This paper describes a two-part study on the Dunning-Kruger effect in SIUC University’s aviation students. The Dunning-Kruger effect indicates that individuals with lower skill or knowledge levels have unrealistic positive images of their capabilities compared to their peers. Results indicate that the Dunning-Kruger effect is present in SIUC aviation students. Students scoring lower on both a grammar test and a pilot knowledge test grossly overestimated their ability, while higher scoring students underestimated their ability. Additional research using other pilot training programs and other aviation industry safety personnel should be undertaken before any generalizations can be made. However, this study indicates that the Dunning-Kruger effect might be a problem within the aviation industry and could play a role in the safety of the National Airspace System.
Pavel, Samuel R.; Robertson, Michael F.; and Harrison, Bryan T.
"The Dunning-Kruger Effect and SIUC University’s Aviation Students,"
Journal of Aviation Technology and Engineering:
1, Article 6.