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Fatty182 19th Sep 2012 23:06

CanuckInOz: my housemate was advertising on here fortunately, he already had a place, was just looking for people to fill the rooms. It was only $120 a week, which included the internet, then just share of water and electricity bills.

Finch13 20th Sep 2012 05:10

Re: ATC app Stuff
Hi Guys,

Thanks for the maths-related advice! I think I'll be ok with the testing because the degree I'm currently studying is fairly maths-heavy, but probably need to brush up on mental arithmetic just to be sure.

Another question: while training at the academy, does anyone know what the parking facilities are like and approx. how much it would cost each day? I don't want to sound cheap, but I'm trying to create a budget to work out if I could actually afford to survive in Vic before progressing with my application.

Thanks again :ok:

BurglarsDog 20th Sep 2012 11:12

When I was there, (a couple of years back) a staff car park for all was provided at the college free of charge.


Fatty182 20th Sep 2012 11:43

Yeah parking is still provided and it's free.

stevep64 20th Sep 2012 11:51

Parking is free, secure and under cover everywhere in the Melbourne centre compound. so no worries there. If you're from out of town and want to fly home, you can park your car there for free and not have to worry about it.
If you're on a tower course, you'll have to spend 4 days at the BoM training school in Broadmeadows. I and one of my course-mates had our cars broken into during the course and getting Airservices to pay for it, despite what's in clause 21 (or is it 23) of the the agreement is a bit of a problem.

Kieran17 20th Sep 2012 15:46

Hereís how it is. I first applied in 2010, started the course in April 2011, finished the course in May 2012, rated in August 2012 (enroute). I started with no prior ATC experience but do have a private fixed wing licence and a commercial heli licence. Having previous aviation knowledge helps with some things like comms, nav and met but donít rely on it to get you through the college.

At the college, thereís enough car parking and itís all in the secure compound so you donít need to worry about that. Even if you have to park on the other side of the compound, itís not that big so donít complain. Thereís no public transport to the compound so youíll have to drive or carpool.

In the college youíll get a locker for your stuff and thereís a rec room with TV, tables, fridges and microwaves. In the main building there a cafeteria with food and coffees and so forth.

About places to live, if you can live with others in your group it will help, can discuss ideas and help understand what youíre learning, test each other and save money of petrol. I live 20 minutes away in Taylors Hill, good area, lots of shops etc. If youíre looking for somewhere just look at google maps and find somewhere in a reasonable distance.

Anyway, a couple of acronyms to remember that will help get to the other end:
-HTFU (harden the f**K up)
-RTFQ (read the f**king question)

The application process:

1. 1.Apply online: Just submit your resume and wait for them to get back to you, it takes time, if you want to know how much, read the rest of this thread.

2. 2.Online cognitive tests: Psychometric cognitive tests including things like pattern recognition, memory, logical reasoning, numerical reasoning and mental arithmetic under pressure. You get practice runs ahead of the real ones, not as scary as you might think, but do them somewhere you can concentrate.

3. 3.Phone interview: Just answer their questions. You get to organize a time for when the interview will be so they donít just spring it on you at random. Try not to sound like an idiot.

4. 4.Testing day: Donít try to act how you think they want you to, just be honest and be yourself. Thereís no point trying to guess ahead of what they want, youíll do more damage to your prospects than you realize. You redo the online tests so donít cheat the first timeÖ Also, wear good clothes, donít turn up looking like a hobo or that you were just at the beach.

5. 5.References Checked: Just choose good references and tell them ahead of time (ie donít use your current boss if you havenít told them youíre looking for another job.)

6. 6.Offer: Itíll come eventually, or youíll get told youíre not in, either way, theyíll tell youÖ eventually

7. 7.Start Course: Turn up and donít cock it up.

For me the time from initial application to starting the course was one year.
Once you start the first week will be corporate induction, not too exciting but the company gets to check off the box, and you get a free dinner and maybe lunches. After that thereíll be a few quick tests to cover off the pre course info that youíll be given. The exams arenít graded, just used to see where youíre at.

After that is when the fun begins. The first few months will be pretty much solid theory, thereís a lot to learn in a short time for a while there will be at least one exam every week, often two. Study hard and donít miss any days of school, youíll get behind pretty quick if you do.

The academy runs on three different shifts, all Monday to Friday. 0700-1500, 0900-1700 and 1100-1900. You most likely won't be on the same shift for the duration of training, they arrange it according to instructor and sim availability. I found the 0700 shift to be the best (despite NOT being a morning person) as it avoids the traffic in both directions and allows for extra work to be done in your own time. You won't have any say in what shift your on or when it changes, so when it does, as above, HTFU and don't complain.

