Bachelor of Aviation – BAv

Become a pilot with a difference. Gain a professional qualification that integrates flight training with university study.

Type of qualification

Bachelor's degree

Level of study

Undergraduate study

An undergraduate qualification is usually the first one you study.

More about study levels

NZQF level 7

Our courses follow the New Zealand Qualification Framework (NZQF) levels.

Find out more about NZQF levels

Time to complete

3 years full-time (480 credits)
Up to 6 years part-time
Part-time available

International students

International students are not New Zealand citizens or residents.

Definition of New Zealand citizens and residents

Open to international students on campus in New Zealand
Note: Selected entry qualification. Available at Manawatū.

Study a Bachelor of Aviation – BAv

Massey is the only place in New Zealand where you can turn your passion for aviation into a university qualification. We are not only an internationally recognised pilot training facility but we also give you a broad knowledge of the global aviation industry.

You will not just train to be a professional pilot, but to become a ‘flight deck manager’ with a university education and an in-depth understanding of the aviation industry.

Find out more about the Air Transport Pilot major in ‘Specialisations’.


  • The 2020 Student Experience Survey results for this qualification found that 80% of students on this qualification were satisfied with the teaching they have received, 85% believed assessment tasks challenged students to learn, and 95% highlighted that the qualification has given them excellent “knowledge of the field you are studying”.
  • The 2020 Graduate Destination Survey results for this qualification found that 60% of graduates are in employment and 60% have continued in further study.
  • Between 2018 and 2021 the average number of students enrolled in the qualification was 136 (headcount). In the 2020 academic year, 93% of students in the first year of this qualification continued their studies and across the whole qualification 89% of courses were successfully completed.

A BAv is a good fit if you:

  • have well-developed leadership qualities
  • enjoy mathematics and physics
  • want a degree - not just a ‘licence to fly’.

Entry requirements

Admission to Massey

All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.

Specific requirements

This is a selected entry qualification. This means there are a number of extra requirements you must meet.

To enter the Bachelor of Aviation, you must pass NCEA Level 3/Year 13 or equivalent in an ‘English-rich’ subject in order to demonstrate your ability to write a formal extended essay. These include one of the following:

  • classical studies
  • English
  • geography
  • history
  • history of art
  • media studies
  • religious education (RE)
  • business studies
  • biology
  • economics.

We highly recommend that you have passed Mathematics (Calculus) and Physics at NCEA Level 3/Year 13 or equivalent.

When you first apply online you need to:

  • provide a CV including academic and work history
  • have completed a trial flight
  • provide any information of circumstances in your past personal or professional life that might make you ineligible to train for, or hold, a professional pilots licence in New Zealand (see below for more information).

If you already have a NZCAA Class One Medical Certificate please also upload a copy with your application. But this is not essential for your initial application.

There are two more stages to the application process:

Stage One

You will take and pass an online ‘ADAPT’ test. See below for information.

Before Stage Two

Before you will be considered by selection board in Stage Two, you will have:

  • taken at least one trial (experience) flight
  • pre-booked your medical appointments (with both a CAANZ approved medical examiner and optometrist).

Note: you must allow enough time to undertake all the medical and vision assessments required for a NZCAA Class One Medical Certificate so that you will have been issued this certificate no later than one week prior to your course commencement.

Stage Two

Your application will be assessed, and you may then be invited to the ‘selection board’. This involves:

  • taking part in a panel interview
  • passing pilot aptitude assessments - including a flight simulator aptitude test, psychometric and physics tests
  • completing two writing tasks: English language competency tests (an essay and a vocabulary test) and a multi-choice / short answer mathematics assessment.
  • completing a 'Fit and Proper Person' declaration that you know of no barrier to being issued a 'Fit and Proper Person' (F&P) clearance by the CAANZ.

Before you start

Once you are successful in gaining a place in the Bachelor of Aviation qualification you will also need to complete further tasks. These include:

  • providing evidence of holding a current CAANZ Class One Medical Certificate,
  • providing evidence of meeting the University’s academic and English Language regulations  (international students )

Selection Board

Selection boards are held several times per year :

  • Week two of the NZ October school term holidays, and in early December immediately after NCEA examinations (for those applicants wishing to commence in the following January)
  • Either during the last week of May – or during the first week of June  (for those applicants wishing to commence in July).

Once you apply for this qualification you will be advised of the exact date of your selection board appointment.

CAANZ Class One Medical Certificate

You must obtain a CAANZ Class One Medical Certificate before being confirmed into the Bachelor of Aviation. If you do not already hold a current Class One Medical Certificate you must arrange to book your medical appointments with both a CAANZ - approved medical examiner and optometrist, allowing enough time to complete same before your degree commences.

