Aviation Technology with Pilot Studies BSc

(Full time) 2019 start

Course information for 2018 start


Drawing on our extensive expertise in aircraft design, materials, propulsion, environmental issues and industrial management, this course will equip you with a solid science and engineering base and the broader aviation knowledge vital for pilots in the 21st century.

You’ll benefit from the training facilities and expertise of a professional flying school as you undertake ten hours of flight training, achieve the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ground exam requirements for the Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL) and develop the knowledge you need for commercial pilot ground exams. At the same time, you’ll gain a strong science and engineering base with modules on topics like aviation engineering materials. You’ll also put this knowledge into the context of the aviation industry today and in the future.

You’ll be taught be expert academics and experienced professionals, allowing you to develop the knowledge and professional skills to succeed in the aviation industry.

Specialist facilities

You’ll have access to our engine laboratories and state-of-the-art flight simulators, including an Airbus A320 airliner cockpit simulator. If you want to take commercial-level instrument training, you’ll also benefit from the use of our CAA approved, complex twin-engine FNPTII aircraft simulator.

Course content

You’ll be introduced to the key science and engineering principles that underlie aviation studies in Year 1, when you’ll also develop the theoretical knowledge you need for the Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL) – you can meet the CAA’s ground exam requirements as part of your studies. During this year and the following summer you’ll also spend ten hours in the air, working towards your PPL.

Optional modules will also give you the chance to explore related areas such as process chemistry, management or the broader context of surface and air transport in an evolving economy and society.

Year 2 will incorporate the theoretical knowledge to prepare you for the CAA commercial pilot ground examinations. You’ll also learn more about how airlines and airports operate, their economic importance and the practical challenges that arise from commercial, technical, regulatory and political constraints.

In your final year you’ll learn more about vital issues of safety and reliability in aviation, as well as the health and security issues that affect different elements of the industry. You’ll also deepen your understanding of aerodynamics, aircraft design and construction, and work on a team technology project to apply your knowledge to a specific problem in aviation.


Every year of the course gives you hands-on experience of project work. This gives you the opportunity to explore your subject further as well as developing valuable skills in problem solving, communication and teamwork.

Find out more about our Projects

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.


Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Technical Skills and Applications 20 credits
  • Aviation Engineering Materials 10 credits
  • Theoretical Knowledge for the Private Pilots Licence 20 credits
  • Aviation Engineering Science 20 credits
  • Introduction to Aviation 20 credits
  • Mathematical Techniques 1 10 credits

Optional modules

  • Foundation Mathematics 10 credits
  • Fundamentals of Process Chemistry 10 credits
  • Foundation Engineering Physics 10 credits
  • Introduction to Management 10 credits
  • Introduction to Surface and Air Transport 10 credits
Year 2

Compulsory modules

  • Aircraft 1 20 credits
  • Aviation Health and Safety 20 credits
  • Advanced Pilot Theory 40 credits
  • Airline and Airport Operations 20 credits
  • Mathematical Techniques 2 20 credits
Year 3

Compulsory modules

  • Aircraft 2 20 credits
  • Aviation Safety and Reliability 30 credits
  • Aviation Technology Project 40 credits
  • Aviation Futures 30 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Aviation Technology with Pilot Studies BSc in the course catalogue

Broadening your academic horizons

At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. On this course you broaden your learning through core and/or optional modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

Learning and teaching

You’ll study among academics who are leaders in their field – staff have conducted research for organisations such as NASA, the US Federal Aviation Administration, Boeing, Lockheed Martin and the US Air Force. Our research leads directly into our teaching, meaning you’ll hear about the very latest developments in your studies.

You’ll benefit from our integrated style of teaching and learning, using methods such as lab classes, project work, lectures, tutorials, example classes and group activities, allowing you to gain first-hand experience of applying your knowledge to real-life situations. Together they will equip you with in-depth knowledge and key practical skills that will put you in a good position to compete in science and technology-related careers. Our close links with industry also mean that you have direct contact with industry and potential employers from an early stage in your course.

Our personal tutorial system will provide academic and pastoral support. You will have a designated member of staff as personal tutor throughout your studies at Leeds. You will have weekly academic tutorials with your tutor throughout your first year, in your tutor group (of typically 5 students), as well as one-to-one meetings twice per semester.


Most modules are assessed by more than one component. These components can include written examinations held at the end of each year, in-class and online tests, example sheets, assignments, and coursework in the form of reports, projects, presentations and posters.

Flying skills are assessed formally in line with civil aviation practices and requirements. We give individual feedback so you can improve your skills.

Entry requirements, fees and applying

Entry requirements

A-level: AAA including Mathematics or Physics.

Where an A-Level Science subject is taken, we require a pass in the practical science element, alongside the achievement of the A-Level at the stated grade.

Excludes A-Level General Studies or Critical Thinking.

Extended Project Qualification - Whilst we recognise the value, effort and enthusiasm applicants make in the Extended Project, we do not currently include this as part of our offer making. We do however encourage you to provide further information on your project in your personal statement and if invited, at interview.

GCSE: English Language at grade C (4) or above, or an appropriate English language qualification.

  • Access to HE Diploma

    Pass 60 credits overall with 45 credits at Level 3, 30 credits with Distinction (including Mathematics) and the remaining 15 credits with Merit or above.