Some of the subjects:
Air law- itís useful and relevant, if you donít like it HTFU.
Rules of the air
Principles of flight
Flight instruments and nav aids
Aircraft type knowledge
in flight emergency response
Aerodromes and other landing surfaces
Human Factors
Separation Standards
Flight planning
unlawful interference
Ö and many many more.

Additional to all the lectured units, there will be a lot of computer based training CBT. Some of these units are useful and actually teach you stuff you need, some are just so the company can put a tick in the box and be difficult to get through in one go. Most of them will have questions to answer during and at the end and completion won't be marked until all have been answered correctly.

After the main theory block ends you get to start in the sim.
First real module is DTI Ėdirected traffic information. Basically itís all about providing an information service to pilots, who is in their way, weather, SAR alerting etc. Not control but proving information service.

Next is Procedural control. This is a big one, lots of different standards to keep aircraft apart and you need to be able to know which one to use, and have a back up, and a plan C D and E. This module goes for a few months. You'll start by learning each of the sep standards in order and the sim exercise will be based on that one standard. You'll learn vertical, time, longitudinal and lateral standards. Eventually it'll be up to you as to which standard you think will work best.

Following is radar control. Less separation standards (1000 feet, 5 miles-how hard can it be?) but a lot of different techniques and methods to achieve the right outcome. Again, this module will go for a few months. There are two parts, controlled airspace and uncontrolled. The latter is all information service and the former is stopping planes from hitting, the difference is you can see where they actually are, not just where the system thinks they are (big difference).

Last module is Combined ops. In this thereís no new learning but youíre doing both radar and procedural control at the same time, much bigger airspace, more aircraft and the sim runs go for twice as long. In a mixed environment you need to be able to switch easily between different standards and your able to establish them in different ways. The final exams will be over two days.

Throughout all of the sim time there will also be more theory units being run at the same time, so keep studying hard. Also, whenever possible, get extra sim runs done on your own time for extra practice. Each day youíll get a write up of how you went for the exercise, what you did right, did wrong, completely screwed, and need to work on. These will all be part of your training record (forever). Several times through the module youíll also do Progressive Evaluations (PE), more or less a semi-exam.

When you finally finish at the college and go to the real world (good feeling) youíll start the first few weeks doing famil on your sectors (plugging in behind the controller and watching, learning). You may be able to get a bit of time off between finishing at the academy and starting in the real world, but this depends on the circumstances of the group you're going to.

After a while of famil is the ops sim which will be sector specific training for however long it takes than youíll be plugging in and talking to real aircraft. During this time you will have an Ďon the job training instructorí OJTI sitting with you and teaching you what to do and making sure you donít kill anybody. When they think you are ready the group checky will watch instead of the OJTI for a day or two and then sign the papers to get you your ATC license which will turn up from casa a few weeks later.

There seem to be longer delays for field training in Brisbane Centre than in Melbourne, as Fatty182 will know...

At the end of the day, if you get an offer, study hard and donít plan on going out too much or taking time off during your training. The instructors are there to help you get through so if you donít know something, ask them. Do extra work whenever possible, it can only help. Become friends with your classmates, theyíre all in the same boat and you wonít pass without the help of everyone around you.

If you donít work hard you will fail, no two ways around it. Even if you do work hard, you may still fail, thatís life. But If you do get through, itís awesome. Good pay and 12% super, good people to work with, fun job and lots of overtime available if you want it (about $85 per hour lowest level rate).

If you have any questions, feel free to ask, but I wonít answer about what the tests and so forth are for recruitment.


mel2012 20th Sep 2012 16:46

Great post!
Hi everyone. Long-time lurker, first time poster.

That was an awesome post Kieran17.

stevep64, not wanting to get too personal, but what led you to withdraw from the training?

canadiangal75 20th Sep 2012 21:36

wow! Great post Kieran! That's awesome.. Now I really want that phone call saying I got in and with a start date...

As for assessment day creeping up on you, it did for me.. The phone interview was on Friday August 31st where she mentioned the assessment centre will be in Brisbane sometime next month and she was hoping to send emails out the following week... Sure enough email was received on the Monday around lunch time and then logged in only to find out I had to be in Brisbane in 7 days for my assessment! I made it work. Booked flights, hotel, and leave from work... But I made it to the assessment day.

I waited a long time between steps except for between phone interview and assessment day which was 10 days.

I waited almost 2 months after I did the online tests to find out I passed.

It was explained to me that we are processed in batches and I would've been at the beginning of the batch.

