Published date: 11 November 2015

General

Civil Aviation Authority advisory circulars contain information about standards, practices, and procedures that the Director has found to be an acceptable means of compliance with the associated rule.

An acceptable means of compliance is not intended to be the only means of compliance with a rule, and consideration will be given to other methods of compliance that may be presented to the Director. When new standards, practices, or procedures are found to be acceptable they will be added to the appropriate advisory circular.

An advisory circular may also include guidance material to facilitate compliance with the rule requirements. Guidance material must not be regarded as an acceptable means of compliance.

Purpose

This advisory circular provides guidance on general requirements related to air traffic service personnel licences and ratings.

This material is intended for applicants for air traffic service personnel licences and ratings, holders of air traffic service personnel licences and ratings, air traffic service instructors, air traffic service examiners, training organisations, and air traffic service organisations.

Related Rules

This advisory circular relates specifically to Civil Aviation Rule Part 65 Subpart A ‘General’.

Change Notice

Revision 4 incorporates the changes to ATC rating terminology in accordance with Amendment 5 to Part 65.  


Introduction

Civil Aviation Rules, Part 65 Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings was issued on 1 April 1997. This Part prescribes rules governing the issue of air traffic service licences and ratings, the conditions under which those licences and ratings are necessary, and the privileges and limitations of those licences and ratings.The Part introduced changes which included area control automatic dependent surveillance rating, instructor ratings, examiner ratings, and flight service operator licences.

This advisory circular forms part of a series of advisory circulars that supports these rules – one for each required rating.

The following advisory circulars are associated with this advisory circular:

AC65–2

Reserved

AC65–3

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Air Traffic Controller Licences

AC65–4

Reserved

AC65–5

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Flight Service Operator Licences

AC65–6

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Flight Radiotelephone Operator Rating

AC65–7.1

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Air Traffic Controller Ratings – Aerodrome Control Rating

AC65–7.2

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Air Traffic Controller Ratings – Approach Control Procedural Rating

AC65–7.3

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Air Traffic Controller Ratings – Approach Control Surveillance Rating

AC65–7.4

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Air Traffic Controller Ratings – Area Control Procedural Rating

AC65–7.5

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Air Traffic Controller Ratings – Area Control Surveillance Rating

AC65–7.6

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings – Air Traffic Controller Ratings – Area Control Automatic Dependent Surveillance Rating

AC65–8.1

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Flight Service Operator Ratings – Oceanic Air-Ground Rating

AC65–8.2

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Flight Service Operator Ratings –Aerodrome Flight Information Rating tings –Area Flight Information Rating

AC65-8.3

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Flight Service Operator Ratings –Area Flight Information Rating

AC65–9

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Air Traffic Service Instructor Ratings

AC65–10

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings – Air Traffic Service Examiner Ratings

AC65–11

Air Traffic Service Personnel Licences and Ratings—Part 65 Amendment 5  Transitional Arrangements


Advisory Circular Intent and Process

This advisory circular provides guidance on how to comply with Civil Aviation Rule Part 65 Subpart A “General”.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is actively managing the development of syllabuses into specific objective format. This format specifies exactly what has to be covered, and to what standard, so that no matter who studies, who instructs, and who assesses, all are working to exactly the same standards.


Subpart A—General

Rule 65.1       Applicability

Subpart A prescribes the general rules governing the issue of air traffic service licences and ratings; the conditions under which they are necessary; and the privileges and limitations of those licences and ratings.

Rule 65.3       Definitions

Rule 65.3 requires definitions and abbreviations that are used in more than one Part are transferred into Part 1 Definitions and Abbreviations. Any technical term or ordinary word not explained in this rule or in Part 1 has the meaning given to it in the appropriate ICAO Annex or Document. If any ordinary word is not defined in the above documents, the ordinary meaning of the word applies. The ordinary meaning carries the meaning ascribed by the Concise Oxford Dictionary.