  • BTEC

    D*DD with Distinctions in relevant Mathematics and Physics units. Some Mathematics and Physics units may be optional on your BTEC but are required by the Faculty. Please contact us for further information.

  • Cambridge Pre-U

    D3, D3, D3 including Mathematics and Physics.

  • International Baccalaureate

    35 points overall, with 18 points at higher level to include 5 points in Mathematics or Physics.

  • Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

    H1 H2 H2 H2 H2 H2 including Mathematics and Physics.

  • Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

    AA at Advanced Higher level, including Mathematics and Physics, and AABBB at Higher level

  • Other Qualifications

    Advanced Diploma: A with an appropriate amount of Mathematics or Physics.

Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

Alternative entry

We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

If you do not have the formal qualifications for immediate entry to one of our degrees, you may be able to progress through a foundation year. We offer a BSc Studies in Science for students without a science background at A-level and anInterdisciplinary Science Foundation Year for applicants who meet specific widening participation criteria.


We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications.

Foundation year

If you have the ability to study for a degree but don’t have the qualifications to enter directly to level one, you might consider studying a foundation year. We have formal links with the following foundation year programmes:

- University of Leeds International Foundation Year (IFY)

- Northern Consortium of UK Universities (NCUK)

- Study Group Leeds International Study Centre (LISC)

If you are applying from an alternative foundation year provider, please contact our admissions team to find out if your qualification is suitable for entry to our courses.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.0 overall, with no less than 5.5 in each section.. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.

How to apply

Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Next steps

Suitable applicants will be invited to an applicant day, for which we strongly encourage attendance, as this gives you the opportunity to meet our students, academic and admissions staff, and find out more about your course. You’ll take part in a practical engineering activity, followed by a School and campus tour. The tour of the School’s facilities includes interactive demonstrations of student activities.

During the day you’ll have a discussion with an academic member of staff, to check that it’s the right course for you and your career plans, have your questions answered and find out more about studying at Leeds.

After you apply we will send you a link to book your place on the applicant day, but please let us know as soon as possible if you cannot attend, so your place can be allocated to another applicant.

Admissions policy

Faculty of Engineering Undergraduate Admissions Policy


UK/EU: To be confirmed

International: To be confirmed

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

The fee for undergraduate students starting in 2019 will be confirmed in September 2018.

The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students in 2018-19 will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

Read more about paying fees and charges.

Financial support

The School of Chemical and Process Engineering offer a range of scholarships for Home, EU and International students.

Scholarships for 2019 entry are to be confirmed.

Career opportunities

Many of our students see this course as the first step towards gaining a Commercial Pilot's Licence (CPL). However, airports and airlines offer an extensive range of other opportunities and you’ll be well placed to launch a career in a wide variety of aviation-related areas.

These could include airport operations and management, air traffic control, non-airline commercial flight operations, flying instruction, technical sales and marketing in aviation related industries. Some students have also been successful in obtaining RAF sponsorship.

Graduates have gone on to work as first and second officers for airlines such as Qatar Airlines, Aer Lingus, British Airways, Ryanair, Flybe and Cathay Pacific, as well as in administrative and management roles at airports such as Gatwick. Others have launched careers in the RAF and the British Army, or worked as project managers or data analysts among other roles for manufacturers such as Airbus and Navtech.

Careers Support

You’ll have access to our dedicated Employability team, located centrally in our Employability Suite, who will provide you with specialist face-to-face support and advice to help you find relevant work experience, internships and year-in-industry placements, as well as graduate positions.

You’ll benefit from timetabled employability sessions, ongoing support during internships and placements, and presentations and workshops delivered by employers. The team also works closely with the University’s Careers Centre, which is one of the largest in the country.

Find out more about careers support and employability

Study abroad and work placements

Study abroad

On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. The University has partnerships with more than 400 universities worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America. 

Find out more at the Study Abroad website.

Work placements

With the help and support of our faculty Employability Team, you can choose to undertake an industrial placement year at one of the 100+ companies that we work with. If you decide to undertake a placement year this will extend your period of study by 12 months and, on successful completion, you will be awarded the ‘industrial’ variant in your degree title to demonstrate your added experience to future employers.

Find out more about work placements

Flight training

This course offers you the chance to undertake flight training at private pilot level, provided by a flying school at an airfield near Leeds, and ground instruction at commercial level.

Private Pilot Training

Your course fees include ten hours of private pilot flight training over Year 1 and the following summer, including aircraft hire, flight instructor fees, flying club membership and ground transport between campus and the training location. Private Pilot Licence (PPL) theory and ground examinations are included in Year 1.

If you’re considered ready to fly solo, you’ll need to produce a valid UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) Class 2 medical certificate to complete your training – we can facilitate you taking the required medical examination if you haven’t already done so.

Commercial Pilot Ground Instruction

This is incorporated into Year 2 and includes instruction by a CAA-accredited ground instructor, as well as access to study materials for the Air Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL) ground school if you need them. You’ll have access to a suitable flight simulator for no extra cost.

Please note that the CAA ATPL ground examinations are for an external qualification which is beyond the University’s control. If you choose to sit these examinations, you will be responsible for any CAA mandated revision short course and exam fees. You will also need to have completed your PPL.

Course terms and conditions