Forums: Skydiving: Instructors:
New AFF requirements.

 


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 20, 2010, 6:50 PM
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New AFF requirements. Can't Post

I am very excited to hear something was done at the BOD meeting regarding rating requirements. Any updates or exact language of the changes would be appreciated. Thanks


diablopilot  (D License)

Feb 20, 2010, 7:54 PM
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in a nutshell jumpers with less than 500 jumps must hold a coach rating or foreign FAI recognized equivalent for 12 months before receiving and instructor rating.


Andy9o8  (D License)

Feb 21, 2010, 1:05 AM
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In reply to:
in a nutshell jumpers with less than 500 jumps must hold a coach rating or foreign FAI recognized equivalent for 12 months before receiving and instructor rating.

Is there a minimum number of coach jumps that must be made and/or any sort of currency requirement - or is it strictly amount of time holding the rating, without regard to actual jumps?


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Feb 21, 2010, 6:05 AM
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If the point was to require some form of instructional experience and/or time in sport before going for the AFF rating, this is a huge fail. Someone with a fat wallet could still go from first jump to AFF rated in less than a year.


dninness  (D 19617)

Feb 21, 2010, 7:36 AM
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In reply to:
If the point was to require some form of instructional experience and/or time in sport before going for the AFF rating, this is a huge fail. Someone with a fat wallet could still go from first jump to AFF rated in less than a year.

I think its a start. You're going to play hell trying to catch _every_ possibility like this.

How many "fat-wallet, FJC-to-AFF-I in year" jumpers do you think would actually exist? One or two in 5 years?

I think there are far more people who might fit into this category: AFF one year, make 100 jumps, coach rating next year while doing another 100 jumps, take AFF at the beginning of that 3rd season with ~200 jumps.. thats a far more likely scenario, and one that I think we've agreed is maybe not the most optimal.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 21, 2010, 7:50 AM
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Re: [dninness] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

The requirement should read. You must hold coach rating for 12 months AND have 500 jumps.

This new rule does nothing to stop the problem. A guy with 500 jumps wants to be a tandem I, he can take a coach class this weekend and be a TI the next with virtually no student contact. The whole purpose was to get a potential instructor 12 monthes of teaching, student interaction experience. Why are we so afraid of offending people? Good to see the coach rating requirement to c license and 200 jumps was shot down. No comment..


djmarvin  (D 22292)

Feb 21, 2010, 7:52 AM
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In reply to:
How many "fat-wallet, FJC-to-AFF-I in year" jumpers do you think would actually exist? One or two in 5 years?

I've seen at least a couple a year in the past several years that I have been an evaluator. Not all of them are 1 year wonders, but many of them fall in under the two year mark.


NYKid  (C 99999)

Feb 21, 2010, 8:08 AM
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

-1 for USPA

This will change nothing... I think USPA did this to shut people up. People are still going to be able to get a coach rating one weekend and a I rating the next and have no teaching skills. What does that do for our sport?

No matter how may jumps you have , You should have to hold a coach rating one year before getting a I.

HALF MEASURES EVAL NOTHING!!!!
That's what uspa did here... NOTHING as usual!!!!


(This post was edited by NYKid on Feb 21, 2010, 8:28 AM)


voilsb  (D 30581)

Feb 21, 2010, 8:39 AM
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In reply to:
I've seen at least a couple a year in the past several years that I have been an evaluator. Not all of them are 1 year wonders, but many of them fall in under the two year mark.
How many of them failed, because they lacked the experience to safely take students?


diablopilot  (D License)

Feb 21, 2010, 9:28 AM
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Re: [Andy9o8] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

The previous requirements have not changed, so one still needs to do the 10 coach jumps.


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Feb 21, 2010, 9:41 AM
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Re: [dninness] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
AFF one year, make 100 jumps, coach rating next year while doing another 100 jumps, take AFF at the beginning of that 3rd season with ~200 jumps.. thats a far more likely scenario, and one that I think we've agreed is maybe not the most optimal.

Not optimal? Maybe not in sheer jump numbers (although 6 hours of freefall usually = 300+ jumps), but way better than coach rating on Friday, AFF rating by the following weekend. At least those candidates have a couple years in the sport and hopefully a few coach jumps under their belt before going for the AFF rating.

I'm curious what the reasoning is behind the "or 500 jumps" exception, cuz I'm not seeing it.


Premier PhreeZone  (D License)
Moderator
Feb 21, 2010, 10:13 AM
Post #12 of 131 (4144 views)
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Re: [diablopilot] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

JP, that may be the letter of the rating but it does not explain how there are courses that occur that instructors go from nothing to AFF-I in 10-14 days unless the IE is counting the AFF course jumps as coach jumps also.

I just went and looked at the calendars of a few of the IE's and they have back to back courses or a single weekend off schedules. This is one of the issues that could have been addressed if done correctly by the BOD but its still an issue, now you've basically just raised the AFF requirement to 500 jumps or a year in a coach rating which s a good starting point but still not ideal.


Psychonaut  (C License)

Feb 21, 2010, 11:06 AM
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Not to be the devils advocate, nor would I like the idea of the 12 months first jump to affi, but if it happened I don't necessarily think it would be the worst thing to happen. 500 jumps in 12 months is a reasonable amount, and if you did that you would be incredibly current. Currency is very vital!


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 21, 2010, 2:34 PM
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I am still trying to figure out who this even effects. If you have 500 jumps you can take a coach course and an instructor course the next week. (NO CHANGE) If you have 100 jumps and a B license you get the coach rating, it will take a year to get the 6 hours of FF for AFF anyway. Either way will someone please tell me who this effects? Unless it is just a stepping stone.
If the change was coach rating for 12 months and 500 jumps total to be eligible for an instructional rating I would be happy with the change.
God forbid we entertain 200 jumps and a c license for coach. OMG..the world would come to an end, how dare anyone suggest that a new skydiver wait for 100 more jumps. Why dont we just make a coach rating the 100 jump reward, instead of a pie in the face, we can mail a coach rating and save a lot of time and effort.


tuffyjensen  (D 25830)

Feb 21, 2010, 3:26 PM
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

What is wrong with an AFFI needing 3 years in the sport the same as a TI. You gain so much more knowledge by being around the sport. I don't see how a person can be an effective instructor without that broad base of overall skydiving knowledge. It is not just about the flying skills, why do we want to risk the safety of our own up and coming members/friends. Probably wouldn't be a bad thing to require a coach to have a full year in the sport as well.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 21, 2010, 4:16 PM
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Re: [tuffyjensen] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Good Luck.


GLIDEANGLE  (D 30292)

Feb 21, 2010, 4:25 PM
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Interesting, this AFF-I change is not mentioned in the brief report of the meeting posted on the USPA site:
http://www.uspa.org/...9/Default.aspx#12659

I wonder if this change was reccommended by committee to the whole board, but maybe was defeated by the whole board. Of course the brief report may have just omitted it.


Premier TomNoonan  (D 24313)
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Feb 21, 2010, 4:33 PM
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Greetings to all,

I think I can help shed some light on the motion that passed and how it came to be. I would just like to say first thought that I don’t speak for USPA (only the Pres and Exec Director can do that), I am simply offering my personal opinions and observations on what occurred and what was voted on.

- Coach Rating increase to C license and 200 jumps

I brought this to the Safety and Training committee and it was discussed amongst the members of the committee, and the committee’s advisors. There were both pros and cons mentioned and in the end it was concluded that to raise the coach rating requirement at this time would put undue duress on smaller dropzones with SL/IAD programs that still rely on their jumpers to be able to earn a coach rating at 100 jumps and earn a SL/IAD at 200 jumps.

This issue isn’t dead in the water, to the contrary, I think a lot of good info came from meeting and I plan to bring it back to the Safety & Training committee in July after I get a chance to talk with some of the above mentioned DZOs and SL/IAD instructors. So while it didn’t pass committee today, that doesn’t mean it can’t pass in July 2010.

- AFF Rating Requirements Increase

I also brought this to the Safety and Training committee and it too was discussed at length. Prior to (and during the BOD meeting) I consulted a few of AFF I/Es that I know to get their thoughts and also brought up the petition created by Rich and the general industry concensus that we have to do something about the fly by night Coach to AFF one week courses.

I believed the intent of the petition was to address the issue of jumper seasoning, preventing the above mentioned one week Coach/AFF courses. No one disputes that, but then the question became “how much seasoning”. 12 months holding a coach rating makes sense for the newer jumper, but what about say, a member of Airspeed? Do they need to wait a year? The truth is that there are numerous jumpers out there with many hundreds or thousands of jumps that may not necessarily need to wait the full year because they were seasoned before they took the coach course. Add to that, as JP pointed out above, that there is still (has always been) a jump requirement between the Coach and AFF rating. That an I/E could or would skirt that, is a problem to address up stream with I/Es, not with the Coach candidates themselves.

So, if you saw my Motion form on this, you’d see all the scratched out corrections. I started it with 12 months between Coach and AFF unless you had 1000 jumps. But….through the discussion process, it became apparent that at 500 it had a 99.9% chance of passing the full board, which it did, but at 1000 jumps to divert the year requirement, it was any ones guess. And to be fair, I think most agreed at the meeting that once you get to between 500 and 1000 jumps, some form of seasoning has occurred. Can someone do 500 jumps in a year? Yes, of course, but that brings up a different issue, time in sport. Personally I am in favor of the idea of inserting a 3 year time in sport requirement for AFF Instructor candidates attending a course, but I believe that it needs to be a stand alone item/motion and based on the conversations I had in the meetings and in the hallways, we need more research and time to present it. I fully intend to present some time in sport requirement at the next BOD meeting if that is what the instructors in the industry want/demand.

So, if you wanted a bigger wait/more jumps, don’t give up hope. This meeting proved one very valuable thing. We can make changes. If it takes 2 meetings to get us where we need to be, I think that is an acceptable thing. Anyone know how many times the night jumps/D license issue has been going on.? Believe me I am with you guys on this.

- Tandem Rating Issue

Someone above mentioned that the AFF rule doesn’t prevent someone from going to a Coach Rating right to a Tandem Rating, and they are right. I left Tandem out of my motion for a reason though. I believe that any change we make regarding the USPA Tandem program should have the input of the tandem manufacturers. I am going to attempt to sit down with UPT, Strong and Jump Shack in April and discuss the concerns of the industry instructors and what recommended changes are being discussed and get their input. We need to work together with the manufacturers on tandem items like this.

Is it time to increase the overall jump numbers from 500 to 750 or 1000 before a tandem rating can be earned? Maybe it is. Should tandem rating candidates hold a coach rating for a year? Maybe they should, let’s see what UPT, Strong and Jump Shack say before we put it to a vote. Six months from now I can present the Safety and Training committee and the full board opinions from everyone involved here, and under that context, I believe we can make a noticeable difference in what is motioned and what gets passed.


So, that’s my thoughts. Is the 12 month wait with under 500 jumps the perfect solution? No, of course not. But is a step in the right direction and it shows that we can accomplish something and is a piece of the solution. Can we up the number to 750 or 1000 in July if we need to? Of course we can put up for another motion if that’s what we need to do.

In the interim, what we have done, is preventing the jumper with 5:59 of freefall and one year in the sport from going to a Coach course and AFF Course in a week. That is a good thing.

Beyond that, I think most people/instructors realize that it’s more of an issue up stream at the I/E level. What is the saying? “There aren’t bad students, only bad teachers.” This issue was also discussed and address in S&T and we are going to focus on tryin to improve the standards at the I/E level. That can then trickle down to the instructor level.

I know with these types of issues we will always have differing opinions to one degree or another, but I really don’t consider what happened at this meeting a failure, it was the first step in the right direction.

I’d also like to add that the petition was very helpful. Member turn out at these meetings is traditionally low, so it’s often hard to validate that an idea is represented by the masses. Having the petition and the numbers it represented, helped to validate that the concern was not isolated. The only downside to a petition is that it can't participate in discussions. JP was really one of only a handful of USPA Instructors at the S&T and plenary session meetings who is not a member of the BOD to actively participate and share his opinions, the good ones and the bad ones on this issue. That sort of dialogue is incredibly helpful. The next meeting is in Boston, the more instructors we have at the meeting, the more dialgue we can have. This is my invitation to you all, Boston is my home town. Come on up!

Okay, sorry for the marathon response, but I just wanted to share my thoughts in hopes it would clarify what happened.

If anyone would like to contact me directly with concerns and ideas, please feel free to send them to me at noonantommy@yahoo.com. Whatever I receive, I will bring to the next S&T meeting and advocate for.


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Feb 21, 2010, 4:46 PM
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Nice, thanks for the explanations Tom. Smile


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 21, 2010, 5:03 PM
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Tom,
You should run for public office, you are patient, calm, professional, and I am proud of the work you have done. I am also greatful to JP and his dedication, along with numerous other members.
I will be advocating as strong as I can for change and I will be at the Boston meeting. Let me know dates and locations.
I would also be more than happy to help you with your research.


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Feb 21, 2010, 9:01 PM
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Thanks so much for posting that Tom.

I'm glad we have some movement in the right direction and hopefully it'll be a good start.

Personally I think that there should be a higher bar with the option to have S&TA sign off for people who don't meet the requirements. Some people are just better at some things than other people.


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Feb 21, 2010, 9:45 PM
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As one of the "handful" at the meeting;
Tom took the bull by the horns (and dealt with the other kind of bull) very well. He was the first to step up in several instances.
Although it's mentioned elsewhere, I'd like to publically thank Tom for his (several) safety and instructor-related motions and his willingness to openly discuss things.

It should also be said that JP fought like a very calm, quiet dog, and he pointed out more than one inconsistency with certain issues before the board, one of which required an amendment the day following its passage.
Always a pleasure to hang w/you, JP.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 21, 2010, 10:04 PM
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Keep them honest fellas, good job.


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Feb 22, 2010, 7:41 AM
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Thanks for your hard work JP.


darthur2000  (D 30384)

Feb 22, 2010, 8:19 AM
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Re: [TomNoonan] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Time in sport is a meaningless criteria as it's currently defined. The time is counted from when you make your first jump which is silly. Here' a scenario:

Person A went through a FJC in January 2008, gets a Coach rating in the spring of 2009, and gets their D-license in spring 2010 (500 jumps, 6+ hours FF etc). That person must wait until January 2011 to get a TI rating (and AFF-I if you use the current "time in sport" definition).

Person B makes a single tandem jump on a dare from a college classmate in 1990. 18-years later they go through the same FJC as person A in January 2008, gets a Coach rating at the same time in the spring of 2009, and gets their D-license in spring 2010 (500 jumps, 6+ hours FF etc). Under the current system Person B would have sufficient "time in sport" to get either rating simply because they made that one tandem jump years ago.

Does doing a single tandem jump and then coming back years or decades latter really make that much of a difference?

