Aircraft Mechanic Degree Programs with Course Information

Learn about associate's and bachelor's degree programs in aviation maintenance. Find out about FAA certification requirements for aircraft mechanics, as well as the employment outlook for these workers.

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Essential Information

Associate's and bachelor's degree programs in aircraft mechanics, also called aviation maintenance technology, prepare students for careers as aviation maintenance technicians. These programs include classroom and hands-on instruction in inspecting, repairing and maintaining aircraft. Bachelor's degree programs also include courses in business. Admission requirements for these programs may include a high school diploma and prior education in mathematics and computer science. Students who successfully complete programs approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) are eligible for certification in airframe and powerplant maintenance.


Associate's Degree in Aviation Maintenance Technology

An associate's degree program in aviation maintenance technology incorporates general education courses with technical training in the field of aircraft maintenance. Students learn the skills necessary to maintain and repair aircraft structures and mechanical systems. While most programs provide training in both structural (airframe) and engine systems (powerplant), some programs specialize in one or the other.

Educational Prerequisites

Previous coursework in physics and a general knowledge of electronics is helpful. Some programs request previous coursework in math and computers. A high school diploma or equivalent is required.

Program Coursework

The curriculum covers the skills and theories necessary to earn FAA airframe and powerplant maintenance certification. Courses cover a wide variety of topics including:

  • FAA regulations
  • Aerodynamics
  • Aircraft electrical systems
  • Materials science
  • Instrumentation
  • Gas turbine and piston powerplants
  • Airframe systems
  • Aircraft Structure

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

Employment for aircraft mechanics and service technicians is expected to grow at only 6% during 2010-2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Jobs will still be available due to the need to replace retiring mechanics and the low number of individuals entering this occupation. The BLS reported a median annual salary of $55,210 in 2012 for these workers.

Bachelor's Degree in Aviation Maintenance Technology

Similar to an associate's degree program, a bachelor's degree program in aviation maintenance technology provides technical training in aircraft maintenance along with general education. In addition, many programs incorporate management or business courses into the curriculum to prepare graduates for leadership roles in the aviation maintenance industry.

Educational Prerequisites

This degree programs is available to students with a high school diploma or equivalent. Previous coursework in areas such as physics, electronics, math and computer technology is helpful.

Program Coursework

Students learn the necessary skills for FAA certification. The curriculum also covers theory and business-related issues. Course topics include:

  • FAA regulations and documentation
  • Electrical systems
  • Airframe maintenance practices
  • Powerplants
  • Fuel, air and exhaust systems
  • Propeller systems
  • Engine maintenance and repair
  • Avionics
  • Management principles

Popular Career Options

Students are prepared for careers repairing and maintaining aircraft for major airlines, commuter airlines, aircraft manufacturers and the FAA. According to the BLS, job opportunities may be best with small commuter and regional airlines. A bachelor's degree may enable graduates to secure management-level positions. Career options include:

  • Airframe maintenance technician
  • Powerplant maintenance technician
  • Aircraft mechanic
  • Maintenance supervisor
  • Aviation safety inspector
  • Accident investigator

Certification and Continuing Education

The FAA requires certification for aircraft mechanics. Mechanics can receive certification in airframe maintenance, powerplant maintenance or both. Applicants must pass a written, oral and practical exam in each area. Continuing education is a requirement to maintain certification. Aircraft mechanics must complete 16 hours of training every two years to keep current.

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Career Info for a Degree in Mechanic & Repair Technologies

Popular Schools

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

    • Associate
        • CCAF - Associate to Baccalaureate Cooperative Program (AUABC)

    What is your highest level of education completed?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be 18 years of age or older
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Applicants must have completed 12 college credits
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

    • Bachelor
        • BS - Computing Technology (Project Management)

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Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • Utah (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Utah State University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, Master
      • Non-Degree: Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Precision Metal Working
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
        • Airframe Mechanics and Aircraft Maintenance
        • Avionics Repair and Maintenance
  • School locations:
    • Kansas (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Kansas State University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
        • Airframe Mechanics and Aircraft Maintenance
  • School locations:
    • Illinois (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Southern Illinois University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
        • Airframe Mechanics and Aircraft Maintenance
        • Automotive Mechanics
        • Avionics Repair and Maintenance
  • School locations:
    • Alaska (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Alaska include:
      • Graduate: Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Construction Management and Trades
      • Electrical Repair and Maintenance
      • Heating, Air Conditioning, Ventilation, and Refrigeration Maintenance
      • Heavy Equipment Maintenance
      • Precision Metal Working
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
        • Airframe Mechanics and Aircraft Maintenance
        • Automotive Mechanics
        • Diesel Mechanics
  • School locations:
    • Wisconsin (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Milwaukee Area Technical College include:
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Construction Management and Trades
      • Electrical Repair and Maintenance
      • Heating, Air Conditioning, Ventilation, and Refrigeration Maintenance
      • Heavy Equipment Maintenance
      • Precision Metal Working
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
        • Aircraft Powerplant Tech
        • Airframe Mechanics and Aircraft Maintenance
        • Autobody Repair
        • Automotive Mechanics
        • Diesel Mechanics
  • School locations:
    • California (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Stanford University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering
      • Biomedical and Medical Engineering
      • Chemical Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Environmental Engineering
      • Industrial Engineering
      • Materials Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Petroleum Engineering
      • Systems Engineering
  • School locations:
    • Massachusetts (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Harvard University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Math

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