Changing How CFI’s Log Student Flights

Pilot Partner CFI Dashboard

Spring of 2016, Pilot Partner release the new CFI Dashboard as a tool integrated into the Electronic Pilot Logbook App.   This allows a Certified Flight Instructor the ability to link their eLogbook to their student’s eLogbook.   Seems simple enough, but what does this actually do for the student and the instructor?

Changing the Flow of Logging

DSC00609Historically, when a student completes an instructional flight the student will hand their logbook to their CFI, the CFI will write in the logbook and say 4 or 5 simple words.  The student would then close the logbook and go home.    Any information provided in the verbal debrief is now lost.   At the end of the day (or sometimes week) the CFI would try and reconstruct the flights done and add them to his or her logbook.

With the CFI Dashboard, we are changing the flow of how instructional flights are logged.   Immediately after an instructional flight, the student can now pull out their iPhone or Android phone and log their flight under the supervision of their instructor.   They log all of the required information such as Tail Number, Total Time, Route of Flight and Landings.  Most importantly the student fills out their own remarks.

Effective Self Debrief

Because the student is filling out their own remarks, the student is learning how to do an effective self-debrief.   This is an important skill that the traditional Instruction Flight Logging flow did not do a good job of.   A student who learns to evaluate them self will be better at long term Aviation Decision Making (ADM).   Teach the student to debrief using the following instructions:

In the remarks field, write down all of the skills you performed on the flight from the start to the end of the flight.  You should call out the things that you did well and are proud of and make note of the skills that you didn’t perform well and want to work on.

StudentSelfDebriefYou will find that most students will end up being much harder on themselves than you ever will be.   If they are not, then that is a good coaching opportunity to bring awareness that will make them a better pilot long term.

Once the student has logged the flight and provided their remarks, the student can head home for the day.

Instructor Comments and Signature

Pending Signatures

Pilot Partner will automatically put the flight that was just completed into their Pending Signature queue to be commented on and signed.   The CFI can handle all of the signatures at the end of the day.  This allows the instructor to work more personally with each student and prepare for his or her next instructional flight.

At the end of the day, the CFI will log into their CFI Dashboard and review the pending signatures that need to be processed.  By clicking on each flight the Instructor will see all of the Flight Information:  Date, Tail Number, Total Time, Landings, etc. and most importantly they will see the student’s self-debrief.

The CFI will then write a complete debrief that will be delivered to the student.   The CFI is no longer limited to a couple small inches of space to write in.   The Instructor is able to provide feedback on the student’s debrief and the instructor’s overall feedback.

What did the student do good on or demonstrate they need work on that they didn’t mention in their self-debrief?

Provide Detailed Debriefs

The instructor then signs the flight by entering their secret 4 digit PIN # and the flight is now locked in the student’s logbook from being able to be edited.   The one exception is, the student can add additional notes in their remarks field.

The student will receive an email letting them know that the flight has been signed and the email will include the instructors comments.

Keeping the CFI’s Logbook up to Date

Not only is this flow of logging flights a much better for the student’s learning process it has several other advantages.

Accessible Record of Training

All of the notes and flight history is now available online.  Before the next flight, the CFI can easily go back and review the previous remarks and determine what the lesson plan for the next flight should be.

CFI’s Logbook

Automatically Add Flights

Pilot Partner will also keep track of the flights the CFI has signed and makes it very easy to copy those flights into their own logbook.   When a CFI copies the flights into their logbook, Pilot Partner automatically handles converting Dual Received to Instruction Given and ensures the CFI gets PIC credit.

Imagine a busy instructor does 5 flights in one day, and 20+ flights in a week.  With Pilot Partner the CFI can make all 20 logbook entries in under 30 seconds.  Plus their logbook will contain detailed and accurate information including:

  • Flight Date
  • Tail Number, Aircraft Type
  • Route of Flight
  • Landings
  • Name of Student
  • Students and Instructor Remarks

Other Advantages

Track Endorsements

Pilot Partner also tracks other items for both the Student and the Instructor.   All of the student’s endorsements are tracked.   Even the endorsements that are time limited, such as the 90 Day Solo Endorsement are tracked with an expiration date.



Progress Reports

Pilot Partner also has a Private Pilot and an Instrument Pilot progress report to ensure all items required for the check ride are met.

Private Pilot Progress Report

How do you Get Started?

This is a free feature for a CFI to use.   In fact, our business goal is to make it so an Active CFI never has to pay for the Pilot Partner service.  We achieve this through our referral program.  When the CFI refers his student to Pilot Partner and the student purchases a subscription for $29.95 a year, the CFI is given an extra 6 months for free (and the student gets 3 additional months for free).   There is no limit to how many 6 month bonuses you can earn.  If you refer 10 student’s to Pilot Partner, the CFI will have 5 years of free Pilot Partner service.

To learn more about getting started, read our CFI Dashboard Introduction.

Or watch our Getting Started Videos:

Get Started Today:

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