Aviation Technology with Pilot Studies
BSc (Hons)

Industrial Placement
Work placement opportunity
International Students can apply

3 good reasons to study Aviation Technology with Pilot Studies at Salford


Combine flying skills with aviation technology


Option to follow a structured pilot training programme


Accredited by the Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS) and Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE)

Course Summary

The course is engineering focused towards aircraft performance, aircraft handling qualities and flight systems, together with an aviation management theme which includes a hands-on aviation operations and flight practice dimension.

It aims to produce graduates who can apply theoretical and practical methods to design, develop, construct, commission and maintain engineering products, processes, systems and services within the aviation sector. You will study flight dynamics and control, aircraft propulsion and performance, and avionics. Aviation management skills are developed through moduleson aviation business enterprise, airline and airport management, airport design and aircraft maintenance.

You have the option to follow a structured pilot training programme leading to the opportunity to gain a Private Pilot Licence.

A total of 45 flying hours are offered within the training course, at additional cost, with the twin aims of enabling you to fly solo by the end of year 1 and obtain a Private Pilot Licence by the end of year 2. Lessons are at an additional total cost of £7,608 (correct at time of printing), with flexible payment options.

You are encouraged to join the Manchester Branch of the RAeS which is based at the University. We also encourage you to take a placement year either in Europe or the UK, which you arrange with our support. Successful completion of an industrial placement year will add 'with Professional Experience' to your degree title.

Thanks to the generosity of University of Salford donor and Chairman of Morson Group, Gerry Mason, we were delighted to be able to offer five scholarships specific to students beginning courses in September 2016 across all disciplines of engineering and will have ten more on offer in 16/17 and fifteen in 17/18. Students studying this course will be eligible to apply for this scholarship, please see here for more information.

Watch our video

Ross, a student on BSc (Hons) Aviation Technology with Pilot Studies talks about studying at Salford.

Course Details

This course has been awarded accredited status by both the Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS) for 2010 to 2014 intake cohorts and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) for 2009 to 2011 intake cohorts as meeting the exemplifying academic benchmark for registration as Incorporated Engineer (IEng).

Why is accreditation important?

It provides external validation of the degree course content which recognises that it meets both UK and international standards required by the engineering profession.

Professional registration and Institution membership will enhance your career in the following ways:

  • Access to continuous professional development
  • Careers advice and employment opportunities
  • Increased earning potential over the length of your career
  • International recognition of your qualifications, skills and experience
  • Evidence of your motivation, drive and commitment to the profession
  • Networking opportunities

On graduation you will:

  • Gain scientific and mathematical skills as applied to aircraft engineering as well as excellent engineering analysis skills
  • Be able to design solutions according to customer and user needs in the aviation area
  • Have knowledge and understanding of the commercial and economic context of aviation processes, including management techniques, sustainable development and relevant legal requirements
  • Have the ability to use appropriate codes of practice and industry standards and be able to understand the requirements to fly an aircraft

There is a flight test course just prior to the final year, which is delivered by Cranfield University's National Flying Laboratory Centre using their specially instrumented Jetstream 31 aircraft. During the flight, the aircraft will conduct specific manoeuvres during which flight data is gathered for later analysis. This valuable experience allows you to link practical issues of aircraft behaviour to principles of flight taught in the classroom.

Course Structure

Year 1

This module will introduce you to the history of air transport systems leading to the current state of the aviation business. You will study topics such as the evolution of surface transportation systems – roadways, railways and waterways; the beginnings of air transport – first generation airships and winged flying machines; the development of technologies relating to improvements in civilian and military aircraft designs; passenger facility enhancements such as in-flight catering, conveniences and entertainment and the birth of the modern airliner leading to the demise of the airships and the ocean liners.
In this module you will develop an understanding of the basic properties and applications of materials and of the principles of electronic and electrical engineering. This will include learning about the relationship between microstructure and mechanical properties of materials, mechanisms of corrosion and corrosion protection, the principles of electronic and electrical engineering, and the response of electrical elements in circuits to AC or DC supplies.
This module will help you develop the necessary mathematics for the successful study of engineering subjects and give you an appreciation of the links between mathematical analysis and engineering applications.
This module introduces flight mechanics through a description of the principles of aircraft flight in purely physical rather than mathematical terms. You will gain a sound foundation in aircraft propulsion, performance, stability and control, getting you ready for a more analytical approach in modules later on in your degree.
In this module you will gain proficiency and knowledge in the planning of multiple leg flight plans and build awareness and experience of aviation meteorology. On completion you should have developed skills including practical knowledge of operational procedures; requirements for safe and adequate flight planning; understanding requirements for time planning; the principles of aviation meteorology; and be able to make rational assessments for flight safety by interpreting synoptic weather forecasts.
This module will give you an insight into the complete process for the design or engineering of products and services. On completion of the module you will have basic marketing techniques and have an understanding of how to present information using both written and oral techniques. You will also be able to read and interpret engineering drawings, with particular reference to BS 308 and also be taught skills in basic manufacturing processes and be able to create 2-dimensional orthographic engineering drawings.

