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Sep 18

Airline Accident Investigation – Short Course


This short course is intended to provide an introduction to aviation accident investigation. It is intended for those who already have professional expertise in one or more of the three areas of pilot, maintenance engineer or safety professional. The scope is to provide an overview of relevant areas which need to be considered in a major aircraft investigation, and successful completion is intended to provide a background for an individual to contribute to a team effort in a major investigation, perhaps representing one of the many groups or organizations having an interest. It is also intended to provide a suitable background for an individual to conduct minor safety investigations. The course is not suitable to equip you as a fully qualified air safety investigator, but should serve as a foundation for future participation in such a course.

The governing legal framework is described in ICAO Annex 13, and under the ICAO umbrella, individual states who are signatory to ICAO (effectively all major nations) are required to implement legislation within the guidance of Annex 13. In this course we emphasise the Australian legislation, and participants from other nations will need to find the parallel legislation in their own countries. In Australia the ATSB (Australian Transport Safety Bureau) is the official investigating body, while that role is held by the NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) in the US, the AAIB (Air Accidents Investigation Branch) of the UK, and the TSBC (Transportation Safety Board of Canada). Each of these agencies has slightly different published techniques and methodologies, while maintaining consistency with ICAO.

This course is accredited by IFALPA AAP and by Aus ALPA. The notes provided give a baseline of information which can be used for future reference, and the notes are supplemented by presentations given by experts during the course. Successful completion of the course, as well as successful completion of an additional assessment module will lead to advanced standing for UNSW academic Course AVIA5022 Aircraft Accident Investigation Techniques, which can be counted toward one of the Schools postgraduate programs offered.

The postgraduate programs which are all delivered by distance are described at


Subject topics in this short course include legal issues, human factors, aeromedical issues, technical background, weather forecasting, investigation methods and analyses, data acquisition, report writing and interviewing. Minor case studies of existing accidents will be evaluated. Two major cases studies of fictitious cases will be used to build participant skills.

Intended participants are expected to have a professional knowledge of aircraft operations and aircraft systems, as would be obtained with professional flying or aircraft maintenance qualifications.


Course dates are 0930 Monday 20th November to noon Friday 1st December, 2017 inclusive, with the middle weekend free.


School of Aviation, the University of New South Wales main campus in Sydney NSW.

Local Hotels

There are many local hotels in the Sydney and UNSW local areas, and we suggest that you use common hotel comparative websites.
The closest beach to UNSW is Coogee Beach and this has several options

  • The Crowne Plaza Coogee Beach
  • Coogee Sands Motel
  • Adina Apartments Coogee Beach


    Late November is early summer with day time temperatures well into the 20s, and sea surface temperatures usually 22-24C.

    Transport in Sydney

    Buses are common and service the campus from the city as well as from Coogee area. Users purchase an “Opal” card which via tap-on and tap-off provide cashless access to buses and trains. No trains service the campus.

    Taxis and Uber services are common.

    The campus is about 20 min drive from the Sydney international terminal, and 15 minutes from Sydney domestic terminal


The Course fee is $4500 inclusive of Australian GST. Payment details will be advised. Please express interest to


School of Aviation UNSW, Sydney www.aviation.unsw.edu.au

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