Good luck to everyone and thanks again Kieran for that detailed post about the training.

jcr737 20th Sep 2012 22:26

The Best
Hi Kieran,

Your thread has to be the best example of the entire Airservices recruitment & training process ever posted. Finally a detailed description of how it works & what to expect.

I have just completed my assessment day & await the call.

Thanks again & all the best.


Fatty182 20th Sep 2012 23:15

Yeah sadly Kieran is right, field training is taking a bit longer in Brisbane that in Melbourne. All my coursemates in Melbourne are rated (and have been for a few weeks now) and the two of us who came up back to Brisbane have only just started in the sim a week ago. Having said that, I've heard some people in Melbourne are getting delays now too...

ATC-Lisa 24th Sep 2012 02:57

Starting at the Learning Academy
Hi all,

I've been reading this forum ever since I first applied to be a trainee (back in February 2012) and wanted to say a big thanks for all of the detailed info about the application process. If I hadn't read this forum first, I would have been stressing about the long breaks between correspondence but can confirm that the timeframes set out on this forum were spot-on for me.

In August, I was initially offered a place on the September enroute course but due to reading this forum about how long it takes to get medical clearance from CASA, I ended up requesting to go on the following course (November). And I'm glad I did because I've only just received it even after phoning CASA every couple of days to chase it up. I'll now be moving down from Brisbane for the enroute training course commencing in Melbourne on 7th November.

I have a question about the Learning Academy. I will be moving into a share-house for my stay in Melbourne and will only be taking limited possessions. Will it be necessary for me to buy a laptop for my stay in Melbourne, or are there computers/internet access available to students for study and/or personal use at the Learning Academy?

I'm wondering if anyone starting on the November course has received their official "Offer Letter" yet? I was told they were still negotiating the new Collective Agreement so an offer letter wouldn't be prepared until negotiations were finalised. Is this the case for everyone else?

Also, how long from the first day of the course do we have to wait for our first paycheck?

And just one last question (which may seem a bit silly), what is the dress code like at the Learning Academy? I'm just wondering what to pack!

Very excited!
Thanks :)

Fatty182 25th Sep 2012 05:33


Firstly, there are computers available at the learning academy, but you're behind the ASA firewall, so some sites you won't be able to access. I have never tried, but I assume things like facebook, etc are blocked, so if you are looking to visit those sort of sites, you will need your own internet elsewhere. Checking of webmail and so forth is allowed however.

As for pay, we got paid on the first pay fortnight after we started, and it was for one week pretty much, given the date we started. So I guess unless there is some drama with paperwork, you should get paid no more than a fortnight after you start. For information, today is pay day if you wanted to work forward to when you start :)

Also, they should tell you all this, but if you are driving down to Melbourne, you can fill out a form when you get there to get money back for travel expenses. For me at least, it worked out way more than it cost me to get down there, so that's a win :)

Dress code - in the paperwork they send you, they say corporate wear. Which is what everyone wears..... for about the first week or two until you realise everyone wears whatever they want pretty much. Wear something smart for the first week, then after that as long as the clothes are neat and reasonable, they don't make an issue about it. These days they even give you a couple of Airservices shirts to wear if you want :)

Good luck with everything, and don't hesitate to ask more questions if you have them :)

stevep64 25th Sep 2012 06:36

An email came out about two weeks ago regarding dress code at the academy. Basically, shirts must have collars, most people wear the Airservices shirts, no hoodies, no trackpants and no beanies or hats in the classrooms or sims.

Facebook is blocked on the academy computers, as is this forum I believe.

They tell you they'll either pay for your fuel to drive down, or for your airfares. What they don't tell you is they work on a fixed rate per kilometre, which turned out to be enough for fuel, accommodation and meals on the way down.

It's just a pity they don't pay removal costs.

slscrockatt 25th Sep 2012 22:00

I'm wondering if anyone starting on the November course has received their official "Offer Letter" yet? I was told they were still negotiating the new Collective Agreement so an offer letter wouldn't be prepared until negotiations were finalised. Is this the case for everyone else?
That's a negative for me aswell, I get the same line about negotiating the agreement.
Finally got my casa medical yesterday, only took 35 days to process. and 8 days to arrive in the mail.

Question for anyone, how much pre course study is required?

CanuckInOz 28th Sep 2012 02:06

I'm wondering if anyone starting on the November course has received their official "Offer Letter" yet? I was told they were still negotiating the new Collective Agreement so an offer letter wouldn't be prepared until negotiations were finalised. Is this the case for everyone else?
I got a call yesterday from ASA and was told that the legal team would not be able to negotiate a new collective bargaining agreement in time to produce letters to us so, they are sending out the official letter of offers today with the old agreement terms.

