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NATS interview process

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NATS interview process

Old 2nd Dec 2010, 14:13
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Hope it goes ok for you dcoliv !

Last edited by gazb2; 3rd Dec 2010 at 17:19.
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 14:48
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Sooooo gutted it has been cancelled until April! There's more than a metre of snow outside my home and I was still able to make it to Prestwick...

Suppose I will be mega prepared by the time April comes round though

Good Luck for Stage 1 next Tuesday!
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 15:06
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Hope it goes ok for you dcoliv !
Thanks!

I have just been informed that there will be no more assessments that I can book until April 2011 !!!!!!!!!! I don't mean to be dramatic about it - but are you kidding me ?!? Surely they should re-schedule a date sooner for the people they have cancelled on ?!? It's entirely inconvenient and very inconsiderate of them....Why should I have to wait 4 months to sit tests I was completely ready for tomorrow ?! I'm raging !
Yeah they announced it a few days back, it's somewhere in this thread. It seems they're reducing the number of candidates from January 1st 2011. Fortunately, I was one of those who was able to book a slot in 2010 (I applied in late October), but everyone who has to book in 2011 (as far as Stage 1 is concerned) will have to wait until April 2011.

In your case, you were already booked for tomorrow, so what they're telling you makes no sense. I can understand they have all the slots booked, but surely they can make an exception for you and for the rest of the people who were going to attend Stage 1 tomorrow in Prestwick. Explain the situation. Maybe they could "squeeze" you guys in another session, even if it isn't in Prestwick. It doesn't hurt to try! Best of luck.

EDIT: Oh, and I'll report as soon as I hear from them regarding Stage 1 in Whiteley next Tuesday. If the weather doesn't improve and they cancel it, I will probably also have to wait until April 2011
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 15:24
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Hey guys....

Just wanted to let you guys know, watch out what you say on this forum....
Remember you are not the only one reading around on here...

Nevertheless I do understand you feel very disappointed but just keep in mind you want to keep a low profile all the way through your training and that even begins while applying....

Just thought I should remind you of this
(by the way, I'm still in process with my slection for NATS myself at the moment so don't worry, I'm not somebody you would somethimes hope not to read this tread )

Anyways, good luck to you all, hope everything works out in the end and just keep this in mind I would say...
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 15:51
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Just booked in for stage 2 on the 26th of Jan, looking forward to seeing you again Crazy Voyager and meeting Sambatc

Really sorry to hear that others have been cancelled, it really must be tough, especially at such short notice
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 16:35
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Okay people, so, to whom it may concern:

NATS told me that they are not in a position to be able to tell me if the tests on Tuesday (in Whiteley) will be cancelled. They also said the weather forecast looks positive with no more snow predicted, so it should be fine. However, they cannot guarantee it (obviously) because the weather could change at any point.

They also said that if I am worried in any way, I should cancel my selection date and wait for the dates from April 2011. Finally they said that if I want to take the risk that is fine, but it is unlikely they would be able to let me know an
answer until Monday (the day before).

So here you go, for all those who may be in this situation. In case they cancel the tests, we will surely have to wait until April 2011!
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 22:57
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I just applied a few days ago and got the email about going to stage one. I feel sorry for the guys who had tomorrow's test cancelled :/
Anyway is it really true the next tests are in April? Is that only for Prestwick? Or are other centres doing the tests much earlier? hope so
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Old 2nd Dec 2010, 22:59
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3rd dec prestwick

Stage 1 cancelled. This is nothing but cheating. I lost my ticket money. Weather forecasts for a week are available in advance. So y wudn't they decided it early? Is it snowing inside the NATS center or doesn't they have any heating system in their building??ridiculous!If the trains, coaches and airlines are operating to Glasgow then what adverse condition are they talking abt?see this, copied from prestwick airport website.
"Glasgow Prestwick handles diverted flights"
On Sunday, an Emirates Airlines’ flight from Dubai landed at Prestwick after Glasgow Airport closed. Also that day, Prestwick accepted a number of Easyjet and Ryanair flights bound for Edinburgh.

