University of Hawaii Community Colleges
Instructional Annual Report of Program Data (ARPD)

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Review Year: College: Program:

College: Honolulu Community College
Program: Commercial Aviation

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Program did not provide date of the last comprehensive review.

Program Description

PROGRAM MISSION: The Commercial Aviation Program’s mission is to serve Hawai‘i and the Pacific Region as the 
primary technical training center in aviation by offering a rigorous pilot flight training curriculum, meeting basic 
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requirements to train and earn FAA certifications leading to careers as 
professional commercial pilots within the aviation industry.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: The Commercial Aviation program is a four-semester program of study that prepares students for 
careers as a professional pilot, including charter and tour services, cargo and transport services, and flight instruction. This flight training program enables students to earn private, commercial, instrument, multi-engine, flight instructor, and instrument flight instructor ratings. 
Students may log up to 250 hours of flight time. The Associate in Science degree credits from Commercial Aviation are transferable to 4-year colleges offering aviation degrees or toward a University of Hawai‘i degree in other disciplines.

Part I. Quantitative Indicators

Overall Program Health: Cautionary

Majors Included: AVIT     Program CIP: 49.0102

Demand Indicators Program Year Demand Health Call
10-11 11-12 12-13
1 New & Replacement Positions (State) 36 36 64 Cautionary
2 *New & Replacement Positions (County Prorated) 24 24 56
3 *Number of Majors 28 37.5 51
3a     Number of Majors Native Hawaiian 6 7 19
3b     Fall Full-Time 43% 50% 47%
3c     Fall Part-Time 57% 50% 53%
3d     Fall Part-Time who are Full-Time in System 20% 8% 16%
3e     Spring Full-Time 67% 50% 47%
3f     Spring Part-Time 33% 50% 53%
3g     Spring Part-Time who are Full-Time in System 5% 3% 11%
4 SSH Program Majors in Program Classes 321 468 617
5 SSH Non-Majors in Program Classes 17 6 25
6 SSH in All Program Classes 338 474 642
7 FTE Enrollment in Program Classes 11 16 21
8 Total Number of Classes Taught 12 11 14

Efficiency Indicators Program Year Efficiency Health Call
10-11 11-12 12-13
9 Average Class Size 8.3 12 13.4 Cautionary
10 *Fill Rate 34% 48.8% 57.1%
11 FTE BOR Appointed Faculty 0 1 1
12 *Majors to FTE BOR Appointed Faculty 0 37.5 51
13 Majors to Analytic FTE Faculty 18 26.0 27.5
13a Analytic FTE Faculty 1.6 1.4 1.9
14 Overall Program Budget Allocation $238,551 $117,336 $297,269
14a General Funded Budget Allocation $238,551 $117,336 $151,417
14b Special/Federal Budget Allocation $0 $0 $0
14c Tuition and Fees $0 $0 $145,852
15 Cost per SSH $706 $248 $463
16 Number of Low-Enrolled (<10) Classes 7 2 5
*Data element used in health call calculation Last Updated: January 27, 2014

Effectiveness Indicators Program Year Effectiveness Health Call
10-11 11-12 12-13
17 Successful Completion (Equivalent C or Higher) 72% 58% 62% Unhealthy
18 Withdrawals (Grade = W) 0 3 8
19 *Persistence Fall to Spring 48.5% 65% 71.4%
19a Persistence Fall to Fall     51%
20 *Unduplicated Degrees/Certificates Awarded 0 1 0
20a Degrees Awarded 0 1 0
20b Certificates of Achievement Awarded 0 0 0
20c Advanced Professional Certificates Awarded 0 0 0
20d Other Certificates Awarded 0 0 0
21 External Licensing Exams Passed   Not Reported Not Reported
22 Transfers to UH 4-yr 0 3 2
22a Transfers with credential from program 0 0 0
22b Transfers without credential from program 0 3 2

Distance Education:
Completely On-line Classes
Program Year  
10-11 11-12 12-13
23 Number of Distance Education Classes Taught 0 0 0  
24 Enrollments Distance Education Classes N/A N/A N/A
25 Fill Rate N/A N/A N/A
26 Successful Completion (Equivalent C or Higher) N/A N/A N/A
27 Withdrawals (Grade = W) N/A N/A N/A
28 Persistence (Fall to Spring Not Limited to Distance Education) N/A N/A N/A

