Aviation technology deals with the development, maintenance and piloting of flying machines, as well as the administration of various other aspects of the aircraft industry. By pursuing a certificate or degree in aviation technology, you'll learn how to successfully maintain and repair aircraft. You'll also have the opportunity to develop professional piloting skills.
Most jobs in aviation technology require a degree or certificate, as well as licensure from the Federal Aviation Administration. Program specializations include airgram mechanics and powerplant or structural repair. Through such a program, you'll delve into course topics such as flight instrumentation, air traffic control equipment, aircraft structural design and aviation electronics. In addition to in-class coursework, students will participate in flight simulations and lab work.
Certificate in Aviation Technology
Aviation technology certificate programs allow you the opportunity to learn basic technical knowledge in order to repair and maintain aircraft. You'll learn about aircraft procedures and airport operations. Programs will introduce you to the mechanics of aircraft structure. Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED.
You'll gain fundamental knowledge of the field of aviation, which may lead to becoming a pilot, airline mechanic or air traffic controller with additional education. A school may offer labs in flight simulation and allow you to concentrate your studies in airframe mechanics, powerplant or structural repair. After graduating, you may choose to continue your education by enrolling in an associate degree program in aviation technology. Coursework can include:
- Reading aircraft blueprints
- Aviation safety
- Aircraft repair
- Engine repair
- Electrical repair
Associate's in Aviation Technology
An associate's degree program in aviation technology will teach you basic aviation electronics theory as well as how to maintain and install aviation equipment. These programs will prepare you for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Commercial Pilot Single/Multi-Engine Land Licensure. Degree programs will teach you to adjust aviation systems and calibrate cockpit instrumentation. You'll also be taught how to analyze and identify flight weather conditions. Students must have a high school diploma or GED and satisfactory SAT/ACT scores.
A school may offer courses that teach various aspects of aviation systems. You'll be taught federal aviation regulations. You'll also learn aerodynamic theory and the effects of flight speed. Coursework at the associate level may include:
- Air traffic control systems
- Pilot theory
- Flight instrumentation
- Flight theory
Bachelor's in Aviation Technology
A bachelor's in aviation technology will expand your knowledge in aviation maintenance and professional flying. Degree programs may also offer courses in aviation business and management. As an undergraduate, you'll be taught how aircraft systems perform and operate. You'll also learn pilot flight skills and about aviation safety. To enroll in a bachelor's program, students must have a high school diploma or GED and satisfactory SAT/ACT scores.
This degree program will teach you professional piloting skills, including flight instrumentation, techniques and procedures. You'll also be taught about the weather and its influence on aviation. Other coursework may include:
- Introduction to aviation
- Aviation electronics
- Engine maintenance
- Aircraft controls
- Technical programming
Popular Career Options
An undergraduate degree in aviation technology will prepare you for careers in professional piloting or aviation management. You may find work with major airlines, aircraft manufacturers or corporations. You may also be able to find work with the FAA. After graduating, you may considering pursuing a career as a(n):
- Airport manager
- Air traffic controller
- FAA program administrator
- Operations manager
- Air cargo administrator
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual salary for aircraft mechanics and service technicians was $62,920 in 2018. The BLS also reported that avionics technicians earned $64,140 as a median yearly wage in 2018.
The BLS predicted that jobs for aircraft mechanics and service technicians will grow about 3% in the decade 2018-2028 (www.bls.gov). In the same 2018-2028 time frame, avionics technicians will have no change in job growth.
Those interested in piloting and flying aircraft can complete an associate's, bachelor's, or certificate program in aviation technology. Throughout these programs, students learn about aviation safety and repair, flight instrumentation, and aircraft controls.