BSc (Hons) Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems (Including Foundation Year)

Top in Wales for Aerospace Engineering Guardian University Guide 2023

If you don’t have the right qualifications to start our BSc (Hons) Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems degree, you could start your studies with a foundation year. The extra year will give you the best possible preparation for success on the degree programme.

The aviation sector has seen unprecedented growth in recent years and there is now a significant shortage of personnel qualified to work in the industry. This does not just apply to pilots, but to maintenance and support staff that keep these aircraft flying.

There is a growing market for maintenance, repair and overhaul of commercial aircraft that require expertise in the management, planning and organisation of maintenance scheduling.

The Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems (Including Foundation Year) degree will qualify you to work in these areas while also giving you the option of studying towards an accelerated EASA Part-66 Basic Aircraft Maintenance Licence.

As USW is an approved EASA Part-147 organisation, upon graduation and providing you took the embedded educations requirements for the Part-66 licence, you will have completed a course accredited by the CAA, EASA and GCAA. This means you will have the necessary academic requirements and practical training to gain the full basic license with just two years of appropriate industrial experience instead of the usual five years. These multiple approvals from the governing regulatory authorities allow our students to embark on careers in Britain, Europe, and the UAE.

This aviation programme offers excellent career opportunities worldwide. This degree, will enable you to gain worldwide employment with manufacturing companies, commercial airlines, air-taxi operators, flying schools and the armed forces. 

Aeronautical and Aerospace Engineering students rated USW top 10 in the UK for academic support, and assessment and feedback (National Student Survey 2022)

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
H400 Full-time 4 Years September Treforest A
UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
H400 Full-time 4 Years September Treforest A

The Foundation Year will give you a good understanding of our engineering courses and provide you with a good numerical background to support you throughout the remainder of the degree. Following your initial foundation year, you will progress onto the modules studied as part of the BSc (Hons) Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems (Including Foundation Year).

Foundation Year: Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems

The Foundation Year will give you a good understanding of our engineering courses and provide you with a good numerical background to support you throughout the remainder of the degree. Following your initial foundation year, you will progress onto the modules studied as part of your award.

  • Foundations of Mathematics
  • Application of Mathematical Skills
  • Essential Engineering Skills
  • Engineering Project
  • Foundation Engineering Principles
  • English for Engineering (optional)
  • Introduction to Aircraft Maintenance Academic Studies (optional)

Year One: Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems

Aircraft are complex machines that incorporate a host of engineering disciplines. An understanding of general science, mathematics, and technology-based subjects are explored to provide the foundations necessary to progress on to the more complex subjects related to commercial aircraft. The modules studied during year 1 are:

  • Aerospace Mechanics
  • Electrical and Electronic Fundamentals for Maintenance Engineers
  • Aerospace Materials and Hardware
  • Professional Engineering Techniques
  • Analytical Methods for Engineers

This year of study will give students the opportunity of acquiring 6 of the 13 EASA modules required to obtain the EASA Part-66 Cat B1.1 qualification.

Students who meet the criteria set by the CAA can transfer to year 2 of the BSc (Hons) Aircraft Maintenance Engineering, which will allow you to complete this named award along with the remaining EASA modules under the University's CAA Part-147 approval. This route will enable students to apply for their EASA aircraft licence in just two years, which usually requires five years' professional experience. Additional costs are likely to apply to the required professional experience.*

Year Two: Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems

This year will expose students to common mechanical and electronic systems found on aircraft. It also introduces them to Human Factors and Legislation incumbent within the aircraft maintenance industry. It also provides an underpinning knowledge of the business practices within the aviation industry. Modules include:

  • Fundamentals of Business Engineering and Management
  • Human Factor Analysis
  • Aviation Maintenance Legislation
  • Digital Fundamentals
  • Designing Hydraulic Control Systems
  • Group Project


Year Three: Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems

The final year requires students to undertake a significant aviation maintenance related project which will draw on the previous study undertaken. It will also introduce the concept of new and emerging technologies in the aviation industry, alongside the planning and resource management of maintenance activities.

  • Individual Project
  • Engineering Project Management
  • Emerging Aerospace Technologies
  • Aviation Maintenance Resource and Planning Management 
  • Advances in Aerospace Propulsion 



Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, tutorials, demonstrations, practical classes and workshops and external visits, as well as both directed (including online learning) and independent study.

During the second year, all students will study approximately 27 hours per week. In the third and fourth years, it will be 12-14 hours unless students decide to follow, and continue to meet, the requirements of the CAA approved Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Systems course. Students following the AME course will be required to study for 27 hours per week.


Students will be assessed through external MCQ examination, examinations, coursework and practical tasks.