If the USPA and manufacturers are going to have a "time in sport" criteria then it really should be time as a licensed skydiver.


Heatmiser  (C License)

Feb 22, 2010, 10:44 AM
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I'm sorry for the daft question, but since the thread title says new AFF requirements, does the 12 months between coach and I effect S/L as well? The title seems to suggest it won't, but I couldn't tell from the posts of those that attended the meeting.Blush


Premier slotperfect  (D 13014)

Feb 22, 2010, 12:51 PM
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Re: [darthur2000] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

The one year clock starts when the Coach Rating is issued. From the date the Coach Rating is issued, a Candidate must wait one year (and complete the other experience requirements on the AFF Proficiency Card) before he can attend the AFFIRC. It's a "time as a Coach" requirement, not a "time in sport" requirement.


Premier slotperfect  (D 13014)

Feb 22, 2010, 12:53 PM
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The new requirement applies to time between Coach Rating and AFFIRC only; the other rating requirements remain the same.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 23, 2010, 7:17 AM
Post #29 of 131 (1791 views)
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Re: [slotperfect] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Why not make that a hard rule instead of under 500 jumps?

Simple: You must hae 500 jumps, 6 Hours ff, and a coach rting for one year. Is that asking to much of someone who will be responsible for students lives?

This is the new politically correct me.


hchunter614  (B 30368)

Feb 23, 2010, 12:52 PM
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This requirement will not take effect until the next printing of the IRM.


NickDG  (D 8904)

Feb 23, 2010, 7:29 PM
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The "rule" should be apprentice under an 20 year Instructor veteran until he/she deems you ready to touch a student. Apprenticing under me would take you about 5 years, and I'd still be forgetting to tell you some things . . .

NickD Smile


matthewcline  (D 21585)

Feb 23, 2010, 7:32 PM
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Under your mentoring rule, many would learn and improve, I would do it!

Matt


NickDG  (D 8904)

Feb 23, 2010, 7:53 PM
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Re: [matthewcline] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the complement . . .

The fly in the ointment would be after I gave you a five year PHD in student instruction you'd earn the same 20 bucks a jump as a 90 day moke wonder!

NickD Unimpressed


matthewcline  (D 21585)

Feb 23, 2010, 8:09 PM
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I could live with it, I don't do this for a "living", my other pay checks provide that.Wink

Matt


NickDG  (D 8904)

Feb 23, 2010, 8:19 PM
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There's the second fly in the ointment.

If you didn't commit to teaching skydiving full time I wouldn't take you on.

Part time skydiving instructor always sounds like part time brain surgeon to me . . .

NickD Smile


diablopilot  (D License)

Feb 23, 2010, 8:43 PM
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In reply to:
Thanks for the complement . . .

The fly in the ointment would be after I gave you a five year PHD in student instruction you'd earn the same 20 bucks a jump as a 90 day moke wonder!

NickD Unimpressed

It's the sad truth.


matthewcline  (D 21585)

Feb 24, 2010, 8:33 AM
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Yeah I can see that, every weekend or every other weekend is really regular, but not daily. I guess "Daily" equals full time. But even if I was Daily I still have income that allows me to live comfortable with the long stretches of bad weather that happen.

Matt


loudtom  (D 23115)

Feb 24, 2010, 9:45 AM
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Quit Bragging already will ya...Wink


matthewcline  (D 21585)

Feb 24, 2010, 10:43 AM
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Blush

Matt


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Feb 24, 2010, 8:38 PM
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Re: [darthur2000] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Agreed!

USPA should also require a list of coaching contacts before issuing a a "continuous" coach rating. That list should be long enough that any candidate will have to spend a few weeks - or months - (coaching junior jumpers) between his coach course and any other rating course.


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Feb 24, 2010, 8:41 PM
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Funny!
That reminds me of the time Don Balsch referred to two-instructor AFF as an apprenticeship program for newly-minted AFF Instructors.
And the concept makes perfect sense, because newly-minted AFF Instructors should have to do a few dozen cling-on jumps before they allowed to do early release dives with students.
Those cling-on dives should be done with a senior AFF Instructor on the other side, so he/she can coach the newbie instructor on the finer points of teaching freefall skills.


tdog  (D 28800)

Feb 24, 2010, 8:59 PM
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Re: [TomNoonan] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
I fully intend to present some time in sport requirement at the next BOD meeting if that is what the instructors in the industry want/demand.

With all due respect, as an AFFI, someone who has evaluated coaches, and someone who loves seeing students learn....

Time in sport = meaningless
Number of jumps = meaningless

These are metrics that do not give any indication to the quality of the instructor candidate.

Instead I would advocate a difficult written test, similar to the FAA exams for riggers - done on a computerized platform with tons of questions for the computer to randomly select. There are plenty of commercial testing facilities who do these types of exams for organizations for a small fee, internationally, for many different customers. (I took one for my LEED AP rating and had 10 places to choose from in a network of testing facilities)...

That would determine how "seasoned" the instructor candidate is for "book knowledge". If someone can pass the test with 10 days in the sport, then great - they did all their homework and have the knowledge to teach! (And hopefully have the discipline to not BS answers but instead get help from people that know, should they be encountered with a question they don't know... It just happened last week to me, as an FAA rigger and AFFI - a student stumped me so I had to research the question.)

Once the candidate passes the written - then they can take an instructor course, for which the USPA would have very strict expectations of their examiners. Each examiner would have to register their course with the USPA, and the USPA can send a S&TA or other official to the course to audit the course directors to make sure the USPA criteria is met. Part of that criteria is teaching ability, the other flying ability. And I support 25 coach jumps with real students prior to the AFF course (with a waiver given to those who come from a small DZ and simply cannot find that many students).... And, once someone gets their AFFI - they should be on a 25 jump probation where they must be partnered with another AFFI. (Our DZ does this as a management policy and it works well).

So, in recap - numbers are meaningless (my opinion). Why not test for skill and knowledge instead???


(This post was edited by tdog on Feb 24, 2010, 9:05 PM)


stratostar  (Student)

Feb 25, 2010, 6:06 AM
Post #43 of 131 (1415 views)
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Quote:
Time in sport = meaningless

It always cracks me up when low timers like you make this claim.


Reginald  (D 28162)

Feb 25, 2010, 6:38 AM
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Okay the time in sport issue keeps coming up. This post is not directed ant anyone specifically but the "time in sport" discussion generally. I'm literally taking an old post of mine and re-posting it.

--------------------------------------------------

So which is better?

A. 500 jumps and 2 years and 6 months in the sport but at DZ 52 weekends a year
B. 500 jumps and 5 years in the sport but at DZ every OTHER weekend (26 weekends a year)

The problem with time “in sport” doesn’t necessarily mean it’s time applied TO the sport. In the example above both A and B have the exact equal amount of time applied TO the sport, assuming they only time they apply to the sport is while at the DZ (which is probably a reasonable assumption for everyone but the handful of DZ.com fanatics).

Does one gain knowledge by osmosis if they are at a day job, home with the kids, or focusing on something else? Does this knowledge only come from being at the DZ? Likely it is neither extreme.

Probably the reason for jump numbers or freefall time being the primary method of measuring experience is because they are the most reliable measure of time actually applied TO the sport. Is this the perfect system, of course not. Would adding time in sport be beneficial? Possibly but likely the collinearity with jump numbers is such that it makes it appropriate to use only jump numbers instead.

Personally, for USPA - AFFI’s I’d rather see a requirement for “X” number of coached jumps than I would time in sport. It’s more likely to be beneficial than number of years since a person’s first jump, or time since receiving a coaches rating.

Of course opinions vary…


tdog  (D 28800)

Feb 25, 2010, 6:52 AM
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Time in sport = meaningless

It always cracks me up when low timers like you make this claim.

As long as I don't take this as a personal attack, I counter with another non-personal attack:

"It always cracks me up when old farts like you are so stuck in their ways."Tongue

You are right... With less than 1000 AFF instructor jumps (but still "re-earned my D licence on AFF instructor jumps working with students") - I consider myself a younger skydiver. I am always learning. Unfortunately, in the 6 years I have been jumping, I have seen a lot of people leave the sport because of money, lack of interest, grumpy people, etc... Thus, more people at the DZ are newer jumpers than me than people who were my mentors when I had 25 jumps. In fact, 3 of the tandem instructors were in my FJC (one I taught years ago, god forbid when I was even younger) and do great jobs, infact are some of the best at making sure students have fun and are safe, 2 of which now are AFF instructors ...

However, I thought I gave a pretty complete alternative to jump numbers and time in sport by giving detailed solutions including very difficult written quizzes taken at a 3rd party testing facility where "friendships" and "perks" can't get you a rating in the "good 'olde boys club"... The questions in those tests would require someone who has knowledge of the sport. Either learned by time in the sport OR doing intense homework.

I still contend that time in sport = (almost completely) meaningless... HOWEVER - what is learned in that time is MEANINGFUL! I know some 10 year veterans who know very little because they simply are not interested in learning. I had a FJC student a few weeks back who had every question I could ask him answered correctly before I taught him anything, including complex questions like, "say you pull your reserve handle and it gets stuck. How else can you pull your reserve?" He devoted his time to learning prior to $ for FJC and proves time in sport does not equal knowledge as he technically had 1 hour in the sport when he was getting everything right in a quiz.

However, I will agree, until someone sees some bad injuries or worse, sometimes people feel invincible and take risks. That is where time in the sport builds character.


(This post was edited by tdog on Feb 25, 2010, 7:03 AM)


tdog  (D 28800)

Feb 25, 2010, 6:53 AM
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In reply to:

Personally, for USPA - AFFI’s I’d rather see a requirement for “X” number of coached jumps than I would time in sport. It’s more likely to be beneficial than number of years since a person’s first jump, or time since receiving a coaches rating.

Of course opinions vary…

Amen.


stratostar  (Student)

Feb 25, 2010, 7:08 AM
Post #47 of 131 (1386 views)
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Re: [Reginald] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

How about someone who say has done:

25 years in sport, 1500 jumps and spent most every weekend on the dz wearing every hat.

vs

500 jump wonder with one year in the sport spending most weekends on the dz and wearing only the basic hats, packer, jumper.

This topic always makes me think of people like Nate Gilbert who died doing something "we" learned a long time ago. We see the flash in the pans come and go, they show up hit it hard a few years and then their gone, some leave to other sports or life callings, some leave in body bags.

In the last five years I've seen a number of flash in the pans who thought they were the hot shit on the dz, racked up jump numbers and collected ratings in a very short time, some of those retards were kept out of the tandem or aff business because they didn't meet the time requirements and that was a good thing because their actions proved they were not ready, sure they might have been able to pass the course, but that don't mean they have any business teaching or working with students.

There are also a lot of people who forge logbooks to get the jump numbers they need, someone just told me the other day they were thinking about using their base jump numbers (forged into a logbook as skydives) in order to go get a tandem rating now that they have 3 years in the sport but not the jumps.


timmyfitz  (D License)

Feb 25, 2010, 7:16 AM
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Quote:
Time in sport = meaningless

Quote:
I still contend that time in sport = (almost completely) meaningless... HOWEVER - what is learned in that time is MEANINGFUL!

Meaningless or almost meaningless? Don't start back peddling now.

Quote:
I had a FJC student a few weeks back who had every question I could ask him answered correctly before I taught him anything, including complex questions like, "say you pull your reserve handle and it gets stuck. How else can you pull your reserve?" He devoted his time to learning prior to $ for FJC and proves time in sport does not equal knowledge as he technically had 1 hour in the sport when he was getting everything right in a quiz.

So he would be qualified to teach/instruct? He past the written/oral exam and time in sport is meaningless.


kmills0705  (D 21696)

Feb 25, 2010, 7:26 AM
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I fully intend to present some time in sport requirement at the next BOD meeting if that is what the instructors in the industry want/demand.

With all due respect, as an AFFI, someone who has evaluated coaches, and someone who loves seeing students learn....

Time in sport = meaningless
Number of jumps = meaningless

These are metrics that do not give any indication to the quality of the instructor candidate.

Instead I would advocate a difficult written test, similar to the FAA exams for riggers - done on a computerized platform with tons of questions for the computer to randomly select. There are plenty of commercial testing facilities who do these types of exams for organizations for a small fee, internationally, for many different customers. (I took one for my LEED AP rating and had 10 places to choose from in a network of testing facilities)...

That would determine how "seasoned" the instructor candidate is for "book knowledge". If someone can pass the test with 10 days in the sport, then great - they did all their homework and have the knowledge to teach! (And hopefully have the discipline to not BS answers but instead get help from people that know, should they be encountered with a question they don't know... It just happened last week to me, as an FAA rigger and AFFI - a student stumped me so I had to research the question.)

Once the candidate passes the written - then they can take an instructor course, for which the USPA would have very strict expectations of their examiners. Each examiner would have to register their course with the USPA, and the USPA can send a S&TA or other official to the course to audit the course directors to make sure the USPA criteria is met. Part of that criteria is teaching ability, the other flying ability. And I support 25 coach jumps with real students prior to the AFF course (with a waiver given to those who come from a small DZ and simply cannot find that many students).... And, once someone gets their AFFI - they should be on a 25 jump probation where they must be partnered with another AFFI. (Our DZ does this as a management policy and it works well).

So, in recap - numbers are meaningless (my opinion). Why not test for skill and knowledge instead???

Just because someone has the knowledge doesn't mean they have the ability. Part of the AFF I course evaluates a candidates ability to teach.

When it comes down to it there are no magic formulas. If you have x number of jumps over x amount of years then you will be a good AFF I. The fact is each person has different knowledge, experience and abilities. The AFF I course directors should be evaluating each individual based on a combination of knowledge, skills and ability to teach. If there are "problem" AFF I's then it must go up to the AFF I/E that passed them.

I personally believe that the requirement for coach rating for a year prior to AFF is a good step. It was this way in the past when we had jump master to Instructor rating. Then they have some experience with working with students and actually teaching.

I believe the BOD was trying their best to please everyone. That simply won't happen. I think they should be applauded for hearing our voices and taking the steps to make changes that will ultimately better our solution.

Were the decisions the best? Well, that will depend on who you ask.


Reginald  (D 28162)

Feb 25, 2010, 7:56 AM
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In reply to:
How about someone who say has done:

25 years in sport, 1500 jumps and spent most every weekend on the dz wearing every hat.

vs

500 jump wonder with one year in the sport spending most weekends on the dz and wearing only the basic hats, packer, jumper.

Interesting point. In my example I intentionally chooses a neutral example not one biased to an extreme. The flip side of your example is:

A: Old timer that has been jumping for 25 years and has 1500 jumps. He shows up to the DZ a few times a year, flying some old school box man in his Wonderhog rig with an F111 canopy and flat packs.

