Expert pilot brains work less

Research finds expert pilots make better flying decisions—not a surprise. Expert pilots brains work less than average pilot brains—that is super cool! The paper Higher Landing Accuracy in Expert Pilots is Associated with Lower Activity in the Caudate Nucleus published in the journal PLOS One found that: High Expertise pilots showed lower activation in the bilateral caudate nucleus (0.97±0.80) compared to Moderate Expertise pilots (1.91±1.16) (p<.05). These findings provide evidence for increased “neural efficiency” in High Expertise pilots relative to Moderate Expertise pilots. So work hard to be an expert pilot, so you can fly better, and work less! Quotes and illustrations … Continue reading Expert pilot brains work less

Do ‘brain-training’ games make you a better pilot?

The Association for Psychological Science recently published a massive 200-page research report on brain training programs, seeing if fun cognitive tasks or games can enhance performance on other tasks. Peer-reviewed, respected authors, fully-referenced. It covered all the valid studies that have examined this question, a huge research database. And the results? Based on this examination, we find extensive evidence that brain-training interventions improve performance on the trained tasks, less evidence that such interventions improve performance on closely related tasks, and little evidence that training enhances performance on distantly related tasks or that training improves everyday cognitive performance. So no, they don’t! … Continue reading Do ‘brain-training’ games make you a better pilot?

Am I a good pilot?

I think I’m a good pilot. Above average, anyway. For sure. Over 17,000 hours, 5 type ratings, published scientific research into pilot behavior, on and on. I work at it, every flight. Well, most every flight. But a paper recently published in Psychological Science: Journal of the Association for Psychological Science (I’m not a nerd, but I am a subscriber) has me worried. It’s titled When knowledge knows no bounds: Self-perceived expertise predicts claims of impossible knowledge. The authors found that “people overclaim [knowledge] to the extent that they perceive their personal expertise favorably.” People that think they are experts, … Continue reading Am I a good pilot?