If you have a CAANZ Class One Medical Certificate please upload a copy with your application.

Application closing date

Applications for a Semester One start close on 1 November for domestic students and 1 October for international students, for study commencing the following year.

Applications for a Semester Two start close on 1 May for domestic students and 1 April for international students, in the year of study.

English language requirements

To study this qualification you must meet Massey University's English language standards. Where English is not your first language, you must have achieved an Academic IELTS of 6.5 with no band below 6.0, or equivalent.


As Massey is an Air NZ Preferred Flight Training Organisation all prospective candidates must complete the ‘ADAPT’ pilot pre-screening tool.

Candidates will receive a code to complete the ADAPT assessment three months prior to their Stage Two assessments. Payment for the assessment must be made in advance through the Massey University student portal. Please contact for further details.

You are required to meet a satisfactory standard in this test in order to be invited to the next stage of the selection process.

Trial flights

If you are living in New Zealand, you are required to have taken at least one trial (experience) flight before your selection board appointment is confirmed. This is to give you an understanding of what it is like to fly in a small aircraft. Trial flights experiences can be flexible (eg taken at any New Zealand flight training organisation), with pilot friends, or at the annual Massey University Aviation Open Day.

‘Fit and Proper Person’ (FPP) assessment

Are there any circumstances in your past personal or professional life that might make you ineligible to train for, or hold,  a professional pilots licence in New Zealand?   If so, please provide a Ministry of Justice and / or a Ministry of Transport report. This information should be uploaded when submitting your application. This information will be confidential to those staff assessing your qualification.

Once enrolled in this programme you will also be required to apply for a 'Fit and Proper Person' (FPP) assessment. This is to comply with the Civil Aviation Act 1990, Section 9. You must provide an up to date criminal convictions report and obtain an offence history report from Land Transport NZ, or from any other country resided in over the last five years.

You will be  required to declare any traffic or criminal offences at your selection board appointment. This will enable us to advise you  if there may be a barrier to your gaining the required FPP approval from the  NZ Civil Aviation Authority in future which will then prevent you from being able to continue your flight training programme.

During the programme the obligation continues

Once you are assessed as having FPP status it is your obligation to maintain this status. For example, if you gain a conviction for drunk driving (or other serious or serial offending) that breaches the 'Fit and Proper Person' criteria whilst on this programme, and you lose your FPP status,  your training will be unable to proceed.

Short or long term disability, including learning disability, or health issues

If any of the above apply to you, please upload a summary of what these are, how they are being managed and any support you believe you may need during your study/training. Your responses are confidential to University staff processing your application.

Application deadlines for the Air Transport Pilot Programme


January commencement

July commencement


Domestic students

International students

Domestic students

International students

Apply online

Due 1 November

Due 1 October

Due 1 May

Due 1 April

ADAPT test

Due 5 November

Due 5 October

Due 1 May

Due 1 April

Selection Board

Early December

Early November

Early June

Early May

NZCAA Class One Medical Certificate

Due start of January

Due start of July

University Entrance

Submit when exam results released – NCEA results published early January. ICE and IB results also released in January

Evidence of UE status must be submitted no later than 30 June




Prior learning, credit and exemptions

For information on prior learning, exemptions and transfer of credit or other questions:

English language skills

If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, see our English for Academic Purposes (EAP) courses.

Meeting requirements for industry membership

To become a pilot you will need to complete this qualification, comprising a total of 480 credits as outlined on this page.

At the completion of 360 credits in this qualification, you will have met the requirements for the award of a New Zealand Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL) with Multi-Engine and Instrument Rating, plus hold credits for all New Zealand Air Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL) Theory examinations.

You will also need to complete:

  • 1500 hours of flight experience
  • a flight test in an aircraft of 5700kg or greater.

Maximum time limits for completion

There are maximum time limits to complete this qualification.  If you do not complete within the maximum time, you may be required to re-apply for the qualification if you wish to continue your studies.

The Bachelor of Aviation is normally completed in three years of full-time study. If you are granted any extensions during your studies, the maximum time to complete this qualification is six years.  

  • Look for information under ‘Completion Requirements’ in the regulations for this qualification
  • Contact us through the Get advice button on this page if you have any questions.

Official regulations

To understand what you need to study and must complete to graduate read the official rules and regulations for this qualification.

You should read these together with all other relevant Statutes and Regulations of the University including the General Regulations for Undergraduate Degrees, Undergraduate Diplomas, Undergraduate Certificates, Graduate Diplomas and Graduate Certificates.

Returning students

For returning students, there may be changes to the majors and minors available and the courses you need to take. Go to the section called ‘Transitional Provisions’ in the Regulations to find out more.

