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3 Answers

Failed Instrument Written Test

Asked by: 9246 views , , ,
Instrument Rating

I have taken and failed the instrument written twice. First time I got a 68, second a 62. I took the second one only days after the first, so I realize my mistake. I was not getting your recommended 90% on practice tests either... more like 78/80%. Anyway, my goal is to ultimately become an airline pilot for a major and I'm worried about this bump in the road showing up on my records. I understand the FAA examiner only sees my passing score, but will these 2 failed scores follow me forever?

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3 Answers

  1. Paul on Jul 27, 2010

    You may be asked a question during an interview “Have you ever failed any written or practical checks?” However, just because you answer “yes” does not mean you won’t get the job. The key is spinning it to make you look good. You could answer, “I did struggle with my instrument ground school, I had a hard time understanding X but I worked hard passed my test and went on to receive a 95% on my ATP written.”

    You have to remember, there have been guys re-hired by airlines after much much worse issues. The interview board doesn’t want perfection, but they want to see that you are someone who works hard and learns from your mistakes and is passionate about being a pilot.

    Good luck, hang in there! Roosevelt said, “Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty… “

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  2. Matthew Waugh on Jul 29, 2010

    I agree with Paul’s answer, but not to be too much of a downer, it’s “easy” to address in the interview, harder to address if you don’t yet have an interview. Prior to recently the airlines said they would do a document search on you, but most did not, certainly at the “first airline job level”. A number of accidents have happened with pilots who had a number of failures on their record (and I have no opinion on if that makes them good pilots or not, I’m just saying). Congress got itself twisted around the issue and made noise.

    So airlines may get gun shy for a while, although in my opinion most of the regional airlines are playing Russian roulette with a fully loaded gun most of the time so this probably won’t faze them one bit.

    On the other hand looks like we’re going to get the 1500 hours for the right seat regulation in place at some point, and so in some future hiring frenzy the ability to fog a mirror and have accumulated 1500 hours will get you a flying job.

    Keep your nose clean, ace the rest of your checkrides (keep your knowledge test scores, send them in with the application, can’t hurt, can it?) have a fine aviation career and I’m sure you can get hired by an airline.

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  3. carpediem1 on Feb 01, 2012

    To study for the written there are programs like our software that do not teach you mindless memorization but instead teach you the material itself through time tested techniques. I have been personally teaching written exam classes for over 10 years and here is the result of my experience:
    Feel free to download our trial version and see if this teaching technique suits your needs.

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