Changing the Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals Course for 21st Century F-15C Pilots
AIR COMMAND AND STAFF COLLEGE, AIR UNIVERSITY MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE United States
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The United Sates Air Force has been using the Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals course IFF in relatively the same manner for the last forty years. During that time, the F-15C, its tactics and adversaries have grown dramatically. IFF has not evolved to replicate the follow-on training students will encounter in the F-15C or other fighter aircraft. Based on this fact, a decision was made to look at this problem and assess possible solutions. A comparison between the F-15C B-course and IFF was used to evaluate the skills and experience students would receive at IFF and whether or not those skills and experiences are transferable to the F-15C. Highlighted throughout this research was the fact that based on the T-38C being used as a trainer and the time spent focusing on flying the T-38C was not producing the desired results. The F-15C has evolved to the point that no longer does the IFF experience prepare students for success in the F-15C B-course. Based on these findings, a recommendation to move the IFF course for F-15C students to the F-15C B-course is made. Modifying the course, allowing for more exposure to the F-15C, its systems and tactics, is the preferred solution. Using the F-15C B-course as an example, other fighter training units will be able to build upon its success. IFF is a valid training course, but it needs to evolve to allow fighter pilots greater success in their follow-on aircraft.
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