B: A newer jumper that has been at the DZ every weekend for 5 year has 1500 jumps, has 15 hours in the tunnel with Airspeed, has a Sr. riggers ticket, 750 4 way jumps has been to nationals several times, has been to big way camps and been on multiple 100+ ways, can fly a solid mantis plus and boxman and is a respectable free flyer.

Pointing to extremes speaks little to the bulk of the population we're discussing.

In reply to:
In the last five years I've seen a number of flash in the pans who thought they were the hot shit on the dz, racked up jump numbers and collected ratings in a very short time, some of those retards were kept out of the tandem or aff business because they didn't meet the time requirements and that was a good thing because their actions proved they were not ready, sure they might have been able to pass the course, but that don't mean they have any business teaching or working with students.

Well this brings up another interesting point and that is competence. I’ll point it directly at TI and AFFI’s. I’ve seen plenty of instructors with a rating, which means they’ve passed some minimal proficiency level, that if I owned a DZ I would not hire to work with students. Some of these are “less experienced” but many of them are “old timers” too. Just because someone posses a rating does not mean they automatically get work. A rating is one of many factors that a DZO should and likely does consider when looking at hiring people to work with students.


In the context of the conversation about AFFI requirements I personally think a 3 year in sport requirement is fine which synchs it up with the TI rating. Likely this will affect very few people anyway. I also think that a minimum number of coach jumps is better than "time since coach rating" as this speaks more directly to working with students as opposed to watching some period of time go by on a calender.


tdog  (D 28800)

Feb 25, 2010, 8:15 AM
Post #51 of 131 (1407 views)
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In reply to:
How about someone who say has done:

25 years in sport, 1500 jumps and spent most every weekend on the dz wearing every hat.

vs

500 jump wonder with one year in the sport spending most weekends on the dz and wearing only the basic hats, packer, jumper.

Which one of these people opened their ears more, learned from their peers, asked tons of questions, went to many DZs for training camps from AZ Airspeed and others, jumped with students as a coach every chance they could, and was passionate to learn? If both people had the same exact personality - then the 25 year person might have more knowledge, but the one year guy probably would have enough knowledge to be a good instructor (especially if he worked REAL hard for it). In that case, yes time matters, but only because both people were good students... Time in sport however is still meaningless if the 25 year guy in the sport did not give a crap while wearing the hats - and I would even say, 1500 jumps in 25 years is not enough to be an aggressive flyer when needed for an out of control student, especially if half of those are tandems. Currency (and belly flying coaching/training) is much more important outside of the aircraft when words and teaching don't matter any more but it comes down to one thing only - flying your body.

Quote:
In the last five years I've seen a number of flash in the pans who thought they were the hot shit on the dz, racked up jump numbers and collected ratings in a very short time, some of those retards were kept out of the tandem or aff business because they didn't meet the time requirements and that was a good thing because their actions proved they were not ready, sure they might have been able to pass the course, but that don't mean they have any business teaching or working with students.
And in the last five years I have seen some new skydivers who inspire me to be a better instructor, are great people, and have become great instructors with only a few years in the sport. I also have seen some guys I know will die in this sport, and I am not afraid to tell them, and I would never let them be on the other side of my student in an AFF level 3... And I don't think the DZO would either...


Quote:
There are also a lot of people who forge logbooks to get the jump numbers they need, someone just told me the other day they were thinking about using their base jump numbers (forged into a logbook as skydives) in order to go get a tandem rating now that they have 3 years in the sport but not the jumps.

I agree with all of those things. DZOs need to pick their staff carefully - ratings don't equal jobs. Other instructors need to mentor people they see living on the edge. Forging logbooks = fraud when ratings are concerned, thus course directors should be checking references to see if the canidate recieves recommendations from their peers...


If you are counting on years in the sport and jump numbers to protect the general public from these bad candidates, then you are weeding out the flowers in the garden too. Use other techniques to weed out just the weeds - such as the very demanding and more difficult evaluation criteria I posted a few posts prior, that test for skill and knowledge, not time in sport.

Quote:
In the last five years I've seen a number of flash in the pans who thought they were the hot shit on the dz

They soon would learn they are not the hot shit when they are required to take a very detailed exam and fail it.


tdog  (D 28800)

Feb 25, 2010, 8:24 AM
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So he would be qualified to teach/instruct? He past the written/oral exam and time in sport is meaningless.

Yes and no.

That very same student, who I taught to pack, taught someone else to pack and did a good job of it. So yes, he is qualified to teach some things. Is he AFFI ready? No, because he does fly good enough and would fail evaluation. He also would not pass the ground evals for a coach rating or AFFI, because while he knows the answers, he is not comfortable enough with them to teach them effectively and smoothly... He will need a lot more practice. However, if he studied more, and keeps jumping a lot, and practices a lot, he will be ready for an instructor rating younger than most people.


(This post was edited by tdog on Feb 25, 2010, 8:25 AM)


tdog  (D 28800)

Feb 25, 2010, 8:31 AM
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In reply to:
How about someone who say has done:

25 years in sport, 1500 jumps and spent most every weekend on the dz wearing every hat.

vs

500 jump wonder with one year in the sport spending most weekends on the dz and wearing only the basic hats, packer, jumper.

One other thing I thought about - the yin and yang of life. What one person does well, someone else does not... While a younger jumper, who may be more than able to outfly and out teach most other instructors at the DZ can be a great instructor and should not be denied the rating because of time in sport - other people bring other experiences such as length of time in the sport and should eventually work with the student too. Diversity brings knowledge. By no means am I not valuing the perspectives of all instructors when I suggest time in sport is not an important metric for instructor qualifications.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 25, 2010, 8:37 AM
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Quote:
I also think that a minimum number of coach jumps is better than "time since coach rating" as this speaks more directly to working with students as opposed to watching some period of time go by on a calender.
Quote:

If they are to remain current after one year they must have made 15 or 20, whatever it is, coach jumps...in theory.


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Feb 25, 2010, 9:32 AM
Post #55 of 131 (1380 views)
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In reply to:
Quote:
I also think that a minimum number of coach jumps is better than "time since coach rating" as this speaks more directly to working with students as opposed to watching some period of time go by on a calender.
Quote:

If they are to remain current after one year they must have made 15 or 20, whatever it is, coach jumps...in theory.

To keep a Coach rating current, 15 Coaching Jumps and one FJC in 12 months is required.


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Feb 25, 2010, 9:44 AM
Post #56 of 131 (1378 views)
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Jumps per year is a ratio that might be more meaningful than time in sport or jump numbers alone.

I did my first tandem in 2005 but didn't start jumping actively until a couple of years later. I don't consider those couple of years as time in the sport because it really wasn't.

I think that there needs to be some hard rules with a waiver process that's not governed sole by the I/E because as far as I've gathered from all these threads, the process becomes corrupted if we rely on single people. Not that all people are corrupt but the credibility of the system is undermined when one I/E doesn't follow the rules. For example (making these up!) 5 years in the sport and at least 150 jumps per year to be an AFFI candidate but your S&TA (or someone of authority) could get it done sooner in the case of smaller DZs where they don't have to people to wait that long or someone is just really good and deserves to be in the program.

For the record, the "flash in the pan" 5 year wonderkind that you guys keep referring to were taught by the generation before them, what does that say about teaching methods?

Please don't send me PMs saying I should be reading and not posting, I got those in the last thread, My view (as a newly minted Coach) of the system is from a different perspective which and is no less valid. After all, it's just an opinion and I'd much prefer to get reasons why it's not valid from the experienced people rather than just wonder to myself. I'm learning from this too.


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Feb 25, 2010, 10:07 AM
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Quote:
Jumps per year is a ratio that might be more meaningful than time in sport or jump numbers alone.

This is true, yet bear in mind that the standard needs to apply to dropzones with multiple turbine aircraft and dropzones that can barely support a 182 at the same time. 15 coach jumps a year is a no-brainer in Elsinore whereas at a place in the midwest, it might be somewhat more difficult.

As identified by several, the I/E process needs to be more carefully examined. One bad I/E does tend to spoil it for everyone.


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Feb 25, 2010, 11:21 AM
Post #58 of 131 (1345 views)
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Your written exam mirrors the entry level exam for earning a Strong Tandem Instructor rating.
By insisting that candidates order the course package (a month) ahead of time and read through it and arrive with the written exam 3/4 completed in pencil, Tandem Examiners can save everyone a couple of days in the classroom.

Strong Enterprises feels so strongly about pre-course reading that they tell Examiners to send candidates home - empty-handed - if they arrive without attempting the written exam.

Similarly, candidates need to pass a written exam before earning a learners' permit to drive busses or air brakes.


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Feb 25, 2010, 11:21 AM
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What do you think about the idea of having an individual or DZ waiver allowing a person to be admitted into the AFFI program without the requisite experience? In the case of a small 182 DZ, the ratio could be adjusted for that (those) DZs. One way of doing it might be to factor in the number of jumps/loads per year at the AFFI candidate's home DZ? I think some real thought needs to go into what factors are important in gauging people's state of "seasoning" (sounds tasty!). That's something I don't really have the experience to come up with but it seems to me that rules should be made that are going to be basically right and that a waiver process should be included because some people really are just better and you want those people to be teaching.


stratostar  (Student)

Feb 25, 2010, 11:24 AM
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Quote:
For the record, the "flash in the pan" 5 year wonderkind that you guys keep referring to were taught by the generation before them, what does that say about teaching methods?

Oh no they were not, they were trained by by the new breed who have the same attitude they display.


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Feb 25, 2010, 11:40 AM
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Who trained them? There seems to me to be a disconnect when people say that the AFFIs are bad. At some point we went form allegedly good instruction to poor instruction, when and why? I ask that because I'm curious to know what changed.


kmills0705  (D 21696)

Feb 25, 2010, 11:48 AM
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In reply to:
Quote:
Jumps per year is a ratio that might be more meaningful than time in sport or jump numbers alone.

This is true, yet bear in mind that the standard needs to apply to dropzones with multiple turbine aircraft and dropzones that can barely support a 182 at the same time. 15 coach jumps a year is a no-brainer in Elsinore whereas at a place in the midwest, it might be somewhat more difficult.

As identified by several, the I/E process needs to be more carefully examined. One bad I/E does tend to spoil it for everyone.

Thank you DSE and thank you BOD who realize that there are a lot of small Cessna DZ's in existence today.

And you can't have different standards for different dropzones. That takes away the meaning of "standard".


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Feb 25, 2010, 1:42 PM
Post #63 of 131 (1289 views)
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In reply to:
What do you think about the idea of having an individual or DZ waiver allowing a person to be admitted into the AFFI program without the requisite experience? In the case of a small 182 DZ, the ratio could be adjusted for that (those) DZs. One way of doing it might be to factor in the number of jumps/loads per year at the AFFI candidate's home DZ? I think some real thought needs to go into what factors are important in gauging people's state of "seasoning" (sounds tasty!). That's something I don't really have the experience to come up with but it seems to me that rules should be made that are going to be basically right and that a waiver process should be included because some people really are just better and you want those people to be teaching.

Two initial reactions to your idea;
-If waivers become "standard" fare for small DZ's, then waivers become "standard" as opposed to waiving the rules for special circumstances.

-If waivers for small DZs become somewhat "standard" then we've effectively lowered the standard to (probably) lower than it was in the first place.

IMO, there is simply no way to counter the throughput differences between places like Eloy, Perris, Elsinore, etc and "Skydive Kansais." It's easy to say "well, then the folks at Skydive Kansas should plan on spending a coupla weeks in the winter time at Eloy, Perris, Elsinore (wheverever) getting their ratings." In practical terms, this sport simply doesn't have the compensation to make that idea work.

The standard is low enough that everyone can play, high enough that it takes effort to achieve, and if someone wants to go above/beyond the standard (like Skydive University decided to), then more power to them.


NickDG  (D 8904)

Feb 25, 2010, 2:17 PM
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I've made my views known on this before so won't go into it again other than to say this . . .

The old way of certifying new AFF candidates, while not perfect, worked. Three people running it and traveling the country gave it standardization. The kid at Skydive California had to meet the same standard as the kid at Skydive Ozarks.

And the fact so many failed candidates would come on here after busting a course complaining of how unfair it was proved it was working. Funny, but you don't hear anyone complaining anymore.

That alone should make you very afraid . . .

NickD Smile


stratostar  (Student)

Feb 25, 2010, 3:34 PM
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Re: [danielcroft] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

My comments are across the board for all ratings when I talk about "flash in the pans" there people who think because they can bust out 500 or more jumps in a season and get a few ratings they fucking know it all and disregard solid advice from seasoned skydivers rated and non rated, who have more time in the sport then FNG's have spent on the planet.

The end result is people get killed, maybe you should go look the tandem master death in Indiana about 5 years ago and read that report. One of those people involved was part of a crew who all thought they knew it all and just the type I'm talking about, and good number of jumpers with twice the time in the sport as me, along with myself and a number of others kept calling out the shit we were seeing and got blown off. The person killed (the TM) and myself sat in the parking lot about two weeks before this happened and we were talking about all the shit and he said, yea if the shit don't change soon someone is going to die, little did he know it would be him and not those he was speaking of, just two week later.

It's more about attitude then anything, I've been jumping for 27 years, I spent 12+ more years before my first jump living and working on a number of DZ's, I started packing parachutes in 4th grade along with a number of other things clear up until my first jump. I learned about catching cutways in 1978 live and in person watching someone go in from doing that, it was the trend back then for a short time, till we got wise that was not a real smart idea, yea I saw a lot of people get away with it too.

There is whole host of things i learned about in my early years involved in this sport, such as an beech 18 (Hawaii 1981 85-hotel) out of CG and flown by a lowtime pilot can kill a whole load of very good friends or like at my second home dz once I started to jump was skies west, in loveland co, maybe you can look up and read about the commuter plane that rear ended (mid air) our 206 and killed a couple people. I learned that doing crew with mis matched canopies on demo will kill you, see the wheatridge co demo reports from 1984 or 85.

I could just keep on going on with a number of things over the years and friends I've known who went west, there is just somethings you can only learn in this sport by putting in your time and not by signing your check book for a rating or reading it in a fucking sims manual.

So yea I find it funny as hell when people say and think time in this sport is meaningless, come back in 20 years if your still around and we'll see if your tune is changed.

I also find it funny as hell that we have so many retards who discount the good advice of people like Sparky, Nick DG, Al Frisby (RIP) and a whole host of other folks across the country, because they are "oldtimers" those people have forgot more about this sport then you can learn in 20 years.

And no I'am not surprised there are a number of people posting here who don't understand what the fuck I'm talking about.

(as a side note, no I don't know it all, I do know one thing though, and that is you will never know it all in this sport and the day you stop learning something new in this sport is the day you should walk away!)


