CRM Flight Crew Resource Management Term Paper

Pages: 15 (4295 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 22  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Transportation

e., skills). Learning about CRM is the first step toward d positively engaging CRM practices, and applying them in the cockpit. The bottom line is that assessment of learning criteria provides evidence as to how successful the training program was in imparting the targeted knowledge, skills, and attitudes, and also provides the basis for feedback and areas in need of further refinement.

For the most part, CRM programs seem to produce positive examples of participant learning, primarily as indexed by attitude change. However, there are a few reported instances of CRM programs creating a "boomerang effect" that is creating instances of negative attitude change (Helmreich, 1991). One study found that personality type influenced whether participants had a positive or negative attitude change as a result of CRM training (Chidester et al., 1991).

2) Do Aviators Apply Learned CRM Behaviors in the Cockpit? Behavioral Evidence

Behavioral evidence, identified by Kirkpatrick (1976) as the proof of positive CRM training, provides an assessment of whether the lessons and/or knowledge learned in CRM training transfers to actual behavior on the job. The extent to which trainees learned how to perform the knowledge, skills, and attitudes taught during training as well as when to apply these skills; as well as trainee readiness and overall program effectiveness are the overall measure of the effectiveness of CRM training. (Cannon-Bowers et al., 1989).

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Behavioral evidence has been argued to be valuable in determining the effectiveness of a training program because it provides a the single most direct means to assess whether training participants can actually translate the knowledge, behaviors, and attitudes learned in training into action. Overall, the behavioral evidence reviewed suggests that CRM training does have an impact on behavior

Are the Skies Safer? Results/Evidence of Organizational Impact

Term Paper on CRM Flight Crew Resource Management Assignment

Organizational impact (i.e., increased safety, fewer errors) is the highest level of evaluation which can be used to evaluate the effectives of CRM. If the training does not result in fewer accident, and increased safety in the air, then the CRM training, regardless of theoretical underpinnings, is a considerable waste of time and effort. Although this type of evidence is highly valued, very few current studies have been conducted at this level. This kind of study is typically expensive, time consuming, and needs to be a longitudinal study in order to accurately gauge the overall effectiveness. Because of the difficulty of collecting this type of information (in terms of time, resources, identification of a clear criterion, and low occurrences of accidents and mishaps), evidence of CRM training's impact on the organization as a whole is not often sought or obtained. The only measure of overall CRM effectiveness is on an expectation basis. The occurrence of in flight problems in which CRM practices were not used points to the fact that additional CRM training methodologies need to be developed and implemented.

Although anecdotal reports indicate that CRM behaviors may contribute to reducing the impact of human and mechanical error within the aviation community, much stronger evidence and additional longitudinal studies are needed. However, even in the presence of additional research, a number of difficulties exist in establishing a clear cause-and-effect relationship between CRM and safety. For example, various miscellaneous factors may influence airline operations between the point at which a CRM program is implemented and the assessment of the program's impact, making direct causal relationship somewhat problematic. Clearly, evaluation efforts that can systematically track the impact of a CRM program on safety provide a stronger argument than do any anecdotal reports. The bottom line appears to be that although there is evidence of a positive trend regarding the impact of CRM on safety, more and better evaluations need to be conducted

Evaluating the outcome of CRM training

The following studies have been undertaken to evaluate the effectiveness, and the causal effect of CRM on crew behaviors. These reports span the last decade and therefore represent a broad-based review of CRM literature.

Baker et al. (1991)

Review of mean scores in this study indicated that preflight CRM brief exercise was a worthwhile addition to the aircrew coordination training course. Therefore this preflight review of CRM skills are likely to have an impact on next briefing experience (approx 4.4 on 5-point scale)

Participants were able to cite specific ways they planned to use information gained in both exercises. In addition, open-ended questionnaire revealed favorable impressions of exercises. 75% ranked role play assertiveness exercise as 1st or 2nd choice (n = 4)

Clark, Nielsen & Wood (1991)

Participants felt CRM enhanced information processing ability. Nonetheless, the majority indicated that negative effects of aviation stress outweighed many of the positive effects of CRM.

