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Field of Study: Commercial Pilot and Flight Crew Training


Commercial pilot and flight crew training programs prepare people to work in commercial air transportation.



Commercial pilot and flight crew training programs include topics such as:

  • Operation of fixed wing aircraft
  • Principles of aircraft design and performance
  • Aircraft flight systems and controls
  • Flight crew operations
  • Radio communications
  • Navigation procedures

This program may qualify students to sit for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) commercial and airline aircrew examinations.

Several community colleges offer associate degree programs in commercial pilot and flight crew training. An associate degree program usually takes two years of full-time study.

Several colleges and universities offer a bachelor's degree in commercial pilot and flight crew training. A bachelor's degree usually takes four years of full-time study to complete.


College preparation

To qualify for a commercial pilot's license, applicants must:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Be able to speak, read, write, and understand English
  • Hold a private pilot's certificate
  • Have at least 250 hours of flight experience
  • Pass a strict physical exam
  • Have 20/20 vision with or without glasses
  • Have good hearing
  • Pass written exams on safe flight and navigation techniques
  • Demonstrate their flying abilities to FAA examiners


Typical course work

This program typically includes courses in the following subjects:

  • Advanced Aerodynamics
  • Advanced Flight Maneuvers
  • Advanced Night Flying
  • Advanced Weather
  • High-Performance Takeoffs and Landings

Many programs teach students flight maneuvers using a flight simulator. This is in addition to flight time with an instructor.


Things to know

Although not required, many programs encourage you to get your pilot's certificate.

To be licensed as a pilot, students must pass Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) written, oral, and flight tests supervised by an FAA examiner or inspector.


Similar fields of study

Careers you may qualify for

Airline Pilots
Commercial Pilots



Let's Go Flying!
Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association

Federal Aviation Administration

Schools that offer program

Click on the school name to see a list of their programs related to this field of study.

Academy College - Bloomington, Located in Metro
Lake Superior College - Duluth, Located in Northeast
Lake Superior College - Online - Duluth, Located in Northeast
Minnesota State University, Mankato , Located in Southeast
Minnesota State University, Mankato - Online , Located in Southeast