The following definition is applicable to Part 65 advisory circulars—

Syllabus – A syllabus describes the contents of the course and the minimum standards to be achieved.

Rule 65.9      Reserved

Rule 65.11    Application for licences and ratings

Rule 65.11 requires an applicant for the grant of an air traffic service licence, an air traffic service instructor rating, or an air traffic service examiner rating, or for the endorsement of a rating on that licence, to complete form CAA 24065/01. A copy of this form is available from the CAA web site, http://www.caa.govt.nz/Forms/24065-01.pdf (external link) .

Applicants for an ATS examiner test should complete form CAA 24065/05. A copy of this form is available from the CAA website, http://www.caa.govt.nz/Forms/24065-05.pdf (external link) . The test will be conducted in response to the application form from the candidate and as agreed by the CAA Testing Officer.

Where the advisory circualr specifies a syllabus, compliance with that syllabus will satisfy the applicable requirements of the appropriate rule Subpart. However the Director may also accept compliance with an alternative syllabus, or may accept alternative credits, provided the Director is satisfied that those alternatives are of a standard that is at least equivalent to the advisory circular syllabus and therefore meets the rule requirements.

Rule 65.13    Issue of licences and ratings

Language proficiency for air traffic controllers and flight service operators

ICAO Annex 1 amendment 164 requires an English language proficiency standard for all pilots from March 2008 to improve language proficiency. In 2008 the CAA developed testing requirements in conjunction with Aviation Services Limited to meet the Annex implementation deadline.

Rule 65.13(2) requires an applicant for an air traffic service licence to have sufficient ability in reading, writing, speaking, and understanding the English language to enable the applicant to carry out their responsibilities as the holder of that licence.

Effective radiotelephony communication requires that air traffic service personnel strictly adhere to standard ICAO phraseologies in the first instance. Unexpected emergency or urgency situations, or non-routine but not necessarily unusual circumstances, may need to be resolved through the use of plain English, which, in the past, has not been formally evaluated.

From the implementation date, the acceptable means of compliance with rule 65.13(2) by an applicant for the issue of an air traffic controller licence or a flight service operator licence is by demonstrating proficiency at least at Level 4 (Operational) of the ICAO language proficiency rating scale and the following holistic descriptors—

(a) communicate effectively in voice-only (radiotelephone) communications; and

(b) communicate on common, concrete and work-related topics with accuracy and clarity; and

(c) use appropriate communicative strategies to exchange messages and to recognize and resolve misunderstandings in a general or work-related context; and

(d) handle successfully, and with relative ease, the linguistic challenges presented by a complication or unexpected turn of events that occurs within the context of a routine work situation or communicative task with which they are otherwise familiar; and

(e) use a dialect or accent which is intelligible to the aeronautical community.

Applicants for an air traffic trainee licence, a flight service trainee licence or any air traffic service rating do not need to be assessed unless they wish to have a language proficiency level endorsed on their licence.

As a result of their participation in the New Zealand civil aviation system, air traffic service personnel who have been issued with an air traffic controller licence or flight service operator licence before the implementation date are considered to have demonstrated sufficient English language ability to adequately exercise the privileges of that licence. These persons do not need to be assessed unless they wish to have a language proficiency level endorsed on their licence.

If the Director believes on reasonable grounds that an air traffic service licence holder’s English language proficiency is inadequate to safely exercise the privileges of that licence, then the Director in rule 65.27(a) may require the holder to undertake a language proficiency assessment within such period as the Director determines.

Applicants for an air traffic controller licence or a flight service operator licence issued from the implementation date should have demonstrated English language proficiency to at least Level 4 (Operational) in all language categories specified in the ICAO language proficiency rating scale. Satisfactory evidence of such demonstration is an assessment credit issued by a delegated service provider.

