Private Pilot Practical Test

Private Pilot Practical Test


Private Pilot Practical Test / Plan Of Action

Here are my guidelines/questions that most FSDOs/FAA Inspectors will ask before they allow you in their office or meet/fly with you. This is due to the Coronavirus of 2020:
“When was the applicant last out of the country?”
“When was the applicant last in contact with any person that has been out of the United States recently (since January 1, 2020)?”
“When were classrooms, briefing rooms, common areas that we would be utilizing last disinfected/sanitized?”
“When was the aircraft last cleaned for the purpose of disinfection and sanitization? How was that completed?”

Both the examiner and the applicant will wear some type of mask during the entire test.

If you are an applicant at a school that has had one or more students test positive, here are the guidelines for a practical test with Harry:
Classroom table must be cleaned with Clorox or alcohol prior to the test.
Mask will be worn at all times.
Hands must be cleaned with hand sanitizer.
Applicant will use their own computer to sign the IACRA application.
Aircraft controls and all knobs, switches, and buttons must be cleaned with Clorox or alcohol before the flight.
Applicant must provide a Covid test report (test must have been within 7 days of the practical test) showing negative results.

Harry has had the antibody test (July 21 2020) and the nasal swab test (July 23 2020). The antibody test was negative as of July 22 2020.


Once I receive the applicant's information form and PLT codes, send them their scenario

Incorporate PLT codes in to my Plan-of-Action

Print Flight-Profile to take on flight

The day of the test:

Verify approval for test in DMS


Pretest Briefing

When reviewing the student's log book, be sure to confirm that he/she was properly endorsed for all solo time. Click here to review the endorsements

Verify proper endorsements for checkride

Open the proper ACS/PTS

Open my Questions & Answer page

Pre-flight briefing

The flight test

Post Flight Briefingt

After printing the temporary certificate, Notice of Disapproval, or the Letter of Discontinuance, I will print a copy of this form and have the applicant sign it


1. Be on time
2. Physical testing environment: Ensure privacy.Eliminate possible interruptions/ have calls held, etc.
3. Psychological testing environment: Show genuine interest in the applicant. Be polite, courteous, receptive.Manage your prejudices. Keep personal or business problems to yourself

1. Access all levels of learning: rote, understanding, application, correlation. Correlation: should be the objective of aviation instruction.
2. Scenario situations are one of the evaluator’s better tools for more comprehensive testing and will, to the greatest extent practicable, test the applicant’s correlative abilities. Scenarios also aid in evaluating pilot judgment, knowledge, and skill.
3. Characteristics of good oral test questions: reliable, valid, usable, objective, comprehensive, and non- discriminating.
4. Oral questioning may continue throughout the test.

When the applicant is with you for the practical test and they are reviewing the online 8710, you the examiner should take control and be sure that the applicant accepts each page and does not just close each page. This is very important. Take control of this and guide the applicant through this process.

Print the Knowledge Test from IACRA and compare the numbers with the original.

After reviewing the 8710 in IACRA, you have a chance to return the 8710 to the applicant to correct any issues.

When the applicant is with you for the practical test and they are reviewing the online 8710, you the examiner should take control and be sure that the applicant accepts each page and does not just close each page. This is very important. Take control of this and guide the applicant through this process.

Have the applicant sign a printed 8710 in front of you. This is for your file.

In IACRA, explain in detail in the remarks/comments section any special issues. Also in this section you can explain exactly why an applicant failed so that the next examiner has the details.

You can start each checkride with the PAVE and I'M SAFE checklist.

At the completion of the checkride, the DPE will keep the original test results. You return the original only if you discontinue the test or the applicant fails the test.

Flight Profile:

Preflight Inspection
Cockpit Management
Engine Starting
Before Take-off Check
Normal takeoff and climb (cross wind takeoff if applicable)
Start off on cross country to the first 2 or 3 checkpoints - Pilotage/Dead Reckoning
Trigger Event - divert to an alternate I pick via pilotage/Dead Reckoning plus ATC
Normal approach & landing at alternate

Landing picture

Side slip for crosswind landing

A famous runway incursion

Soft field takeoff & landing

Soft Field Landing

Short field takeoff & landing
Forward slip to landing

Forward slip

Go around
Takeoff towards practice area
Steep turns
Ground Reference maneuvers ***See Note Below

Private Pilot ground reference maneuvers slides

FAA Airplane Flying Handbook Ground Reference Maneuvers

Slow flight *** See Slow Flight in Q&A section SAFO 17009 & SAFO 16010. This cannot be turned in to a power off stall. Per March 2019 DPE class, the applicant needs to recovery from slow flight.

Power off stall
Power on stall
Spin awareness

Lesson Plan on spins

Instrument maneuvers, straight & level, constant airspeed climbs, constant airspeed descents, turns to headings
Magentic compass turns
Unusual attitudes *** See note below

Recovery procedures

Lesson plan on emergencies

Emergency descent
Emergency operations - systems & equipment failures
Lost procedures
Radio navigation return to home base (some hood work) - GPS & VOR
Emergency approach & landing
Post flight procedures

*****Notes >>>>> Per the March 2019 Initial DPE training class an applicant can do one or two go arounds when attempting a landing. It is up to the examiner as to how many go arounds are allowed. >>>>> An applicant can also stop a maneuver and restart it if the applicant feels the maneuver got of to a bad start. For example, on a steep turn if the applicant is climbing or descending too much during the entry, the applicant can stop the maneuver and restart the maneuver.

*****Note >>>>> The ground reference maneuver rectangular course cannot be a traffic pattern with a landing. The ACS states "PA.V.B.S7 Maintain altitude ±100 feet; maintain airspeed ±10 knots." Flying the pattern with a landing is NOT maintaining altitude plus/minus 100 feet.

*****Note >>>>> The FAA does not recommend that you do a touch and go on a Practical Test.

***** Unusual attitude recovery >>>>>In moderate unusual attitudes, the pilot can normally
reorient by establishing a level flight indication on the
attitude indicator. However, the pilot should not depend on
this instrument if the attitude indicator is the spillable type,
because its upset limits may have been exceeded or it may
have become inoperative due to mechanical malfunction.
If it is the nonspillable-type instrument and is operating
properly, errors up to 5 degrees of pitch-and-bank may result
and its indications are very difficult to interpret in extreme
attitudes. As soon as the unusual attitude is detected, the
recommended recovery procedures stated in the POH/AFM
should be initiated. If there are no recommended procedures
stated in the POH/AFM, the recovery should be initiated by
reference to the ASI, altimeter, VSI, and turn coordinator.

PracticalTest PlasticCertificate
Detailed Information
Detailed Description
Have the applicant bring a paper copy of the 8710 form signed by his/her instructor. For a practical test inside the 24 hour notification window, it is ok to do the test - the FAA will approve it when they have time. As the DPE you will not be able to do the post activity report until the FAA approves the test.
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October 22, 1907: Airship races at St. Louis attract six entries. Winner is Lincoln Beachey.