Bachelor's degree Aviation
“If you study Aviation, you don’t learn to fly - you learn to understand aviation in its complexity, which opens a range of additional opportunities.”
Mathieu Wanner, graduate in aviation, pilot Swiss International Airlines
- A general education in the aviation sector with a focus on technical engineering or operational engineering
- High relevance to practice thanks to close collaboration with industrial partners
- New technologies such as electric drive systems, unmanned aviation and automation
- Option to combine with a training programme to become an airline pilot or aircraft mechanic
In the field of aviation, a large number of different tasks must be mastered in a short time. This means that all participants are required to have comprehensive subject-specific knowledge, a holistic way of thinking, good team and communication skills, and the ability to independently perform their work amid the competing interests between humans, technology and the environment.
Safety and economic considerations are of central importance for the services provided on a daily basis in the complex world of aviation. In the long term, environmental compatibility of the applied technologies is decisive for their use. Aviation represents a global and intermodal segment of the overall transport system, and offers professionals with a broad education in process and system engineering interesting employment opportunities.
The Bachelor's degree programme can be completed on either a full-time basis, with a study duration of three years, or on a part-time basis, with a minimum study duration of four years. A maximum employment level of 60% during the lecture period is recommended to students wishing to work while studying part-time.
Graduates of Swiss baccalaureate schools can choose the work-study Bachelor's degree programme, which combines internships and study in a four-year model.
Aviation can also be studied in the international profile, which features specialist modules in English and an extended stay abroad. In addition, students have the opportunity to spend an exchange semester at one of our partner universities during their Bachelor's degree programme.
Students holding a Swiss baccalaureate must provide proof of professional experience lasting at least 12 months (full-time employment) prior to starting the study programme. Work-study Bachelor's degree programme. This experience can be gained with several different employers, ideally in a field linked to the aviation sector, for instance, management and support divisions of airlines with tasks in operations engineering, route support, operations control or network planning. Other options include work as a flight attendant or in dispatch at an airport as well as internships at service and maintenance firms, the operating departments of airports and air traffic control bodies, training organisations such as flying schools or authorities. Military service is not recognised as work experience.
The Bachelor's degree programme in Aviation is highly relevant to professional practice. From the very first semester, students have the opportunity to apply the knowledge acquired in the scope of practice-based projects. Following the second year of study, students can complete a 10-week internship in the aviation industry, allowing them to gain professional experience, establish contacts and prepare their final project. In the project and Bachelor's thesis at the end of the study programme, students work independently on current topics and questions, often in collaboration with a company.
The lecturers in the Aviation study programme are also active in research and development, and the findings from their projects – generally completed together with business partners – are directly incorporated into their teaching. Students especially benefit from the connection the Bachelor's degree programme in Aviation has to the Centre for Aviation (ZAV).
Aviation students at the ZHAW School of Engineering have the opportunity to acquaint themselves with the working methods of flight-test engineers and test pilots during an aeronautics internship in Nordholz or to take a look behind the scenes of the air traffic control profession and observe the field of activity of air traffic controllers in Luxembourg.
Would you like to get a feel for student life and learn more about the Bachelor's degree programme in Aviation? Have you already given your future study path a lot of thought but would still like more first-hand information to make your final decision? The “Student for a Day” programme offers you the opportunity to join a ZHAW student for half a day and attend lectures or observe an internship, get to know the campus and ask questions about the study programme.