Applicants for an air traffic controller or flight service operator licence issued from  the implementation date will have their language proficiency level endorsed on the new licence at no added charge. Holders of air traffic service licences issued before the implementation date who have demonstrated language proficiency may, upon application to the Director and payment of the applicable licence amendment fee, have their language proficiency level endorsed on their licence.

A current language proficiency endorsement held by a person applies to all air traffic service or pilot licences held by that person. A person who holds a current language proficiency endorsement and who applies for a different type of licence will have that language proficiency endorsed on the new licence for the remaining currency period.

Licences are to be endorsed as language proficiency Levels 4, 5 or 6 in accordance with the respective assessment credit. Language proficiency demonstration currency periods are as follows:

(a) Level 6 (Expert) demonstrations are current for the lifetime of the holder of the air traffic service licence:

(b) Level 5 (Extended) demonstrations are current for six years from the date of assessment:

(c) Level 4 (Operational) demonstrations are current for three years from the date of assessment.

The licence endorsement is to be in the form: “Demonstrated English language proficiency to Level __ on ___ (date)___”. (Then only for Level 5 and Level 4 respectively) Current for six years/Current for three years”.

Language proficiency assessments are to evaluate the plain English language used in effective aviation radiotelephony and so are to be broader than ICAO phraseologies. The assessments are set in a broad aviation-related context and the language is to cover that needed for common, concrete and aviation-related situations or tasks, including complications or unexpected turn of events that occur from time-to-time.

The aviation context for the language proficiency assessments is to be appropriate for all trained air traffic service personnel. The language proficiency assessments are not tests of theoretical knowledge but candidates are to have demonstrated the ability to competently transmit and receive spoken messages and so should have a basic aviation awareness broadly covering the subject matter contained in the flight service operator licence theory syllabuses specified in Appendix A to AC65-5. That is—

(a) air traffic service general knowledge; and

(b) operational procedures; and

(c) air law; and

(d) human factors; and

(e) telecommunications equipment.

Thus, as a prerequisite to undertake a language proficiency assessment under Part 65, a person is to:

(a) hold a flight radiotelephone operator rating; and either:

(b) have passed examinations required by rule 65.103 (a)(5):

(c) have passed examinations required by rule 65.203 (a)(4):

(d) hold an aeroplane or helicopter pilot licence issued in accordance with Part 61:

(e) hold a current foreign air traffic service licence.

A simplified diagrammatic guide for the assessment and endorsement processes is contained at Appendix 2 to this advisory circular. The language proficiency assessments are set, administered and conducted by the Director or a delegated service provider.

Language proficiency assessments may be voluntarily undertaken before the implementation date and successful candidates may apply to have a demonstrated language proficiency level endorsed on their licence.

Licence applicants who are native or very proficient non-native English language speakers with a dialect or accent intelligible to the international aeronautical community may be issued with a language proficiency endorsement by clearly demonstrating language proficiency at Level 6 (Expert). A Level 6 proficiency demonstration should confirm that the speaker can communicate at Level 6 for at least pronunciation, structure, vocabulary, and fluency. The acceptable means of compliance with rule 65.13(2) for an applicant who does not meet “Level 6” criteria on the first attempt is to complete a Formal Language Evaluation.

A Formal Language Evaluation is to fully comply with all ICAO recommendations and evaluate the applicant’s proficiency in pronunciation, structure, vocabulary, fluency, comprehension and interactions. The evaluation is to record the overall level achieved plus the levels achieved in each language category. A Formal Language Evaluation may be taken by any applicant, who will be eligible for a language proficiency endorsement by demonstrating language proficiency at Levels 4, 5 or 6.

The language proficiency rating scale at Appendix 1 to this advisory circular is extracted from Annex 1 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation. A person’s proficiency in each language category is determined by the degree to which the person’s demonstrated performance complies with the descriptor for the appropriate proficiency level. The overall proficiency rating is determined by the lowest rating level assigned in any particular category.

