Flight simulation based case study to compare student learning, performance and retention

Adeel Khalid, Kennesaw State University


Student learning and retention as a function of the mode of teaching is analyzed in this study. Different groups of students are given information about aircraft flight operations either via lecture, through directed study, a combination of the two or through a pre-recorded flight demonstration video. Their level of learning is assessed by evaluating how well they fly an aircraft and perform a predefined mission using a flight simulator. Scores of different groups are compared qualitatively and quantitatively and students are surveyed after the flight. It is found that students that learn through watching a demonstration video tend to perform better than all other groups. Additionally, it is discovered that students that have access to literature beforehand and receive a lecture prior to the flight perform better than those that only review the literature or only receive a lecture before the simulation. So a combination of teaching modes tend to reinforce the concepts and therefore increases student performance. Also, the efficacy of the hands-on learning in a laboratory environment is discussed.