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Aeronautical Communications

"In Aeronautical Communication, the primary objective is not necessarily to use grammatically correct language but rather, the focus is on achieving mutual intellegibility between interlocutors."

William Agius, Deputy-Head, Centre of Aviation

Field of expertise

Aeronautical communication investigates the use of language in aviation. The linguistic conventions that abide in radio-telephony communications between pilots and air traffic controllers differ in many ways from plain English as it is used on a daily basis in our social interactions. Safety is paramount in aviation. To this end, it is absolutely imperative for pilots and air traffic controllers to be able to communicate effectively, using both ICAO standard radio telephony as well as plain English. At the Centre for Aviation we have specialised on language test development for English for specific purposes. More particularly, on the development of language tests for pilots and air traffic controllers that meet language proficiency requirements as they have been defined by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).


Project examples