Help Needed in Choosing Online Private Pilot Ground School

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by JMoore, Jul 22, 2019.

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What is the best, most comprehensive Online Ground School program for earning your PPL?

  1. King

    9 vote(s)
    52.9%
  2. MZeroA

    2 vote(s)
    11.8%
  3. Gleim

    1 vote(s)
    5.9%
  4. Sports Academy

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Other

    5 vote(s)
    29.4%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. JMoore

    JMoore Filing Flight Plan

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    Hey all!

    I'm new to PoA and just starting my (eventual) commercial pilot journey as well!
    Right now I have zero flight experience (minus one class taken at Ohio State in aviation about 10 years ago), but I'm having a hard time choosing between different online Private Pilot Ground schools.

    Because of financial (and work) reasons, I'm going to be doing a "pay as you go" program with Wayman Aviation to get the actual FLYING portion of all my ratings completed, but I am not sure who to go with for the online ground instruction for my PPL.

    Any suggestions?

    MZeroA looks ok, but they do a monthly subscription for the online ground school (which could end up costing much more than a typical pay everything up front program elsewhere).

    King looks comprehensive but is nearly $600 (two or three times more than any of the other ones I've been researching).

    Gleim I hear more has the reputation of teaching to pass the written test vs teaching for actual knowledge retention.

    Sports Academy has come up occasionally on searches for reviews on PPL Ground Schools, but I haven't heard of anything really good or bad about them.

    Any recommendations, pros/cons, info on any of these (or any additional ones I didn't mention) would be greatly appreciated!

    Ideally I'd take the ground school portion in a classroom (how I learn best), but because of time and money constraints, that's not really an option right now. Aside from In-the-Classroom learning, I'm more of a "book in hand" learner where I can flip through pages to put 2 and 2 together, BUT I learn by seeing and doing. So having online videos where I can watch and look at what's being explained will really help me learn as well.

    Sorry if this was already covered in another post. I looked around and didn't see anything comprehensive, so wanted to say HI to the PoA community and see what help yall might suggest!

    Thanks again!

    -J
     
  2. farky

    farky Pre-Flight

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    The King course doesn't have to be $600....all you need is the ground school/test prep. I think it's $279. I used them for my private and commercial and they worked well so I saw no reason to switch to something else for my instrument. Haven't finished it yet but it seems good so far.
     
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  3. RyanB

    RyanB Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    Gleim is my recommendation. I scored well due to their preparation materials.
     
  4. bobmrg

    bobmrg En-Route PoA Supporter

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    ASA private pilot online ground school is $180 and sells very well. Good reviews from Aviation Consumer..www.asa2fly.com.

    Bob
     
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  5. Jim K

    Jim K Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    Just went through this myself a few weeks ago. I used Gold Seal, and really don't have any complaints, but I also don't have anything to compare to. There were a couple videos I had to reload to make work, and a couple topics I felt could have been covered better, but I liked that you can look at the lessons before you buy, and I liked their teaching style. I think they were the cheapest; I used an oshkosh discount code that was posted here. The owner is a poa member. I got a 92% FWIW.

    I couldn't handle how dated some of the king videos are, and the MZA guy just rubs me the wrong way. I think Rod Machado's stuff would be good if you can handle the animation and dad jokes.

    I also used sporty's study buddy which is free online to take mock tests. I recommend getting a PHAK and reading it cover to cover. There's also a couple questions out of the AFH, but I don't think it's critical to have for the knowledge test.
     
  6. Half Fast

    Half Fast Final Approach

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    Personally, I don't think a formal class is really necessary. I bought the ASA test prep book and the PHAK (you can download it for free from the FAA), and I used Sporty's free online Study Buddy. There are lots of free videos available if you need more explanation of some topic.
     
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  7. JMoore

    JMoore Filing Flight Plan

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    Wow thank you everyone!

    So many detailed responses! Haha I love it!

    Next question is what books/ study material REALLY help (in addition to the online ground school course)?

    ASA (and many other programs) offer either the eBook kit or in hand book kits, but they come with about 15 books and run from $75-$175 in addition to the ground school. Are these worth it?

    Are only SOME of the books worth getting?

    Any thoughts on which books actually helped you study/ prepare for your PPL?

    Thanks again!!
     
  8. Half Fast

    Half Fast Final Approach

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    PHAK and AFH are essential and can be downloaded for free from the FAA.
     
  9. NordicDave

    NordicDave Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    I’ve actually tried a few, and King is the best. They have greatly revised their videos and content to high def and the corny memory tricks actually work. I scored a 92 on my written. Taking the King IFR course presently.

    You DON’T need the $600 kit. Just the basic training and the check ride course is perfect. The rest of it is of minimal value.

    -David
     
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  10. write-stuff

    write-stuff En-Route

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    Don't buy into anything unless you've seen it work firsthand. Try Gold Seal - it has a free test drive allowing you to see exactly how it works. Also, your instructor can join for free and monitor your progress through the course.

    You can do your free sign-up here: www.GroundSchool.com

    Or, if you want to view the first lesson without doing the sign-up, here is the direct link. It's an overview of the program, explaining how it works.
    https://www.groundschool.com/lessons/28/course_page

    Best of luck to you.
     
