Check ride prep

The time has come for a student to do a phase check before he goes to the DPE for a private check ride. This is my first student to get this far and I was as anxious as the student. I know he was prepared as he has been very diligent in studying and has a great memory, but there’s always that anxiety of not knowing what is in store.

It was a check on me as well as to what I have taught along with what did I miss so I can improve for the other students I’m training and 1 other is getting close to needing a phase check as well.

As pilots we like the flying part of the test, but we usually don’t do as well with the paperwork side of things.

Showing how all the AD’s have been complied with by finding the records in the airframe logbooks takes time but is a necessary part of the exam.

Some of the tips I learned is to make a simple description of all the systems to make it easy to explain. By doing the work of putting it into a concise description then it also serves as a memory aid and you may not to read it, but its available.

Keep you answers as short as possible while answering what was asked. Don’t expound on something unless its really relevant as too often we start to dig our own hole that makes it hard to climb out of.

All in all it was a good 2 hours spent listening in on the phase check and to be honest he would have failed the oral exam if it was for real, but on the positive side it was on one small topic that we are correcting. This was handled by a former DPE and now a full time CFI, so this was about as realistic as it gets.

I learned as well so I can better prepare the following students. I don’t want to be stuck in a rut and teach things that aren’t accurate. So I’m patching up the holes in the things I didn’t cover as well as I should have to better prepare the next batch of pilots.

Hopefully I’ll have news of a check ride soon, so stay tuned.

If you have any other good tips for check ride prep you found useful please add comments or email them to me at