Discourse “Radiotelephony of Civil Aviation”: psycholinguistic aspect

Keywords: radiotelephony discourse, intentional, conventional, circular model, language code, information coding / decoding, communicative failure.


The article focuses on psycholinguistic aspects of the discourse “Radiotelephony of civil aviation” (RTF). The relevance of the research is related to the key role that this discourse plays in ensuring flight safety. Psycholinguistic analysis of radiotelephony allowed us to prove its discursive nature based on procedural, interactive, and real-time attributes. The RTF discourse is defined as a closed, narrow-professional, institutional and dynamic type. This discourse is intentional and focused on safe operation of flight; conventional, limited by a set of stereotyped phrases enshrined in regulatory documents and obligatory for radiotelephony participants’ use, by strict regulation of radiotelephony procedures at all stages of flight. We determined that RTF discourse users as representatives of a certain professional space could realize themselves in a limited set of communicative roles. Communicative process “pilot – air traffic controller” is based on the “circular model”, since one-way communication in this type of discourse is not provided for. The “status-role” relations of RTF participants are primarily realized by means of the binary opposition “the initiator of the message” – “the executor / non-executor of the requested action”. Main speech functions realized in RTF discourse are informative and regulatory.

RTF discourse is a “language code”, since information transmitted in it is understandable only to the actors of aviation community. Non-compliance with norms of this language code use, as well as a number of psycho-linguistic, psycho-physiological, and extra-linguistic factors lead to disruption of information coding / decoding processes, cause communicative failures, become concomitant factors of aviation accidents.

Analysis of psycholinguistic features of RTF discourse, nature and causes of RTF communication failures, and psycho-physiological features of pilot in-flight activity (information overloading, high tempo of work due to time limits, work in stressful conditions) allowed us to determine types of exercises facilitating the process of future pilots training to cope with real difficulties of professional communication in RTF discourse.


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Bogush, A., & Kovtun, O. (2019). Discourse “Radiotelephony of Civil Aviation”: psycholinguistic aspect. PSYCHOLINGUISTICS, 25(1), 11-32. https://doi.org/10.31470/2309-1797-2019-25-1-11-32