1.2 AQP Overview

1.2.1 General

AQP integrates a number of training and evaluation features that are aimed at improving performance relative to traditional training programs. An AQP is a systematically developed, continuously maintained, and empirically validated proficiency-based training system. AQP allows an air operator to systematically develop, implement, evaluate and maintain a training program that will be self-correcting.

  1. Phases of Development

    There are five phases for developing, implementing and maintaining an AQP. A description of each phase is located in Chapter 2 of this document. Each phase must be reviewed by Transport Canada before the applicant may be authorized to proceed to the next phase. Each phase consists of specific activities, including the documentation of those activities, which must also be reviewed and authorized by Transport Canada. 
  2. AQP Documentation
    In addition to the supporting documents and manuals which must be provided to Transport Canada in traditional training programs, there are six documents and an annual report requirement that are unique to AQP. These documents are instrumental in managing the AQP and must be maintained throughout the life of the program. These documents are categorized by their function and interrelationship into two groups: “management” and “database” documents. All of the documents, combined with the annual reports comprise the Program Audit Data Base (PADB). A brief description of the AQP documents appears below:
    1. Management Documents. These documents include the Application/Administration Document, Instructional Systems Development (ISD) Methodology, and Implementation and Operations (I&O) Plan. These documents are stand-alone in that a change in one will not necessitate a change in another. 
    2. Database Documents. These documents include the Task Analysis, Qualification Standards and Curriculum Outlines. Because a change to one document often requires a change in the others, they should be maintained in an interactive database. 
    3. Annual Report. The purpose of the report is to identify changes to the curricula, training equipment upgrades, and the AQP Maintenance Strategy resulting from feedback and analysis of the information in the Proficiency/Performance Data Base (PPDB).

Additional details of these AQP documents can be found in Appendices A and B.

1.2.2 Objectives of AQP

The following is a list of general objectives of AQP:

  1. To improve safety by continuously improving training and evaluation. 
  2. To be responsive to continuing changes in industry, including new aircraft technology, changing operational environments, and new training methods and equipment. 
  3. To be responsive to continuing changes and best practices relative to training and evaluation.

1.2.3 Characteristics of AQP

The following is a list of the general characteristics of AQP:

  1. Participation is voluntary. 
  2. An AQP will employ innovative training and qualification concepts with the regulatory flexibility to tailor training to individual company circumstances. 
  3. An AQP may build upon an existing training program or be completely new using empirical performance data to drive curriculum changes. 
  4. Qualification is based on individual and team performance. Under AQP, qualification is determined using progressive evaluations of proficiency objectives. It is dependent on the structure and maintenance of all elements of the program. These include: curriculum, facilities, training equipment, instructors, evaluators, courseware and quality assurance. 
  5. Individual and team proficiency, and the AQP itself, will be empirically validated by data collection and analysis. 
  6. Training will be systematically developed with an audit trail for all training and data requirements. 
  7. The methods used for development, implementation and maintenance of program operations will be continued throughout the life of the program.

1.2.4 Requirements of AQP

AQP is a voluntary program that requires a strong commitment from the air operator to exceed minimum training standards in the greater interest of safety. To determine an equivalent level of safety compared with a traditional training program, the entire AQP must be examined as a comprehensive whole rather than considering any one component in isolation. In order to assure that the AQP does establish an initial justification and a continuing process to show an equivalent level of safety, mandatory requirements have been established.

Under an AQP, Transport Canada monitors the process as well as the product. Instead of basing curricula on prescribed generic manoeuvres, procedures and knowledge items, AQP curricula are based on a detailed analysis of the specific job tasks, knowledge and skill requirements of each duty position for the individual airline. Compared to traditional training programs, the AQP process provides a systematic basis for establishing an audit trail between training requirements and training methodologies.

AQPs have the following requirements:

  1. All aspects of the program, as authorized by Transport Canada, must be complied with. 
  2. The processes used for development, implementation and maintenance of program operations will be maintained throughout the life of the program. 
  3. AQPs shall accommodate each specific make, model, and series aircraft (or variant). 
  4. AQPs may build upon existing training programs or may be completely new. 
  5. AQPs must provide two basic types of curricula for every duty position. These include: 

    1. Qualification; and 
    2. Continuing Qualification
    Secondary curricula (transition, difference, upgrade, re-qualification, etc.) will be derivatives from these basic types.
  6. Duty positions covered must include all flight crewmember positions, instructors and evaluators.  
  7. Air operators must provide justification, in a manner acceptable to Transport Canada, that the proficiency-based qualification of personnel under AQP meets or exceeds the requirements in Parts IV, VI and VII of the CARs as applicable. 
  8. Each of the training, evaluation and qualification requirements of Parts IV, VI and VII of the CARs, which are not specifically addressed in the AQP, continue to apply to the air operator. 
  9. Under AQP, the air operator must document the requirements of Parts IV, VI and VII of the CARs, which would be met or replaced by an AQP curriculum. 
  10. Under AQP, the air operator must establish an initial justification and a continuing process to show how the AQP curriculum provides an equivalent level of safety for each requirement to be replaced.   
  11. AQP requires the use of a LOS methodology for both training and evaluation, including LOS scripts reviewed and accepted by Transport Canada.  

