Preparing for ATP at the Denver Location in Broomfield


I currently am about to make a career change from firefighting to ATP school coming up in June for my class start date. I was wondering if I could get some advice on taking the exams prior to starting? I currently am using Sportys for my private exam but am unsure of what other tests are recommended to take and in what order? I appreciate all the help in advance.

Also, if theres any other advice on things I should try to become familiar with before training so I can be 100% on day 1 I would appreciate it. I’ve been listening to radio communications online and it feels like a foreign language but maybe you guys have advice on how to be more confident before starting. Thanks so much.



As for the ATC comms of course it sounds like a foreign language because it is. You’re not a pilot and you have no context. Frankly I wouldn’t bother with that until you start flying and it will make more sense.

Here’s a link with a list of the required written exams: Get Ahead By Taking FAA Knowledge Tests Before Starting ATP / ATP Flight School

With that in mind, while it’s our pleasure to answer any and all questions, when people are close to starting and are asking these kinds of questions (where the answers are incredibly easy to find) I get a little concerned. ATPs program is highly accelerated and is modeled after actual airline training. At ATP (and later at the airlines) you’ll be expected to do a considerable amount of self-study. You’ll be given assignments and no one will tell you where the answers are. It’s up to you to research and find them. It’s time for you to start doing that.



Thank you for your response and time.

I have been researching on ATP, online, and this website for this question but wanted a clear understanding. I have read many different responses on tests to study and take together, which online test preps are best, etc. I’m sorry if my question came off in a way that seemed that I have not been preparing as I should but I was hoping to gain a bit more understanding of the order in which I should take these tests. I just found out today about my class date and started this process about 2 weeks ago so I am very new to the aviation world and understanding how it works. Thank you for your time!

This might not be the common consensus around here but I’d recommend a desktop flight simulator if you have a decently powerful computer. While not very useful (and in some ways counterproductive) for actual flight training, its fantastic for familiarization, ATC, procedures like traffic pattern, flying an ILS, holds, procedure turns, intercepting and following a VOR radial, different classes of airspace, interacting with aircraft systems like tuning radios and transponder, knowing where buttons and switches are, getting familiar with G1000 flight deck since pretty much everything in flight training is glass these days, instrument scans, etc. Ive been flying in microsoft flight sims since Combat flight sim 1 and FS2002, went thru Fs2004, FSX and now on fs2020. The amount of knowledge you can pick up from just a couple hours a week from an under 100 dollar PC videogame is immense and will no doubt get you off the ground knowledge wise, so youre not completely green at your intro flight/day 1 of flight school


I respectfully couldn’t disagree more. The worse students I’ve ever trained had extensive home video game flight school experience. Why? Because a) they think they can fly, and b) spend way too much time looking inside.

If you think they help or have helped you that’s great but for most they do more harm then good.


I Would argue that home flight simulators are on eon the worst things you can do for your training. Somebody might think they are knowledgeable based on as video game, but that is exactly the problem. A video game is not a substitute for flying and it often builds a great deal of self confidence that is not well founded. Iw Ould stay away from video games and focus on taking the written exams.