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Feb 26, 2010, 1:04 PM
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Re: [stratostar] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

DSE - Then the number of loads flown per year or the type of aircraft would define the difference and there would be two models. I'm thinking something like the 182 DZ has to do AFF with at least one certified AFFI and one who passed under the waiver. The waiver person would fit into the apprenticeship model to the AFFI. I know that opens a can of worms (throughly discussed in the AFF thread) about reserve and main sides not always staying where they should based on what happens on the dive. The waiver AFFI still has the same training as the AFFI just not the experience required to fly single AFF or whatever the limitation is. I can't say what that limitation should be because I don't have enough experience but I would expect that you guys could. Forget what we've got now for a minute and say what makes sense. For the record, I don't think that it's a problem that the waiver becomes the standard if that's what's required. There's never going to be a perfect system but I think there's the possibility for a better system.

Stratostar - I do listen to the experienced people around DZ.com. I read the posts and try to understand the points being made. They don't always make sense to me, sometimes I just don't get it and sometimes I just don't agree. I haven't been in the sport for long and certainly don't understand (in some cases) why things are done a certain way. Some of the examples you give are instances where I don't need to see it first hand to understand why. Those lessons have been learned the hard way by the people who came before me. We can learn from other people's mistakes if we listen (as you said) and actually take heed.

In other cases however, things have changed and bemoaning that change isn't a constructive solution. Back in the day, when 3 people ran all the courses, there probably weren't as many people actually trying to take the course(s). Now that we have many more skydivers, I don't know if it would be practical to have only 3 people run every course. So what's the solution? Seems like there should be a practical and effective way to evaluate I/Es if the problem is there and I think that making the AFFI/Coach/TI/etc. ratings harder to get will help people's attitudes.

If I'm here another 20 years, I hope you are too so you can call me a noob politely again then too. Wink


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 26, 2010, 2:20 PM
Post #67 of 131 (1141 views)
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Re: [danielcroft] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

I just cant buy into different standards across the board. We are governed by the United States Parachute Association. We should be able to come up with what a skydiver must possess and demonstrate to be responsible for another human life, (wether it be AFF, Tandem, IAD, Static) If you people, are tying to sell the fact that becasue a DZ is a small cesna dropzone, that we must lower the standards or actually keep them as low as possible so as to give instructors the opportunity to make DZO's money, I can not be objective. One AFF jump out of a cesna in bumfuck Dropzone is no different than one AFF Jump at a busy DZ. They both have the possiblilty of death to the student or instructor. Further, why would we not want our instructors to be the most qualified instructors that we can produce, thus limiting the possibility of said death.
A waivered AFFI is like saying, okay you do not meet the qualifications but go ahead give it a shot. Not to mention the law suit that will come out of a drop zone that provides waivered instructors vs full fledged instructors. I can see the arguement now. I think this problem boils down to those making the decisions and what motivates their decisions to keep the requirements where they are. You need to look at each BOD members and their background and see how they vote. Which brings up another completely seperate topic as to why a DZO can be on the board to begin with, but I do not want to throw the thread into a tizzy and get a hundred PM's. The unmentioned fact: A DZO needs as many staff as possible to make as much money as possible. So why would they vote to increase requirements if it will reduce their staff? C'mon this is as much a political discussion as it is a common sense one. Safety and Training did not bring forth some suggestions because they felt they would not pass the board. So, hence the viscious cycle. and no I am not bashing DZO's just saying the conflict is possible. See for yourselves and make your own decision.


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Feb 26, 2010, 4:22 PM
Post #68 of 131 (1110 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

I understood the reasoning behind having some way to accommodate small DZs is that there just aren't enough people around to have very strict requirements on jump numbers/time in sport/whatever makes sense to enable some small DZs to have sufficient instructional staff. We can argue about the principals or possible ethical considerations but I was only trying to suggest a practical solution to the issue that had been raised by more than a few people regarding smaller DZs.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 26, 2010, 6:20 PM
Post #69 of 131 (1076 views)
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Re: [danielcroft] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

that wasnt to you I just hit reply on the last post sorry...just an overall opinion which, nobody really gives a shit about anyway. sorry


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Feb 26, 2010, 6:25 PM
Post #70 of 131 (1075 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Fair enough, no hard feelings, I was just responding to the general question out there.

I think we'd be better off having strict standards because we'd end up with better instructors. The practical factors shouldn't be dismissed however which is why I was wondering about a waiver process for instructor candidates. That would be a compromise that might allow us to have good, strong rules but still account for practical considerations. Do you think that would not work?


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 26, 2010, 9:47 PM
Post #71 of 131 (1046 views)
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Re: [danielcroft] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

I am too far right at this point for a variety of reasons. Most would call me out of my mind I believe that the AFF rating should be 500 jumps, 3 years, 6 hours of FF, and a coach rating for a year with at least 15 coach jumps. (I wouldnt mind 1000 jumps but that is never going to happen).

I also believe while I am at it, to take the coach course you should have a C license and 200 jumps.
http://www.ipetitions.com/...n/instructorchanges/

and tandem should be 1000 jumps, 3 years in sport, and a coach rating for one year.


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Feb 27, 2010, 12:24 PM
Post #72 of 131 (1005 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I just cant buy into different standards across the board. We are governed by the United States Parachute Association. We should be able to come up with what a skydiver must possess and demonstrate to be responsible for another human life, (wether it be AFF, Tandem, IAD, Static) If you people, are tying to sell the fact that becasue a DZ is a small cesna dropzone, that we must lower the standards or actually keep them as low as possible so as to give instructors the opportunity to make DZO's money, I can not be objective. One AFF jump out of a cesna in bumfuck Dropzone is no different than one AFF Jump at a busy DZ. They both have the possiblilty of death to the student or instructor. Further, why would we not want our instructors to be the most qualified instructors that we can produce, thus limiting the possibility of said death.
A waivered AFFI is like saying, okay you do not meet the qualifications but go ahead give it a shot. Not to mention the law suit that will come out of a drop zone that provides waivered instructors vs full fledged instructors. I can see the arguement now. I think this problem boils down to those making the decisions and what motivates their decisions to keep the requirements where they are. You need to look at each BOD members and their background and see how they vote. Which brings up another completely seperate topic as to why a DZO can be on the board to begin with, but I do not want to throw the thread into a tizzy and get a hundred PM's. The unmentioned fact: A DZO needs as many staff as possible to make as much money as possible. So why would they vote to increase requirements if it will reduce their staff? C'mon this is as much a political discussion as it is a common sense one. Safety and Training did not bring forth some suggestions because they felt they would not pass the board. So, hence the viscious cycle. and no I am not bashing DZO's just saying the conflict is possible. See for yourselves and make your own decision.

I'm not at all suggesting the standards be lowered for the 182 DZ vs a multi-aircraft DZ. I'm suggesting that the opportunities are fewer, and that does need to be factored in.
The risks are identical at both DZ's.
We've gone in circles over whether the "old program is better/worse" (I'm convinced it was as much about who greased whose palms and who gave the best BJ as it was actual skills), and whether the "new program" is worth a damn. No point in revisiting that one.
Then we've got the I/E that issued a "conditional rating" and even defended it. More silliness.
We have RD's that do nothing, even fight submitting a fatality report to the FAA, that might incriminate an instructor that made an error.
There are LOTS of issues unrelated to the instructional programs and requirements themselves.

The USPA responded to a part of the complaint; maybe baby steps are in order here. But the crux of it, IMO, comes down to the I/E and disciplinary processes. There are solid I/E's and there are weak I/E's. There are solid AFFI's and there are weak AFFI's. There is an incredibly apathetic board and a number of even more apathetic RD's, and a few very "easy" s I/E's out there. Hopefully the IERC changes and some actual disciplinary actions on the part of the S&TA's, RD's, and BOD will take place, and we'll see an uptick in quality vs quantity.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 27, 2010, 3:21 PM
Post #73 of 131 (984 views)
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Re: [DSE] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
There are solid AFFI's and there are weak AFFI's.
Quote:

We are on the same page for the most part, but isnt there a way to reduce the weak future AFFI's? Maybe if we ask ourselves why are the weak ones weak or how did the weak ones get to where they are?, we can start to correct the problem. I guess there are weak and solid in everything but we cant afford just to ignore the problem. I do not want to settle for,"weak AFF's. Weak AFF's lead to potential bad things for the sport. I imagine that there are solid and weak fighter pilots out there, but at least the bar is set so high that even the weak fighter pilots are pretty dam good pilots. That is what I am looking for through oversight, change if necessary, and continual support and debrief. I know there are weak AFF's out there, I just want to get back to the time where if you graduated an AFF course everyone was comfortable with your teaching and flying ability. I do not have that warm and fuzzy feeling, at all lately.


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Feb 27, 2010, 3:46 PM
Post #74 of 131 (978 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

There will always be "weak" anything, IMO.
Either they get the rating to make money, they get the rating for ego, they get the rating for god-knows-why, but they're not really in the same mindset as people like yourself.
Moreover, you'll never understand it any more than I will. I don't understand people that don't take their role as instructors seriously, yet we've all come across several that are like that.
Here's the problem...There HAS to be a standard, and that standard MUST be objective. That was the problem with the "old" system was that it was very subjective.
Here's an example;
We'll call my hypothetical guy "Phil." Phil has 2000 jumps and is terribly serious about instruction. He's a terrific flyer, but he pisses off a course director during an off-DZ dinner.
CD doesn't pass Phil, but a young chickie who has huge assets, 400 skydives does get the rating. Phil challenges the course again from a different CD 6 months later. Same CD also doesn't pass him. Phil's DZO sends a letter to USPA saying "WTF." Phil takes course again, and passes from same CD that wouldn't pass him in the first place. Meanwhile, chickie has taken students up and has femured one of them during radio'd landing, and flies another one downwind (resulting in no injury). Chickie is now out of sport, Phil is still in sport with 5k skydives and is one of the most respected instructors I know.
Slightly off-track, but the point is, character can't be part of the "evaluative" process, because character is subjective. That's why the system *had* to be changed. It allowed for subjectivity. Now, it's pretty cut/dried as to how you do in the course. We all know instructors in every discipline of life that suck, we all know of the instructors that don't observe the 8 hour "bottle to toggle" rules, and we know instructors that burn one down during the day. How do you weed those guys out during the evaluative process? I submit you can't. Because it's subjective.
Rather, hope that those instructors don't kill anyone in the process, hope they wash out or are known for their weak skills and the DZO's wash them out, whatever. Or hope that the S&TA or RD will undertake disciplinary action (riiiiigggghhhhtttt). But the process has to remain objective. Unfortunately, that can mean that less-than-idyllic skydivers will be successful when challenging the course.
I can't at all accept your comparison to fighter pilots. We don't have millions of dollars at our disposal to teach people to do AFF. Moreover, we don't need it.
Yeah, we all want better instructors, we all want to see the courses find a means of weeding out certain types, but at the same time, skydiving doesn't require a Master's Degree (flying a fighter jet requires the equivalent).

If you've lost the "warm fuzzy feeling," then I'd honestly suggest you look back at yourself, and how good YOU feel you're doing, because I happen to know you're a very fine instructor who cares a lot for how you teach, and how your students do after they've come off the program. Of course you want to make it better across the board, but (IMO) you should still have that warm, fuzzy feeling because of your own efforts and the successes you see your students enjoying.
It's pretty hard to see the world as it is, but it's pretty easy to see the world as you are in it.
Smile Rich, you're one of the good guys.Tongue The sky ain't falling, it's just not quite as blue as you remember it once being.


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Feb 27, 2010, 4:34 PM
Post #75 of 131 (968 views)
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Re: [DSE] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Im trying to get him to chill a little more. I took him freeflying last week. I think he has 5 freefly jumps
http://www.youtube.com/...FE60AC/1/Y8bycmWJ394

Its hard teaching a old dog new tricksWink


(This post was edited by ozzy13 on Feb 27, 2010, 6:47 PM)


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Feb 27, 2010, 5:11 PM
Post #76 of 131 (1324 views)
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Re: [DSE] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Your analogy blows mine away because I saw that happen back in the late 90's by a respected I/E of the time.
Again, keep in mind I am in NJ right now with 30+ inches of snow on the ground and doing what we do best in the Northeast, complain.lol The warm and fuzzy feeling I was refering to wasnt with myself it was with the new AFF guys/girls. Anyhow, your post is to the point of why if we had just a little bit of oversight of a new instructor, we can help them learn skills without almost killing someone. The old adage, no need to recreate the wheel. If I can debrief a new AFF and give them some help that would bnefit future jumps for them that is a good thing, hence the reason I am in favor of a probation period or JM rating. The example girl with the tata's should be under strict observation and be mentoring under a seasoned AFFI. Instead of just letting them go in the hopes thye dont really screw up. I know as a fact many DZ's do this already, so why not follow suit and make some minor adjuctments. This would be a much easier conversation over a cocktail after a day of jumping.
As far as Ozzy, we are trying to save you from yourself schmuck, in the most loving way possible.
I only have 5 freefly jumps because I have been babysitting you since you got your AFF. Wait a minute, kinda like I am suggesting to USPA, Why dont you post your first (Beer) off DZ landing for us to view? Let the rest of DZ.com enjoy the fine art of a 1 and a 1/2 front flip with a graceful face plant in the mud.


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Feb 27, 2010, 6:51 PM
Post #77 of 131 (1308 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

LMAO Good times Cool


Premier SkymonkeyONE  (D 12501)

Feb 28, 2010, 7:13 AM
Post #78 of 131 (1279 views)
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Re: [diablopilot] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
in a nutshell jumpers with less than 500 jumps must hold a coach rating or foreign FAI recognized equivalent for 12 months before receiving and instructor rating.

That's excellent.


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Feb 28, 2010, 10:02 PM
Post #79 of 131 (1222 views)
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Re: [NickDG] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
... Three people running it and traveling the country gave it standardization.

...and one of them, no longer associated with USPA, was such an asshole, IMHO. He had no business running anything involved with dealing with real people.


diablopilot  (D License)

Mar 1, 2010, 2:24 AM
Post #80 of 131 (1207 views)
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Re: [SkymonkeyONE] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
in a nutshell jumpers with less than 500 jumps must hold a coach rating or foreign FAI recognized equivalent for 12 months before receiving and instructor rating.

That's excellent.

It's good, but not great "yet".

It will be great when we can get it to address the "meat hauler" mentality of drive by coach & tandem ratings in a weeks time.


darthur2000  (D 30384)

Mar 1, 2010, 7:51 AM
Post #81 of 131 (1179 views)
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Re: [stratostar] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
So yea I find it funny as hell when people say and think time in this sport is meaningless, come back in 20 years if your still around and we'll see if your tune is changed.