    Note: . The design methodology used to design LOS scenarios must be approved by Transport Canada. Individual LOFT, SPOT and LOE scripts require review and acceptance by Transport Canada. Alternatively, individual LOE scripts developed through an approved system of script design methodology require event set review. Once these event sets have been accepted by Transport Canada, the entire script does not require acceptance. Among the possible script design methodologies available are rapid reconfigurable LOS methodology (i.e., Rapid Reconfigurable Line Operational Evaluations (RRLOEs). 
  12. An AQP must contain provisions for the training and evaluation of instructors and evaluators. 
  13. Air operators must provide Transport Canada with access to performance data. This will allow Transport Canada to validate training methods and the training program. 
  14. Curricula must be based on an Instructional System Development (ISD) methodology. This methodology must include a thorough analysis of the air operator’s operations, aircraft, line environment and job functions. 
  15. AQPs must include a list of, and text that describes the knowledge requirements, subject materials, job skills and Qualifications Standards of each task to be trained and evaluated. These are contained in the Job Task Analysis (JTA) and Qualification Standards. 
  16. AQPs must include a list of, and text that describes the supervised operating experience, evaluation/remediation strategies, provisions for special tracking, and how recency of experience will be accomplished. The details are contained in Chapter 4. 
  17. All curricula will include planned hours for ground training, flight training, evaluation, and operating experience. These planned hours will be derived from a detailed task analysis that includes CRM.
  18. Training and evaluation in Qualification and Continuing Qualification Curricula. 
  19. Curricula must be conducted in a crew or team environment. CRM must be trained and evaluated throughout the program. 
  20. AQP must include LOS. 
  21. Flight crewmember proficiency evaluation will be accomplished though Line Operational Evaluation (LOE). 
  22. Training and evaluation under AQP will integrate appropriate advanced flight training equipment. FTDs and simulators will be used to support scenario-based training as appropriate. 
  23. Air operators will develop data collection and analysis processes in order to obtain performance information on crewmembers, instructors and evaluators. This data will enable the air operator and Transport Canada to determine whether the form and content of training and evaluation activities are satisfactorily accomplishing the overall objectives of the curriculum.
  24. Upon request, performance data will be provided to Transport Canada electronically or in a paper report format that is acceptable to Transport Canada. 
  25. Air operators will provide Transport Canada with a Master AQP Transition Schedule (MATS) that provides a plan to transition from a traditional program to an AQP. In addition, the MATS should include a plan on how the applicant would return to a traditional program should that become necessary or desirable at some later date. This is not to imply that the traditional program must be kept current once AQP is entered, but only how the applicant would update the program and the time frame needed for implementation.

1.2.5 Developmental Assistance and Support

AQP applicants may avail themselves of a wide range of support organizations, documents, and services in the development of their AQPs. The total inventory of such support is constantly increasing, and the latest versions of all such support resources are always available by contacting the air operator’s Principal Operations Inspector (POI).

1.2.6 Transport Canada Support

Support is available from the following Transport Canada units:

  1. Transport Canada, Standards Branch, Certification and Operational Standards Division (AARTF)

    The Certification and Operational Standards Division (AARTF) is the office responsible for the development of regulations, standards and guidance material for AQP. 
  2. Transport Canada, National Operations Branch, Airlines Division (AAROA) or regional Commercial & Business Aviation operational oversight divisions

    The Regional Offices of C&BA and the Airline Division (AAROA) (as applicable) are responsible for ensuring regulatory requirements are met and standards are maintained. In addition, these offices will provide oversight of the entire operator’s AQP process and documentation.  
  3.  Transport Canada, Principal Operations Inspector ((POI)
    The POI is responsible for ensuring that regulatory requirements are met and that the AQP provides a satisfactory level of safety and pilot proficiency. The POI will recommend and coordinate the approval and provide oversight of the AQP documentation and program. The POI will recommend and coordinate the authorization of any modifications and subsequent authorizations throughout the life of the AQP. The POI will provide oversight of the instructor and evaluator program and adherence to approved documentation for all AQP curricula.

1.2.7 Evaluation Review Team (ERT)

There are fives phases in AQP that are described in Chapter 2. Authorization to proceed from one phase to the next is subject to the assessment of an Evaluation Review Team (ERT). The ERT will include (but not necessarily be limited to) the following:

  1. The POI (or a designated representative) 
  2. An AQP Specialist from National Operations – Airlines Division or from the Regional Office responsible for operational oversight.
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