In some cases the programme or specialisation you enrolled in may no longer be taking new enrolments, so may not appear on these web pages. To find information on the regulations for these programmes go to the Massey University Calendar.

Please contact us through the Get advice button on this page if you have any questions.

Structure of the Bachelor of Aviation

All Bachelor of Aviation students undertake a full-time qualification. In your first year you will take twelve 15-credit courses, making a total of 180 credits.

All your courses in Year One and Year Two are compulsory.

Courses and specialisations

Key terms

Each qualification has its own specific set of courses. Some universities call these papers. You enrol in courses after you get accepted into Massey.
Course code
Each course is numbered using 6 digits. The fourth number shows the level of the course. For example, in course 219206, the fourth number is a 2, so it is a 200-level course (usually studied in the second year of full-time study).
Each course is worth a number of credits. You combine courses (credits) to meet the total number of credits needed for your qualification.
Some qualifications let you choose what subject you'd like to specialise in. Your major or endorsement is what you will take the majority of your courses in.

Credit summary

480 credits

  • Compulsory courses – 360 credits
  • Choose from Option 1 or Option 2 – 120 credits

You must also meet the required competencies to achieve:

  • Your Commercial Pilots licence
  • Multi-engine instrument rating, and
  • Airline Transport Pilot Licence subject theory credits in specified courses

Ensure that overall, you have:

  • Not more than 225 credits at 100 level
  • At least 75 credits at 300 level

Attend field trips, simulations, workshops, tutorials, laboratories and flight training as required.

Course planning key

Courses that need to be completed before moving onto a course at the next level. For example, a lot of 200-level courses have 100-level prerequisite courses.
Courses that must be completed at the same time as another course are known as corequisite courses.
Some courses are restricted against each other because their content is similar. This means you can only choose one of the offered courses to study and credit to your qualification.

Air Transport Pilot

There is one major in this degree, which is the Air Transport Pilot (ATP) major. All students complete this major.

Fees and scholarships

Fees, student loans and free fees scheme

Your tuition fees may be different depending on the courses you choose. Your exact fees will show once you have chosen your courses.

There will also be some compulsory non-tuition fees and for some courses, there may also be charges for things such as study resources, software, trips and contact workshops.

Already know which courses you're going to choose?

You can view fees for the courses that make up your qualification on the course details pages.

Student loans (StudyLink) and Fees Free scheme

You may be eligible for a student loan to help towards paying your fees.

The New Zealand Government offers fees-free tertiary study for eligible domestic students. Find out more about the scheme and your eligibility on the Fees Free website. To use the site's eligibility checking tool, you will need your National Student Number.

Current and returning Massey students can find their National Student Number in the student portal.

Fees disclaimer

This information is for estimation purposes only. Actual fees payable will be finalised on confirmation of enrolment. Unless otherwise stated, all fees shown are quoted in New Zealand dollars and include Goods and Services Tax, if any. Before relying on any information on these pages you should also read the University's Disclaimer Notice.

Careers and job opportunities

A career as a pilot is exciting and highly sought-after.

The Bachelor of Aviation (Air Transport Pilot) opens up opportunities to become airline pilots or any other potential career within the aviation industry.

Many graduates work as flight instructors in New Zealand or Australia, enabling them to build on their instructional techniques expertise which is a valuable skill for those who eventually decide to take up a role as an Airline Training Captain.

You may wish to progress to key management or training positions for an airline or with international bodies such as the International Air Transport Association (IATA) or the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). Postgraduate study in aviation would be worth considering if you intend to follow this path.

Accreditations and rankings

Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)

Massey Business School is rated in the top 5% of global business colleges by AACSB International.

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New Zealand Civil Aviation Authority (CAA)

The Bachelor of Aviation has equivalence approval from the New Zealand Civil Aviation Authority.

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Logo showing koru symbol and words AIR NEW ZEALAND ACADEMY OF LEARNING.

Air New Zealand

The School of Aviation is the only Air New Zealand Preferred Flight Training Organisation (PFTO) that offers an integrated aviation degree, and one of only four PFTOs selected by the institute to provide airline-informed ab-initio flight training.

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QS Ranking - Business Management Studies

Massey University is ranked by QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) as one of the top 400 universities for business and management.

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Royal Aeronautical Society accreditation

The Royal Aeronautical Society accredits all aviation qualifications at Massey University, certifying that they meet the RAeS's international professional standards.

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ShanghaiRanking – Business Administration

Massey University is ranked #2 in New Zealand for business administration by ShanghaiRanking.

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The Bachelor of Aviation Massey is ISO-9001-2015 certified.

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