Monday, it hosted four Eastern Airways flights - from Norwich, Nottingham, Liverpool and Scatsta in the Shetland Islands - which were unable to land at Aberdeen Airport.

Glasgow Prestwick has been unaffected by the severe weather conditions across Scotland and its own schedule of Ryanair and Wizz flights is operating normal

I am sure the decision is purely on NATS' selfish interest.Whatever lets keep an eye on the interview schedule link as they are posting time slots randomly.
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 09:46
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Cancellation = Major Overreaction!!

WOW – what a reaction. Im really surprised that so many of you have reacted in such an emotional and embarrassing manner. Do you really think it would have been sensible of NATS to send us to Prestwick today when the conditions are so dangerous and put us at risk of injury? Im pleased it was cancelled and like many others I expect they also emailed NATS to ask if it was still going ahead due to the bad weather.

I would be careful of what you say on this forum, other people do read it. Do you think they would want to recruit someone to become an ATCO if you appear to completely overreact to something as simple as cancelling a test session due to freak weather conditions. So what will you do when flights are grounded due to volcanic ash – throw a tantrum because you can’t work.

I would have a think to yourselves – is this really the career for you, if you can’t cope with a simple change of plan.

I work for a hotel chain and we have had to cancel four xmas parties this week alone which is a decision my boss didn’t take lightly due to the costs and resources involved. Im sure NATS would have had the same dilemma.
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 11:40
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Hi everyone,

Indeed I have to agree with aerochick, applicants aren't the only ones posting here, as proven by the many live ATCOs and other experience people we are lucky enough to have answering our questions!

Freedom of expression is fine, and when it comes to "will I have a Job or won't I?" I think its fair enough for some to become emotional.

I think that everyone in their recent posts has had some good points, and we shouldn't ignore them.

I don't mean to be rude, but aerochick; exactly who are you to be vetting them?
Remember, one of the competencies they are supposedly looking for from all of us applicants is teamwork and "personality". Lets all try to keep a bit of a lid on throw-away remarks about one another when they aren't needed?

Also, if anyone from November 24th at Bournemouth has heard back their Stage 1 results, please please let us know!! It's only been 7 working days, so I'm not expecting to hear for a short while. It seems to me, that people generally wait the full 15..

Phil
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 14:30
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philthereaper

I don't mean to be rude, but aerochick; exactly who are you to be vetting them?
Remember, one of the competencies they are supposedly looking for from all of us applicants is teamwork and "personality". Lets all try to keep a bit of a lid on throw-away remarks about one another when they aren't needed?



The post was not an attention to vet people. I was just concerned that people were expressing very negative feelings towards an organisation that they are hoping to one day work for which is not a wise move. I find the NATS website much more informative if you want the ‘real deal’. The competencies that they look for in new ATCOS are ATC motivation, conscientious and rule adherence, decisive and confident. Emotional stability !!!, error awareness, Planning decision making and problem solving, team working and open to learning and development. I was just pointing at that maybe if you didn’t have those competencies you may not be suitable for the job.

aerochick


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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 15:13
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more slots are available now
I just got the invite to stage 1 yesterday and I am thinking the one on Dec 10th would be good. Do you think its wise to just have about 6days to learn the material? Or would the January date for the 21st be more wise?

hoping that more dates in December open so then I could possibly change the slot.

thanks in advance for any replies Cheers
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 16:37
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@Hero 878:
The 6days should be enough to learn the material in principal. Remember that during the theory phase you will see around 3500pages of theory in aprox 3months.
On the other hand, the most important thing during this selections is that you keep yourself as calm, relaxed and rested as possible. If you feel you prefer to go through it a few times and take it all slowly than go for the date in january, it's only one month later.

@aerochick: Like I had already said above... I couldn't agree more with you...
Everybody just think about what you say on here. I'm not saying that you can't be well disapointed because it got cancelled, that's normal ofcourse if you were all ready to go.... but keep in mind that you are applying for a job and you can only be happy that you are allowed to apply for it, not the other way around.

