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Aviation English

Our partners

Our partners around the world deliver our training solutions.

Africa

Algeria

Language Solutions Algeria

Australasia

Papua New Guinea

PNG Air Services

Asia

Indonesia

Civil Aviation Training Institute, Transportation
Human Resources Development Agency

Europe

Russia and CIS

Moscow Aviation Institute

Slovenia

Slovenia Control

RELTA Results

The RMIT English Language Test for Aviation (RELTA) for Air Traffic Controllers and Pilots was delivered from September 2006 to December 2016 by RMIT Training and through its worldwide network of accredited partner test centres.
 
All RELTA results and RELTA certificates for the period 2006-2016 will be maintained by RMIT Training until 31 December 2026 unless extended. 

Prior to this date, RELTA candidates are able to retrieve their results from RMIT Training here by entering their date of birth and licence number.

Alternatively or if the website is unavailable, any RELTA candidate or Aviation Authority can request a copy of their certificate or check on a candidate’s test centre result by contacting RMIT Training (aviation.ops@rmit.edu.au).

Case studies

Algerian Civil Aviation Authority and Language Solutions Algeria

Background

Algeria’s aviation industry is growing at a rate of over 12% per year. Passenger traffic for both domestic and international flights is significantly increasing. Algeria controls a large airspace with overhead traffic from both the Middle East and Europe.

Language Solutions Algeria is a prestigious English language training organisation that implements a variety of language training and testing products from providers such as IELTS, Cambridge University and RMIT Training.

Need

Algeria’s Civil Aviation Authority recognised the need to improve the English language proficiency of the pilots of its national and domestic carriers and its air traffic controllers.

It also needed to increase its capability to train and test personnel in order to meet the ICAO Language Proficiency Requirements, which would help ensure safe passage for international carriers and enable its national carrier to increase its networks internationally.

Solution

RMIT English Worldwide sought out the best language training partner to provide a strategic fit for Algeria’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), and found Language Solutions Algeria (LSA).

We then worked with both organisations to analyse the specific language needs of their aviation personnel.

A tailored program incorporating our General English for Aviation and Radiotelephony English training products was developed for LSA.

In addition, we created a test centre to deliver RELTA. RMIT English Worldwide and LSA continue to provide English language support to the aviation industry in Algeria.

Oman Aircraft Control College

Background

Oman Aircraft Control College is a joint civil and military training college located in Muscat that provides air traffic control, air defence and ancillary training at all levels.

Need

Most of the training at the college is delivered in English, and participants need to have a good grasp of the English language to achieve the best results. 

All graduates from the college are expected to meet the ICAO Language Proficiency Requirements.

Solution

Participants build their English language proficiency by doing our General English for Aviation course along with their other studies.

We trained the College’s team of Aviation English trainers to deliver the course.

Graduating students sit RELTA to attain their ICAO English language proficiency licensing requirement.

Qatar Airways

Background

Qatar’s national carrier needed to expand its network of international destinations to meet its goal of becoming one of the world’s most renowned airlines.

Its Civil Aviation Authority had not yet endorsed an Aviation English test to enable its aviation personnel to fulfil the ICAO Language Proficiency Requirements.

Need

Qatar Airways employs pilots with different international backgrounds and varying levels of English language proficiency. They required a flexible and reliable test to check whether their pilots met ICAO’s Language Proficiency Requirements.

Solution

RMIT English Worldwide worked with Qatar Airways to successfully demonstrate the validity and reliability of RELTA, which ensured its endorsement from the civil aviation authority.

We created a RELTA test centre at Qatar Airways and provided training for Qatar Airways’ own RELTA examiners and raters. Within 4 months of receiving endorsement from the Civil Aviation Authority, all pilots from Qatar Airways had been tested.

Russian Civil Aviation Authority and the Moscow Aviation Institute (MAI)

Background

MAI is a premier engineering university dedicated to aerospace technologies and training. Russian aviation personnel typically had low levels of English language proficiency.

Need

The industry recognised that this low level of English language proficiency posed a serious safety risk, and also impacted on the ability of its carriers and pilots to work outside of Russia.

MAI needed a holistic training and testing solution for pilots and air traffic controllers to improve their proficiency to an operational level, and an internationally recognised test that proved their compliance with the ICAO Language Proficiency Requirements.

Recognising the effects of language erosion, MAI also identified the need for recurrent training of aviation personnel after they had been tested, and to prepare for their next Aviation English test.

Solution

RMIT English Worldwide worked with MAI to deliver a training program that helped over 2000 pilots and air traffic controllers develop their proficiency to ICAO Level 4 (Operational), and in some cases Level 5 (Extended).

We created a RELTA test centre at MAI and developed a recurrent training program that provides Beyond Level 4 training. These steps ensure aviation personnel can maintain their English language proficiency between tests as well as prepare for their next test.

