What is the Airline Transportation Pilot License – ATPL(A) theory?

  • ATPL(A) theory is a must for professional airline pilots

Airline Transportation Pilot License is the highest level of aircraft pilot certification. ATPL(A) theory course is meant for future airline pilots and passing the ATPL(A) exams successfully is one of the most important steps in becoming a professional pilot.
To find out more about how to become a professional pilot, please click here.
ATPL-certified pilots are authorized to act as pilot-in-command (Captain) or co-pilot (First Officer) in airplanes engaged in commercial air transportation.

What are the ATPL(A) theory course entry requirements?

The ATPL(A) theory course entry requirements are as follows:

  1. to be at least 17 years old
    You need to be at least 17 years old at the date of enrollment.
  2. to be a PPL(A) holder
    You need to be at least PPL(A) (Private Pilot License) holder.
  3. to be proficient in the English language
    You need to be proficient in the English language (ICAO English Language Proficiency minimum level 4)
  4. to have sufficient level of knowledge of Mathematics and Physics
    You must be able to make some basic mental calculation and have a minimum of knowledge in Mathematics and Physics, no degree or scholarship are needed but an evaluation will be done by the Academy.

How is the ATPL(A) theory training structured?

  • ATPL (A) Theory is conducted as a partially distant training course.
  • The ground lessons provided by professional lecturers are divided into two 10-day blocks.
  • The blocks are approximately 2-3 months apart, giving you the possibility to self – study in between and not
  • stay in the Czech Republic full time.
  • Each block covers 7 subjects.

Program structure:

ATPL(A) – 650:

This course is intended for PPL(A) holders.

  • Minimum time of ATPL (A) 650 course – 33 weeks – 651 hours
  • Consultation – 19 days for 7 hours
  • Introductory concentration – teach-in educational material handover
  • Continuous concentration – 2 days for 8 hours (stage-checks)
  • Final concentration – 2 days for 8 hours
  • Self-study range – 491 hours (33 weeks for 15 hours)
  • Time in the classroom – 160 hours

ATPL (A) – 450:

This training is designed for holders of a CPL(A) or IR(A) may have the theoretical instruction hours reduced by 200 hours to 450 hours.

ATPL (A) – 300:

The course is intended for holders of a CPL(A) and IR(A) may have the theoretical instruction hours reduced by 350 hours to 300 hours.

What are the ATPL(A) theory subjects?

  • Air Law and ATC Procedures
  • Airframes & Systems,
  • Instrumentation
  • Mass and Balance
  • Flight Performance
  • Flight Planning & Monitoring
  • Human Performance & Limitations
  • Meteorology
  • General Navigation
  • Radio Navigation
  • Operational Procedures
  • Principles of Flight
  • VFR Communication
  • IFR Communication

How do the theoretical examinations look like?

  • For the ATPL theory, there are 14 exams you have to pass to prove a sufficient level of knowledge appropriate to the privileges of the holder of an ATPL (A) in accordance with the EASA Part FCL requirements.
  • All 14 subjects have to be completed within 18 months from the enrolment date in order to get the complete certificate from the school (attendance for the ATPL(A) blocks and Final exams in our study materials, whether Bristol or Aviation Exam).
  • All 14 exams have to be completed within 18 months from your 1st exam block.
    You have total of 6 exam blocks available and no more than 4 attempts per one subject within these 6 exam blocks.
  • The theoretical examinations are conducted at Civil Aviation Authority of the Czech Republic in Prague.

What study materials will I use during ATPL(A) theory studies?

For ATPL theory distance learning we provide an access to Bristol Groundschool CBTs (Computer Based Training – interactive presentations for aiding the learning process). Our blended learning system combines the best traditional training methods with modern interactive training tools, and we have a proven success rate far in excess of traditional classroom-based teaching or iPad-only learning.
Bristol Groundschool also includes an access to a testing database.

  • The database gives you an opportunity to practice the exams and to deepen your theoretical knowledge, as it also includes explanations.
  • The testing portal will help you in focusing on your weaker areas in each subject by providing detailed statistics of your results.
  • It also enables our instructors and responsible personnel to rigorously check your progress throughout the training.

How much does the ATPL(A) theory course cost?

The course price starts from 2816 EUR. Training fees are covering the following items and services:

  • All training manuals
  • Access to the Learning Management System and EASA question bank
  • Ground school

*All training fees are bound to the actual exchange rates of the local currency of the Flying Academy base where the training or a part of the training is provided. Learn more about complete training fees.

How long does it take to complete the ATPL(A) theory?

The duration of ATPL(A) theory training depends on trainee’s time availability for in-house theoretical training and also self-study. The minimum duration is 26 weeks or 6-7 months.

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