Airline Pilot & Flight Crew
Types of Degrees Airline Pilot & Flight Crew Majors Are Getting
The following table lists how many airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.
|Education Level||Number of Grads|
What Airline Pilot & Flight Crew Majors Need to Know
In an O*NET survey, airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew majors were asked to rate what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important in their occupations. These answers were weighted on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important.
Knowledge Areas for Airline/Commercial/Professional Pilot and Flight Crew Majors
According to O*NET survey takers, a major in airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew should prepare you for careers in which you will need to be knowledgeable in the following areas:
- Transportation - Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
- Geography - Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
- Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Skills for Airline/Commercial/Professional Pilot and Flight Crew Majors
When studying airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:
- Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
- Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
- Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Abilities for Airline/Commercial/Professional Pilot and Flight Crew Majors
As you progress with your airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:
- Control Precision - The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
- Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Response Orientation - The ability to choose quickly between two or more movements in response to two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures). It includes the speed with which the correct response is started with the hand, foot, or other body part.
- Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Far Vision - The ability to see details at a distance.
What Can You Do With a Airline Pilot & Flight Crew Major?
Below is a list of occupations associated with airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew:
|Job Title||Job Growth Rate||Median Salary|
|Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers||3.5%||$140,340|
Who Is Getting an Associate’s Degree in Airline Pilot & Flight Crew?
At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew majors is as follows:
|Race/Ethnicity||Number of Grads|
|Black or African American||19|
|Hispanic or Latino||95|
Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in Airline/Commercial/Professional Pilot and Flight Crew. About 4.6% of those with this major are international students.
How Much Do Airline Pilot & Flight Crew Majors Make?
Salaries According to BLS
Airline/Commercial/Professional Pilot and Flight Crew majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $96,530 to $169,560 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.
To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.
Amount of Education Required for Careers Related to Airline Pilot & Flight Crew
Some careers associated with airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.
Find out what the typical degree level is for airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew careers below.
|Education Level||Percentage of Workers|
|High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED)||14.7%|
|Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production)||22.2%|
|Some College Courses||2.8%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||11.8%|
|First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession.||0.8%|
Online Airline Pilot & Flight Crew Programs
In 2018-2019, 122 schools offered a airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.
|Degree Level||Colleges Offering Programs||Colleges Offering Online Classes|
|Certificate (Less Than 1 Year)||36||1|
|Certificate (1-2 years)||24||0|
|Certificate (2-4 Years)||2||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Research)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Other)||0||0|
Is a Degree in Airline Pilot & Flight Crew Worth It?
The median salary for a airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew grad is $96,530 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.
This is 142% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $1,132,600 after 20 years!
Explore Major by State
District of Columbia
Trades Related to Airline Pilot & Flight Crew
You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to airline/commercial/professional pilot and flight crew.
|Major||Number of Grads|
|General Aeronautics/Aviation/Aerospace Science & Technology||3,517|
|Aviation/Airway Management & Operations||1,306|
|Air Traffic Controller||373|
|Other Air Transportation||343|
|Airline Flight Attendant||71|
*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.
- College Factual
- College Scorecard
- National Center for Education Statistics
- O*NET Online
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers First Quarter 2020
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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