She did say however; that there was a slight possibility the terms would be reached by the time we start our course in November.

Baileys 28th Sep 2012 04:32

"...slight possibility the terms would be reached by the time we start our course in November"

November 2013 if you're lucky. Not joking.

Mulu 29th Sep 2012 00:13

ATC Aptitude test
I have just completed the ATC online aptitude test yesterday. Can anyone give me an idea of how long they had to wait before being contacted....?


Kieran17 29th Sep 2012 04:52

room avbl
For those looking for a room while studying, I have a room available in Taylors Hill, take about 20 minutes to get into work. $130/wk includes internet, bills split evenly as they come in...

PM me for details

canadiangal75 30th Sep 2012 12:27

Hey Mulu,

If you read this thread you will find that several people have posted their timelines. Some people wait as little as a couple of days after the online test. I personally waited almost 2 months after my online tests to be invited to do a phone interview... I was told applications are processed in batches. So if you are at the beginning of your batch, like I was, you will wait a long time. If you are at the end of your batch, you may get an email tomorrow.

Sorry, but that's all I can tell you. I'm waiting to hear back on the results from the assessment day now. It'll be 3 weeks tomorrow, but understand it can take 2 months as well.

kiwi chick 6th Oct 2012 10:51

Two months and the rest... :)

There were a bunch of us assessed at the beginning of March that had to wait an agonising 10-11 weeks wait to hear the news!

stevep64 6th Oct 2012 11:17

At my exit interview, Christine, the tower course co-ordinator told me it took five and a half years for her to get through the recruitment process.

missy 6th Oct 2012 14:03

At my exit interview
, Steve, is it all over?

Thacow 7th Oct 2012 00:43

Hey guys, i just failed the online test and im about to get some feedback soon. Just wanted a few questions i could ask that will help me for next time. As i understand it, you only get two chances and you have to wait one year before trying again, is this correct?

canadiangal75 7th Oct 2012 04:26

I didn't think there was feedback available if you failed the online tests... hmmm.. I guess they can tell you which ones you failed... Like the math or the reading comprehension.... Well good luck with it.

stevep64 7th Oct 2012 05:50

Speaking as someone who found the online tests easier than some of the training, are you really sure you want to try again. Depending on what part you failed, it's probably a good indication that you won't get through the course.

Yep, I left the academy about two and a half weeks ago and am back in Brisbane.

SpankyRooster 7th Oct 2012 09:10

Thacow: Good on you for seeking some feedback, it can only help and hopefully give you something to focus on. I'm pretty certain you can only apply twice with a year in between. Good luck for next time.

Steve: Please don't take this the wrong way but, trying to dissuade someone from trying again just because they didn't make it first time is a bit out of order. It sounded a bit like "If I can't do it, you can't do it".

I'm hopeful that this wasn't your intention though

kiwi chick 7th Oct 2012 09:39

Without sounding arrogant, I have to agree with Steve - the tests are hard for a reason.

I'm only in week 3 of training, but there's no doubt that it's hard bloody work alright.

Not just THE content (everyone can learn stuff) but the AMOUNT of content and the depth to which you need to know it, could be quite overwhelming if you don't have an inbuilt solid base to start with.

The online tests are repeated at the Assessment day - some say they're harder, I thought they were easier because I didn't have a calculator for the online tests - but they are much of same only more and at a faster pace.

Personally I'd find it hard if I waited a year, got through the online testing then didn't make it through the assessment - but that's just my two cents worth, take it for what it is, and good luck with whatever you decide.

How's the weather up there Steve?! :ok:

slscrockatt 7th Oct 2012 10:48

How's the weather up there Steve?!
Weather in South East QLD, great one day better the next.

What challenges have you come across and any tips for the first couple of weeks?

stevep64 7th Oct 2012 12:02

How's the weather up there Steve?!
Weather in South East QLD, great one day better the next.
What he said :ok:

Just to add to what j-mo said. I reckon it cost my wife and I well over $4k in removal costs, buying stuff we needed in Melbourne, etc. I'm not trying to put people off, far from it, but there are a lot of people that have no concept of just how hard a job it is. I equate them to the people that audition for idol thinking they have talent.

I encourage anyone that's fallen at the assessment day hurdle to try again, I'd even encourage old farts like me to give it a try, just be aware of what you're getting yourself into and don't ignore the advice of those on here that have been through it all.

