Aviation – Safety Assessment


The Safety Assessment Aviation test set assesses aspects of cognitive ability that are relevant to aviation. It measures criteria such as stress tolerance, memory, spatial ability and psychomotor coordination. The dimensions have been validated in terms of their ability to predict success in a flight simulator test. The tests used have been shown to meet the highest psychometric standards.

Safety Assessment Aviation is tailored to the needs of civil and military aviation and covers three areas: selection of civil and military pilots and air traffic controllers, pre-selecting candidates for testing in a flight simulator, and regular testing of pilots’ fitness to fly. Safety Assessment Aviation can be used to select pilots of all types, such as aircraft pilots, sports aircraft pilots, helicopter pilots and airship pilots.

It can reduce not only the institutional burden of the selection process but also the burden on pilots and would-be pilots in terms of both time and physical and mental stress. A generally high level of ability in all relevant areas can be regarded as a basic condition for coping successfully with the cognitive demands placed on pilots




The Safety Assessment Aviation test set comprises of the following dimensions and abilities:

Dimensions Ability Definition Duration in minutes
Logical reasoning Capacity to train and acquire new knowledge and skills such as functionality of all technical equipment and apply these in challenging and complex situations approx. 30
Numerical ability Capacity to reliably and correctly make calculations in preparation for flights (e.g. fuel consumption or optimal speed) approx. 40
Spatial ability Capacity for spatial perception and mental 3D orientation, which is used to make in-flight adjustments  (e.g. following distance estimations to objects or other aircraft) approx. 30
Memory Capacity to store and remember procedures, processes and technical information in manuals, as well as memorise displays and values, and retrieve this information from various instrumentation approx. 13
Focused attention Capacity to effectively divide attention between tasks, such as flying an aircraft, attending to in-cabin displays and communicating with an air traffic controller, while ignoring irrelevant events, information and noises approx. 24
Vigilance – sustained attention Capacity to maintain attention, alertness and focus on instrumentation data (e.g. cabin pressure) over a long period of time such as long-haul flights, under jet-lag and shift-work conditions approx. 27
Stress tolerance – Performance based Capacity to stay composed under duress, and call upon skills learnt in training more readily to deal with emergency situations, such as poor visibility or engine failure approx. 6
Eye-hand coordination Capacity to use hands and fine motor movements to precisely use control devices such control knobs, gears, joysticks and steering wheels, which may be used to operate an aircraft approx. 10
Total length of the test set approx. 180