- May 3, 2018
I recently heard there is a pilot test all applicants take and was wondering if there is a specific name for it? Also, if there is a test, when is it administered? Thank you in advance.
The AFOQT is a pass/fail selection measure for becoming a pilot. However, the standards on the exam are quite low to meet the pilot minimumThe only "test" that can qualify or disqualify you for a pilot slot at the Academy is the more extensive vision test. This is administered starting your second year. The cadets, I believe during the first year, also take the AFOQT, but it is not used to determine whether or not you can go for a rated slot.
I think the OP is talking about the AFOQT and TBAS, but wanted to make a note here-USAFA did not have a similar test. USAFA has a number of 'flying' opportunities with the glider program, the parachute program, powered flight etc. My impression has always been that USAFA puts you in the air to determine if you have the basic skill set to learn how to become a pilot.
I agree as to the purpose of the airmanship programs. We had T41 (which I assume per your post is now at Pueblo which you did have to pass and some of my classmates did not. My larger point - if you want to fly or at least think you do - you simply can't beat all the opportunities USAFA provides to get you in the air (at the USAF's expense) and I do not recall ever taking a 'test' regarding aptitude.I think the OP is talking about the AFOQT and TBAS, but wanted to make a note here-USAFA did not have a similar test. USAFA has a number of 'flying' opportunities with the glider program, the parachute program, powered flight etc. My impression has always been that USAFA puts you in the air to determine if you have the basic skill set to learn how to become a pilot.
Honestly, USAFA doesn't really screen people for aptitude for flying in its basic airmanship programs. All airmanship programs are pass/fail and don't affect whether or not you can get a pilot slot...with the exception of Powered Flight. They've made Powered Flight essentially mandatory in recent years for pilot selection (you can still get a waiver if for some reason you can't get in the program), but pretty much as long as you show up to the airfield for Powered Flight, you'll pass. They don't really have any skill requirement to complete the program, and even if you develop airsickness or are really terrible at flying, they're just trying to give you a brief exposure to what flying a single engine aircraft is like.
The first time you're really screened for flying aptitude is when you start training after graduation in Pueblo (IFT, but they're changing back to IFS) or at your UPT base.
The rationale there is that USAFA airmanship programs should motivate cadets to pursue rated careers and develop big picture airmaship/leadership skills, not serve as screeners. Another nuance there is that for cadets interested in applying for ENJJPT, participation in one of the advanced airmanship programs (WOB, Soaring IPs, Flying Team) can provide an advantage in the form of a recommendation from an airfield squadron commander.
Long post, but I just wanted to make the point that you aren't truly screened for flying aptitude until you're a lieutenant in AETC.