National Academies Press: OpenBook

Airport Operations Training at Small Airports (2020)

Chapter: Chapter 2 - Synthesis Methodology

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Page 14
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Synthesis Methodology." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Airport Operations Training at Small Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25948.
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Page 14
Page 15
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Synthesis Methodology." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Airport Operations Training at Small Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25948.
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Page 15
Page 16
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Synthesis Methodology." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Airport Operations Training at Small Airports. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25948.
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Page 16

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14 Literature Review Prior to collecting data from airports on the topic of airport operations training programs, this study entailed a thorough review of the literature on this topic (and related topics, includ- ing adult learning styles, generational learning preferences, and learner motivation). Sources were discovered through numerous platforms, including Google, Google Scholar, OneSearch (powered by EBSCO), Transportation Research International Database (an integrated database that combines the records from TRB’s Transportation Research Information Services Database and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Joint Transport Research Centre’s International Transport Research Documentation Database), and the websites of AAAE (including the Accreditation Papers member library) and FAA. Recipients and Participants The population defined for this synthesis reflects a desire not only to focus on small airports but also to gather data from larger airports for possible training practices that could be scaled down for smaller airports. In an effort to streamline data collection, the study included recipients that are members of the following airport industry committees: • AAAE Training Committee (77 members) • AAAE General Aviation (GA) Airports Committee (190 members) • AAAE Operations/Safety/Planning/Emergency Management Committee (371 members) • ACI–NA Small Airports Committee (350 members) • ACI–NA Operations & Technical Affairs Committee (750 members) Although the actual airport makeup of these committees varied and some airports were members of multiple committees, the project panel aimed to include airports from all NPIAS airport categories and all nine FAA regions. Thus, the study also gathered data from air- ports at-large via the AAAE Member Hub community (which technically could include every AAAE member). After several email reminders, a total of 182 airports responded to the survey. A response rate could not be determined, because the total population of airports receiving the survey could not be accurately determined. As presented in Figure 3 and as reported by participants, the study included participating airports from each of the nine FAA regions. Additionally, all NPIAS airport sizes—including large hub, medium hub, small hub, nonhub, nonprimary, GA, and reliever—were represented. Within some regions, such as Eastern, Southern, and Southwest, airports from each NPIAS category were represented. Even though a response rate C H A P T E R 2 Synthesis Methodology

Synthesis Methodology 15 could not be calculated, this number of responses, representing such diversity in geography and airport size, was deemed sufficient to synthesize nationwide information on airport opera- tions training practices. Survey and Interview Methodology The researcher designed a unique questionnaire consisting of 17 items using the web-based SurveyMonkey platform. Categories addressed in the questionnaire included demographics, personnel, training methods, training topics, training hours, training sources, and training practices. It was anticipated that an online survey protocol would result in a greater response rate than mailed surveys, garner faster response, and be more economical than telephone interviews. The survey was developed using the researcher’s knowledge of airport operations training, knowledge gained during the literature review, and feedback from the project panel. Following a project panel pretest, the survey instrument was further refined. The survey link was first shared with the AAAE Member Hub community on July 20, 2019. Survey links were then shared with AAAE and ACI–NA committees on various dates during August 2019. Because of the extensive distribution over a period of several weeks, the survey remained open until August 30, 2019, with 182 total responses. Once the survey closed, no further responses were possible. Figure 3. Participating airports by NPIAS category and FAA region.

16 Airport Operations Training at Small Airports On the basis of survey responses (including the willingness to be contacted for follow-up), 14 airports were contacted via phone during September 2019. The intent of the phone calls was to better understand innovative training methods at the select airports for the purpose of developing case examples for the report. A case example was developed for each of those air- ports (presented in Chapter 5). Data Analysis Survey data were analyzed using basic Excel statistical analysis tools, as well as the SurveyMonkey data analysis tool. Descriptive statistics were calculated. Charts were created using Excel. Quali- tative responses to open-ended questions were manually tabulated and analyzed using content analysis. Themes were uncovered from the verbatim responses and presented to better under- stand common perspectives among participating airports.

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Managers of airports of all sizes face a perennial dilemma: how to efficiently train operations personnel to meet Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 139 requirements and ensure a safe and secure airport environment.

The TRB Airport Cooperative Research Program's ACRP Synthesis 112: Airport Operations Training at Small Airports focuses on airport operations employees and aims to better understand current training methods and programs in use by small airports in the United States (including nonhub, nonprimary commercial service, reliever, and general aviation) to initially and recurrently train airport operations employees.

Supplemental material to the report includes several appendices, including Appendix H, Appendix I, Appendix J, Appendix K, and Appendix L.

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