Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Gas Turbines, AC Electrics and Autoflight

With some of the old topics drawing to an end with Test 1s, these the new subjects we are picking up at the moment. Now that we’ve finished on Piston Engines, we get to study the rather more exciting Gas Turbine engines, the kind of which we’ll be playing around with for most of our career. AC Electrics really just carries on where DC left off, and we have our first couple of hours of Autoflight on Friday which sounds quite exciting! The pace of lessons has really just continued from where we left off, and even seems to have increased somewhat! We have 17 full days of classes left before School Finals, and the pressure really is on to get through all the material. Luckily, it all seems to be staying in my head a bit better now, but once again life is pretty much committed to working solid, with only a few hours in the evening for escape.

Our class is shrinking in size this week as one guy drops back a few courses. It’s a shame but it is his own decision. My personal feeling is that no matter what score I received in my Test 1s I would have kept going; the thought of having to go back to the beginning and effectively give myself another 2 months of Ground School is enough to send shivers down my spine!! Roll on Arizona, only 22 weeks away! :-S

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

First Exams Down!

That’s right, the exams are over and the results are in…

  • Aircraft Systems – 93%
  • Instruments – 95%
  • Human Performance – 98%
  • Meteorology – 92%
  • Principles of Flight – 90%

That’s an average of 94%! Needless to say I’m very pleased with those results, some of which were a lot more than I thought I was capable of! We’ve reviewed all the papers in class as well and I have a good idea of where I went wrong. The key thing in this whole process has been learning the art of studying for exams. We have huge question banks online, and although it may be painful, it was enormously helpful to sit and trawl through those.

So now we move onto the second half of Phase 1. Some subjects continue, though we will be starting Gas Turbines and AC Electrics now, and a few other different ones later on. And in 4 and a bit weeks we’ll be sitting down for our School Finals, followed by a week of revision and then our first 7 JAA exams! The time seems to have flown so quickly already, and this next month is going to be very intense indeed. However, I do feel my learning processes have improved and I seem to be able to absorb the information we’re being given a lot better now. The key will be in maintaining the same level of work, and hopefully the same kind of grades next time around!

Finally, just as the thick snow surrounding Heyford began to clear, we were treated to a nice new layer this morning! Needless to say getting into the airport was a bit of an adventure, and we were actually sent home after a couple of lessons anyway. Has been pretty nice to have a day off though where I’ve just been able to relax, haven’t said that for a while! Keeping my fingers crossed that things are back to normal tomorrow though and we can have a full day of classes. Bring it on!

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Test 1s Tomorrow!

That’s right, it seems like the last 2 months have absolutely flown by, but it’s already time for those dreaded Test 1 exams. I have been revising absolutely solidly for the past 5 days, to the point where my brain is actually aching! :-) We had a LOT of snow this week which means I’ve pretty much been confined to the flat anyway, so in a way I’m actually looking forward to a reason for getting out tomorrow. And also, it’ll be good to get these exams out the way so we can get back to the classroom and get the rest of Phase 1 done. Although tomorrow’s exams don’t count for anything, I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed that I do well, else all this hard work was in vain! Not sure when we’ll be finding out the results but hopefully I’ll post them up here if they’re not too bad.

The exams we have on Monday are:

  • Principles of Flight
  • Aircraft Systems (Airframes, Piston Engines, DC Electrics)
  • Instruments

and on Tuesday:

  • Human Performance
  • Meteorology

These are the same exams we’ll be sitting in March, plus we’ll be picking up 2 extra subjects, VFR comms and IFR comms. I’m already looking forward to a break after those exams just to relax!

Sunday, 3 January 2010

Back to school

Have arrived back in Heyford after a nice Christmas at home. Have tried to do as much work as possible, though I couldn’t help installing Flight Sim on my laptop and taking it for a spin a few times! Never mind, have managed to revise 4 out of the 7 books. Plus, we only have half a week of lectures, and the rest of the week is pre-exam study so I’ll be able to finish the other 3 books plus run through plenty of questions. Then it’s exams Monday and Tuesday next week! Very scary stuff, am pretty nervous about it all but will hopefully feel much better when they’re out of the way. Although they are just progress checks and don’t count for anything, it would still be reassuring to know it’s going well! Plus it all may well end up on my report at the end!