Perkins IV Core Indicators
Goal Actual Met  
29 1P1 Technical Skills Attainment 90.00 88.89 Not Met  
30 2P1 Completion 50.00 11.11 Not Met
31 3P1 Student Retention or Transfer 74.25 70.00 Not Met
32 4P1 Student Placement 60.00 40.00 Not Met
33 5P1 Nontraditional Participation 17.00 17.95 Met
34 5P2 Nontraditional Completion 15.25 0.00 Not Met

Performance Funding Program Year  
10-11 11-12 12-13
35 Number of Degrees and Certificates     0  
36 Number of Degrees and Certificates Native Hawaiian     0
37 Number of Degrees and Certificates STEM     Not STEM
38 Number of Pell Recipients     25
39 Number of Transfers to UH 4-yr     2
*Data element used in health call calculation Last Updated: January 27, 2014
Glossary | Health Call Scoring Rubric

Part II. Analysis of the Program

The commercial aviation program of Honolulu Community College will create over a dozen commercial pilots during the 2013-2014 school year. This success is the result of a three-year program renovation that began in late 2010 with the appointment of a new program coordinator. Since that appointment, the number of majors in the program has more than doubled and the number of graduates with degrees will also soon increase substantially. The ARPD for the 2012-2013 school year is indicative of a flight program that lacked a substantial number students involved in second-year flight courses (AVIT 323 and 325) during the previous year. The substantial turnaround of this program will not become apparent until numbers for the 2013-2014 school year are evaluated.

Demand indicators showed Cautionary due to a more than doubling of demand for pilots within a single year. While a target rate of 1.5 to 4.0 majors per job opening might make sense for some career fields, these numbers are far too high for fields requiring the most expensive forms of training such as medical and flight school. Further, the target rate does not take into account that a major percentage of flight training has historically taken place outside a college environment. Nonetheless, enrollments in the AVIT program continue to increase at a rapid pace and demand indicators should return to healthy in a reasonably short time as student numbers continue to increase and collegiate flight training continues to erode the percentage of flight training done by private flight schools.

Efficiency indicators showed Cautionary for a few important reasons. The program has been growing rapidly and the college has not yet hired a second BOR full-time faculty member to keep up with this growth. Such an appointment would improve the "majors to FTE BOR Appointed Faculty" ratio. Also, since various courses tied directly to flight training must be offered every semester in order to prevent major delays for the students in reaching graduation, some classes will out of necessity fall below the 10 student level. Fortunately, the continued growth of this program will alleviate these areas for caution, as well. Another method for improving class sizes in second-year flight-related courses will be to improve retention of first-year students. This improved retention will be possible because of newly-introduced flight simulation labs and because of improved performance from the flight provider associated with this course. Both issues will be discussed in the action plan.

Effectiveness Indicators showed Unhealthy this year but will improve dramatically when many degrees and certificates are awarded in the 2013-2014 school year. Nonetheless, certain elements of the rubrics for determining health are going to be problematic. For example, demand for pilots within the county more than doubled within the past year, and a collegiate program cannot be expected to more than double its degrees and certificates awarded within a one year time span to meet this increase in demand. A delay of two to three years is more likely required to double the number of graduates when demand doubles. Secondly, when the program is growing rapidly, the ratio of graduates to total majors is diluted as the number of first year students expands substantially.

Improved numbers of degrees and certificates awarded will become apparent during the 2013-2014 evaluation. Further, both number of majors and student retention in 2012-2013 are way up compared to the previous two school years. This is a program that is improving at a rapid pace.

Part III. Action Plan

A college has a responsibility to provide both opportunities for students and a suitable supply of skilled graduates to the community. In the case of pilot training, quality is of particular importance since lives of community members are at stake. The AVIT program at Honolulu Community College has adopted two of the most important techniques used by major U.S. airlines, the leaders in flight safety. Those techniques are the use of flight simulation to enhance the flight training process and the introduction of scenario-based training.

