The IFATCA Asia Pacific region developed the Speak English Program (SEP) to help enhance the English-speaking capabilities of ATC around the region. Given its initial success and interest from other regions, IFATCA decided to open up to program to colleagues from around the world.

A controller's language and communication skills are critical for delivering the service. As English is the international standard language requirement for aviation professionals, it is therefore a priority to strengthen the general communication and English language skills of all Controllers.

The main purpose of the SEP is to create a welcome and friendly English-speaking environment without any judgement or pressure. The IFATCA Speak English Program (SEP) is not only to help the participants improve speaking English, but to help them be able to think in English, thus improving their overall English abilities.

SEP also provides an environment where air traffic controllers can practice plain English language and build up self-confidence in both usual and unusual situations that necessitate departure from standard R/T phraseology.

Learning English is important as it enables you to communicate easily with your fellow global citizens.
Anthony Ang
former IFATCA EVP Asia Pacific

How does it work?

The program will identify individuals who will be able to facilitate the training program.

Following this, it looks to assist participants by providing practical time for them to work on improving their English through online teleconferences.

Assessing English proficiency following specifically focused courses or programs poses unique challenges as all tests are developed for a purpose. For technical expertise, it is necessary to recruit individuals with strong relevant and diversified skill sets to deliver the training course. Therefore, SEP is not assessed by an assessor, it is run by a facilitator to assist participants in practicing English before any assessments.

IFATCA thanks these SEP volunteers


Cheryl Chen

SEP Secretariat

Nainaa Dash

SEP Secretariat

Olivia May

SEP Secretariat

Hamid Abdi

SEP Secretariat

Mehdi Debbari

SEP Secretariat

John Harrington

SEP Secretariat


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