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  11. Initial Fix

    Initial Fix Pre-takeoff checklist

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    @jmore you didn’t say if this is prepping for the written or if you are doing a self study ground school. The approaches are slightly different.

    For my commercial written I was very happy with sheppard air. Ditto my FOI, etc. Gleim is also very good and the red books are inexpensive and have great info too. I had a long dwell between my instrument and commercial and would have loved Sheppard over the king instrument videos (vhs!)

    I would read the PHAK and augment with ASA or one of the other video systems like sportys. That will prep you for the orals.

    Plus come here with questions :)
     
  12. benyflyguy

    benyflyguy En-Route

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    King does have a 20% off their courses right now with an Oshkosh code. I did my IFR with them and it was great but the “checkride prep” extra part I bought was largely useless.
    I was mulling purchasing the commercial course with the Oshkosh deal now even though I don’t plan on starting till the winter.
     
  13. NordicDave

    NordicDave Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    King seems to have their 22% sale every Osh and Black Friday. They occasionally have a 20% or less off sale during the year.
     
  14. islandboy

    islandboy Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I followed @write-stuff's suggestion 5 years ago. The system worked just fine back then and has been enhanced greatly since.

    When I had questions, I received brisk replies from @write-stuff or another instructor, sometimes even late into the night.

     
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  15. JM93

    JM93 Pre-Flight

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    Disclaimer, I train at a Cessna used Pilot Center, so we get a package deal with Kings Ground School. The videos are definitely outdated but the information is still accurate. I used Kings for my primary ground School and training. When it was time for my written, I used the Gleim book to test prep. I then used Kings online mock tests to verify I was ready to go. I passed with a 93%.
     
  16. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

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    There is more to ground training than passing the written test. You can download all the materials free from the FAA, study, take practice tests at King.com, then sit down and review the the material with your CFI and receive the endorsement for the test for a lot less money. You will also have a better understanding of the material.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2019
  17. mryan75

    mryan75 Cleared for Takeoff

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    FYI, the King videos have all been redone (Private, IR and commercial), and there’s a 22% off sale right now.
     
  18. Bacho

    Bacho Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I have the ASA kit. I used the book heavily for the written test and now the oral. Youtube Videos and dvds uploaded to youtube have proven the most useful to me.
     
  19. NHWannabe

    NHWannabe Line Up and Wait

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    Used Gold Seal and was very happy with the course, my instructor liked that she got notifications on my progress as well.
     
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  20. ByrdmanFL

    ByrdmanFL Filing Flight Plan

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    Almost finished PPL Ground School with Gleim. Although it seems better than adequate, I will probably look at something else for my instrument. All the info you need is there, I just dont like the way it is layed out.

    I like the quality of the videos from MZeroA from the samples on YT. They seem VERY well produced, but IDK if I can handle his voice for months on end, lol...
     
  21. SkyDog58

    SkyDog58 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Sporty’s Pilot Shop has real good products.
     
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  22. Pugs

    Pugs Line Up and Wait

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    Agreed. I did both the PPL and Instrument through them and not only did well on the tests but felt like I had really learned the material.
     
  23. Deelee

    Deelee Cleared for Takeoff

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    I used the Cessna/King course (think it was about $200?) for the initial work since that's what my flight school recommended. Videos looked a little dated, but only in the resolution and clothes... the maneuvers are the same and the aircraft was a modern 172 SP.

    Right before the written, on the advice of one of my CFIs, I downloaded the sporty's study buddy. I went through each section every day or two. I made a little table recording my scores on each section. When I was getting 100%'s on a given section, I would start to skip it and focus on sections where I was getting less than 100%. Finally, I was getting 100%s on each section, I started taking the sample knowledge tests. This took me a couple of weeks, by the way.

    When I sat for my knowledge test, I knew most of the answers by heart anyway and was able to figure out the questions I hadn't answered from rote memory easily. I got a 97%.

    I know some will say... hey this guy just memorized the questions. I also read the PHAK, Airplane Flying Handbook, FAR/AIM (relevant chapters like 43, 61, 91, etc.) in prep for sitting with the DPE... But the sporty's app really helped me get that high score on the written. Good luck!
     
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  24. SkyDog58

    SkyDog58 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I’m currently working through their instrument course. Still in the early stages but I really like it.
     
  25. Jacque

    Jacque Filing Flight Plan

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    If reading Jeppesen is killing you then try out the free PPL ground school offered by https://fly8ma.com/

    I used it and the Gleim software to pass the Private.
     
  26. vsc

    vsc Filing Flight Plan

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    I used King for private, along with ASA's test prep book. Either is good enough, but I would recommend the King course given it teaches more than just passing the test.

    At the time, about a year ago, there were ~10 questions on the written that were not explicitly covered in the King test bank. That said the King material was good enough that the answers was obvious. In short the King material provided knowledge, not just memorizing test answers.

    While I appreciate the work done by Fly8Ma and MzeroA, after watching a number of their videos I decided to go with the people Cessna trusted to build their course....King Im glad that I did. I had no problem getting a very high score on the written. Additionally the King practical test prep course proved itself as well. While I got a workout on the oral, I did really well per the DPE. The guy was known as one of the the more "thorough" DPE's in the local FSDO.