Well here's the problem. I did talk to someone who had about 20-years in sport (according to the current definition used to determine if someone is qualified for a TI rating). They didn't have much to say other then that the tandem jump they did back in the '90s was fun (they weren't sure if it was '90 or '91). They haven't been at a DZ or touched a parachute since then so they didn't really have much to say beyond that. But hey, according to the USPA and the "time in sport" criteria currently used they have about 20-years in sport and meet one of the qualifications to get a TI rating.

It's not that time in sport is meaningless, it's just the way it is currently defined that makes it meaningless. If this is going to be used as a qualification then the "time in sport" clock should start from when you become a licensed skydiver.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Mar 1, 2010, 9:00 AM
Post #82 of 131 (1158 views)
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Re: [darthur2000] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

+1


NickDG  (D 8904)

Mar 1, 2010, 9:23 AM
Post #83 of 131 (1141 views)
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Re: [popsjumper] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

>>and one of them, no longer associated with USPA, was such an asshole, IMHO.<<

I did say, "while not perfect," LOL . . .

NickD Smile


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Mar 1, 2010, 2:48 PM
Post #84 of 131 (1111 views)
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Re: [darthur2000] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

You hit the nail on the head. We can still run into trouble If you start the timer at a A.
A jumper could get his/her A, then not jump for a couple years then come back.
What is the difference from that and what your saying ... Nothing. So their has to be away to stop these loopholes...


(This post was edited by ozzy13 on Mar 1, 2010, 2:52 PM)


NickDG  (D 8904)

Mar 1, 2010, 3:28 PM
Post #85 of 131 (1103 views)
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Re: [NickDG] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

All right, as long as this can of worms is open . . .

Maybe we should do something along these lines:

Bill Booth and Ted Strong both said of tandem, "Now it's dual instruction! Just like how people learn to fly airplanes!" So maybe we should follow up on that. When a prospective flight student is ready to test he presents themselves to a FAA designated person for a check ride.

We could do the same without the FAA part. We could designate a number of people to conduct these "check dives" plus other things like can you pack, spot (or whatever passes for spotting these days,) can you do a proper gear check, perform in the hanging harness, plan a small RW jump, have a clue about the weather, know something about airplanes and what to do when it all goes sideways?

And if certain instructors keep signing off people for these check dives and their student's perform poorly it would be a clue to weed them out, or at least mark them for re-education. That's how it works if you're a certified flight instructor in airplanes. Send too many students for the check rides that flunk and you'll soon get a nasty phone call for the FAA FSDO.

It's like we have the whole instructing dynamic ass backwards. We test prospective instructors instead of their students. Or, at least we used to. We've now totally blown the way we certify new instructors so the only thing left is to hold them accountable for the performance of their students.

I've never liked, in total, how the "old" AFF certification courses were conducted. Even though I hold they were a 100% better than what's going on now. I always thought we should "teach" folks how to be instructors rather than have them just show up to be tested. I can't tell you how many times I watched otherwise competent AFF candidates blow their courses while biting my tongue. And I always got spoken to in those AFF Eval courses, for "sneak" teaching when I was just being paid to certify.

Before going further it should be said I believe about 70% of the current instructor corps is excellent and totally outstanding. Fifteen percent could benefit from some formalized "How to Instruct classes" and the last 15% needs to be stood up against a wall and shot.

Jay Stokes came the closest to a "fix it all" when he suggested some years ago a boot camp for prospective instructors. (Watch Professor Quade have a cow now!) But I think he was right. Prospective instructors should go somewhere where they live, eat, and shit skydiving instructor 101 for six-weeks at the hands of very experienced "sky-drill instructors."

And the idea that instructors should be held to different standards depending on the DZ they come from is ludicrous. Sure, DZ circumstances are varied, but students are the same all over. The inverse of that flawed thinking is over or under jump-suiting a student to make up for lack of flying skill on the part of the instructor.

Sure, there's Skydive University and that thing over in New Zealand but they aren't working, other than they exist. USPA can't do it either. Someone on their own dime has to take a chance and start up a boot camp for skydiving instructors. And sooner of later just like the FAA found a scapegoat to wash their hands of regulating skydiving (USPA) the USPA will defer and endorse this new thing.

There are hundreds of us out here. Instructors with the accumulated knowledge of the last 40 years. I wouldn't mind rotating in and out of such courses as a part time retirement career. If it doesn't happen it means all that accumulated knowledge goes to the grave with us. Over my time as an instructor I've worked for the best and the worst in this sport, but I learned a little bit from each and every one of them.

I learned about the sky from Frank Mott, Leo Orlowski, Don Balch (with him it was mostly how to get girls) but he did invent the "second check" so he gets a pass, from John Brasher, Al Frisby, Pat Works, Gary Douris, Bob Ceylia, Jim Wilkins, T Bird, and a hundred other guys.

My dream solution is 50 young prospective instructors stepping off a bus at 'o dark thirty in some godforsaken Arizona desert. "My name is Sky Drill Instructor NickD! And for the next six weeks your ass belongs to me! Look at the person next to you! In three weeks they'll be gone!

Yeah, we could fix it. If we just had the balls . . .

NickD Smile


darthur2000  (D 30384)

Mar 1, 2010, 6:27 PM
Post #86 of 131 (1049 views)
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Re: [ozzy13] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
You hit the nail on the head. We can still run into trouble If you start the timer at a A.
A jumper could get his/her A, then not jump for a couple years then come back.
What is the difference from that and what your saying ... Nothing. So their has to be away to stop these loopholes...

Could always do something like 3-years as a licensed skydiver and a minimum of 600 jumps in the last 3-years.

Then you get some time actually in the sport and a certian level of currency.


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Mar 1, 2010, 6:30 PM
Post #87 of 131 (1047 views)
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Re: [NickDG] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
And the idea that instructors should be held to different standards depending on the DZ they come from is ludicrous. Sure, DZ circumstances are varied, but students are the same all over. The inverse of that flawed thinking is over or under jump-suiting a student to make up for lack of flying skill on the part of the instructor.

No one suggested as much, so if that's what you got out of it, maybe your reading glasses are dirty.Tongue

Requirements for instructors across the board need a standard that prospective and recurrency allows for dropzones that fly multiple planes and dropzones that offer only a 182.
Bottom line.... If you're instructing at Podunk Skydive in Tama, Iowa, you can't get enough jumps with AFF students to stay current if the requirements demand high numbers that only big DZ's can sustain. At least that's some of the thinking behind "Time in sport" requirements.

The rest of it, we've been round and round. The hell of it is, I'm hearing the same BS in the production industry. "These kids are gonna kill somebody someday, they don't know how to rig tracks like we learned. We learned before lunchboxes and 10K's and blah blah blah." The old-timers in any industry bitch about the newbs not knowing as much. Funny thing, fatality rate in the production world has almost dwindled to zip, not terribly unlike skydiving. Maybe the sky isn't falling after all.Tongue


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Mar 2, 2010, 8:21 AM
Post #88 of 131 (985 views)
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Re: [darthur2000] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Just a thought, how about an average jumps per year number?


kmills0705  (D 21696)

Mar 2, 2010, 9:49 AM
Post #89 of 131 (959 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Just a thought, how about an average jumps per year number?

I think the difficulties lie in the size and location of the drop zone. I am at a small midwest Cessna drop zone. I made almost 175 jumps last year. That was A LOT.

My guess is that many out there would look at that number and laugh. Unsure


AllisonH  (D 29505)

Mar 2, 2010, 10:29 AM
Post #90 of 131 (951 views)
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Re: New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
Just a thought, how about an average jumps per year number?

I think the difficulties lie in the size and location of the drop zone. I am at a small midwest Cessna drop zone. I made almost 175 jumps last year. That was A LOT.

My guess is that many out there would look at that number and laugh. Unsure


It also depends in large part on the ability of the jumper to pay for all those jumps. Do we only want to allow people who can afford X number of jumps per year to be instructors? Of course they can offset the price of jumps by packing or working manifest or some other extra job, but all of those would severely limit the number of days left for accumulating all those jumps, making the above poster's point about fitting those jumps in even more valid.


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Mar 2, 2010, 11:00 AM
Post #91 of 131 (941 views)
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Re: [AllisonH] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:

It also depends in large part on the ability of the jumper to pay for all those jumps. Do we only want to allow people who can afford X number of jumps per year to be instructors? Of course they can offset the price of jumps by packing or working manifest or some other extra job, but all of those would severely limit the number of days left for accumulating all those jumps, making the above poster's point about fitting those jumps in even more valid.

I would not want to have only Instructors with money as you put it.
Currency I think is very important. You guys are talking about smaller DZ's and jump numbers. You need 6 hours of free fall for AFF and 500 jumps for tandem. So I dont understand your argument.

You don't want to put a currency requirement on ratings but as you say its hard to get 250 jumps in a year.
So lets say the average jumper does 100 jumps at your DZ. It would take five years before they could get a Tandem rating. That's what you guys are dealing with now. I don't think anyone here wants to make it harder on the smaller DZ's at all. Just want to put out better instructors. Putting a currency requirement would not change anything at your DZ. If I guy/gal only does 10 jumps one of those years. I really don't think getting that said jumper current before going for their rating and last If they cant afford to jump , how the hell will they afford the course?


(This post was edited by ozzy13 on Mar 2, 2010, 11:07 AM)


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Mar 2, 2010, 12:19 PM
Post #92 of 131 (920 views)
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Re: [kmills0705] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

I think 175 is a good amount.


AllisonH  (D 29505)

Mar 2, 2010, 1:00 PM
Post #93 of 131 (903 views)
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Re: [ozzy13] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:

You don't want to put a currency requirement on ratings but as you say its hard to get 250 jumps in a year.
So lets say the average jumper does 100 jumps at your DZ. It would take five years before they could get a Tandem rating. That's what you guys are dealing with now. I don't think anyone here wants to make it harder on the smaller DZ's at all. Just want to put out better instructors. Putting a currency requirement would not change anything at your DZ. If I guy/gal only does 10 jumps one of those years. I really don't think getting that said jumper current before going for their rating and last If they cant afford to jump , how the hell will they afford the course?


Maybe they afford the course by doing 50-100 jumps that year instead of 150-200? Or maybe they are lucky to have a kind DZO like I did who will allow them to "charge" the course and associated jumps on their DZ account and work it off once they get the rating?

(I did actually do 150-200 jumps/year plus some tunnel time the 2 years before getting my rating, but as a student it wasn't easy. It helped that I worked manifest and was able to do some coach jumps. But I was getting paid to go to school. I'd imagine it would be much more difficult for someone who wasn't.)


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Mar 2, 2010, 2:40 PM
Post #94 of 131 (886 views)
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Re: [AllisonH] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Just out of curiosity who ever said being a skydiving instructor was easy and cheap. Ask a commerical pilot taking passengers how much he paid for his ratings. Why do we have to be the gentler, kinder, generation.. It reminds me of socialization. Lets take all the jumps out there and distribute the number evenly thoughout the skydiving community so we are all equal and then everyone can become an instructor. Distribute the Jumps...I am starting a movement. OOPS I forgot I am a right wing conservative.


(This post was edited by Para5-0 on Mar 2, 2010, 2:47 PM)


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Mar 2, 2010, 2:47 PM
Post #95 of 131 (881 views)
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Coach to tandem or AFF in a week [In reply to] Can't Post

Ok I just got my Parachutist.
Here we go:
56 people got their coach rating this month.
Out of the 56. Three of them got their AFF rating
Also one guy got his IAD rating, Tandem rating,and Coach rating in the same month.
Discalmer: I dont know any of them and also dont know the Circumstances behind it.
The guy with three ratings is from Poland or thats what it states.

Food for thought....

If you are wondering if I have too much time. The answer is yes, Its winter Cool


(This post was edited by ozzy13 on Mar 2, 2010, 2:57 PM)


JohnDeere  (D License)

Mar 2, 2010, 2:48 PM
Post #96 of 131 (879 views)
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Re: [Para5-0] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Just out of curiosity who ever said being a skydiving instructor was easy and cheap. Ask a commerical pilot taking passengers how much he paid for his ratings. Why do we have to be the gentler, kinder, generation.. It reminds me of socialization. Lets take all the jumps out there and distribute the number evenly thoughout the skydiving community so we are all equal and then everyone can become an instructor. Distribute the Jumps...I am starting a movement.
+1 I dont think we should go down that road. If so then why not give raitings to all the 200 jump # jumpers regardless of ability, lord knows not everbody can be natural flyer.....Crazy


voilsb  (D 30581)

Mar 2, 2010, 5:01 PM
Post #97 of 131 (837 views)
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Re: New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Here are some currency / time-in-sport requirements that don't seem to restrictive to me:
"3 years as a current USPA member" - ie, if you let your membership lapse, that time doesn't count. So if you made a jump, then took 10 years off, chances are you didn't keep up your membership. Only the first of those 10 years is likely to count.

"6 hours of freefall with 200 jumps in the last 18 months" - similar to the wingsuit currency requirement. Not too hard to do if you're motivated. Not too expensive if you can afford to take an instructor course.

"500 jumps in the last 4 years" - yeah, technically you could get around this by making 30 jumps the first year, 10 the second, 10 the third, and 450 the fourth year, but then you'd still be somewhat current.



Just some food for thought.


Andy9o8  (D License)

Mar 3, 2010, 5:42 AM
Post #98 of 131 (768 views)
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Re: [voilsb] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Here are some currency / time-in-sport requirements that don't seem to restrictive to me:
"3 years as a current USPA member"

I don't think that's reasonable. Experience and currency are experience and currency. We either trust the signatures on a person's logbook or we don't. This is little but economic protectionism and bullying on the part of the USPA. It's chickenshit like this that makes people resent the USPA.

In reply to:
"6 hours of freefall with 200 jumps in the last 18 months" - similar to the wingsuit currency requirement. Not too hard to do if you're motivated. Not too expensive if you can afford to take an instructor course.

Personally, and this ties in with what KMills posted, I think that's a bit on the stiff side for people with only a moderate amount of time and money, especially those who jump at a small Cessna DZ.


(This post was edited by Andy9o8 on Mar 3, 2010, 5:44 AM)


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Mar 3, 2010, 6:21 AM
Post #99 of 131 (754 views)
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Re: [Andy9o8] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Im not say that small dz's dont have great instructors.


Your not the only person bring this up but when you are learning something/ anything. Do you go to a moderate instructor or do you go to someone that is the best at what they do? These students are paying a lot of money.

Do you have to jump full time to get a rating? NO. I just think their should be some kind of currency prior to attending a course.

My biggest grip with the way it is, is how someone can get their coach rating one weekend. Never teach a student and get their AFF or Tandem rating the next weekend. I don't understand how USPA allows this to happen. The change that just happened is a step in the right direction.


(This post was edited by ozzy13 on Mar 3, 2010, 9:46 AM)


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Mar 3, 2010, 7:42 AM
Post #100 of 131 (733 views)
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Re: [ozzy13] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
My biggest grip with the way it is, is how someone can get their coach rating one weekend. Never teach a student and get their AFF or Tandem rating the next weekend. I don't understand how USPA allows this to happen.

