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Aviation English Proficiency Test


Welcome to this pilot refresher course on ICAO ENGLISH TEST PREPARATION COURSE. We hope that the information you find here will enhance your knowledge of ICAO ENGLISH TEST PREPARATION COURSE.

ICAO Language Proficiency Requirements
English has long been the common language of aviation. Pilots and air traffic controllers of varying nationalities have been required to communicate using english. Previously it was up to each country to create their own standard of aviation english. However, these standards often vary and as a result miscommunication in the english language has contributed to many aviation accidents. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) created an international standard for language proficiency requirements including a rating scale to measure the level of english proficiency. Of this scale, ICAO level of 4 or higher was officially recognized as being english proficient in aviation.

ICAO set an initial deadline for 2008 for pilots and air traffic controllers to achieve the minimum english proficiency of ICAO level 4. Many countries were not able to meet the deadline so an extension was given until 2011.
All speakers of English must demonstrate a minimum English language proficiency at ICAO Level 4 (Operational) in order to be fully licensed internationally.
Air traffic personnel will be required to take a test to determine their English language proficiency according to the ICAO proficiency scale. Personnel will need to demonstrate ability to use the language specific to all aspects of radio telephony communication.

Personnel who demonstrate English language proficiency at

ICAO Level 6 (Expert) will not be required to demonstrate English language proficiency in the future.
ICAO Level 5 (Extended) will need to be retested every six years.
ICAO Level 4 (Operational) will need to be retested every three years.
ICAO Level 3 or below will need specific Aviation English language training to reach the minimum ICAO Operational Level.

Practice your Aviation English Listening Skills by working the exercises that we have put together for you. The key to read back efficiently is to have very great listening skills and to write down as quickly as you can. Then, everything will fall into place.

Course content
Each unit focuses on routine or non-routine situations of high relevance to cadet pilots, eg bird strike, engine failure, equipment failure, fuel planning, volcanic ash, Basic Aeronautical Knowledge. Each unit includes pair and group work activities to increase pilots' ability to communicate effectively and safely in aviation. The range of activities is very wide but includes:

Picture description
Listening comprehension of plain English in an aviation context, eg weather briefing, news report, personal experiences, interview, group discussion.
Pronunciation practice
Grammar drills and practice of relevant structures
Listening comprehension of pilot/controller dialogues in routine and non-routine situations.
Role play of pilot-controller / pilot-crewmember communications using both ICAO standard phraseology and plain English Group discussion and debate on topics affecting flight safety

  • Aviation English Exam Practice
Completion rules
  • All units must be completed