Military AircrewA forum for the professionals who fly the non-civilian hardware, and the backroom boys and girls without whom nothing would leave the ground. Army, Navy and Airforces of the World, all equally welcome here.
I've got 3 weeks to go until I head up to Tamworth for Flight Screening. I'm trying to access all points of information and was wondering if any of you had suggestions, information and general knowledge about the whole process. The more detail the better .
Also, there is the OSB at the end of it. Once again if you have any suggestions etc. That would be great!
I am in the same boat as you and heading off to screening in few weeks myself. Any chance that you can post Karhu's info onto this thread. I have researched as much as possible thru the ADF website (fairly vague and non descript) and spoke to some serving pilots about what really goes on in Tamworth but it is still pretty vague. One guy called it a "bit of a holiday" and was just really happy that Tamworth had a Hungry Jacks. Helpful stuff ain't it!
G'day guys, Flight Screening is probably the most challenging thing you will have done at the age of 17+. It is certainly NOT a holiday, and if you treat it as such, i don;t expect you will pass.
Study is the biggest tip. Get in there and study as much as you can in the evenings or when not flying.
They don;t expect you to be a perfect pilot, they are looking for rate and ability to learn. They will generally demo a technique, then give you a go, then assess you on the next try. This happens for the entire two weeks.
You will fly both the CT4 and CAP10 (varying amounts depending on previous experience). Do not lie about your previous experience. Many people have been thrown off course for this in the past.
The CAP 10 is quite challenging as its a tail dragger, and quite difficult in the circuit. Once again, studying and knowing the parameters etc will hold you in good stead.
Try to enjoy yourself as much as possible. Sounds noddy, but the more you enjoy it, generally the better you will do.
Finally, have a positive attitude. You will find it challenging, but immensely rewarding.
Biggest tip: Be honest. Generally the Psych interviews are quite long, and often they will ask you the same question a number of times during the 2 hours+ but in a different way to see if you give the same answer, or are just telling them what you think they want to hear.
Second biggest tip: Be honest. Third biggest tip: Be honest.
For the Board, make sure you know WHY you are applying for your particular specialisation, where you can be posted in that specialisation, and as many specifics about that specialisation as possible. Ie, if you want to fly fast jets, find out where they are based, what a typical day consists of, what progression you can expect, what your future looks like after flying (in terms of promotion etc). Be able to tell the board about a Hornet and Hawk, their armament, how many we have etc. It all shows just how interested and motivated you are. You don;t need to be an expert, just know a bit about it.
If you get thrown some curly questions by the board (and you will), take your time, don;t get stressed and work through it. They want to see how you handle pressure etc.
The first time I applied, there was only 4 of us out of the multitude that went into the office that day that actually were applying for aircrew - for all forces.
I was the only one that got through.
I know you know how stressful it is going in there and getting through the initial testing, and how damn good it feels when you get through it all.
I had my psych on the same day as all my initial testing, and I can tell you that it was probably the most nerve wracking of all the testing that I had to do that day. The reason being that it was a matter of one person's opinion, not on a standardised number of correctly answered (or indeed just answered) questions.
That was the thing that got me the most.
I was honest, and I will be now too. I don't have the best marks of a pilot applicant, and I am now 25 years old, and about to apply again this April/May. I want this like you wouldn't believe, and I can't possibly intimate to you how much this means to me via the horribly inadequate medium of words.
My advice is, as per above advice, is not only to be honest, but to be honest with yourself. There is a very real possibility that you may be waiting for some considerable time before you get a shot at FSP and Officer Board, so either don't let yourself lose focus, or make sure that there is nothing else that you could want more.
The psychs are there to make sure that you have not only the right motivation for wanting to be there, but are also there to make sure that the Defence Force isn't wasting time and money on people that they can be certain won't make it to the end. I have heard the opinion that from the moment you walk through the door they are trying to make you fail, and in a sense, this is true. They don't so much want you to fail, but to find the ones that they can tell will succeed.
If there is one thing that I have noticed in a very large way is that the attitude of those actually in the service is very very supportive of those that are trying for this profession, whereas the attitude of those in the recruiting sections is almost one of indifference.
But that is what they are there to do. They aren't there to pander to you, and gee you up when you feel you can't make it.
One last piece of advice. Talk to as many pilots as you can. They give you advice that is absolutely priceless and that will really give you the best idea of what you are about to undertake. Depending on your location, it is fairly simple to get access to these guys and they are always happy to see someone else going for Pilot.
As you and I both know, this is the best job in the world. I will not stop until I am allowed the privelige of wearing the wings, and I pray you don't either.
Location: these mist covered mountains are a home now for me.
And if you do want to fly fast jets, study up on their tasks, where they are based and deployed etc. However, they may then show you a photo of a B707, and ask you all about them. So make sure you have an all-round knowledge.
Current affairs is also a big issue, especially when related to current conflicts, defence spending and the defence minister.
Don't bag any type of aircraft, for your interviewer may have flown (and loved) them. Once again, know why you want to join, and have an answer ready for why you don't want to join the airlines. You want to join the airlines in eight years? Keep that one to yourself - I've heard kids announce that pearl.
Find out about MDR - Mental Dead Reckoning. A good pilot instructor should be able to help you on that one. You may be asked a few aviation related mathematics problems, to see how you work under pressure. Your F-111 is being towed down the Amberley runway at 10kts, and is passing the 2000ft to go marker. Will it reach the turnoff at the end of the runway before the Hawk trainer which is 12 miles away doing 360knots flies overhead? It might not be that exact question but you get the idea. (Don't take a calculator).
As what most people have said the biggest way around the psyc is honesty!, honesty! honesty!. Thats there job, to weed out the ones who are insecure and are willing to lie. But you wil probably have noticed that there is more to the interviews than just the psyc theres also the knowledge and maths. Good tip for mutiplications.. Say 14 x 13...mutiply the 4X3 if theres any remainders then add that on to the total of 4+3 and add the first digits. So.. 4X3 = 12..3+4+1(carry the ten remainder)=8 and 1+1 =1 so equals 182..Sorry if im confusing you it took me a while to figure it as well but it takes the pressure of things. Also if you get in to say flight screening be careful, your always been watched! Try to be cool and don't be the odd one out! Also as what happened to me, the psyc had a real go at me for only being 17 and what I was doing away from my mum! But whateva you do don't let it get to you, even if you have the urge to kick his ass after the interview, it's all part of the deal.