The focus these days is on air skills. Knowledge has been thrown under the bus. It explains why there is so much stupid shit going on. We're doing a piss-poor job of instilling knowledge and safety in the youngsters.


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Mar 3, 2010, 8:16 AM
Post #101 of 131 (1405 views)
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Re: [popsjumper] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
My biggest grip with the way it is, is how someone can get their coach rating one weekend. Never teach a student and get their AFF or Tandem rating the next weekend. I don't understand how USPA allows this to happen.

The focus these days is on air skills. Knowledge has been thrown under the bus. It explains why there is so much stupid shit going on. We're doing a piss-poor job of instilling knowledge and safety in the youngsters.

POPS, USPA is trying very hard to change this. The IERC is one of the major steps forward, and more is coming.
I don't know what the teaching methodology was 15 years ago, but what they've adopted for the IERC, and requiring standardization courses is a step in the right direction, IMO.

Quote:
{Ozzy}
My biggest grip with the way it is, is how someone can get their coach rating one weekend. Never teach a student and get their AFF or Tandem rating the next weekend. I don't understand how USPA allows this to happen. The change that just happened is a step in the right direction but as I said before half measures evil nothing.

Agreed, this shouldn't be an easily done thing. Flip side, look at someone like Craig Girrard...Why shouldn't he be able to take a Coach Course on Monday/Tuesday/Wed, and an AFFI course on Friday-Friday? With quadruple the jumps and instructional experience of most of the AFFI/E's out there, would you agree he's kind of in a different boat?


kmills0705  (D 21696)

Mar 3, 2010, 8:23 AM
Post #102 of 131 (1405 views)
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Re: [Andy9o8] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
Here are some currency / time-in-sport requirements that don't seem to restrictive to me:
"3 years as a current USPA member"

I don't think that's reasonable. Experience and currency are experience and currency. We either trust the signatures on a person's logbook or we don't. This is little but economic protectionism and bullying on the part of the USPA. It's chickenshit like this that makes people resent the USPA.

In reply to:
"6 hours of freefall with 200 jumps in the last 18 months" - similar to the wingsuit currency requirement. Not too hard to do if you're motivated. Not too expensive if you can afford to take an instructor course.

Personally, and this ties in with what KMills posted, I think that's a bit on the stiff side for people with only a moderate amount of time and money, especially those who jump at a small Cessna DZ.

So, its not uncommon knowledge that I am a newly rated AFF Instructor. I have been a static line instructor for years and have taught countless first jump courses and have put out at least 250 static line progression students (probably more).

Looking at my numbers and years in sport are confusing. I made my first jump in 1994. Made 7 and stopped. Then in 1997 I went through FJC and jumped through 2000 when I did the marriage/kids thing. I had around 300 jumps at that time. I started jumping again in 2007. I received my static line I in 1999 and spent a lot of time time teaching FJC. When I started back in this sport I said this time I am jumping for me. No students. I don't need the money to jump (never did). But wouldn't you know... I went through the static line instructor course and earned my rating back and starting working with students again almost immediately.

I LOVE this sport and I am passionate about teaching students. Teaching them correctly and taking the time to do so.

Back to going through the AFF I course last year. I was scared and nervous and doubted myself. I took the course with Bram and as we went through the precourse jumps and I was the one learning I gained a lot of knowledge and became confident of my skills. I KNOW Bram would not have passed me if he didn't feel I was capable and setting out to be a good AFF I.

With all that said I dropped about 1,000.00 to take the course (maybe a little more but that is ballpark).

Why are people going to invest that much time and money if they are not going to take it seriously and be a good AFF I? It will take me a LONG time to earn that 1,000 in student jumps.

Maybe that is the difference between a smaller dz and a larger dz... those getting their I's are doing so to make money.

I don't care about the money part. I care about the students and being a good instructor and role model to them.


ozzy13  (D 29344)

Mar 3, 2010, 8:39 AM
Post #103 of 131 (1397 views)
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Re: [DSE] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
In reply to:
My biggest grip with the way it is, is how someone can get their coach rating one weekend. Never teach a student and get their AFF or Tandem rating the next weekend. I don't understand how USPA allows this to happen.

The focus these days is on air skills. Knowledge has been thrown under the bus. It explains why there is so much stupid shit going on. We're doing a piss-poor job of instilling knowledge and safety in the youngsters.

POPS, USPA is trying very hard to change this. The IERC is one of the major steps forward, and more is coming.
I don't know what the teaching methodology was 15 years ago, but what they've adopted for the IERC, and requiring standardization courses is a step in the right direction, IMO.

Quote:
{Ozzy}
My biggest grip with the way it is, is how someone can get their coach rating one weekend. Never teach a student and get their AFF or Tandem rating the next weekend. I don't understand how USPA allows this to happen. The change that just happened is a step in the right direction but as I said before half measures evil nothing.

Agreed, this shouldn't be an easily done thing. Flip side, look at someone like Craig Girrard...Why shouldn't he be able to take a Coach Course on Monday/Tuesday/Wed, and an AFFI course on Friday-Friday? With quadruple the jumps and instructional experience of most of the AFFI/E's out there, would you agree he's kind of in a different boat?

Yes very much so. I just dont want the guy/gal with a 1000 jumps saying I want to make money in the sport. Go a take the coach course then take a AFF or Tandem course. Yes they might have flying skills. But should work with students under supervision before cut free.


davelepka  (D 21448)

Mar 3, 2010, 6:00 PM
Post #104 of 131 (1350 views)
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Re: [DSE] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
look at someone like Craig Girrard...Why shouldn't he be able to take a Coach Course on Monday/Tuesday/Wed, and an AFFI course on Friday-Friday? With quadruple the jumps and instructional experience of most of the AFFI/E's out there, would you agree he's kind of in a different boat?

No. He should take the same course as any other cantidate, and follow the same guidelines. If he doesn't like it, he should have thought of that 10,000 jumps ago, and got his rating then when he had 800 jumps or so like everyone else.

Despite all of his accomplishments, if they don't include the USPA mandated experience for becoming an instructor, than he's not qualified. He may be the head of the class at his coach course, and he may sail through the AFF cert course, but he needs to follow the rules like everyone else. All of his experience is an asset for sure, but if it doesn't include what the USPA says it should include to be an instructor, then he's not qualified to be a USPA rated instructor.


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Mar 3, 2010, 6:12 PM
Post #105 of 131 (1346 views)
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Re: [davelepka] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:

No. He should take the same course as any other cantidate, and follow the same guidelines. If he doesn't like it, he should have thought of that 10,000 jumps ago, and got his rating then when he had 800 jumps or so like everyone else.

Despite all of his accomplishments, if they don't include the USPA mandated experience for becoming an instructor, than he's not qualified. He may be the head of the class at his coach course, and he may sail through the AFF cert course, but he needs to follow the rules like everyone else. All of his experience is an asset for sure, but if it doesn't include what the USPA says it should include to be an instructor, then he's not qualified to be a USPA rated instructor.

You don't feel someone with say....25,000 jumps who coaches hundreds of students each year should be allowed a waiver should they request one?
(as an aside, CG took the coach course before the new ruling, taught more students than required to maintain currency in a week, took the AFFI course and passed both very handily).

While I agree with the new rules and publically supported same...
A guy has 16 years in sport, 600 jumps, becomes AFFI and just completed TI course.
Different guy has 2.5 years in sport, 1200 jumps, easily manages the AFFI course, but can't be a TI due to time in sport restriction. He got coach rating at 100 jumps, AFFI around 450 jumps.
Which guy would you prefer take your daughter or mother on an AFF or tandem jump?


(This post was edited by DSE on Mar 3, 2010, 6:38 PM)


davelepka  (D 21448)

Mar 3, 2010, 7:12 PM
Post #106 of 131 (1330 views)
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Re: [DSE] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
You don't feel someone with say....25,000 jumps who coaches hundreds of students each year should be allowed a waiver should they request one?

Not really. Somewhere in those 25,000 jumps, and the years upon years it took to rack them up, the guy should have taken care of the USPA requirements. Every other instructor had to go through the same process, and meet the same requirements, so should he.

Look at it from the point of view of a cantidate on the other end of the spectrum. They're working hard, investing time and money making sure that they meet the requirements before they get their rating. What does it say about their efforts, and the validity of those requirements if not everyone has to achieve them.

If you want to be a USPA rated instructor, go through the USPA instructor training program and earn your rating.

Quote:
A guy has 16 years in sport, 600 jumps, becomes AFFI and just completed TI course.
Different guy has 2.5 years in sport, 1200 jumps, easily manages the AFFI course, but can't be a TI due to time in sport restriction. He got coach rating at 100 jumps, AFFI around 450 jumps.
Which guy would you prefer take your daughter or mother on an AFF or tandem jump?

The obvious answer is the guy with 16 years in the sport because he's the guy who's been through the TI course, and has the rating.

If you're asking the hypothetical question (which I think you are), I would still take the guy with 16 years in the sport. He may have fewer skydives, but he has the longevity, and the expereince that comes along with it. If you can manage to jump for 16 years, and still be in the sport and still physically able to get a tandem rating, that shows a guy with some degree of good judgement, common sense, and some respect for safety. On top of that, the guy has completed the TI course, has the education it provides, and performed well enough to pass.

The other jumper, while he may have more jumps, the fact is that it's not that hard to rack up 1200 jumps in 2.5 years, provided you have the money. Also, with the higher concentration of jumps in a short span, that would lead me to believe that there were many, many 10 or 12 jump days at the same DZ.

I would argue that you learn more making 3 jumps per day over the course of three or four different days (on different weekends) than by banging out 12 at one DZ, on one day. I would also argue that you learn more jumping at different DZs with different jumpers than by jumping at the same DZ with the same local crew you see every weekend.

I would have to imagine that the other guy, over the course of 16 years would have seen a few places, met a few people, and learned a thing or two that they don't teach at any instructor certification course.


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Mar 4, 2010, 8:43 PM
Post #107 of 131 (1262 views)
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Re: [ozzy13] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

17 quotes, 30 reply to's, who the hell is talking to who in your post...why so confusing, let us know your thought and move on.


tdog  (D 28800)

Mar 5, 2010, 5:50 AM
Post #108 of 131 (1231 views)
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Re: [popsjumper] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
The focus these days is on air skills. Knowledge has been thrown under the bus. It explains why there is so much stupid shit going on. We're doing a piss-poor job of instilling knowledge and safety in the youngsters.


I am going to ask for more information.... I believe it is important to look at PROBLEMS and find SOLUTIONS - not to just make policies that make people "Feel good". Can you tell me examples of how this piss-poor job is a real problem (I know of problems at my home DZ working with students, but the AFFIs I don't think are on the top of the list).

I can honestly say that the AFFIs I work with are great. Each has a personality, and flaws, but they all do a good job. Some are younger, some are older. Some have tons of tandems, some are weekend fun jumpers.

So lets look at fatalities, per USPA:

1998 - 44
1999 - 27
2000 - 32
2001 - 35
2002 - 33
2003 - 25
2004 - 21
2005 - 27
2006 - 21
2007 - 18
2008 - 30
2009 - 16

HOW MANY OF THESE WERE STUDENTS (AFF STUDENTS, NOT TANDEM)???

I went to this site:http://www.uspa.org/...abid/81/Default.aspx and noticed the fatalities for people with less than 100 jumps are few and far between. I read each one... I see no smoking gun that the system is all that broken other than CANOPY CONTROL - which is not an instructor shortcoming but system shortcoming in AFF... (No dedicated canopy control jumps, no dedicated canopy control lesson plans... Just something that the instructor/student do post freefall).

This tells me things/instructors are no better or worse then they ever have been... Maybe slightly better since membership/jump numbers have gone up most years other than the last few... And this is coupled with the fact aggressive skydiving canopies for people well past their AFF has become a leading cause to offset better gear.

Can you point to an increase in incidents with jumpers with under 25 jumps where the AFFIs have control, or incidents post 25 jumps where AFFIs have clearly been negligent in teaching something (as opposed to the student trying to continue to learn, you can lead a horse to water, but drinking is.....)

Ok, so give me details to support your claim. (I may or may not dispute them, but I will learn from them).


(This post was edited by tdog on Mar 5, 2010, 5:58 AM)


kallend  (D 23151)

Mar 5, 2010, 6:17 AM
Post #109 of 131 (1219 views)
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Re: [davelepka] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Quote:
look at someone like Craig Girrard...Why shouldn't he be able to take a Coach Course on Monday/Tuesday/Wed, and an AFFI course on Friday-Friday? With quadruple the jumps and instructional experience of most of the AFFI/E's out there, would you agree he's kind of in a different boat?

No. He should take the same course as any other cantidate, and follow the same guidelines. .

Why shouldn't he be allowed to test out? If he can display the skills and knowledge, why should he have to sit through hours of basic instruction on stuff he already knows from someone that knows less than he does?


timmyfitz  (D License)

Mar 5, 2010, 6:26 AM
Post #110 of 131 (1213 views)
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Re: [tdog] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
The focus these days is on air skills. Knowledge has been thrown under the bus. It explains why there is so much stupid shit going on. We're doing a piss-poor job of instilling knowledge and safety in the youngsters.


I am going to ask for more information.... I believe it is important to look at PROBLEMS and find SOLUTIONS - not to just make policies that make people "Feel good". Can you tell me examples of how this piss-poor job is a real problem (I know of problems at my home DZ working with students, but the AFFIs I don't think are on the top of the list).

I can honestly say that the AFFIs I work with are great. Each has a personality, and flaws, but they all do a good job. Some are younger, some are older. Some have tons of tandems, some are weekend fun jumpers.

So lets look at fatalities, per USPA:

1998 - 44
1999 - 27
2000 - 32
2001 - 35
2002 - 33
2003 - 25
2004 - 21
2005 - 27
2006 - 21
2007 - 18
2008 - 30
2009 - 16

HOW MANY OF THESE WERE STUDENTS (AFF STUDENTS, NOT TANDEM)???

I went to this site:http://www.uspa.org/...abid/81/Default.aspx and noticed the fatalities for people with less than 100 jumps are few and far between. I read each one... I see no smoking gun that the system is all that broken other than CANOPY CONTROL - which is not an instructor shortcoming but system shortcoming in AFF... (No dedicated canopy control jumps, no dedicated canopy control lesson plans... Just something that the instructor/student do post freefall).

This tells me things/instructors are no better or worse then they ever have been... Maybe slightly better since membership/jump numbers have gone up most years other than the last few... And this is coupled with the fact aggressive skydiving canopies for people well past their AFF has become a leading cause to offset better gear.