Terrindo

Background

Terrindo is an organisation in Jakarta, Indonesia that provides training solutions to a broad range of industries. Their work with the aviation industry focuses on providing Aviation English courses to airport personnel.

Need

A wide variety of airport personnel, from management to fire fighters and customer service representatives, need English for professional purposes.

Solution

RMIT English Worldwide worked with Terrindo and airport management to tailor Aviation English courses for specific purposes using our General English for Aviation course materials.

We provided Aviation English trainers to deliver intensive courses over 5 and 10 day periods. We also trained local teachers to deliver the courses in future.

Why RMIT English Worldwide?

We have worked with the international aviation industry for over 20 years. Our team of writers, English language experts, aviation subject matter experts and production specialists all work together to ensure sound pedagogy and assessment.

We are committed to working with your organisation to tailor an effective Aviation English language program to meet your specific needs, and minimise your costs and disruption to staffing schedules.

We work with you to determine the Aviation English language skills your personnel need to develop to:

  • attend meetings, conferences or training courses
  • read manuals or follow written instructions
  • speak with other aviation professionals or the public to perform their duties
  • write emails or speak on the telephone
  • meet a level of English language proficiency for licensing purposes.

For more information, please email us at aviation.ops@rmit.edu.au with your enquiry.

Why is English language proficiency important?

These extracts from ICAO’s Manual on the Implementation of ICAO Language Proficiency Requirements explain why ICAO strengthened its language proficiency requirements.

  1. Background to strengthened ICAO Language Proficiency Requirements

    1.  

      Over 800 people lost their lives in three major accidents (one collision on the ground, one accident involving fuel exhaustion and one controlled flight into terrain). In each of these seemingly different types of accidents, accident investigators found a common contributing element: insufficient English language proficiency on the part of the flight crew or a controller had played a contributing role in the chain of events leading to the accident. In addition to these high-profile accidents, multiple incidents and near misses are reported annually as a result of language problems, instigating a review of communication procedures and standards worldwide. Such concern was heightened after a 1996 mid-air collision in which 349 passengers and crew members were killed in an accident in which insufficient English language proficiency played a contributing role.

    2.  

      Accident investigators usually uncover a chain of events lining up in an unfortunate order and finally causing an accident. In some instances, the use (or misuse) of language contributes directly or indirectly to an accident.

      At other times, language is a link in the chain of events which exacerbates the problem. There are three ways that language can be a contributing factor in accidents and incidents:

      1. incorrect use of standardized phraseologies;
      2. lack of plain language proficiency;
      3. and the use of more than one language in the same airspace.
    3. Incorrect use of standardized phraseologies.

      The purpose of phraseologies is to provide clear, concise, unambiguous language to communicate messages of a routine nature. One study of real en-route radiotelephony communications (Mell 1992) revealed that 70 per cent of all speech acts uttered by native and non-native speakers, and for which a phraseology is prescribed, are not compliant with the recognized standards. For phraseologies to have the most significant safety impact, all parties need to use ICAO standardized phraseology … while ICAO standardized phraseology has been developed to cover many circumstances, it cannot address all pilot and controller communication needs. It is widely acknowledged by operational and linguistic experts that no set of standardized phraseologies can fully describe all possible circumstances and responses.

    4. Lack of plain language proficiency.

      This is often cited as having played a contributing role in some accidents. In one example, the controller last in contact with the unilingual English-speaking crew which strayed off course and crashed into a mountainside acknowledged to accident investigators that the flight’s position reports were incongruent with where he understood their position to be. However, by his own admission, he lacked plain English proficiency to clarify his doubts or to notify the crew that they were off course.

    5. The use of two languages in the same airspace.

      This can have an impact on the situational awareness of flight crews who do not understand all the languages used for radiotelephony in that airspace and has been cited in several accident reports as a contributing factor.

    6.  

      While the focus of ICAO language proficiency requirements is on improved aeronautical radiotelephony communications, language also plays a role in cockpit resource management (CRM) and has been cited as a contributing factor in incidents/accidents where miscommunication happened within a flight crew. By meeting language proficiency requirements, flight crews, especially multi-national flight crews, will have the added safety benefit of better CRM.

    7.  

      Concern over the role of language in aviation accidents and incidents has been expressed from several quarters. Data obtained from the ICAO Accident/Incident Data Reporting System (ADREP) database, United States National Transportation and Safety Board reports (ASRS), the United Kingdom Mandatory Occurrence Reporting System (MORS) and Confidential Human Factors Incident Reporting Programme (CHIRP) corroborate that the role of language in accidents and incidents is significant. A number of fatal and non-fatal accidents appear in the ICAO ADREP which cite ‘language barrier’ as a factor. These data are further supported in two recent reports by Eurocontrol (Van Es 2004; Van Es Wever & Verbeek 2006).

    8.  