The Level 4 (Operational) descriptors are the safest minimum proficiency skill level determined necessary for aeronautical radiotelephony communications and represent the minimum required for a language proficiency level to be endorsed on a licence.

Rule 65.17    Examinations

Rule 65.17 (a)(1) requires applicants to produce written proof of their identity for all examinations and for practical examinations. In the case of practical examinations the air traffic service examiner or instructor will also check the candidate’s logbook record of any required training and experience before conducting the practical examination.

Rule 65.17(a)(2) requires applicants to gain at least 70% of the possible marks in order to pass. Where a supplier of examination credits issues pass credits in the form of letter grades, those grades will have to be shown to be awarded on a final recorded percentage of at least 70%. Normally this would equate to a grade of at least B plus.

A pass in any theoretical examination is valid for life.

Part 65 does not require applicants for practical examinations to have passed all the written examinations before taking the practical examination.

Rule 65.21    Air traffic service logbooks – general

Rule 65.21 requires each holder of an air traffic service licence to maintain a record in ink of his or her air traffic service training and experience time in a logbook acceptable to the Director. Use of the Pilot Logbook MOT 1373, or an equivalent, is considered acceptable if the column headings were changed.

Although the logbook may be provided by an organisation, it is the property of the individual whose name is entered in the logbook. That individual is responsible for ensuring all data and information entered is accurate and current.

No pages should be removed. An incorrect entry in a logbook should be altered by putting a line through the entry and by adding the correct information either beside the entry or on a new line.

Records of any ATS licences and ratings issued may only be made by an appropriately qualified person as prescribed by Part 65.

Proficiency assessment information, including that for instructor and examiner assessments, should be entered on successful completion of assessments and signed by the examiner or instructor who conducted the assessment.

Training times should be recorded. Training times may be recorded daily or weekly or at the end of a shift cycle or at the end of an operational training module, whenever training is undertaken for the issue of a licence or rating. Simulator time may be credited to require training times at the rates specified in the exposition document of the Part 172 organisation. Recurrent or cyclical training should be recorded.

Prior to performing a final performance assessment for the issue of a licence or rating, the logbook should be signed by the applicant to certify the correctness of the entries.

Aircraft flight deck experience entries should be completed as necessary to satisfy the requirements of an ATS licence, and certified by the applicant and pilot as being correct prior to the final performance assessment for the issue of a licence or rating.

Subsequent official flight deck experience should also be recorded.

Rule 65.23    Air traffic service logbooks – crediting of time

Rule 65.23 details the crediting of air traffic service time. ATS simulator time which an ATS trainee licence holder or an air traffic service licence holder wishes to claim towards a licence or rating should be logged in a similar manner. Other times, such as duty/rostered times, which are required for operational or other purposes, may also be logged provided these additional times can not be confused with the times required for Part 65.

When exercising the privileges of an instructor or examiner rating, a log entry should be made of each candidate and what was being assessed.

When exercising an instructor rating (delivering on-the-job instruction), at least one log entry should be made for each trainee being instructed.

The log entries should be a true reflection of annual operational work performed, including that as an instructor or examiner. Individual periods of work should be identified between significant absences from operational work (i.e. greater than four weeks). A minimum of one entry should be made annually. (This may be the case where an ATS licence holder is not exercising instructor or examiner ratings, and no break from duty greater than four weeks has occurred.)

Where entries are required, only the broad operating position and rating name need be recorded, e.g. aerodrome/location, approach/location.

Rule 65.25    Medical requirements

There are a number of medical conditions that will cause either a temporary or permanent change in a person’s health or fitness that renders them unfit to exercise the privileges of an ATS licence. These conditions are described in detail in Part 67, but for specific advice on whether a medical problem will result in a period of unfitness or not, a licence holder should consult an Aviation Medical Assessor before using the licence.


Appendix 1—ICAO Language Proficiency Rating Scale

Appendix 2—Language Assessment Guide