Airframe Technology Training and Education Program Overviews

Airframe technicians and mechanics inspect, repair and maintain aircraft and can receive training through an Associate of Applied Science in Airframe Technology degree program. Read on for information on these programs, including curriculum and prerequisites as well as requirements for Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification.

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Essential Information

Aspiring airframe technicians seeking an associate's degree program must first find one that is accredited by the FAA. Approved degree programs provide students with an educational foundation in aircraft technology that teaches them the practical and technical skills necessary to work as a technician in the field. After graduation, students can test for FAA certification. Some programs can be completed in less than a year. Students usually must complete a few general education courses, such as English composition and psychology, but requirements vary by school.

The curriculum included within an associate degree program in aircraft technology covers basic mechanic processes such as welding, rigging, assembling and finishing. Students learn how to apply these skills to aircrafts in order to maintain, repair and calibrate aircraft electrical systems, navigational systems, hydraulic systems, landing gear systems, positioning systems and control systems.

Education Prerequisites

Community, technical and vocational colleges are the schools most likely to offer approved associate degree programs in airframe technology. Such schools only admit students who have proof of a high school education or its equivalent. Some schools also require students to complete mathematics and English language placement tests before they can begin core classes.

Program Coursework

Associate degree programs in airframe technology are comprised of both classroom lectures and practical laboratory sessions. Some specific examples include:

  • Ground operation
  • Ground service and cleaning
  • Materials and processes
  • Maintenance forms and regulations
  • Aviation physics
  • Aircraft electrical systems
  • Welding
  • Airframe inspection
  • Airframe repair

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

The air transportation support activities and scheduled air transportation industries were the largest employers of aircraft mechanics and service technicians in May 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). In that year, these mechanics and technicians held a total of about 119,160 jobs and earned a median annual salary of $55,210.

Certification Options

The FAA must certify all airframe technicians and mechanics before they are allowed to work on aircrafts. Those who are not certified must work under the direct supervision of a certified mechanic at all times. Individuals must have at least 18 months of professional experience before they can apply for an airframe mechanic certificate from the FAA. In many cases, the completion of an associate degree program can be substituted for those work months.

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  • 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)

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

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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
      • Dental
      • Medical and Health Preparatory Sciences
      • Medical Residency Programs
      • Public Health and Safety
  • School locations:
    • Pennsylvania (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Pennsylvania include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: First Professional Certificate, Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Biomedical and Medical Engineering
      • Chemical Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Computer Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Environmental Engineering
      • Geological Engineering
      • Materials Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Systems Engineering

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