A fresh start for aviator training

6 February 2023

Our newest aviators will receive a modernised and streamlined introduction to Air Force starting this year, with both 1 Recruit Training Unit (1RTU) and Officer Training School (OTS) revamping their Initial Military Training (IMT) courses.

The 1RTU initial recruit course has been shortened from 11 weeks to nine, and the OTS Initial Officer Course (IOC) has been reduced from 17 to 14 weeks.

Commanding Officer 1RTU Wing Commander David Borg applauded his team’s efforts and said that while the initial recruit course now has fewer training days, the quality of graduate will not change.

“The team has worked tirelessly to produce a new program that achieves the learning outcomes of the previous version and holds 1RTU in good stead to increase training capacity over the coming years in accordance with the Australian Government’s strategic intent,” Wing Commander Borg said.

He noted that while the course is shorter overall, some components receive greater focus in the new program.  

“One of the more challenging aspects of the course is meeting Air Force physical fitness standards,” Wing Commander Borg said. 

“The team recognised this and added more physical training sessions while keeping the summative assessment in the same week as the previous program.”

Commanding Officer of OTS Wing Commander Garth Herriot also praised the work of his team and highlighted the benefits of the new course.

“The revision of the IOC has provided the opportunity to question how we develop our people, focus on approved learning outcomes and identify efficiencies within the course,” Wing Commander Garth Herriot said.

“As an IMT school our mission is not to produce a complete workforce package, but rather, deliver a solid foundation for resilient, fit-for-purpose war fighters who have the ability and drive to develop further through workplace engagement, specific employment training and the professional military education framework. 

“Further, the restructuring of the course reduces the duplication of training for commissioning aviators, minimising their attendance and providing personnel capability back to Air Force.” 

The new versions of the courses will be trialled in the first part of 2023, after which feedback will be invited from key stakeholders before they receive final approval.



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