NTSB Training Center

The Training Center provides training for NTSB investigators and others from the transportation community to improve their practice of accident investigation techniques. The curriculum promotes independent, objective, and technically advanced accident investigations that will enhance the safety of all modes of transportation.

The Mission of the NTSB Training Center is to promote safe transport by:
  • Ensuring and improving the quality of accident investigation through critical thought, instruction, and research;
  • Communicating lessons learned, fostering the exchange of new ideas and new experience, and advocating operational excellence;
  • Providing a modern platform for accident reconstruction and evaluation; and
  • Utilizing its high-quality training resources to facilitate family assistance and first responder programs, sister agency instruction, and other compatible federal activity.

 

Courses

The 2021 courses will be presented virtually.

Due to the pandemic and to offer the most flexibility for our students, the NTSB Training Center has redesigned all of our training in a virtual platform for the remainder of 2020. The outstanding curriculum that NTSB is known for has been re-tooled to include virtual best practices such as polling, chat rooms, whiteboarding and breakout exercises. With these enhanced virtual training features, students will receive the same level of engagement and training experience as traditional instructor-led training. We will offer in-person instructor-led in the future based on health and safety guidelines.

Training Center Course in progress.The Training Center offers a variety of courses ranging in length from one day to two weeks, with wide applicability outside of the field of transportation accident investigation, such as Cognitive Interviewing for Accident Investigators, Investigating Human Fatigue Factors and the Photo documentation Series.

Most courses offered at the Training Center are open to those outside the Safety Board. In fact, the majority of those attending Training Center courses are from transportation and emergency response communities outside the NTSB.

Complete list of NTSB Courses >

Instructors

The majority of the courses taught at the Training Center are developed and delivered by NTSB staff. Nearly 25 NTSB investigators and staff provided instruction during the Training Center’s first year. Outside instructors are used to supplement NTSB expertise in order to ensure the most comprehensive presentations.

The Training Center has identified outside subject matter experts to instruct on special topics including experts from the Global Maritime and Transportation School, various universities and other identified experts in relevant fields of study.

Practical Training

Hands on training with wreckage.Recognizing the importance of using the training material in the real world environment, Training Center courses emphasis examples, demonstrations and, when appropriate, hands-on training. Participants leave the course with useful information and skills that can be applied immediately.

Who May Attend

The Training Center does not enroll participants, as would a traditional academic institution. Since courses have differing admissions criteria, prospective participants are admitted on a course-by-course basis.

While forums and symposia are open to the public, certain courses are limited to those who may be directly involved in an NTSB accident investigation or are members of the emergency response community. See the Who May Attend section included in each course description for further details.

 

About the NTSB Training Center

Brief History

The NTSB Training Center was established to improve the training and skills of its own employees, and make its safety expertise more widely available to the diverse transportation community. In 2000, the NTSB selected The George Washington University as the Training Center’s home. In 2001, the NTSB and the university signed a 20-year lease. The new training facility opened in August 2003 in Ashburn, Virginia.

Investigations

The Training Center facility also houses the Board’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Office for aviation accident investigation. In May 2004, the complete wreckage of a Cessna 208 was brought to the lab, enabling NTSB investigators to thoroughly examine and document the aircraft components within the Training Center’s secure facilities. This is a departure from years past when the Board has had to rely on its parties or others for such space. The football field-sized laboratory serves not just as an instructional venue, but also as a resource for active investigations.