Relationships of Anxiety Scores to Academy and Field Training Performance of Air Traffic Control Specialists
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION WASHINGTON DC OFFICE OF AVIATION MEDICINE
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State-trait anxiety scores were used prior to the 1981 strike of air traffic control specialists ATCSs to estimate perceived levels of job stress in field studies of this occupational group. The present study assessed the relationship between anxiety, as measured by the State-Trait Personality Inventory STPI, and post-strike ATCS trainee success at the FAA Academy and during field training. The STPI was administered to students who entered the FAA Academy between June 1984 and September 1985. Academy test scores were obtained for 1,790 students in the enroute option. Criterion data included the field training status of the Academy graduates as of July 1988. Statistical analyses determined the relationships between ATCS student scores on the STPI measures and a normative data and b Academy and field performance. ATCS students reported significantly lower state current level and trait proneness levels of anxiety than did either college students or military recruits. Individuals who were unsuccessful at the Academy, as well as those who were unsuccessful in the field, had higher overall anxiety scores. Trainees who had relatively high scores for ATCS on a combined index of the trait and state measures of anxiety exhibited significantly higher a percentages of Academy failureswithdrawals, b percentages of option switches in the field, and c overall field attrition than did trainees with low scores. Results support the operation of some personality-related self-selection among ATCS applicants regarding anxiety, and the importance of this characteristic for ATCS job success.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations