We’ve had a great time this past week at the 17th annual European Airline Training Symposium (EATS) in Madrid, along with a record attendance of nearly 900 industry experts and professionals.

What’s emerged from our conversations at EATS is how training methods are continually adapting to fit the capabilities of new technology, and follow the recommendations of research.

Almost in response to the rising numbers of pilots that must be trained worldwide, training methods themselves are now adjusted to fit individual students. While some methods, such as assessing the core personality traits of potential cadets, are still human-led, others have emerged with the support of technology.

Full flight simulators increasingly are able to capture, analyse and use the data that comes from their use. This data can provide formative feedback to the student – an objective training source to improve the training experience for operators, instructors and pilots.

From this year’s EATS, we saw a number of announcements in this vein, with products and partnerships that are supposed to enhance the training experience.

These include an MoU for a new helicopter pilot training centre by Avicopter and Thales; the introduction of iPad-based FMS free play training technology to Airbus A320 and Boeing B737 type rating candidates by AeroStar and ECA Group; and the development of synthetic air traffic control environments in training. It was an exciting year to be on the ground in Madrid, and we’re looking forward to seeing these changes take root as we head into 2019.