A better version of this post – How to Pass ATC Exam in First Attempt
Air traffic control (ATC) is one of the most amazing professions in the world which provides you challenging role every day, a handsome salary package, and an excellent working environment. The aim of the Air Traffic Control Service is to ensure a safe, orderly, and expeditious flow of air traffic.
When we think of an Air Traffic Controller, the image of men and women working behind the glasses of the Airport Control Tower controlling the movements of aircraft comes to our mind; however, ATC(Air Traffic Control) is a much more complex job than that. Air Traffic control includes coordination of aircraft movements, providing separation between the aircraft, directing aircraft during landing and take-off, guide the pilot during an emergency or bad weather.
- How to Prepare for AAI Air Traffic Controller Interview | Important Questions for ATC Interview
- Air Traffic Controller salary in India | AAI ATC Salary
With the unprecedented growth in air traffic density, there will be a large requirement for Air traffic control officers (ATCOs) in India. On behalf of Govt. of India Airports Authority of India (AAI) recruits Air Traffic Controllers for civil aviation air traffic control/management. AAI is a Mini-Ratna Public Sector Undertaking(PSU) under the Ministry of Civil Aviation. The selection procedure includes a written test, a voice test followed by an Interview. In this post, I will discuss how to prepare for the written test of the ATC Recruitment examination. First of all, let us see who can apply for this prestigious profession.
- Regular full-time Bachelor’s Degree (3 years) in Science (B.Sc.) with Physics and Mathematics from a recognized university with a minimum of 60% marks OR Full-time regular Bachelor’s degree in Engineering/Technology (B.E./B.Tech) in any discipline
of Electronics/Telecommunications/ Information Technologywith minimum 60% marks.(Updated:02/01/2016)
- The candidate shall have minimum proficiency in both spoken and written English of the level of 10+2 standard. He/she shall also attain the ICAO language minimum proficiency level 4 (operational) for the purpose of issuing of license or rating. Any candidate who is not able to attain ICAO proficiency level 4 or above during the training, his /her services are liable to be terminated.
Well, don’t worry about the ICAO Language minimum proficiency level 4 condition because once selected you will be provided English improvement classes during initial training at AAI Training Institutes. So candidates with poor English backgrounds don’t need to panic about this condition.
AAI(Airport Authority of India) has decided to conduct the written test online. There will be a total of 120 questions which are divided into two sections i.e. Technical and Non-technical. Technical Section comprises questions from Physics and Mathematics whereas the Non-Technical section tests the general knowledge, English, reasoning, and numerical ability of the applicant.
It will have a total of 60 questions which will be divided into two parts: 30 questions of Physics and Mathematics each. The level of questions will be of 12th standard with a few questions testing the graduation level knowledge of the applicant. As AAI(Airport Authority of India) started putting only Physics and Mathematics questions in 2015. I have listed some of the topics for you which were asked in the JE (ATC) exam conducted on 26th April 2015.
Physics: Dimensions of Force/Work/Torque/Energy etc., Numerical on Newton’s Laws of Motion, Angular momentum numerical, Numerical on static Friction, Torque variation, type of forces: centripetal and centrifugal, Potential and Kinetic Energy formula based numerical, Theoretical question on the definition of diffraction/refraction/Total Internal Reflection/Reflection, Vector and Scalar Product, Wave motion, Theoretical questions on Transverse and Longitudinal waves, Numerical on wavelength of Lyman, Balmer, Paschen series, various Atomic models, Numerical on Hook’s Law,Elasticity, Diode Numerical, doping in Semiconductors, p-type and n-type semiconductors, Barkhausen stability criterion, Ideal Gas equation, Specific heat theoretical question, Numerical on resolving power of prism, volume based numerical, numerical on level rise of a field of defined area due to rain,Satellite communication numerical like orbital velocity, Escape velocity etc.
- Important Books for Technical and Non-Technical Section
- Read How to Prepare for Air Traffic Controller Interview
Mathematics: The topics include Convergence and Divergence, Matrix (Eigen Value, types of matrices e.g. Idempotent matrix, to find out determinant of matrix, to check the consistency of given equation, rank of matrix), Coordinate Geometry (No. of tangents of a sphere, condition of co-linearity and to check collinear points, line equation, parabola, ellipse etc.), simple Probability problem, Mathematical induction, Equation of planes and relationship between planes, Vector planes, Limits, Trigonometry, Differential equations, Complex variables, Simple questions on integration and differentiation, questions on Graphs theory.
It will have 60 questions which include questions from General Knowledge, Reasoning, Numerical ability/Quantitative problems, and English. The standard of questions is the same as that of SSC CGLE . English covers almost one-third of this section i.e. 20 questions. 15 questions from Numerical ability and Reasoning each and 10 questions from GK.
English will cover antonym/synonym, direct/indirect speech, idioms, conjunction, active and passive voices, one-word substitution, one passage, error correction, and prepositions.
Some important points to be considered for the written test:
- Keep this in mind that unlike most of the PSU exams, there will be no negative marking, so my personal advice will be to attempt all the questions.
- The non-Technical section has quite easy questions so first attempt this section (if online test settings allow it), it will ensure that you don’t miss easy questions due to paucity of time or last-minute hurry.
- The technical section has Physics and Math questions so preparation can be started with NCERT books of 11th and 12th
- The syllabus of Physics and Maths can be covered by referring IIT-JEE prelims questions. Go through the notes from reputed institutes for this. This will cover almost 50-70% of the technical section.
- In Physics, focus more on Mechanics and Thermodynamics in particular.
- Similarly in Math. focus on Matrix, Coordinate Geometry, and Differential Equations.
- Some of the questions in the technical section will be of graduation level so please refer to 1st-year Physics and Math. of B.Tech./B.Sc. but my advice will be to focus more on IIT-JEE notes of the 12th standard as it will cover a major portion of the section.
- As reasoning covers almost 33% of marks of the non-technical portion so practicing this will be a good choice instead of memorizing GK facts from a small part of the exam.
- Practice SSC CGLE test papers for Numerical Ability and Reasoning preparation.
- Also, overall practice can be done from NDA’s previous years’ papers as it will cover Physics, Math, English and GK.
- For English preparation, NDA and SSC CGLE test papers will achieve the goal.
- There will be no sectional cut-off i.e. selection for the interview will be on the basis of overall marks in the two sections
P.S. : This article was written with reference to AAI ATC Exam held in April 2015, but as the level of questions or important topics/subjects keeps changing with each exam, I would like to add here that prepare the Graduation level Maths. and Physics as well. I am saying this because in Dec. 2015 Exam there were a good number of questions from the Graduation level. You can check the level of questions in my other article (link given below). So covering the Grad. the level syllabus will magnify the chances of clearing the online test.
- Important Books for Technical and Non-Technical Section
- AAI Junior Executive ATC Exam Old Question Paper
- How Air Traffic Control Works | ATC Secret Revealed
I wish you all the very best for your exam.