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CBIR Theory Workload

From what I can gather, the full IR requires 150 hours theoretical training (according to the UK CAA website…my local ATO says 200, not sure why the difference)

The CBIR is touted as 80 hours. I am doing the distance course with Bristol Ground School and after following their syllabus where they basically give you the full IR course and tell you what to leave out) I am up to 80% complete. I’m not sure how it’s touted at having less than 50% of the theory requirement by EASA when the learning objectives end with you doing 80% of the course.

This is aside from the fact that so much of it is pointless. About 1/3 of Air Law is based on knowing how be an ATC controller.

EIWT, Ireland

In fact as an ATCO I don´t know much about conventional separation, and we´re not supposed to, since it´s pretty much useless in our congested airspaces. But as a pilot it´s even more useless, since you do what you´re being instructed most times anyway. Maybe someone should tell EASA?!


Different ground school FTOs have negotiated different credits towards the “regulatory number”, it appears, for (a) classroom time and (b) distance learning. Consequently nobody seems to be doing the regulatory number, exactly.

Also most students want the absolute minimum classroom time (because it is a huge hassle e.g. airline flights and hotel stays, for many or most, and most of the lecturers think a KNS80 is a state of the art navigation tool – literally in the case of one I had – which makes the classroom time particularly worthless for anybody who already flies) and want to load the extra onto the distance learning part which can be “helped” by hammering the computer question bank.

I suggest a search on “CATS” (a popular UK FTO) and have a read e.g. here.

Of course most of the syllabus is bollocks – for some amusement you can read these notes from 2011. Especially the ATC content which belongs to an ATC course.

You just have to grind through it, get the IR, and never look back

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Yea I’ve got the boxes ticked now in terms of time sat at the computer so I’m going to hit the question bank for a month (currently only scoring about 70% average) and then do the 8 hours classroom time in Bristol with a round of exams the following day. I’ll probably do it in two trips as the volume of information is just too much for one run. Am I right in saying that you just book a series of ‘slots’ at the exam centre and you can do whichever exam you want in each slot?

I’m thinking Met, Law, HPL and IFR Comms in the first round and then the rest along with a possible repeat in either Met or Law the second time.

EIWT, Ireland

I did the whole thing in one day with CAPT, and then used AviationExam question bank.

I passed the whole lot in two sittings on the first go – I’d just recommend doing the minimum classroom time and then bang through the question banks. It’s much more productive that way, particularly as the EASA exams don’t really test understanding.

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Oxford EGTK

@Charlie Are you serious? One day in the classroom, hammer the question banks, then the exams? Really, was that it? No prior study?

EGTT, The London FIR

@Finners yes basically. But bear in mind the question bank has 4000+ questions. And each time I got one wrong I read the explanation so I would understand the topic properly. So it’s not as though the whole process takes 2 days. I reckon in total I spent 4 full days to get there.

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Oxford EGTK

I nearly fell off my chair reading that. Four days total is most impressive and probably a great tip for anyone contemplating a CBIR.

EGTT, The London FIR

Bear in mind you won’t understand much with this approach, but you will pass

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Oxford EGTK

I spent a lot more than that ;-)

LFHN - Bellegarde - Vouvray France
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