Year 2

You will be introduced to the basic concepts of aircraft performance by modelling aerodynamic loads and propulsion system performance, leading to key results in both steady and accelerated flight. You will learn how to calculate and assimilate performance in cruise, climb and glide, and to link the predictive methods to design issues and understand how to analyse engines as used in aircraft propulsion, with an emphasis on the aero- and thermodynamic aspect influencing engine performance.
The aims of this module are for you to develop an in-depth knowledge of aviation safety issues; use and evaluate analysis so you can anticipate and alleviate safety risks in aviation; and develop an understanding of human factors and CRM to optimise capability to operate in a safe, efficient aviation environment.
This module will teach you to appreciate the factors involving the management of operating air services and the airport infrastructure including the origins of basic airstrips, lessons learned from airfield related accidents and generation of flight rules; and the performance characteristics of transport aircraft and their operational suitability over various sectors. You will learn to assess market demands, and learn about route planning, choice of aircraft type(s) and ground support equipment. Other subjects covered include air traffic control systems to sequence approaches and departures for maximum safety and efficiency; international regulatory documentation such as ICAO Annex 14; aerodrome and air operator certification; and the handling of bird strike events, low visibility conditions, criminal behaviour and runway incursions.
To appreciate the current state of the aviation business and appreciate the infrastructure in detail this module will cover topics including sovereignty and freedoms of the air; air and surface transport network; route planning and time scheduling; ticketing methodologies and pricing; immigration, customs and excise issues; the Warsaw convention and liabilities; range-payload, costs and productivity.
This module will introduce the theory of business economics in route planning. You will learn the techniques and methodologies used for navigating an aircraft using modern navigation aids.
This module covers the basic principles and theory of statics and dynamics as related to the static and dynamic behaviour of an aircraft and also the basic principles and theory of flight control as related to the dynamic behaviour of an aircraft.

Year 3

The aim of this module is for students to be able to specify and critique the design of aircraft systems such as electrical, environmental and hydraulic systems.
This module will help you appreciate the costing techniques in the aviation business, the invasion of new technologies and the generation of aircraft design specifications based on sustainability and market trends. Topics covered include: matching of capabilities of aircraft to existing route structures to meet travel demands; political negotiations associated with aircraft purchase and transfer of technologies; current and future environmental regulations concerning emissions and noise limits; evolution of online reservation systems combining accommodation and transfers; future of in-flight services in addition to catering, entertainment, gaming and communications; use of biometrics and intelligence gathering to improve security measures.
This module will give you an in depth knowledge of avionic systems currently fitted to modern aircraft, including communication, flight instruments, flight management, automatic flight, warning and recording and passenger systems.
The aim of the Final Year Project is to develop your ability to work with a significant degree of independence on a structured programme of activity. You should demonstrate your competency in analysing and assessing the value of information derived from this course, be able to communicate effectively (both through written reports and orally) the details of what you have learned and conclusions that can be drawn together with suggestions of further work.
In this module you will develop an awareness of the commercial issues which must be addressed by engineering businesses in order to operate successfully, efficiently and legally. You will also be introduced to the principles of quality management systems and consider the role(s) of people in successful business operation. Furthermore, you will be provided with a thorough knowledge and understanding in relation to the health, safety and environment, buiness and project management of a range of engineering industries, as well as a thorough knowledge and understanding in relation to the economics of petroleum, aerospace and manufacturing industries.
This module aims to enable students to understand and critically evaluate the issues underlying current practice in the basic design of airport infrastructure in the context of operational performance, capacity, quality of service, environmental impact, aircraft maintenance and dispatch reliability.

Please note, exact modules may vary in order to keep content current. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the modules you will study on or before the start of the programme.

