What skills and knowledge do I need to train to become a pilot?


If you would like to enrol on our Integrated Flight Deck Programme you will need to meet the following criteria:

  • Possess at least 5 x GCSEs, to include Maths, English and Science (or equivalent), at grade 4 (C) or higher.
  • Preferably 2 x A levels or equivalent
  • Be aged 18 years or over
  • Have a valid EASA class 1 medical certificate.


The entry requirements for a modular course will vary, depending on which phase of flight training you have already completed. All the prerequisites for our modular courses are available on the course page, please check the relevant module for specific entry requirements.

To enrol on a Private Pilot's Licence Programme are no academic qualifications are required, this is because this is a recreational licence. You will however still require an aeromedical and more information on this can be found here.

The programme you progress onto after the PPL is a Night Rating for which the requirement is a PPL. The ratings and training you add follow on with each pre-requisite being met by the course before. Full information on the modular pathway to fATPL and each course requirement can be found here.


When you're ready to enrol or secure your space on a course, we will need the following:

  • A copy of your passport or national identity card.
  • A completed copy of the relevant admission pack.
  • Either a copy of your medical certificate, or evidence that one has been booked (this is dependant on how far in advance you book your course).
  • Copy of your qualifications (e.g. GCSEs).
  • Your initial payment or deposit (this will vary according to which course and year you enrol).

English Language Requirements

All students are expected to have a good level of English language, writing and comprehension. Overseas students must have English language competence of Level B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference Languages (CEFR) or Level 4 of the International Civil Aviation Organisation.

More information for students from an EU or EEA country can be found here.

Do you have the necessary 'pilot personality'?

Read our article 'pilot personality' which includes the other core competencies you will be expected to exhibit as a pilot, click here to learn more >>

You may also find the articles featured on our blog useful and informative. Click here to read our pilot training blog.

Skills assessment/aptitude test

You do not need to complete a skills test to enrol on one of our courses. If you're not certain whether you will be able to complete your ATPL training and become an airline pilot, independent tests are available.  The Honourable Company of Air Pilots offer a pilot assessment/aptitude test for those who are unsure whether they have the potential to succeed in professional flying.

The assessments are carried out at RAF Cranwell (in Lincolnshire) and are designed for those with little or no flying experience.  As part of the assessment, candidates have an individual debriefing to discuss the scores achieved and what they mean.  They also offer the opportunity to talk to current or former professional, pilots about a career in aviation.

Our partners in pilot training, AirlinePrep now offer an airline pilot skills assessment. You have a choice of three options for the assessment with prices starting at £249. To give you an idea of whether you have some of the basic skills to become a pilot, you can also complete their pilot quiz and test your training potential, click here to give it a go.

As anyone who has completed pilot training will tell you, the journey is not easy. It takes hard work and commitment to become an airline pilot but the rewards are there for those willing to invest the time and effort.