In fall semester of 2013 the AVIT program began offering simulation labs to AVIT 102 (Private Pilot) and AVIT 222 (Instrument Pilot) students. These simulation sessions are given in a classroom environment. For a fee of one credit (not much over $100), a Hawaii resident student can acquire nearly 40 hours of experience pre-flying the same maneuvers he or she will fly in the flight provider's training airplanes. The lab effectively doubles the quantity of flight training at a cost increase of approximately one percent of what that student will pay for tuition and flight fees that semester. These inexpensive PC-based simulation devices can also be used for scenario-based training, in which the student is subjected to situations that tax one's judgment. The instructor debriefs the student after the scenario, and the two discuss how the flight could have been handled differently. By providing these two types of training the AVIT program offers instruction that will lead to substantially better-trained pilots than those being produced using more traditional methods where all the flight instruction takes place in airplanes.

A big change for the coming year will be more careful direction of the flight provider. In previous years, the flight provider used its own criteria for determining the suitability of a flight instructor for the program and insuring that the quality of instruction was sufficient. No flight simulation (AATD, FTD, etc.) had been used in the past three years to defer the cost of flight instruction and enhance its effectiveness. A new RFP has been issued and whether the current provider is chosen or a new provider is picked, the winner of that RFP will be subject to the methodologies demanded of that provider by the new RFP. First, the number of graduates from HCC's AVIT program is expected to be sufficient for meeting the flight instructor needs of the school, and all graduates of AVIT are expected to pass the AVIT 344 flight instruct class, which gives the program coordinator a semester to ensure that no weaknesses exist in the future instructor's aeronautical knowledge, the future instructor's ability to teach effectively with flight simulation devices, and an opportunity for the program coordinator to demonstrate effective instructional techniques. Second, the flight provider will be required to lay out an acceptable standardization program. Third, the flight provider will be required to acquire a simulation device (AATD or FTD) that will be used to reduce the cost of flying and to increase the effectiveness of the training program. Flight hours are reduced when instruction is given in such a sophisticated device.

Perkins core indicators will be addressed as follows:

1P1 Technical Skills Attainment- AVIT's percentage barely missed the 90.00% goal and will reach it in future years because of the reduction in "F" grades given to students who do not complete the flight portion of a flight course. AVIT now requires students to complete the flight portion of a flight course prior to beginning the academic portion of another flight course, and this change alone will allow AVIT to exceed this Perkins criteria.

2P1 Completion- The high dropout rate from flight programs as a result of depletion of financial resources will make this indicator particularly challenging, but with increased completion rates the AVIT program should attain suitable performance in this core indicator during the 2014-2015 school year, and possibly sooner. One method for avoiding dropouts is to deliver the training more efficiently. Three years ago our flight provider was charging an average of $14,000-$17,000 to deliver an AVIT 102 Private Pilot's certificate. During the 2013-2014 school year, the costs of that certificate have been in the $11,000-$12,000 range, and once the efficiencies of our program allow delivery of Private Pilot certificates with approximately $10,000 of flight fees, the school will move to a fixed cost for certificate flight fees approach.

3P1 Student Retention or Transfer and 4P1 Student Placement- Briefing students of their options should enable the AVIT program to score better in future years.

5P1 Nontraditional Participation- Met

5P2 Nontraditional Completion- This number will rise substantially in the coming year as successful female students graduate.

Part IV. Resource Implications

The continued growth of the AVIT program will necessitate that a second BOR faculty member be added prior to the 2014-2015 school year. By then the program will have grown to exceed 65 degree-seeking students. Traditionally, the AVIT program employed a full-time administrator. The previous use of flight instructors as lecturers for flight-related classes proved ineffective, and for these critical classes the transient instructors are now replaced by a seasoned veteran lecturer who returns year after year or by the program coordinator. Unfortunately, the program coordinator can no longer continue to effectively perform both the duties of a full-time administrative position and 18 hours of teaching each semester. Relief is crucial, particularly considering the need to apply significant effort to continue the very substantial progress this program has made.

