Stress and Fatigue in Aviation

AVA80016 12.5 Credit Points Off-Campus


  • One Semester or equivalent

Contact hours

  • Nil

On-campus unit delivery combines face-to-face and digital learning.

Aims and objectives

This unit introduces you to the very important issues of stress and fatigue, and the implications of these two issues on human performance. The aviation industry is a safety-sensitive one, in which the consequences of error can be significant. Stress and fatigue can both contribute to safety in adverse ways. The difficulty we face in aviation is that stress and fatigue are integral components of modern aviation. They cannot be legislated away: rather, they must be understood and appropriately managed.

Unit Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this unit will be able to:

1. Describe acute and chronic stress
2. Evaluate various models of stress including the balance between stressors and resources
3. Distinguish between the various types and causes of fatigue and techniques for measuring and mitigating fatigue
4. Identify the principles of, and approaches to, regulation with regard to fatigue management in aviation
5. Elucidate the stages of sleep and the sleep-wake continuum
6. Explain the concept of circadian rhythms, the factors affecting the internal body clock and strategies to deal with circadian dysrhythmia
7. Demonstrate through individual written communications the application of analysis and human factors theory with regard to stress and fatigue issues in aviation.