Anyway, I hope you all manage to book a knew slot as soon as possibble and best of luck to all of you
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 17:10
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@Aerochick and Stoffel - Please understand that I was mainly upset due to the 20 hours notice...and the fact I believed there were no more dates to sit the tests until April 2011, which felt unfair after the months of preparation for today.

However, NATS have informed me that they have opened a new date for those cancelled today on 21st January, which is great news...and has made me very happy indeed
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 17:40
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gazb2 I'm pleased to hear you and all the others will be getting a new slot reasonably soon, good luck with it.

And just to clarify, trust me I completely understand what you were trying to say... I was just making a generel comment regarding some comments I have been reading on here since when I got on this forum, I didn't mean to specify this situation alone.

cheerio!
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 18:05
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I'm with aerochick on this one, NATS do check forums/websites and since this is one of the most reputable i'd be extremely shocked if they didn't have a brief read.

It doesn't take a lot to work out who people are when you give your first name, location, date of stages etc. Don't give them a reason not to accept you as it's already difficult enough.

Regards
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 18:40
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Thanks Stoffle....glad we got that sorted Everything ok now with the new date, all the best to you (with whatever stage your at in the process!)

Skywards....I understand they check the forums, however I assume people stand by what they said yesterday with regards to the cancellations....which actually maybe helped us all get the January date, as in the e-mails yesterday, they stated that we wouldn't be rescheduled till April. The only way they know that we have a problem, is to address that problem and let them know about it, other than shy away due to fear of not getting accepted. I like to share my concerns, worries and thoughts with others in order to get them sorted, and in this case - I believe it has worked

Roll on 21st January
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 20:56
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This is the 4th time I have posted this but ill give it a go anyway.

I have my stage 2 in just over a week and I have no idea how to prepare. Does anyone have any tips for preperation?

Im getting a bit worried now.
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 22:12
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This is the 4th time I have posted this but ill give it a go anyway.

I have my stage 2 in just over a week and I have no idea how to prepare. Does anyone have any tips for preperation?

Im getting a bit worried now.
Hi,

Some people will say there's nothing you can do to prepare yourself, and some people will say you can do a lot. I will tell you that what you can do lies between those two opinions.

From what I've read in this thread, Stage 2 consists of several computer tests. I have never attended Stage 2, so I don't know what kind of tests they do. I think they do the FEAST test and also other tests. You can learn everything you need to know about the FEAST teast by checking out the EUROCONTROL thread or the Wikipedia article.

Back when I applied to an ATC position in Portugal, I passed the FEAST tests and then went to do some "psychometric tests". I can tell you a bit about them, because I'm convinced they are not that different from those you'll do in Stage 2. So, to begin with, these tests were divided in four distinct parts: personality questionnaires, group exercise, computers tests and conversation with a psychologist. I'll just focus on the computer tests because that's what Stage 2 is.

Just a brief reminder though: as far as I know, these are NOT the computer tests done at NATS. These are the tests done in Portugal.

Some were actually pretty standard tests, which you would find basically anywhere if you were to do an IQ test, like logical tests ("what's the next in sequence?"). Some of these were easy, some were demanding and some were impossible. You had a table with 3 rows and 3 columns, and the bottom right corner position was always empty. You had to figure out the right answer by following logical sequences from the remaining 8 positions, which sometimes consisted of VERY complicated drawings with colours. And to bring a little more misery into my life, sometimes you had to figure out the sequences by looking not only to the rows or to the columns, but to the rows AND to the columns simultaneously!

Then, you also had a short-term/visual memory test, which was actually very nice to do. The computer screen would show you a city seen from above in full screen, and there were some symbols (between 3 and 8, if I remember correctly) all over the screen in key positions. These symbols represented police stations, hospitals, theatres, you name it. They would show up on screen for 3 seconds and then they would disappear. Afterwards they would ask you: "where was the police station?" and you had to click in the general area. You didn't have to be precise (of course you would earn more points if you were), so if you clicked in the general area (small radius though) you would get it right.