Hormann et al.


Preliminary data indicate that 90% of the participants indicated that the course content was highly relevant to the demands of their job. Preliminary data also indicate that 84% thought the method of presentation was attractive, and effective to aid in applying the skills to real life circumstances.

Simpson & Wiggins


In one of the few studies which compared CRM skills to human behavior styles studies, pilots who had previously completed human factors course had attitudes significantly different from those who hand not. Pilots who had a human factors course were more confident in terms of their ability to cope with emergency situations and exhibited a relatively heightened level of self-awareness which was not present in flight crews which participated in CRM studies alone.

Halliday, Biegalski, and Inzana (1987)

Of those not trained in CRM who had flown with another person trained in CRM, 75% indicated that CRM trained crew members

Exhibited recognizable behavioral changes. 80% of untrained individuals felt that they had observed better coordination and flight-deck atmosphere from crew members who had undergone

CRM training that those who had not.

Connolly & Blackwell


Checklist scores and flight ratings indicated that the experimental

Group performed significantly better on posttest than did control groups. Compared with control group, experimental group witnessed a significantly greater amount of change on both checklist scores and flight ratings after training.

As can be seen from the different measured results from this sampling, the affective nature of CRM has created positive results in most studies. Flight crews enjoyed the studies. Flight crews found that exercises are applicable and valuable to their work, and flight crews engaging in the CRM behaviors are positively affective toward their in flight responsibilities.

The most interesting results in regard to this paper is that even thought there is a limited amount of literature focused on the combined effects of personal behaviors training and the relationship to CRM, the literature which was reviewed found that flight crews skills increased appreciably when the two trainings were combined. The flight crews found that their abilities in the skies were increased measurably, and they felt more comfortable with their own skills when they had received personal behavior training in combination with the CRM training.

Solution Suggestions.

The history of aviation incidents, and the studies involved have shown that pilot performance is a major contributor to airline accident and incidents. Regardless of the technology involved in avionics, the human factor cannot be reasoned out of the equation. Human behaviors control the interaction between the airplane and its performance. Human interactions become even more important when emergency situations arise during the course of airplane flight. Therefore, training to improve pilots, performance has been a primary effort to improve airline safety.

As part of this effort, airlines using crew resource management (CRM) have found that CRM is an approach to improving pilot performance that focuses on better coordination - among members of the cockpit crew as well as among the cockpit crew and flight attendants, dispatchers, and air traffic controllers. The role playing and skill development lessons help prepare pilots to address communication issues, and maintain accurate and open communication at times when such communication is the most important - during certain routine and emergency situations.

Of the 169 accidents that involved the major airlines and that were investigated and reported on in detail by the National Transportation Safety Board from 1983 through 1995, it was found that about 30% were caused at least in part by the pilot's performance. Additionally, in at least one-third of these accidents (about 15), researchers have found that pilots did not correctly use the principles of CRM, which could have created a different result if the policies suggested by CRM had been followed. (GAO Report, 1997) During this same period from 1983 to 1995, of the nearly 4,000 total incidents recorded, about one-fifth was caused in part by the pilots' decisions and performance. For example, according to the National Transportation Safety Board, just before a 1994 crash in Charlotte, North Carolina, which killed 37 people, the aircraft had encountered a sudden change in wind direction. The captain of the craft gave an incorrect order to the first officer. The first officer did not question the order, as CRM principles would encourage him to do. While we may never know if the co-pilot's input… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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APA Style

CRM Flight Crew Resource Management.  (2004, May 21).  Retrieved January 21, 2021, from

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"CRM Flight Crew Resource Management."  21 May 2004.  Web.  21 January 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"CRM Flight Crew Resource Management."  May 21, 2004.  Accessed January 21, 2021.