To help prepare students for the working environment, students are encouraged to seek work experience within EASA Part-145 maintenance organisations for both Aircraft Maintenance Engineers and support/planning personnel who organise the maintenance activities.

Find out more about Engineering Placements at USW

Field Trips

Companies are keen to inspire our students to work for them and we have regular invitations to visit Maintenance Repair and Overall (MRO) organisations.

There may be additional costs associated with this course


The aerospace industry has become increasingly competitive and in recognising this, the University has recently invested another £3.3m into its existing aerospace facilities. A two-storey Aerospace Centre extension adds 1,000m2 of practical workshop and laboratory space for engineering students. This includes two aircraft hangars with civil and military aircraft and a MP521 engineering flight simulator.

The Aerospace Centre is home to a Jetstream 31 Twin Turboprop aircraft, assembled with Honeywell TPE331 Engines and Rockwell-Collins Proline II Avionics, alongside a Jet Provost T-Mk 3 military training jet.

The Centre also includes a gas turbine maintenance workshop, simulated aircraft shell riveting area, hand tools workshops and welding bay, plus clean and dirty composite workshops for specimens and repairs. Dedicated laboratory space for electronic practical tasks, avionics systems, hydraulics and pneumatics also feature providing you with hands-on practical experience.

Our sub-sonic wind tunnels are used for basic aerodynamic instruction, testing and demonstrations on various aerofoil shapes and configurations. Whilst our single-seater, full motion, three axes Merlin MP521 engineering flight simulator can be programmed and simulate any existing aircraft type.

The University has approved Maintenance Training Organisation status. This means that our Aerospace Centre on campus is treated as a live aircraft environment, and upholds the same commercial aviation quality control you would expect in the industry worldwide. This approach not only meets EASA regulations, but will also help you make the transition from the classroom into employment. You’ll also have the option to undertake on the job training all over the world with any University-approved PART 145 Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) organisation.


We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

This entry criteria details typical offers, however, USW has a Contextual Admissions Policy and considers eligible applicants on an individual basis.  Under the Policy we could make a personalised offer based on aspects of the UCAS application or have results considered individually when you receive them.  Here is a link to our Contextual Admissions Policy Statement. 

Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed may also be acceptable. 


Typical A-Level Offer


Typical Welsh BACC Offer


Typical BTEC Offer

BTEC Extended Diploma Pass Pass Pass or BTEC Diploma Pass Pass

Typical IB Offer

Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma

Typical Access to HE Offer

Pass Access to HE Diploma with a minimum of 48 UCAS Tariff points

Additional Requirements


GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 3 GCSEs including Mathematics and English at Grade C/Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent but consideration is given to individual circumstances

International Entry Requirements

If your current qualifications don't meet the entry requirements for entry onto year 1 of your chosen undergraduate degree, we offer one-year International Foundation Programmes through our pathway partnership with QAHE to help you reach the level required for progression. For more information visit our Pathway website.


Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course


August 2023 - July 2024 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

August 2024 - July 2025 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

Student Perks

At the University of South Wales, you’re investing in so much more than a degree. We strive to provide our students with the best possible experience, no matter what you chose to study. Whether it’s access to top of the range mac books and PCs, state-of-the-art facilities packed with industry-leading equipment and software, masterclasses and events led by industry experts, or a wide range of clubs and societies to meet likeminded people, better tomorrows start with extra perks.

Each course also has their own unique student benefits to prepare you for the real word, and details of these can be found on our course pages. From global field trips, integrated work experience and free course-related resources, to funded initiatives, projects working with real employers, and opportunities for extra qualifications and accreditations - at USW your future, is future-proofed.

Click here to learn more about student perks at USW.

Additional Costs

As a student of USW, you’ll have access to lots of free resources to support your study and learning, such as textbooks, publications, online journals, laptops, and plenty of remote-access resources. Whilst in most cases these resources are more than sufficient in supporting you with completing your course, additional costs, both obligatory and optional, may be required or requested for the likes of travel, memberships, experience days, stationery, printing, or equipment.


Funding to help pay for (or cover) course tuition fees and living costs

Whilst you’re studying, you’ll have two main financial obligations – tuition fees and living costs. There’s lots of financial help available from the University of South Wales and external funding sources, that may provide loans (which have to be paid back) and grants, scholarships and bursaries (that don't).

To learn about course fees, funding options, and to see if you are eligible for financial support, visit our Fees and Funding pages.

UK students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK residing applicant, applying for year one of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly. 

International and EU students

Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK. 

Admissions statement

Engagement with aviation companies such as Ryanair, British Airways and JMC has produced a large number of employment opportunities for our students.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs. Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.