Program Student Learning Outcomes

For the 2012-2013 program year, some or all of the following P-SLOs were reviewed by the program:

this year?
Program Student Learning Outcomes


Demonstrate the knowledge and skills needed to safety exercise the privileges and responsibilities of a commercial/instrument pilot acting as pilot-in-command of a multi-engine airplane


Satisfactorily pass the FAA Commercial Pilot - Airplane knowledge test


Obtain the Commercial Pilot Certificate, Multi-engine land rating as outlined in the appropriate FAA Practical Test Standards and Federal Aviation Regulations


Identify aircraft design, engine design, airports, aviation support facilities and the practical economics of airline operations as they support the air transportation industry


Demonstrate knowledge of air traffic control (ATC) technology and terminology, career requirements, components and function of the National Airspace System and Terminal and enroute ATC facilities as they support the ATC system


Identify aviation ground operations, technical operations, flight operations and system operations as they support airline operations and management


Provide highlights in the history of aviation from its very beginnings to current endeavors


Explain pilot psychology, physiology, human factors, aircraft technology, crew resource management and accident review and investigation as they relate to the aspects of aviation safety

A) Evidence of Industry Validation

No content.

B) Expected Level Achievement

No content.

C) Courses Assessed

During the 2012-2013 academic year, the following Commercial Aviation courses were assessed.  Details and results of theses course student learning outcome assessments were submitted to the Dean for review and further discussion.

AVIT 102

AVIT 104

AVIT 208

AVIT 222

AVIT 228

AVIT 250

AVIT 302

AVIT 305

AVIT 323

AVIT 325

AVIT 344



D) Assessment Strategy/Instrument

No content.

E) Results of Program Assessment

No content.

F) Other Comments

No content.

G) Next Steps

One necessary step for improving graduation rates is to rationalize the math and physics requirements for AVIT majors. Most AVIT majors need to take several math classes to work their way up to the Math 140 level so that they are eligible to take math-intensive Physics 151. Unfortunately, such advanced mathematical calculations are totally unnecessary for a professional pilot (according to a captain with 20+ years flying experience with a major U.S. airline) and are more applicable to engineers and individuals who need to perform the intricate mathematical calculations. A more rational choice would be to require Physics 100 and a lower-level math class that is appropriate for Physics 100. Even better, once a year the college should offer an Aviation Physics class for which textbooks are available. The Aviation Physics class would cover all basic physics formulas presented in Physics 100 but the course would use relevant aviation examples to highlight the physics principles. Efforts will be extended during 2013 to bring about a curriculum change of the AVIT program so as to enable these changes.

The biggest barrier to a successful transition from an associate's degree in Commercial Aviation to a four year bachelor's degree at U.H. is the lack of a University of Hawaii program that allows the transfer of most or all credits of the Commercial Aviation program. That barrier will soon be removed. At the present time, Honolulu Community College and University of Hawaii West Oahu are at work crafting an articulation agreement that will lead to a four-year degree in a hybrid program that combines the strengths of HCC's Commercial Aviation program with a strong program already in existence at UHWO. A pathway to an aviation-oriented bachelor's degree has become a necessity in the past year because of passage of a rule by the Federal Aviation Administration that lowers the hour requirements for first officer Airline Transport Pilot certificates from 1500 hours to 1000 hours for those pilots who graduate from an approved four-year collegiate aviation program.

The combination of an articulation agreement between HCC and UHWO, plus the rationalizing of AVIT math and physics requirements will lead to very substantial improvements in percentage of students achieving the associates degree and the number of students continuing on to earn a bachelor's degree at a U.H. campus.

Beginning in the summer of 2014, aspiring regional airline pilots will be unable to take the knowledge test for the Airline Transport Pilot certificate until they pass an approved course that includes substantial classroom work and simulator experience in a sophisticated (expensive) flight simulator. One such simulator does exist in the state of Hawaii, and that simulator is operated by Hawaiian Airlines and located near Honolulu International Airport. Over the next six months Honolulu Community College will work to forge an agreement with Hawaiian Airlines to gain access to that simulator and to gain approval of a course that will satisfy the FAA's requirements. It is essential that HCC offer this course in a timely fashion as a necessary support function to Hawaii's aviation community.

Finally, an industry advisory council is being formed and will meet in 2013 to give direction to Honolulu Community College regarding the industry's needs in a collegiate aviation program.