University of Hertfordshire

BEng (Hons) Aerospace Engineering with Pilot Studies

You’d like to design aircraft and have a passion for flying. 

We’ll teach you how to design from a pilot’s perspective. We’ll train you up in everything you need to know, from aircraft structures and materials to aerodynamics. There’ll also be opportunities to fly. We’re passionate about aerospace, and it’s an important part of our institution’s history. It’s how we began. Working with the de Havilland Aircraft Corporation and BAE Systems, the first aerospace engineers started their training back in 1952. As a result, our degree has an excellent and well-established reputation within the aerospace industry.  

University of Hertfordshire aerospace engineers graduate with practical experience of design and development for future aerospace systems. You’ll get hands-on with our flight simulators, wind tunnels, specialist laboratories and CAE software. We have an open-access laboratory policy for students doing experiments in their own time. With an emphasis on Computer Aided Engineering, you’ll be using industrial standard software wherever possible.   

We’re members of the CDIO Initiative  (Conceive Design Implement Operate), a worldwide network of academic professionals, industry representatives and engineering leaders who have a passion for engineering education and engineering leadership. The CDIO framework has been embedded into our undergraduate degree programme, ensuring you’ll put into practice what you learn through “Design and Build” projects during your studies.

You’ll be taught by experienced aerospace staff, who’ll share their industry knowledge with you.  There's plenty of support on offer to help you gain the skills you need to succeed. You'll get a personal tutor for the duration of your course, who can guide you all the way to graduation. You can also access our specialised Centre for Academic Skills. Our Learning Resources Centre is open 24/7, so you can study whenever suits you best, plus you’ll have access to online resources and online discussions with staff and students.  

Like the students before you, you’ll benefit from our strong links to industry. Our students have had work placements at companies such as Airbus, Virgin Atlantic Engineering and BAE Systems. Recent Aerospace Engineering graduates have gone on to work at organisations including The Royal Air Force, Jaguar Land Rover and BAE Systems.  

What's the course about?

In your first year, you’ll learn the fundamental skills and knowledge required by a modern engineer, including principles of flight and aircraft operations. You’ll be introduced to computer packages commonly used in the aerospace industry. You’ll also have the opportunity, at an additional cost, to sign up for a Flight Experience course at our partner flying school, Northwestern Michigan College in the USA and fly over the great lakes. 

In your second year, the first-year core themes are developed for use in aerospace engineering. You’ll learn about the components and the electronics inside the airframe that enable the aircraft to be so widespread and the safest form of transport available. You’ll learn how aircraft are designed for their handling qualities, and expand your knowledge of aerodynamics, with wind tunnel experiments. You’ll also build your pilot skills by studying elements of PPL Ground School. 

Additionally, you’ll learn about the design process through our practical CDIO modules.  In a group, you will design and manufacture a model aircraft. The best models of the year will be taken to compete at the University Challenge organised by the British Model Flying Association. Your aircraft may be the winner! 

Work placement/study abroad option: Between your second and final year, you can choose to take a work placement or a study abroad year. Both are valuable experiences and something you can add to your CV to make you stand out. 

In your final year, in addition to your flight training you’ll work on two projects:  

  • The Aerospace Design group project - is where you’ll showcase your engineering skills.  You will be allocated to a team to design a full-size aircraft and test fly it using our flight simulator.  Every year the design task is different – in previous years, our students designed wide body commercial airliners, heavy cargo aircraft, fire-fighting aircraft and even strategic bombers.   
  • The Individual Project - is where you’ll immerse yourself in an area of aerospace engineering, you’re passionate about, using either the University or industrial facilities. This is a rewarding part of your degree that can lead to future employment.  

Flying training is supported further by a Pilot Studies and Flight Analysis module and our flight simulation facilities.

Entry Requirements

UCAS pointsA LevelBTECAccess Course TariffIB requirement
112 - 120

BBC - BBB - Grade B Maths and either physics or technology or engineering based subjects, excluding general studies/critical thinking

DMM - DDM  -  Extended diploma in engineering (DMM) to include Distinction in further mathsEngineering diploma with 45 Level 3 credits at distinction to include maths and science or principles units. Any additional L3 credits must be at merit112-120 points from a minimum of 2 HL subjects at grade 4 or above to include HL Maths and Physics

GCSE: Grade 4/C in English Language and Mathematics.

All students from non-majority English speaking countries require proof of English language proficiency, equivalent to an overall IELTS score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each band.

Career Prospects

In the past many of our aerospace systems engineering graduates have become professional pilots either with the RAF, Royal Navy, Commercial Airlines or private pilot instructors. By integrating the experience of flying in the initial stages of this degree, you will find the transition to working as a professional pilot easier. Alternatively, graduates may keep flying as a hobby and pursue an engineering career in an aerospace company or a smaller company in the aerospace supply chain.

Many of our graduates have become professional pilots with the RAF, Royal Navy and commercial airlines. Others have become private pilot instructors. Some graduates decide to keep flying as a hobby and pursue an engineering career in an aerospace organisation or a smaller company in the supply chain.

Course Details

Degree programmes are structured into levels, 4, 5 and 6.  These correspond to your first, second and third/final year of study.  Below you can see what modules you’ll be studying in each.    

Year 1

Aerospace technology & industry
Engineering mathematics for aerospace
Mechanical science for aircraft engineering
Introduction to projects and design
Electrical science for aircraft engineering
Programming for aircraft engineers
Aerospace engineering professionalism
Introductory robotics & microcontrollers

Year 2

Fluids & aerodynamics 1
Thermodynamics for aerospace
Materials for aerospace
Practical aerodynamics
Control & autopilot systems
Aircraft structural mechanics
Air law, communications & principles of flight
Structural design & CAE

Year 3

Industrial placement
Year abroad
Semester abroad

*The information’s are correct at the time of publishing, however it may change if university makes any changes after we have published the information. While we try our best to provide correct information, It is advisable to call us or visit university website for up to date information.

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