Schools for Aspiring Avionics Technicians: How to Choose

Schools with avionics technician programs teach students to install and repair the electronic and digital systems in aircraft, such as communications, radar and autopilot systems. Several schools offer specialized certificate and associate's degree programs in avionics, as well as more general bachelor's degree programs in aviation maintenance.

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Aspiring avionics technicians can find necessary postsecondary training at a variety of community colleges, technical institutes and vocational schools around the country. Housed in aeronautics, aviation or electronics departments, avionics training may be comprised of two to four years of full-time study.

10 Schools with Avionics Technician Training Programs

These schools offer avionics technician training programs at the certificate, associate's and bachelor's degree levels. Some programs may require students to pay an additional fee for tools.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition and Fees 2015-2016*
Aviation Institute of Maintenance-Atlanta Duluth, GA 2-year, Private for-profit Certificate $17,897
Aviation Institute of Maintenance-Philadelphia Philadelphia, PA 2-year, Private for-profit Certificate $17,997
Cochise County Community College Douglas, AZ 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's $1,848 in-state, $6,000 out-of-state
Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology Tulsa, OK 4-year, Private for-profit Diploma, Associate's $16,395
San Joaquin Valley College-Fresno Aviation Fresno, CA 2-year, Private for-profit Associate's $30,210 (total program cost)
National Aviation Academy of Tampa Bay Clearwater, FL 2-year, Private for-profit Certificate $35,000 (total program cost)
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Daytona Beach Daytona Beach, FL 4-year, Private not-for-profit Associate's, Bachelor's $33,218
Wichita Area Technical College Wichita, KS 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's $7,317 in-state, $8,728 out-of-state
National Aviation Academy of New England Concord, MA 2-year, Private for-profit Certificate $35,000 (total program cost)
Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics West Mifflin, PA 2-year, Private not-for- profit Associate's $20,345

Source: *National Center for Education Statistics

School Selection Criteria

Consider the following when choosing a school for an avionics technician program:

  • Look for a degree program in electronics with an avionics concentration or a certificate-granting program designed to train future technicians.
  • Seek programs that prepare the student for credentials offered by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) or Federal Communications Commission, as some employers may require these credentials for entry-level jobs.
  • Coursework offered by the program should focus on certification examination content.

Certificate Programs for Avionics Technicians

Certificate programs in avionics can usually be completed within one year of full-time study. Courses provide students interested in becoming avionics technicians with entry-level skills, such as electronics assessment, equipment testing, installation proficiency and repair techniques.

Associate's Degree in Avionics Technology

Associate's degree programs combine coursework in a wide range of aviation electronic technologies with general education and liberal arts courses. Participants learn how to diagnose problems, test systems, install components and repair equipment. Some programs provide specific preparation for FAA certification or offer transferable credit toward a bachelor's degree program in aviation maintenance.

Bachelor's Degree in Aviation Maintenance

Baccalaureate programs in aeronautics and aviation maintenance may offer avionics courses in conjunction with training geared toward certified aircraft maintenance technicians. Specialized bachelor's degree programs in avionics alone are rare, but those that exist typically offer advanced courses in areas such as microelectronics and microprocessor fundamentals.

Aspiring avionics technicians should look for programs that prepare them for FAA credentials. When choosing a school, prospective students should also consider what programs and credential preparation courses are offered.

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