Airline industry: satisfaction with computer-based training: an investigation of the logic of learning in flight-dispatch training practice

  • Ka Kan Erico Chan

    Student thesis: EdD Thesis


    This study is the first to attempt in Hong Kong to collect data about flight dispatch training for airlines. The purpose of this study was to examine the learning experiences of flight dispatchers when using different learning approaches and instructional methods for learning. In the light of an analysis of the training practices linked to the theory of adult learning, self-directed learning, learning style and learning satisfactions, we can determine the beliefs, expectations, and desires of flight dispatch trainees. This thesis argues that effective flight dispatch training goes beyond traditional instructor-centred teaching strategies (pedagogical approach). The new way of thinking about teaching flight dispatchers should also be based on adult learning theory and principles of andragogy. In addition, this thesis argues that flight dispatch training today is likely to be designed according to the needs and preferences of all stakeholders, rather than only according to the requirements of aviation regulators. The research questions are: What are flight dispatchers, trainers and flight dispatch managers' perceptions and expectations regarding the use of instructional methods and strategies currently used in flight dispatch training? What are flight dispatchers, trainers and flight dispatch managers' attitudes towards the use of computer-based training as an alternative instructional tool to replace classroom training? The research methodology adopted uses a mixed-method, sequential explanatory approach. Survey results have shown clear evidence that andragogy, self-directed learning and learning satisfaction play vital roles in the process of flight dispatch training. The results indicated that flight dispatchers' preferred mode of delivery is independent of their learning style, and classroom training had a more favorable reaction than did computer-based training, as demonstrated via quantitative and qualitative analyses. Those taking the computer-based course scored an average of 1.53 (effectiveness) and 0.65 (satisfaction) points lower than did those experiencing classroom training. The survey results did not support the findings from the literature that indicated all adults preferred self-directed learning. This study also included a qualitative analysis to address considerations of computer-based training as an alternative flight dispatch training delivery method. Although most trainees in the study said they preferred classroom training or on-the-job training, the majority felt that computer-based training was an appropriate delivery method to complement other, traditional methods of delivering flight dispatch training. Furthermore, the analysis of variances (ANOVA) for computer-based training satisfaction mean scores and generational group (novice and experienced flight dispatchers) were calculated. The results indicated that flight dispatch experience did not influence levels of satisfaction. To enhance or increase the creativity, innovativeness, and learning capacity of the workforce, a well-balanced training approach between formal classroom training, computer-based training, and on-the-job training should be encouraged in order to harness the advantages of both formal and informal learning.
    Date of Award1 Jul 2017
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • Univerisity of Nottingham
    SupervisorJohn Holford (Supervisor) & Lucy Cooker (Supervisor)

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