, 10 ft, 50 ft, 150 ft, 300 ft, 600 ft, ...)
- Where will the glider go?
- Where will the tow-plane go?
- How did things work out?
- What did not work as planned?
Visual Scanning Scenario
You are flying locally and have been up for about 30 minutes. About 4 miles north of the glider club is a VOR, and about 5 miles east of the VOR is a GA airport with a busy flight school that specializes in instrument training. Discuss the precautions you would take when flying east of this VOR.
- What are the atmospheric conditions?
- What physical obstacles (canopy rails, instruments, passengers, ...) must you work around?
- Where is traffic likely to come from, and at what altitudes?
- What electronic aids can you use to increase your Situational Awareness?
- What actions would you expect from the airplanes belonging to that flight school?
Low Altitude Thermaling Scenario
You and your instructor are going to practice inadvertent stalls from a thermaling turn. After clearing the area, you enter a thermaling turn. Your instructor then creates a realistic distraction until a stall occurs.
- Potential distractions include:
- Look to the outside of the turn for other traffic
- Look inside the glider at the instruments
- Move the controls to quickly steepen the turn
- How quickly will you recognize the glider is stalled?
- What are the stall characteristics of your glider in this condition?
- What stall warning signs are you looking for?
- How obvious are these warning signs during turning stalls?
- What are the correct recovery procedures?
- What are the incorrect recovery procedures?
- Can the glider spin out of this stall?
- Can the glider enter a high speed spiral?
Glide Range Scenario
At a safe altitude a mile or 2 from the glider-port, you pick a ground object 3-5 miles beyond the field and start a straight glide toward that point. Watch the motion and determine if you could glide to that point, glide past it, or fall short.
- What should the glide ration (L:D) be?
- How much altitude should you need to cover 1 mile in still air?
- How would that altitude change in a headwind/tailwind situation?
- How can you determine if there is a headwind, tailwind, or no wind?
- What would you see if you were unable to glide to that point?
- What would you see if you were going to glide past that point?
You are flying a club glider and your hour is about up. Coming back to the field you encounter some heavy sink. How will you recognize this and how will you modify your pattern to make a safe landing?
- What other traffic is in the area (visual or radio calls)?
- What is your altitude and how fast is it changing?
- What are the 3 best options right now?
- How do those options change over time?
- What will the other club members say if you fly an abbreviated pattern?
- What will club/FBO management say?