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Clarity and pronunciation of ab-initio air traffic controller

Abstract

The increasing number of aircraft flying around the world has led to the requirement for air traffic controllers to improve their communication skills to face high demand traffic in the future. The paper examines the communication errors in the pilot-controller communication of six ab-initio air traffic controllers during simulation training. More than three hours of conversation were collected and analyzed qualitatively using conversational analysis. The transcribed data yielded a total of 62 instances of communication errors. The data revealed that clarity and pronunciation of ab-initio controllers contributed to problematic communication and reduced the efficiency of the air traffic controllers in communicating. In contrast, pronunciation errors rarely diminished comprehension amongst the controllers and pilots who share a similar first language and are familiar with the use of English in a lingua franca setting. The study also describes other instances of communication errors in pilot-controller communication. The results indicate that ab-initio air traffic controllers need to be proficient in three main areas in pilot controller communication to improve their performance: aviation phraseology, aviation English, and aviation knowledge. The findings suggest that pilots and air traffic controllers should achieve level 4 (operational) in aviation language proficiency test, before proceeding to aviation training that requires them to be proficient in their language skills.

Keyword : aviation English, pilot-controller communication, English for specific purposes, non-native speakers, miscommunication, language training

How to Cite
Hamzah, H. (2021). Clarity and pronunciation of ab-initio air traffic controller. Aviation, 25(4), 252-261. https://doi.org/10.3846/aviation.2021.15906
Published in Issue
Dec 14, 2021
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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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