Entry Requirements

Qualification Entry requirements
GCSE English Language and Maths at grade C or above
UCAS tariff points 96-104 points
GCE A level 96-104 points Mathematics at grade C and Physics at grade C
BTEC National Diploma MMM to include Engineering - must include Merits in Maths modules
Scottish Highers 96-104 points; Advanced Higher Mathematics at grade C and Physics at grade C; Higher Mathematics at grade B or Physics at grade B or Design at grade B.
Irish Leaving Certificate 96-104 points including Higher Level Mathematics.
International Baccalaureate 28 Grade 5 or above in Higher Level Maths and Physics

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.

There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.

English Language Requirements

International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 (with no element below 5.5) is proof of this. If you need to improve your written and spoken English, you might be interested in our English language courses.

International Students - Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

International Students are required by the Home Office and/or the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) to apply for an Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) Certificate before they begin studying their course. You may need to obtain an ATAS Certificate before you come to the UK in order for you to comply with Home Office regulations. Please refer to your offer conditions.
You can find out if your programme requires an ATAS by checking the FCO website at https://www.gov.uk/academic-technology-approval-scheme with your JACS code which  will be on your offer letter should you choose to make an application. If you cannot find it please contact International Conversion team at application@salford.ac.uk. If you have any queries relating directly to ATAS please contact the ATAS team on Salford-ATAS@salford.ac.uk

You can apply for your ATAS Certificate via this link: https://www.academic-technology-approval.service.gov.uk/

Applicant profile


  • Lectures
  • Tutorials
  • Video presentations
  • Laboratory work
  • Group work
  • Demonstrations


  • Exams
  • Group work
  • Reports
  • Case Study
  • Laboratory


Career pathways will be in to the design, manufacture and operation of aircraft and their related systems.

A wide range of opportunities will exist with main aircraft producers, sub-assembly manufacturers and airport operations. Many of our 'sandwich year' graduates go on to work for the companies they worked with during their year in industry.

Students who have completed this degree have gained employment with several leading companies such as Aviance UK, Flybe, and Oxford Aviation. Typical jobs titles have included Flight Dispatch Officer and Pilot.

Career Prospects

Students who have completed this degree have gained employment with several leading companies such as National Air Traffic Services (NATS), CTC Aviation and Goodrich.

Typical job titles have included Air Traffic Control Safety Engineer, Airworthiness Engineer, and Pilot.

Further Study

Fees and Funding

Fees for entry in 2017-18 will be published as soon as possible.

Fees 2016-17

Type of StudyFee
Full-time International£13,300

Additional costs

Students may choose to study for their pilot's licence at a cost of approximately £7,000 (based on £140 per hour for 50 hours). Costs are approximated based on the current academic year.

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.



  • Mechanical Lab – This lab is used to understand material behaviour under different loading conditions and contains a tensile test machine and static loading experiments – typical laboratory sessions would include tensile testing of materials and investigation into the bending and buckling behaviour of beams.
  • Aerodynamics Lab – Contains low speed and supersonic wind tunnels – typical laboratory experiments would include determining the aerodynamic properties of an aerofoil section and influence of wing sweep on the lift and drag characteristics of a tapered wing section.
  • Composite Material Lab – This lab contains wet lay-up and pre-preg facilities for fabrication of composite material test sections. The facility is particularly utilised for final year project work.
  • Control and Dynamics Lab – Contains flight simulators (see details below) and programmable control experiments – typical laboratory sessions would include studying the effects of damping and short period oscillation analysis, forced vibration due to rotating imbalance, and understanding the design and performance of proportional and integral controllers.
  • Merlin MP520-T Engineering Simulator - This simulator is used to support engineering design modules, such as those involving aerodynamics and control systems by giving a more practical experience of aircraft design than a traditional theory and laboratory approach. As a student, you'll design and input your own aircraft parameters into the simulator before then assessing the flight characteristics. The simulator is a fully-enclosed single seat capsule mounted on a moving 2-degree of freedom platform which incorporates cockpit controls, integrated main head-up display and two secondary instrumentation display panels. An external instructor console also accompanies the simulator and is equipped with a comprehensive set of displays, override facilities and a two-way voice link to the pilot.
  • Elite Flight Training System - The Elite is a fixed base Piper PA-34 Seneca III aircraft simulator used for flight operations training and is certified by the CAA as a FNPT II-MCC Multi-Crew Cockpit training environment. It has two seats, each with a full set of instrumentation and controls, and European Visuals, so you see a projection of the terrain that you're flying through, based on real geographic models of general terrain and specific airports in Europe.