Do I regret the experience? Hell no! I met a great bunch of people at the academy and not all of them were fellow trainees. It's the best job I've ever had, I just didn't have what it took to keep it, and that's the case for a lot of people that make it through the selection process.

alatron 7th Oct 2012 12:46

Medical Certificate
Hey folks Ė first let me say how helpful this thread has been! So much great info about what to expect during the hiring process.

I'm just going through that process at the moment, I have the phone interview booked in next week so I still have a ways to go, but I'm wondering anyone knows if it's possible/worth it to start the CASA medical certificate before getting an offer, particularly if it can take a while to get sorted out?

slscrockatt 8th Oct 2012 12:37

Hey Alatron,

I would recommend waiting to see how you go with the assessment day as the medical is a large expense. My medical was delayed because my dame forgot to stamp the paperwork.
Most medicals as long as the paperwork is correct get processed quickly.

kiwi chick 9th Oct 2012 08:02

And by large expense, he means > $500 :ooh:

My first few weeks have been great. So far, my group seem to gel together really well - which we've been told is good, statistically. ;)

"Those that play together stay together."

We can have a good laugh, bounce ideas off each other and say what we're thinking without being judged or ridiculed. Yet :E

The only tip I would give is "worry not about the things you can't control, and work your hardest to do best at the things you can". :ok:

alatron 10th Oct 2012 09:12

Thanks for the info Ė that's about as pricey as I suspected it might be. Now just to keep waiting... oh the waiting!

canadiangal75 10th Oct 2012 10:35

Enjoy waiting Alatron... It's what it's all about.. I waited almost 2 months after the online tests to do the phone interview.. Then only the weekend to find out about the assessment day the following week... But now been over 4 weeks since the assessment day and expect to be waiting up to another 4 weeks probably... Hang in there and good luck!

atc2020 12th Oct 2012 11:45

Melbourne Suburbs/Transport (Near ATC learning academy)

Just wanted to ask for those already down in melbourne or heading to melbourne atc learning academy.

What are some of the good suburbs to rent near around the airport or college area.

Also does anyone not drive to the college.

Anyone get to the college without driving and if so how.

I'd be interested in your feedback on those two areas: suburb and getting to the college while living down there.

Any help be apreciated.

atc2020 12th Oct 2012 11:57

Melboune Suburbs
So what are the following suburbs like in Melb:
Taylors Hill
Keilor Park
Airport West
Keilow Downs

Any feedback be greatly appreciated


Fatty182 13th Oct 2012 12:17

Hi atc2020,

The only way to get to the college without driving is to live close enough that you can ride to work, which a couple of people did when I was down there. Unsure of which are the best suburbs for this however.

I lived in Taylors Hill, which was a nice 20-25 minute drive to work, and on the plus side, there is a route which does not take any of the freeways, etc and therefore was pretty consistent time wise. Last I heard, my old house mate is looking for someone to live in the spare room, he posted about it on the page before this one in this thread. His username is Kieran17.

stevep64 13th Oct 2012 14:12

Seriously, if ATC2020 can't even be bothered to read this thread about 4 pages back, he or she is not even going to get through the theory part of the training.:ugh:

SpankyRooster 13th Oct 2012 23:21

atc2020, I lived in Coburg when at the college which was pretty decent, I don't think it ever took me longer than 20 minutes to drive to work and it was convenient for the city too for any time off you get. Pricewise it's probably a touch dearer though.

The advice that everyone will agree with is stay well away from Broadmeadows and Westmeadows to a lesser extent.



Cuervo 14th Oct 2012 12:30

Applying for ASA
Hi guys;

I am an experienced ATCO, former TWR and Radar APP Supervisor. Being 44 years old I am considering to leave Europe and give it a try downunder as ASA recently opened positions for experienced ATCOs in Perth and Sydney (both in TWR and APP)...

As you can easily understand if you read the above posts I am a bit worried as it looks like ASA is going through tough times.

Why is ASA opening positions for foreign, qualified ATCOS?!?
Is ASA expected to be a private company in the future?

If I manage to be sucessfull and join the company will I be an ATCO just like all my other (possible) future Aussie mates? Same pay, same overall job conditions?!?

If I do apply, will I be "playing along" some "anti- Aussie-ATCO game"?!?
Hope you understand me...
I will go if prospects are good (both for me, my family and "Aussie ATCOs").

I apologize if my post is out of the context here but so far I did not find a better place to place this message. Any feedback would be much appreciated as I do need to think this process carefully...
Thks a lot for your patience and consideration http://images.ibsrv.net/ibsrv/res/sr...ies/thumbs.gif

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