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Professional Aviation Pilot Practice (Helicopter) (Helicentre Aviation Academy) BSc Honours

Get your commercial pilot’s licence with our course, delivered through a partnership with the Helicentre Aviation Academy.
3 years
Takes place at Helicentre Aviation Academy in Leicester and via online delivery
£9,250 (UK/EU) *
£13,700 (INT) *
See the Fees and funding tab to view January 2020 start fees
Course leader
Mick Betts

We’re planning to teach through a flexible combination of online and face to face learning for the first few months of the new academic year. If you’re thinking about starting with us in autumn 2020 or spring 2021, check back for more detail on arrangements for this course in July and August, and see our current plans for teaching and learning.

Why study pilot practice with us

Receive comprehensive helicopter training with our degree. We’ll give you the opportunity to get academic credit and qualifications based on your technical and practical flying training. We’ll also help you get plenty of early career practice, preparing you for the world of work.

Our course is built around the principle of work-based learning. This means our modules have been designed to target the working and training practices of particular industries, sectors, and employers. All your daily learning as part of your regular training and practice will be assessed and recognised in an academic framework, eliminating unnecessary duplication.

Our degree programme is the first of its kind in the UK to make it possible for you to gain a BSc Honours degree at the same time as you complete ‘ab initio’ helicopter pilot training. 'Ab initio' training refers to an airline sponsoring and mentoring a student from the start and throughout, hiring them once the student is type-rated and certified.

Develop your practical skills with us

The programme incorporates Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) regulated training, leading to the award of a commercial pilot’s licence (CPL(H)). The Honours level (Level 6) programme prepares you for employment through two different routes. The first route is the Flight Instruction (Helicopter) option while the second is Aircraft Specifics (Helicopter). Don’t worry - you won’t have to decide on your preferred path until third year and you’ll have plenty of advice.

You’ll also develop plenty of transferable skills that many employers find desirable. These include working flexibly, communication, IT understanding, and many more. Since you can tailor the degree to best suit your interests, the skills you’ll gain will be highly relevant to future career prospects.

This course is endorsed by the CAA.

*Please note this course is subject to review.

Find out more

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What will you study on the BSc Professional Aviation Pilot Practice (Helicopter) (Helicentre Aviation Academy)?

At the start of the programme you will join HAA and proceed through Initial training, Ground School and Flying Training. You will be examined in accordance with Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) regulations at the appropriate points and awarded academic credit for completion of:

  • The CAA Initial theory, flying to PPL (H) level and CPL (H) Theoretical Knowledge units of study which have been embedded within four Level 4 University modules – Initial Theoretical Aviation Knowledge (Helicopter), Introduction to Helicopter Flying, Flight Operations (Helicopter) and Aircraft and Air Environment (Helicopter)
  • The phases of Flying Training which have been embedded within three Level 5 University modules - Basic Flying 1 (Helicopter), Basic Flying 2 (Helicopter) and Advanced Flying (Helicopter) leading to the issue of your CPL (H) licence

On completion of the CPL (H) course and the issue of your licence you will take the Professional Orientation module, which combines a CRM course with university study. This will complete Level 5 of the programme.

You will then proceed either to the Flight Instructor Course or to employment with an operator, selecting appropriate modules from the Level 6 options to complete your degree programme.

If you elect to progress to the Flight Instructor (FI) course with HAA you will pursue Route A of the degree programme at Level 6. Two university modules encompass the FI course, Flight Instruction (Helicopter) and Flight Instruction Standardisation (Helicopter). Once you are qualified as an instructor you will continue in employment and complete the remaining two University modules, Evaluating and Managing Risks and Threat and Error Management, which relate to your operational practice and employer based training undertaken during the first 6 months of your instructing career.

If, on achievement of your CPL (H), you proceed directly to employment as a helicopter pilot with an operator, you will follow Route B to complete the degree programme. Two modules, Aircraft Specifics (Helicopter) and Airline Orientation and Integration, relate to entry to employment with a specific operator and detailed content of these modules will be determined in consultation with the employing operator. The remaining two University modules, Evaluating and Managing Risks and Threat and Error Management, relate to your operational practice and employer based training undertaken during the first year of your operational flying career.

Level 4

Level 5

Level 6

Initial Theoretical Aviation Knowledge (Helicopter) (20 credits)

Basic Flying 1 (Helicopter) (30 credits)

Route ARoute B

Introduction to Helicopter Flying (20 credits)

Basic Flying 2 (Helicopter) (30 credits)

Flight Instruction (Helicopter) (30 credits)

Aircraft Specifics (Helicopter) (30 credits)

Flight Operations (Helicopter) (40 credits)

Advanced Flying (Helicopter) (30 credits)

Flight Instruction Standardisation (Helicopter) (30 credits)

Airline Orientation and Integration (30 credits)

Aircraft and Air Environment (Helicopter) (40 credits)

Professional Orientation (Helicopter) (30 credits)

Routes A and B

Evaluating and Managing Risks (30 credits)

Total - 120 creditsTotal - 120 credits

Routes A and B

Threat and Error Management (30 credits)


Total - 120 credits

  1. Overview
  2. Teaching and learning
  3. Assessment and feedback
  1. UK & EU
  2. International
  3. How to apply
  1. UK & EU
  2. International
  3. Additional costs

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