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Aircraft Mechanic, Aviation Maintenance Technicians, Aviation Maintenance Schools

How to become an Aviation Maintenance Technician

There are three options to choose from to get the experience you need to become an aviation maintenance technician. Choose from the options below:

Aviation Maintenance Technician Schools
There are approximately 200 postsecondary schools (colleges, universities, community colleges, and trade schools) that offer F.A.A. approved Part 147 Aviation Maintenance Technician programs. These programs range in length from 18 to 24 months and educate students in all aspects of aviation maintenance. They include classroom theory and hands-on training through extensive shop experience. The cost of attending a school that offers an Aviation Maintenance Technician program will vary from one school to another, in which costs are based on several factors such as school reputation, location, state residency, etc. In addition, many schools offer the option of an Associate of Applied Science Degree, in which you can then transfer to a four-year institution to complete your Bachelors Degree requirements.

Upon successful completion of the required FAA coursework for the Aviation Maintenance Technician Program, you can take the FAA written, oral, and practical tests for the Airframe & Powerplant certificate.

Airframe & Powerplant Mechanic Apprentices
Airframe & Powerplant mechanic apprentices are paid trainees who work under the supervision of a certified Airframe & Powerplant mechanic who must sign approval of their work before the aircraft or its equipment is considered airworthy. Apprentices can work 18 months for each certificate (Airframe or Powerplant), or 30 months for both (Airframe & Powerplant) certificates.

Airframe & Powerplant mechanic apprentices are authorized to work on engines and to do limited work on propellers. Apprentices are usually employed by small repair shops in which they perform all the duties of a mechanic. However, some apprentices are employed with large airlines or other large employers in which they have specialized work assignments. As an apprentice, you must document your experience with pay receipts, a log book signed by your supervising mechanic, a notarized statement from your employer, or other proof that you worked the required time.

Military Training
The US Armed Forces (Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines, and Coast Guard) have about 70,000 aircraft mechanics. Each year, they need new mechanics due to changes in personnel and the demands of the field. Military job training consists of 3 to 17 weeks of classroom instruction including inspection and repair of aircraft engines and equipment. Training length varies depending upon the specialty. Course content typically includes engine disassembly and repair; repair of hydraulic, fuel, and avionics and electrical systems; and repair of aluminum, steel, and fiberglass airframes and coverings. Further training occurs on the job and through advanced courses. The Army, Navy, and Marine Corps offer certified apprenticeship-training programs for some specialties in this occupation. After job training, mechanics are assigned to an aircraft maintenance unit, where they perform routine maintenance and simple repair jobs. For more information visit Today's Military online.

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Frequently Asked Questions
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Sources of Additional Information

Sources by: Federal Aviation Administration, US Occupational Handbook, and U.S. Department of Defense.



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