Can you point to an increase in incidents with jumpers with under 25 jumps where the AFFIs have control, or incidents post 25 jumps where AFFIs have clearly been negligent in teaching something (as opposed to the student trying to continue to learn, you can lead a horse to water, but drinking is.....)

Ok, so give me details to support your claim. (I may or may not dispute them, but I will learn from them).

Now you are just using facts and logic. Psst. You are gonna lose your argument with that kind of attitude. You need emotion, not facts.


kmills0705  (D 21696)

Mar 5, 2010, 6:36 AM
Post #111 of 131 (1210 views)
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Re: [tdog] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
The focus these days is on air skills. Knowledge has been thrown under the bus. It explains why there is so much stupid shit going on. We're doing a piss-poor job of instilling knowledge and safety in the youngsters.


I am going to ask for more information.... I believe it is important to look at PROBLEMS and find SOLUTIONS - not to just make policies that make people "Feel good". Can you tell me examples of how this piss-poor job is a real problem (I know of problems at my home DZ working with students, but the AFFIs I don't think are on the top of the list).

I can honestly say that the AFFIs I work with are great. Each has a personality, and flaws, but they all do a good job. Some are younger, some are older. Some have tons of tandems, some are weekend fun jumpers.

So lets look at fatalities, per USPA:

1998 - 44
1999 - 27
2000 - 32
2001 - 35
2002 - 33
2003 - 25
2004 - 21
2005 - 27
2006 - 21
2007 - 18
2008 - 30
2009 - 16

HOW MANY OF THESE WERE STUDENTS (AFF STUDENTS, NOT TANDEM)???

I went to this site:http://www.uspa.org/...abid/81/Default.aspx and noticed the fatalities for people with less than 100 jumps are few and far between. I read each one... I see no smoking gun that the system is all that broken other than CANOPY CONTROL - which is not an instructor shortcoming but system shortcoming in AFF... (No dedicated canopy control jumps, no dedicated canopy control lesson plans... Just something that the instructor/student do post freefall).

This tells me things/instructors are no better or worse then they ever have been... Maybe slightly better since membership/jump numbers have gone up most years other than the last few... And this is coupled with the fact aggressive skydiving canopies for people well past their AFF has become a leading cause to offset better gear.

Can you point to an increase in incidents with jumpers with under 25 jumps where the AFFIs have control, or incidents post 25 jumps where AFFIs have clearly been negligent in teaching something (as opposed to the student trying to continue to learn, you can lead a horse to water, but drinking is.....)

Ok, so give me details to support your claim. (I may or may not dispute them, but I will learn from them).

Canopy control is part of each and every AFF jump. There are freefall dive flows and canopy dive flows whichboth must be completed and passed before advancing to next AFF level. If someone did kick ass in freefall but totally blew the canopy dive flow they are repeating the jump.

I was trained by Bram and he stresses the skydive is NOT over when the canopy opens.


davelepka  (D 21448)

Mar 5, 2010, 6:38 AM
Post #112 of 131 (1209 views)
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Re: [kallend] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Why shouldn't he be allowed to test out? If he can display the skills and knowledge, why should he have to sit through hours of basic instruction on stuff he already knows from someone that knows less than he does?

Testing out would only cover a fraction of the information relayed in the course. Just because a cantidate happens to know enough info to get a passing grade on a test-out, doesn't mean he knows all of the information in the entire course.

If the USPA feels that it's courses are complete, and the cirruculum is well composed, containing all the relevant info an instructor cantidate would need to begin their time as a USPA rated instructor, then you cannot allow anyone to test out. The only way you guarantee that every cantidate knows ALL of the information is for them to do the work, and complete the course.

If the course is full of info that you may or may not need to know, and the USPA is happy to put their stamp of approval on a cantidate who may or may not know what's containted in the course, by all means allow a test out option.

In the end, however, 20 years and 25,000 jumps without a USPA instructional rating equals zero years and zero jumps as a USPA instructor. As such, the cantidate would have no jumps with AFF students as an instructor or a coach. While he may have extensive experience coaching licensed jumpers, that's not the same thing as a student jumper, and all of those jumps were made to his own personal standards, not those of the USPA.

If the USPA wants to ensure that all of it's instrcutor cantidates are on the same page, and operating to the standards of a USPA instructor, they need to establish a complete and comprehensive instructor certification course, and ALL instructor cantidates must pass that course.


tdog  (D 28800)

Mar 5, 2010, 6:57 AM
Post #113 of 131 (1200 views)
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Re: [kmills0705] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Canopy control is part of each and every AFF jump. There are freefall dive flows and canopy dive flows which both must be completed and passed before advancing to next AFF level. If someone did kick ass in freefall but totally blew the canopy dive flow they are repeating the jump.

I was trained by Bram and he stresses the skydive is NOT over when the canopy opens.

I was trained by Bram too... Everything you say is a nice thought... Fundamentally, I disagree with your comment that they are repeating the jump. Every jump should be a step towards new learning, so if freefell went well, they should try new freefall skills on the next jump. What do you determine is totally blowing a canopy ride? Non-stand up landing? Landing out because they did the drills when the spot was borderline and should have flown straight home? Not doing the drills because the spot was long and they knew they had to get home first? Not looking before each turn, and how would you know other than honor system? How many students have YOU failed because of canopy - and what did they do specifically to cause the failure?

In the last few years I have done a ton of AFF jumps for a weekend jumper. What I learned - it takes a special student to be able to work on many tasks on one jump, and at a large otter DZ, sometimes the spot is kind of far out or there is traffic and students cannot always fly the pattern you want them to. It is simply hard to focus on 15 learning objectives on a jump... No matter how much you focus on canopy, it gets in the back burner in the student's mind UNLESS the jump is a hop-n-pop or high pull where the only learning objectives are canopy related. I have had some fun high pulls with students and they are good tools! You and I are taking this topic off track - if you want to rehash this debate, there are 10+ threads on the subject... Find one, post, and PM me you did and I will be glad to discuss.


Reginald  (D 28162)

Mar 5, 2010, 11:23 AM
Post #114 of 131 (1156 views)
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Re: [timmyfitz] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

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In reply to:
I am going to ask for more information.... I believe it is important to look at PROBLEMS and find SOLUTIONS - not to just make policies that make people "Feel good". Can you tell me examples of how this piss-poor job is a real problem (I know of problems at my home DZ working with students, but the AFFIs I don't think are on the top of the list).

I can honestly say that the AFFIs I work with are great. Each has a personality, and flaws, but they all do a good job. Some are younger, some are older. Some have tons of tandems, some are weekend fun jumpers.

So lets look at fatalities, per USPA:

1998 - 44
1999 - 27
2000 - 32
2001 - 35
2002 - 33
2003 - 25
2004 - 21
2005 - 27
2006 - 21
2007 - 18
2008 - 30
2009 - 16

HOW MANY OF THESE WERE STUDENTS (AFF STUDENTS, NOT TANDEM)???

I went to this site:http://www.uspa.org/...abid/81/Default.aspx and noticed the fatalities for people with less than 100 jumps are few and far between. I read each one... I see no smoking gun that the system is all that broken other than CANOPY CONTROL - which is not an instructor shortcoming but system shortcoming in AFF... (No dedicated canopy control jumps, no dedicated canopy control lesson plans... Just something that the instructor/student do post freefall).

This tells me things/instructors are no better or worse then they ever have been... Maybe slightly better since membership/jump numbers have gone up most years other than the last few... And this is coupled with the fact aggressive skydiving canopies for people well past their AFF has become a leading cause to offset better gear.

Can you point to an increase in incidents with jumpers with under 25 jumps where the AFFIs have control, or incidents post 25 jumps where AFFIs have clearly been negligent in teaching something (as opposed to the student trying to continue to learn, you can lead a horse to water, but drinking is.....)

Ok, so give me details to support your claim. (I may or may not dispute them, but I will learn from them).

Now you are just using facts and logic. Psst. You are gonna lose your argument with that kind of attitude. You need emotion, not facts.

The next items needed in Tdogs excellent post is the number of total jumps, number of AFF jumps and preferably the experience and training method of the AFFI, etc. This would allow us to make fact based decisions instead of emotional ones. Estimating that they have not changed materially than one would conclude that AFF training is safer than ever or at minimum not statistically significantly different than in the past.

On the topic of emotional arguments here are a few fallacies in logic I've seen on this extended discussion over the years.

1. Starting with a conclusion and then seeking only evidence that supports the predetermined position while mitigating all information that contradicts the predetermined position. BTW: this is actually how the human mind tends to work and it requires effort to train it to work in a more reasonable and logical manor.

2. Stating that lack of evidence is in fact evidence to support a particular position. The clearly self contradictory nature of this argument should be obvious to all.

3. Using small sample sizes to draw conclusions sometimes intertwined with an “Availability Heuristic”. An example of which is, “if it happened here (easily available and recallable) it must be happening everywhere, therefore it is a big problem!” A sample of 1, 2, 3 or more is not one that conclusions can be drawn from. It is however, enough to draw up a hypothesis and take a larger sample to make a more accurate assessment, which is what Tdog is trying to do. People tend not to want to take the second step of seeking out more information and simply stop too early and draw a biased conclusion. Using only readily available information, specifically combined with small sample sizes will always lead to a cognitive bias.

4. Escalation of commitment (Also known as the “Never admit you’re wrong, even when it is clear you are” fallacy) – even when evidence is subsequently presented that someone had not considered in their prior decision making process that refutes their position, they refuse to admit they are wrong and escalate their commitment to the now defunct position. This typically involves a spiraling array of increasingly flimsily logic and distortions of facts. It also tends to have a flavor of continuing to comment, louder and louder on an issue until others walk away. It leaves the person in the wrong feeling like they won because they got the last word, when in fact everyone else just gave up arguing.

5. Over Focusing – in which people place too much emphasis on one variable in drawing a conclusion. This variable may or may not have predictive power and may or may not require other variables be included to achieve a reasonable degree of predictive power. However, the person believes it is all important.

6. Overconfidence – People uniformly tend to overestimate their abilities and knowledge. A simple example is to ask 100 people if they think they are above, at, or below average intelligence. The VAST majority will reply that they are above average intelligence. Clearly only 50% can be.

The above are just a few ways people can draw biased conclusions and they are part and parcel of normal human cognition. I actually give Tdog great props for trying to frame the problem based on convincing evidence.

My main comment on this issue is that it is in fact subject to a more rigorous debate and testing than it has in this and other threads. I for one would be willing to accept whatever the outcome is based on actual investigation of evidence. Hopefully this is the sort of thing the USPA does as it investigates policy changes.

To throw in my own antidote I will say that the ONLY AFF student deaths that I know of the last ten years (and I am only familiar with two) were both involving instructors with substantial experience and likely would not be questioned in any way for their competence or training method. Sometimes shit just happens no matter how good the instruction or instructor is, we are after all jumping out of planes.

Hopefully this discussion, if here or at the USPA, will be based as best as is possible on supportable facts. But likely it will just be a continuation of a shouting match. Wink

PS: none of the opinions presented in this post represent real DZ.com members actual or fictional, batteries not included, your millage may vary, etc.


danielcroft  (D 31103)

Mar 5, 2010, 12:33 PM
Post #115 of 131 (1137 views)
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In reply to:
4. Escalation of commitment (Also known as the “Never admit you’re wrong, even when it is clear you are” fallacy) – even when evidence is subsequently presented that someone had not considered in their prior decision making process that refutes their position, they refuse to admit they are wrong and escalate their commitment to the now defunct position. This typically involves a spiraling array of increasingly flimsily logic and distortions of facts. It also tends to have a flavor of continuing to comment, louder and louder on an issue until others walk away. It leaves the person in the wrong feeling like they won because they got the last word, when in fact everyone else just gave up arguing.
Excellent description of American politics.

How would you gather sufficient data to justify the argument that the reality of skydiving has changed whereas the ratings haven't?


(This post was edited by danielcroft on Mar 5, 2010, 12:37 PM)


kallend  (D 23151)

Mar 5, 2010, 12:46 PM
Post #116 of 131 (1129 views)
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Re: [davelepka] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

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Quote:
Why shouldn't he be allowed to test out? If he can display the skills and knowledge, why should he have to sit through hours of basic instruction on stuff he already knows from someone that knows less than he does?

Testing out would only cover a fraction of the information relayed in the course. Just because a cantidate happens to know enough info to get a passing grade on a test-out, doesn't mean he knows all of the information in the entire course.

If the USPA feels that it's courses are complete, and the cirruculum is well composed, containing all the relevant info an instructor cantidate would need to begin their time as a USPA rated instructor, then you cannot allow anyone to test out. The only way you guarantee that every cantidate knows ALL of the information is for them to do the work, and complete the course.

If the course is full of info that you may or may not need to know, and the USPA is happy to put their stamp of approval on a cantidate who may or may not know what's containted in the course, by all means allow a test out option.

In the end, however, 20 years and 25,000 jumps without a USPA instructional rating equals zero years and zero jumps as a USPA instructor. As such, the cantidate would have no jumps with AFF students as an instructor or a coach. While he may have extensive experience coaching licensed jumpers, that's not the same thing as a student jumper, and all of those jumps were made to his own personal standards, not those of the USPA.

If the USPA wants to ensure that all of it's instrcutor cantidates are on the same page, and operating to the standards of a USPA instructor, they need to establish a complete and comprehensive instructor certification course, and ALL instructor cantidates must pass that course.

If you can pass the test without being properly prepared, then the test is defective. Are you saying the test is defective?


kallend  (D 23151)

Mar 5, 2010, 12:51 PM
Post #117 of 131 (1125 views)
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In reply to:


6. Overconfidence – People uniformly tend to overestimate their abilities and knowledge. A simple example is to ask 100 people if they think they are above, at, or below average intelligence. The VAST majority will reply that they are above average intelligence. Clearly only 50% can be.

.

Wrong, you are caught in a trap of your own making.

If I ask the first 100 people I meet after typing this, I can pretty much guarantee they are all above average intelligence, because my sample is not random (I'm sitting in an engineering department at a university). Additionally, a sample size of 100 is not nearly enough to guarantee an exact 50% result even if the sample is truly taken at random from the population; the margin of error would be nearly 10% (95% confidence limit).


(This post was edited by kallend on Mar 5, 2010, 12:54 PM)


davelepka  (D 21448)

Mar 5, 2010, 7:38 PM
Post #118 of 131 (1081 views)
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Re: [kallend] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
If you can pass the test without being properly prepared, then the test is defective. Are you saying the test is defective?

I'm not saying the test is defective. What I'm saying is that when dealing with a complicated subject such as training to be an AFF instructor, there is no test that could cover every piece of information covered in the course. The test would literally have to be the same length as the course for it to be 100% inclusive, at which point the test is simply the course itself.

Even if a cantidate could pass a test, that's no guarantee that they know all of the information that would be covered in the course. They may know enough of the material covered in the test to get a passing grade, but that leaves a wealth of material which they may or may not know.

