CFI Renewal Online, the Web-based study course for flight instructors to revalidate their certificates, recently won an award for Distinguished Technical Communication from the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication.
The educational program is a joint venture of the AOPA Air Safety Foundation and Jeppesen Sanderson, in Denver. CFI Renewal Online was introduced in June 2001, and by the middle of January, more than 1,000 flight instructors had successfully completed the course.
"It's an honor for the course to be recognized so quickly in a broad field of competition," said ASF Executive Director Bruce Landsberg. "It's a testament to the dedicated and cooperative staff efforts at the foundation and Jeppesen."
The 16-hour course is fully FAA approved and can be used to renew all valid and current FAA flight instructor certificates and ratings. It features bright graphics, short video and audio clips, and concise modules that explain topics in 16 required subject areas. Interactive exercises reinforce the lessons, and links within modules point to more information.
CFI Renewal Online meets the new, higher FAA standard for online instructor renewal programs established in Advisory Circular 61-83E.
"Flexibility of the Web is advantageous for everyone," Landsberg said recently. "A flight instructor can complete the course at his or her own pace."
CFI Renewal Online is now eligible for the "Online Communication" category in international competition where judges critique organization, editing/writing, layout, usability, integration of media, and achievement of purpose. Winners will be announced by the Society for Technical Communication in the latter part of April.
The AOPA Air Safety Foundation was founded in 1950 to promote general aviation safety through research and pilot education. It has offered live Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics since 1976, helping more than 7,500 certified flight instructors per year revalidate their teaching certificates.
Jeppesen is recognized as the world's leading provider of flight information, flight planning services, aviation weather services, maintenance information, and pilot training systems. In 1989, Jeppesen was the first to introduce a home-study course for flight instructor renewal, with video and printed material organized in an easy-to-use format.
The Society for Technical Communication educates writers and editors, graphic designers, and Web-page designers about issues concerning technical communication. It has eight regions with about 20 chapters in each region.