      Academic studies in such fields as natural language processing (Cushing 1994) and sociolinguistics (Linde 1988) have also examined and highlighted the role of language proficiency and language use in aviation incidents and accidents.

Aviation at RMIT University

RMIT University is a leading provider of undergraduate and postgraduate aviation programs, including Aerospace Engineering, Aerospace Maintenance, Aviation Management and Flight Training. The University operates the flight training program from its airbase at Point Cook, on the outskirts of Melbourne, Australia, where students can attain their commercial flight licence.

FAQ

Can I study an Aviation English training course at RMIT English Worldwide?

No. Our Aviation English training courses are delivered either online (e.g. Beyond Level 4) or in a classroom setting through partner organisations—airlines, government agencies and companies—worldwide. 

If you want to study the Beyond Level 4 course, our online Aviation English training course which is designed as an independent study tool, you can purchase it from this website.

Can I study a course at RMIT English Worldwide to become an Aviation English trainer?

No. RMIT English Worldwide only trains people who are employed by partner organisations to become Aviation English trainers. No Aviation English training programmes are run at RMIT English Worldwide.

What is Beyond Level 4?

See our section above on our Beyond Level 4 online Aviation English training course.

What are the software and hardware requirements of the Beyond Level 4 course?

These are the minimum system requirements:

  • Browser—Internet Explorer 6 or higher, Mozilla Firefox 3.5 or higher, Google Chrome 9 or higher, Apple Safari version 4 or higher
  • Plug ins—Adobe Flash Player 10.1
  • Internet connection—1000 Kbps or higher (Our diagnostic tool will show you the internet connection speed to your computer. If the internet bandwidth is too low the program will be slow.)
  • Peripherals—speakers/headphones, microphone.

These are the recommended system requirements:

  • Browser—Internet Explorer 9, Mozilla Firefox 3.6, Google Chrome 10, Apple Safari 5
  • Plug ins—Adobe Flash Player 10.1 or higher
  • Internet connection—1.5 Mbps or higher (Our diagnostic tool will show you the internet connection speed to your computer.)
  • Peripherals—high quality headphones with built in microphone.

Note: Beyond Level 4 does not operate from a tablet.

How does Beyond Level 4 record and stream media?

Beyond Level 4 incorporates the recording of audio and streaming of media over the internet by using a Flash Media Server (FMS). FMS requires your computer to access Port 1935. Most personal computers will access the FMS without a problem. However, some company firewalls block Port 1935, which will prevent the course material from loading or functioning properly. Our diagnostic tool will help you determine whether Port 1935 is available on your machine.

What is the teaching methodology and what are the goals of Beyond Level 4?

Beyond Level 4 is designed as an independent study tool. High level listening and speaking skills are developed for communication in plain English in radiotelephony based and aviation related communication contexts.

How can individuals track their progress in Beyond Level 4?

You can track your progress using inbuilt features of the course, such as tick symbols that appear next to certain completed activities. Please refer to our sample courses and guided video tours. The video tour gives you a clear overview of the whole course (for either pilots or ATC), including a demonstration of its tracking features. 

How long should it take me to complete Beyond Level 4?

We strongly advise that you complete the course over a 12–16 week period. The course comprises eight units. Aim to complete each unit over a 2 week period. Each unit contains listening comprehension, language structure, pronunciation, vocabulary and speaking activities.

In Beyond Level 4 speaking activities I have to record my answers. How are the answers checked?

Speaking activities are submitted for review by your Beyond Level 4 assessor. The ICAO Language Proficiency Rating Scale is used as the basis for assessment. Individual feedback is forwarded to you following completion of units 1–4. When you have completed Unit 4, please email us at aviation.ops@rmit.edu.au to request assessment.

What accents are included in the Beyond Level 4 Listening training programme?

Accents include Australian, British and North American.

Does the speed of the recordings in the Beyond Level 4 training programme vary from slow to fast, or vice versa?

Speed is not modulated throughout the course; however, as the course progresses through each unit, scenarios become more complex and listening activities become longer.

Is there any partner work in the Beyond Level 4 training programme?

No. Partner work is not required as the course has been designed for independent study.

Will I be able to practise interacting in non-routine scenarios in the Beyond Level 4 training programme?

Yes. Each of the eight units is based on a different non-routine flight scenario.

After completing the Beyond Level 4 course, how much more likely am I to achieve Level 5 on my next test?

The Beyond Level 4 course provides challenging, true to life scenarios for pilots and air traffic controllers to improve their English language proficiency. As with any language learning, the outcomes are more likely to be achieved when as many opportunities as possible are taken to practise over an extended period of time.

Do you have any recommendations for how to study the Beyond Level 4 course?

We recommend you complete the units in order. Each unit has three sessions and it is best to complete each session in one sitting. However, it is not advised to complete more than one session in a sitting. It would be more valuable to leave a few days between sessions and review a session before moving on.