The only way to be sure that every USPA rated instructor knows all of the informaiton covered in the instructor certification course is for every cantidate to complete the certification course.

None of this is mentioning the false sense of status that waiving a cantidate from the course will instill. You're telling a jumper that they're so good they don't need to take the course like everyone else, when the real truth of the matter is that all instructors have the same number of student jumps the day the I/E puts the stamp in their logbook - zero, and they should all be treated as such.

You might be a great 4 way guy, and you might have 20,000 jumps, and you might have ten gold medals, but you have zero student jumps, and as such you have a lot to learn from the kid with 750 jumps total with the last 150 being live AFF jumps with actual students.


kallend  (D 23151)

Mar 6, 2010, 8:53 AM
Post #119 of 131 (1041 views)
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Re: [davelepka] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

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Quote:
If you can pass the test without being properly prepared, then the test is defective. Are you saying the test is defective?

I'm not saying the test is defective. What I'm saying is that when dealing with a complicated subject such as training to be an AFF instructor, there is no test that could cover every piece of information covered in the course. The test would literally have to be the same length as the course for it to be 100% inclusive, at which point the test is simply the course itself.

Even if a cantidate could pass a test, that's no guarantee that they know all of the information that would be covered in the course. They may know enough of the material covered in the test to get a passing grade, but that leaves a wealth of material which they may or may not know.

The only way to be sure that every USPA rated instructor knows all of the informaiton covered in the instructor certification course is for every cantidate to complete the certification course.

.

How, then, do you know that someone who takes the coach course actually knows what he's supposed to, if the test isn't comprehensive enough to assure that?

As a teacher with more than 35 years experience I can assure you that just sitting through a course means NOTHING when it comes to knowing what the course is about. We have lots of high school kids who have sat through countless courses who are also functionally illiterate to prove my point.


davelepka  (D 21448)

Mar 6, 2010, 10:20 AM
Post #120 of 131 (1033 views)
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Re: [kallend] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

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How, then, do you know that someone who takes the coach course actually knows what he's supposed to, if the test isn't comprehensive enough to assure that?

Just because a test may be comprehensive enough to check the cantidates knowledge and retention at the end of the course does not mean that the test is comprehensive enough to replace the course itself.

If a cantidate has completed the course, and passed a test, then the two combined can be taken as reasonable assurance that the cantidate is indeed preparred to act as a coach or AFFI.

To only take the test only assures that the cantidate knows 70% of the test material, which in itself is only percentage of the total information covered in the course. In reality, you may be able to pass a written test knowing less than half of the course material. Would you want to send a coach or instructor out knowing only half of the course cirriculum?

As a teacher of 35 years, I'm surprised that you don't seem to get my point. Are your classes such that passing the final is the equivilant of taking the complete course? How many of your students would you sign off as having passed a Kallend physics course if they just passed the final? I would assume that your lectures contain more than just the 'book info', and that attending the lectures is an important part of earning a passing grade in one of your classes.

Another point about testing out is that the cantidate will miss the unique aspects of each individual course. Every group of cantidates will ask different questions and bring different issues to light thoughout the course itself, and a cantidate who tests out will miss out on all of that additional knowledge.

On top of all that, I would like to assume that any jumper with 20 years in the sport and 20,000 jumps would have learned that every area of this sport is it's own animal. Just becasue you're a gold medal 4-way guy, doesn't mean that you know squat about CRW. If you were going to attend a CRW camp, you should be sitting with all the other CRW newbies, learning the basics.

With that in mind, any 'overqualified' cantidate who might be able to test out, would be the last person to request that they be allowed to test out. They would relaize their place in the instructional world (which is the bottom of the barrel), and they would look forward to completing the course, and preparring themselves for the new challenge.

A jumper who thinks of themselves as 'overqualified', and would request a test out is the exact jumper who should never be allowed to test out, and in fact the I/E should pull them aside and remind them to check their ego at the door. They're at the beginning of a new road, and while they past expereince will be of value, they're still at the beginning of the instructional road, and should conduct themselves as such - eager, open to learning from the course and others, and ready to work hard and earn the rating.


ufk22  (D 16168)

Mar 6, 2010, 12:45 PM
Post #121 of 131 (1027 views)
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Re: [davelepka] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

kallend
Don't see any instructional rating in your profile, so my assumption is you hold no USPA ratings.
Testing out of a coach or I course isn't just taking a written test. The candidate must also teach all the same sections, do the same equipments checks and debriefs, and pass all the same eval jumps as any other candidate. They must do this demonstrating the same teaching techniques and practices that are taught in the course.
If someone can do all this, I see no need for them to sit through the extra 2 days that would be involved in the classroom portion just so I or some other IE can demonstrate what they have proven they already know.
I've conducted or assisted with over 20 USPA ratings courses over the years (coach, instructor and even the old BIC). If your experience running ratings courses is other than what's in your profile, I apologize and would be more than willing to listen to your personal views and experiences.
If not, please explain what (other than your own bias) you're basing your argument on????


Para5-0  (D 19054)

Mar 6, 2010, 1:19 PM
Post #122 of 131 (1022 views)
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Re: [Reginald] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

I really dont want to screw up your mathematical fun but years ago nobody reported domestic violence. Does that mean that women werent abused or worse children weren't victim to emotional and physical abuse. Remember it was not reported so I guess there is no statistical data to support it.
Fast forward:
Oh wait a minute, why would a DZ or Instructor not report a problem? Maybe because of bad press, repercussions, loss of reputation and or money, loss of ratings.
I made mention of this in another thread, "Is the AFF rating too easy", There are incidents taking place and that is a personally witnessed fact. In my small corner of the world if I see incidents not being reported then imagine if all DZ's are not reporting incidents. Now when I say incidents I am not refering to fatalities, as I see is the only statistic you are looking at. What about injuries, cyrus fires, off field landings, lost students (Oh you will really get no reporting in this one)...
i see a problem with only looking at fatalities.
Remember the example, if we only looked at women or kids that got beat to death then I guess it would look like a small problem, (Domestic Violence).


NovaTTT  (D 17887)

Mar 6, 2010, 1:59 PM
Post #123 of 131 (1015 views)
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Re: [Reginald] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

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A simple example is to ask 100 people if they think they are above, at, or below average intelligence. The VAST majority will reply that they are above average intelligence. Clearly only 50% can be.

An otherwise very enjoyable (and necessary) post, but one infers from your statement that 50% are above average and 50% are therefore below.

So who's the average?

I suggest that the average constitutes ~30% of the population. That leaves 70% to split above or below.

Regardless, I think intelligence is a thing too subtle to be measured so severely. . . intelligence is far too complex to be simply categorized.

But please, don't subject my comments to your Logic Metric - I'm certain to fail on several of the points. Wink



And now back to your regularly scheduled ravings. Laugh


kallend  (D 23151)

Mar 7, 2010, 7:55 AM
Post #124 of 131 (952 views)
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Re: [ufk22] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

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If not, please explain what (other than your own bias) you're basing your argument on????

I've been a full-time professional educator for over 35 years. I do know something about courses, teaching and testing.


ufk22  (D 16168)

Mar 7, 2010, 12:06 PM
Post #125 of 131 (926 views)
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Re: [kallend] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Sorry, I wasn't clear on whether you or davelepka was making the "shouldn't be able to test out" argument. With all the different quotes and replies, I think I may have confused your 2 points of view.reply]
In reply to:
If not, please explain what (other than your own bias) you're basing your argument on????

I've been a full-time professional educator for over 35 years. I do know something about courses, teaching and testing.[/reply

This explains your bias (sorry, a cheap shot, but I couldn't resist), but to my 1st point; have you ever (especially since the introduction of the ISP, definitely post introduction of the old BIC) taken any USPA instructional courses? What you seem to think "testing out" means is not what it takes to challenge a USPA ratings course. Passing the written test is the smallest part of it. The biggest part is the teaching and evaluation of student performance, and it must be done following a defined format using clearly defined techniques. If you were to take a rating course from me, I would presume that I didn't have to teach you how to teach (positive vs. negative reinforcement, time management, lesson plans, braking down a topic into teachable portions, etc) and would certainly allow you to "test out" of this portion of the class. If I did have to teach you this, that wouldn't say a lot for your 35 years of experience. Your point seems to be that you, as a professional educator, should have to listen to me spend the better part of a day explaining basic educational theory to someone like you. To me, this would be a waste of time for both of us.


(This post was edited by ufk22 on Mar 7, 2010, 12:17 PM)


Premier DSE  (D 29060)

Mar 7, 2010, 5:35 PM
Post #126 of 131 (497 views)
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Re: [ufk22] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Sorry, I wasn't clear on whether you or davelepka was making the "shouldn't be able to test out" argument. With all the different quotes and replies, I think I may have confused your 2 points of view.reply]
In reply to:
If not, please explain what (other than your own bias) you're basing your argument on????

I've been a full-time professional educator for over 35 years. I do know something about courses, teaching and testing.[/reply

This explains your bias (sorry, a cheap shot, but I couldn't resist), but to my 1st point; have you ever (especially since the introduction of the ISP, definitely post introduction of the old BIC) taken any USPA instructional courses? What you seem to think "testing out" means is not what it takes to challenge a USPA ratings course. Passing the written test is the smallest part of it. The biggest part is the teaching and evaluation of student performance, and it must be done following a defined format using clearly defined techniques. If you were to take a rating course from me, I would presume that I didn't have to teach you how to teach (positive vs. negative reinforcement, time management, lesson plans, braking down a topic into teachable portions, etc) and would certainly allow you to "test out" of this portion of the class. If I did have to teach you this, that wouldn't say a lot for your 35 years of experience. Your point seems to be that you, as a professional educator, should have to listen to me spend the better part of a day explaining basic educational theory to someone like you. To me, this would be a waste of time for both of us.

This is where the methodology of USPA really is important; understanding the whole/part/whole, repetitive analysis, and most importantly....consistency come into play.
If someone can satisfactorily "test out" of the ground evaluations...then I agree...they should not have to sit through the day(s) of training involved. I'd be surprised if many could test out without the contextual training that the courses provide.


diablopilot  (D License)

Mar 7, 2010, 6:44 PM
Post #127 of 131 (481 views)
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Re: [kallend] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
I've been a full-time professional educator for over 35 years. I do know something about courses, teaching and testing.
Shame you haven't shared any relevant information on the subject here.


JohnDeere  (D License)

Mar 7, 2010, 9:02 PM
Post #128 of 131 (458 views)
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Re: [diablopilot] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Quote:
I've been a full-time professional educator for over 35 years. I do know something about courses, teaching and testing.
Shame you haven't shared any relevant information on the subject here.

Who are you too question him? He has shared relevant info. He is a real teacher! Not one of them fake/wannabe instructors/coaches than will never know how to truly TEACH! CrazyCrazyCrazyCrazy Sorry I must have went into Kallend World for a minute.....CrazyUnsurePirate


hookitt  (D License)

Mar 8, 2010, 4:16 PM
Post #129 of 131 (406 views)
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Re: [davelepka] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

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Quote:
look at someone like Craig Girrard...Why shouldn't he be able to take a Coach Course on Monday/Tuesday/Wed, and an AFFI course on Friday-Friday? With quadruple the jumps and instructional experience of most of the AFFI/E's out there, would you agree he's kind of in a different boat?

No. He should take the same course as any other cantidate, and follow the same guidelines. If he doesn't like it, he should have thought of that 10,000 jumps ago, and got his rating then when he had 800 jumps or so like everyone else.

Despite all of his accomplishments, if they don't include the USPA mandated experience for becoming an instructor, than he's not qualified. He may be the head of the class at his coach course, and he may sail through the AFF cert course, but he needs to follow the rules like everyone else. All of his experience is an asset for sure, but if it doesn't include what the USPA says it should include to be an instructor, then he's not qualified to be a USPA rated instructor.

I don't agree with you at all. He should be able to challenge any of the courses due to skill, time in sport, and ability to teach.

I had over 3000 jumps when I finally chose to become an instructor. If I had to do a year of coaching, something I was already proficient at, I would have been screwed. I took that dumbest requirement (BIC) and went to the AFF course. The course was not a breeze but once I finished, real students had a good instructor to work with.

Note, I do not believe people with low time or no practical knowledge should be able to simply get a coach rating (questionable usefulness at best) and then become an AFF instructor the next week.

If we used your example in other areas of *employment* highly qualified and experienced people would not be hired because someone with a degree and very little practical knowledge, will win.

I'm sorry sir, your qualifications and experience is astounding however you do not have an A+ certificate. (A+ iis a very low level qualification)


(This post was edited by hookitt on Mar 8, 2010, 4:18 PM)


Reginald  (D 28162)

Mar 9, 2010, 3:09 PM
Post #130 of 131 (336 views)
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Re: [kallend] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:


6. Overconfidence – People uniformly tend to overestimate their abilities and knowledge. A simple example is to ask 100 people if they think they are above, at, or below average intelligence. The VAST majority will reply that they are above average intelligence. Clearly only 50% can be.

.

Wrong, you are caught in a trap of your own making.

If I ask the first 100 people I meet after typing this, I can pretty much guarantee they are all above average intelligence, because my sample is not random (I'm sitting in an engineering department at a university). Additionally, a sample size of 100 is not nearly enough to guarantee an exact 50% result even if the sample is truly taken at random from the population; the margin of error would be nearly 10% (95% confidence limit).

No I'm not wrong you're introducing a new issue called sample bias. Of course a proper random sample should be used. It's a separate and very real issue.

Beyond that I'm trying to make a general point and 100 was an easy number for people to visualize. If you like we can just add a "0" to it. For illustrative purposes for a general audience it doesn't change the point. And of course referencing statistical tables for proper samples sizes given confidence intervals etc is part of good analysis, it's just beyond the scope of this conversation beyond my commenting to be ware of small sample sizes.

The point still stands that it is a known and testable fact that people are overconfident in their abilities and decision making and is a bias that one needs to be careful about when using opinion to argue a point vs testable data.

Your nit picking aside I would think we would both agree that the issue of quality of instruction and changes over time can be resolved better with verifiable data properly analyzed as opposed to opinion and shouting that is the norm on the board.


kallend  (D 23151)

Mar 9, 2010, 3:13 PM
Post #131 of 131 (336 views)
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Re: [ufk22] New AFF requirements. [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Your point seems to be that you, as a professional educator, should have to listen to me spend the better part of a day explaining basic educational theory to someone like you. To me, this would be a waste of time for both of us.

That is basically it, and it is (more or less) the FAA's position on certifying flying instructors.

Incidentally, there's a lot of non-classroom stuff (labs, projects..) going on in an engineering curriculum, ALL of which has to be evaluated by the prof.


(This post was edited by kallend on Mar 9, 2010, 3:16 PM)



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