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ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) standards now demand that all pilots flying internationally and all air traffic controllers providing services to international flights must have a minimum level of English.

This level of English is known as ICAO Operational Level 4.


The ICAO Standards on language proficiency require that aeroplane and helicopter pilots, air traffic controllers and aeronautical station operators whose proficiency in the English language is below the Expert Level (Level 6) are to be formally evaluated at intervals in accordance with an individual's demonstrated proficiency level. The interval is established by each Civil Aviation Authority.
ICAO recommends an interval of six years for those at the Extended Level (Level 5) and three years for those at the Operational Level (Level 4).
The language descriptors (developed by ICAO) can be found here.

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The new edition of Airspeak is based on over 6 hours of authentic and simulated recordings. The book give students systematic practice in the phraseology they will need for safe radio-telephony communications. It provides extensive practice in listening and speaking skills, and helps to prepare students for ICAO Level 4 in English.

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