Students who want to earn doctoral degrees in aviation technology can pursue a Ph.D. in aviation or a Ph.D. in technology with a concentration in aviation and aerospace management. Both are research-intensive programs that culminate in a dissertation. Students are trained in advanced statistics, regulations in the aviation industry, industry trends, organizational infrastructures, and safety practices.
Prior to admission, students need to have obtained a master's degree in aviation, aeronautics, or a related discipline. Some programs require that students have earned a minimum 3.5 GPA in their master's programs. Students whose degrees are in unrelated field may need professional experience in aviation technology. Other admission requirements typically include GRE scores, letters of reference, and a personal essay.
Doctoral Studies in Aviation Technology
In order to graduate, students must complete at least 18 credit hours of dissertation research. They must also fulfill course requirements, which may include some of the following topics:
- U.S. air traffic systems
- Advances in aviation technology
- National and global legal issues in aviation
- Aviation safety management
- Parameters and variables in statistical analysis
Popular Career Options
Students who earn a Ph.D. in aviation technology can work domestically or internationally for government agencies or private corporations. Specific job titles include:
- Aviation technology researcher
- Air transportation technology professor
- Aeronautics technology analyst
- Aviation control manager
- Aviation technology consultant
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
To provide some salary perspective, aerospace engineers earned a median annual income of $107,830 as of May 2015, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Employment is expected to see a slight decline over the next decade, with a 2% decrease in jobs forecasted between 2014-2024.
Continuing Education Information
A Ph.D. is the highest educational level attainable in the field of aviation technology. However, doctoral graduates can keep abreast of technological advances through various industry organizations, such as the National Business Aviation Association.
In conclusion, Ph.D. programs in aviation offer the academic and analytical training necessary for high-level careers in the field, especially research-related positions.