There was also a very entertaining test that seemed like Guitar Hero on steroids. Its purpose is to test how good are your reactions. The basic idea is this: they show you things on the screen and you need to respond accordingly. So, if they show you a red ball, you need to press the red button. If they show you a blue ball, it's the blue button. If you hear a sound on your left ear, you must press a specific button, but if it's on your right ear, it's another button. And you also have two pedals. That was actually awesome and lasted 8 minutes. Believe me, that test will reveal a lot about your stress coping mechanisms because the computer just keeps showing you things faster and faster and eventually you miss something and you have to start all over again. Some people next to me started shouting and one of them actually got up and left.

Finally, there were some very ATC specific tests. One of these consisted of an aircraft, already airborne, in two different pictures. Basically you had to say what had happened to the aircraft from one picture to the next. They showed you 3 axes and for every particular movement to be achieved you had to choose what to do to each axis. So, for example, if in the first picture the aircraft is aligned with the horizon, and in the second picture it is climbing, you had to say which axis was responsible for this change and in which direction do you need to move it in order to achieve that change. It is not easy to explain in writing and English is not my native language, so I'm sorry if this explanation seemed complicated.

The final test I remember was meant to test your resistance to monotony. It's very simple. You sit at a computer and the screen is completely black with the exception of a small white circle. This circle jumps clockwise every two seconds or so, but sometimes it jumps a bit more. Whenever this happens, you need to press a button. I actually found it really easy, even though it lasted 30 minutes. Some people found it incredibly hard because they just couldn't focus for that long, and others said their eyes started hurting after a while.

So, to conclude: I described some of the computer tests I had to do in Portugal. Do you actually think you can prepare yourself for something like this, or for the personality questionnaire? Just reach your own conclusion. In my opinion, you can't really prepare for the computer tests.

For Stage 3, though, I think we're talking about a completely different thing altogether, and that is why I said, in the beginning of this post, that I was going to tell you that you can do SOME preparation in this whole process. Stage 3 is an interview, so I think it is possible to prepare yourself by reading ATC related books, by visiting towers, by talking to ATCOs, and, if you need, by reading those books on how to be successful in job interviews.

I would just like to remind you, again, that these computer tests I described are NOT done at NATS (as far as I know) so please don't think this is what you'll be expecting. It may be something totally different. But I do hope this (long) description has helped you in some way. Best of luck!

Cheers
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Old 3rd Dec 2010, 22:35
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Hey,

There realy isn't much you can or have to do to prepare yourself for this tests, seriously....
All you can and have to do is try to be as rested and calm as possible.

You will be faced with some reaction and multitasking tests, some test regarding you spatial awareness. But it honestly wouldn't help you to tell you all about these tests in detail since it will not help you in any way.
Every test you will have to do is well explained and you will get some practice runs before you do every different part of the test.

One thing I can say you that will help you relax from time to time during one of the more difficult exercices.
You will have to do an exercise where you have to sort items in different categories. you only get about 2 or 3 seconds to do so before a new item appears. from time to time it will say on your screen "new sort code", this only goes away when you click.... don't just click this away at once but take this time to take a breath for a few seconds, then click on it and start working on the exercise again. It's those things that can help you pass somethimes.

Some other basic things:
-you will see some test involving headings and distances, but I would guess you know the basic headings (it's all written down in the test as well, everything you need is in there)
-you will be tested on your english understanding
-you will be tested on understanding and remembering accurately different large numbers
-you will get more cubes to solve
-you will get a strip display exercise but since this exercise is not exactly following atc rules there is nothing I can tell you about this, this exercise is as well meant to check if you can learn things in a (short) amount of time and apply them
-you will be tested on reaction time with a very basic exercise

As well whenever you feel like you are ******* it all up, just keep on fighting, never give up. Giving up is an attitude you can't permit in atc and sometimes they will be face you with situations that you just can't handle perfectly, these are the times that you have to show you keep fighting for it, set your priorities and make the best out of it.

Anyway, good luck and keep it up, just be as calm and well rested as you can.
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