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Aims air traffic controller students practicing in a control tower

Air Traffic ControllerRequirements

Prepare for success as an air traffic controller in the Aims state-of-the-art simulation lab. In your first semester in this air traffic controller associate degree program, you’ll start out in the classroom learning air traffic control language and procedures. For the following three semesters, you’ll be immersed in the lab environment, gaining hands-on experience using radar and non-radar simulators.

Air traffic control can be a challenging and rewarding career for those who qualify. Currently, there are strict requirements for entering the FAA academy.

Applicants must:

  • Be U.S. citizens.
  • Be no more than 30 years of age at the time of hiring by the FAA.
  • Pass extensive background checks prior to receiving an employment offer.
  • Be able to read, speak and understand the English language (meet International Civil Aviation Organization level 4 standards).
  • Obtain and maintain a second class medical certificate (must meet or exceed standards for vision, hearing, cardiovascular, neurological, psychiatric and psychological exams. Diabetes and substance abuse/dependency will be reviewed and extensively investigated).
  • Adhere to current FAA regulations requiring controllers to retire from controlling aircraft at age 56.

 

How to get started

Step 1 – Apply

  • Apply to Aims Community College 
  • Select AGS Pre-Aviation as your intended major. 
  • Apply for Financial Aid if applicable. 

Step 2 – Are you a VA or Transfer Student

  • If you are a VA Student submit your DD214 and Certificate of Eligibility to the Financial Aid Office
  • If you are a transfer student please have your previous institution send an official transcript to Aims. Learn more on the Transfer Information webpage.
  • If you are not a VA Student or a Transfer Student, go to step 3.

Step 3 – New Student Orientation

Step 4 - Complete the Aviation Application

  • Complete the Aims Aviation Application
  • Applications must be completed no later than: 
    • Fall Term: First Day of Classes
    • Spring Term: First Day of Classes
    • Summer Term: Aims Aviation does not accept new students for Summer Term

Step 5 - Advising Appointment

Row Groupings Required Program Courses: Credits
required

Prepares student for the Private Pilot Airplane, Single-Engine Land FAA Knowledge Exam. Four credits.

4
required

Focuses on the history of the Air Traffic Control System, including its structure, function, and operation. Also includes radar operations and the future of the National Airspace System. Three credits.

3
required

Focuses on recognition, interpretation and evaluation of atmospheric weather as it relates to and affects aviation. Four credits.

4
required

Focuses on preparation for the FAA Instrument Rating Knowledge Exam. Four credits.

Course Prerequisites

AVT 101 and AVT 102 with grades of "C" or better.

4
required

Introduces and emphasizes proper usage of phraseology and flight progress strip preparation in the air traffic control system. Two credits.

2
required

Focuses on and emphasizes procedures for conducting control of air traffic. Procedural use of regulations and air traffic control procedures are covered, such as aviation terms; definitions and abbreviations; terminal and enroute procedures; airport traffic control procedures; radar operations and emergency procedures. Four credits.

Course Prerequisites

AVT 103; AVT 116 with a "C" or better. 

4
required

Focus on RADAR procedures used for guidance to arrivals/departures to/from an airport in typical RADAR approach control environments. Nine credits.

Course Prerequisites

AVT 245 with a grade of "C" or better.

9
required

Focuses on non-radar ATC procedures, flight strip preparation and marking, non-radar IFR separation, and practice scenarios. Nine credits.

Course Prerequisites

AVT 101, AVT 103, and AVT 116 with grades of "C" or better.

9
required

Focuses on radar ATC procedures, radar separation, radar traffic information, hand-off procedures, identification of non-beacon and beacon-equipped aircraft, and practice scenarios. Nine credits.

Course Prerequisites

AVT 245 with a grade of "C" or better.

9
Total Required Program Credits 48
Row Groupings Required General Education Courses: Credits
required

Emphasizes the planning, writing, and revising of compositions, including the development of critical and logical thinking skills. This course includes a wide variety of compositions that stress analytical, evaluative, and persuasive/argumentative writing. This is a statewide Guaranteed Transfer course in the GT-CO1 category. May be taken concurrently with CCR 094. Three credits.

3
required

Focuses on a variety of functions and the exploration of their graphs. Topics include: equations and inequalities, operations on functions, exponential and logarithmic functions, linear and non-linear systems, and an introduction to conic sections. This course provides essential skills for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) pathways. This is a statewide Guaranteed Transfer course in the GT-MA1 category. Course readiness is determined by review of high school transcripts, assessment, and/or meeting with an Aims Academic Advisor. Four credits.

(recommended)
4
required

Covers mathematical material designed for career and technical students. Topics include measurement, algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and vectors. These are presented at an introductory level and the emphasis is on applications. Course readiness is determined by review of high school transcripts, assessment, and/or meeting with an Aims Academic Advisor.  Four credits.

4
required

Provides an introduction to general meteorology and atmospheric sciences. It includes the composition and structure of the atmosphere and characteristics that affect the atmosphere, such as temperature, pressure, and moisture. Additionally, the development of weather systems, such as storm systems, hurricanes, weather fronts and cloud development will also be examined. Finally, concepts of climatology will be stressed. This course is a statewide guaranteed transfer course GT-SC1. Four credits.

Course Prerequisites

MAT 050 or higher and CCR 092 or higher with grades of "C" or better

4
required

Focuses on mechanics, heat, properties of matter, electricity and magnetism, light and modern physics. Incorporates laboratory experience. This is a statewide Guaranteed Transfer course in the GT-SC1 category. PHY 105 cannot be applied towards the A.S. degree. Four credits.

Course Prerequisites

MAT 055 or higher (except MAT 060, MAT 090, MAT 107, MAT 109, MAT 112, or MAT 175) and CCR 092 or higher with grades of "C" or better

4
One Arts&Hum course and One Behav/SS course Select ONE Arts & Humanities course  (3 credits)Select ONE Behavioral & Social Sciences course  (3 credits)
correction/edit notation  [Note: Correction made to this page on 6-19-18 to include requirement of  "MET 150 or PHY 105"  within the General Education Course requirements, with total General Ed requirements to equal 17 credits.]
Total Required General Education Credits 17
Total Credits for A.A.S. Degree 65