What Is Aeronautics & Aviation?
Aeronautics is the scientific field concerned with the understanding of how to make things fly. Aeronautical engineers help innovate, construct, and test aerospace technology that helps fly everything from planes to satellites.
Aviation refers to the more practical side, having to do with actually flying the objects themselves. People trained in the field of aviation help to manage complex environments such as airports, managing both the aircraft and teams of employees. And grounds crew.
How Much Money Can I Earn Working in Aeronautics & Aviation?
Aeronautics & Aviation involve a broad number of fields and skill sets. This means that students need to learn a lot, but also that they’ll leave school qualified to pursue a number of different dynamic and compelling careers.
Students more interested in aviation itself can become airfield operations specialists, who have a median income of around $52,000, which is above the national average. Those more focused on the operational aspects can pursue a career as an operations manager, with a median salary of over $100,000!
Why Choose An Affordable Online Master’s Degree in Aeronautics & Aviation?
Affordable programs help deliver a high-quality education, but at a price that most students will find highly affordable. And with financial aid, grants, and scholarships available, many of these programs can become even more affordable than simply their tuition would suggest.
Online degree programs also give students a great amount of flexibility. Distance students can pursue full or part-time work, or even raise a family, while still pursuing their education. They also gain technical skills by accessing and engaging with online learning platforms.
What Are the 10 Most Affordable Online Master’s in Aeronautics & Engineering?
College Choice considers a multitude of factors including institutional success, student well-being, and financial return to develop rankings.
In the end, this ranking is all about price. We use the Average Net Price from the National Center for Education Statistics. These are the 10 Most Affordable Online Master’s in Aeronautics & Aviation.
See our rankings methodology page.
University Of Washington
Average Net Price: $10,068
The University of Washington is a public research university located in Seattle, WA. Also known as UW, the school is considered the flagship institution of the six public universities in the state of Washington. UW has a student population of around 46,000, including approximately 15,000 postgraduate students.
The University of Washington offers a Master of Aerospace Engineering degree program. The degree is meant to be completed part-time over the course of three years and is available online. Students choose areas of concentration from the following list:
Students are also required to complete a nine credit MAE colloquium course, which includes a set of writing assignments aimed at helping the professional development of aerospace engineers.
Applicants are required to provide two letters of recommendation and a statement of purpose. Students are expected to hold an undergraduate degree in aerospace or mechanical engineering. Other degrees can be accepted, so long as students have completed fundamental engineering and mathematics coursework.
Average Net Price: $11,693
Purdue University is a public research university located in West Lafayette, IN. Purdue offers more than 200 undergraduate programs, along with over 69 masters and doctoral programs, as well as professional degrees in pharmacy and veterinary medicine. At around 40,000 students, Purdue has the second largest student population in the state of Indiana.
Purdue has an online Master of Aeronautics and Astronautics Aerospace Engineering program. It is a 30 credit hour non-thesis program, which is delivered through streaming video and downloadable MPEG-4 files. Coursework from the program is offered in the following areas:
- Dynamics and Control
- Structures & Materials
The program offers a wide range of course options, which allows students to tailor their Plan of Study to their unique professional and academic needs.
Students are able to choose concentrations such as Aeronautics and Astronautics. Students may also choose an interdisciplinary concentration, combining fields such as Aeroacoustics, Biomechanics, Design, and Manufacturing. Students are allowed to take time off from their studies if need be, and most students choose to pursue their degree one course at a time.
Middle Tennessee State University
Average Net Price: $11,744
Middle Tennessee State University is a public university located in Murfreesboro, TN. MTSU began in 1911 as a normal school, educating teachers for the state of Tennessee. The school has a student population of around 20,000 undergraduates and 900 academic staff members.
MTSU offers an online Master of Science program in Aeronautical Science. Students complete 36 credit hours of coursework, and are allowed to choose between a thesis or non-thesis option. Courses from the program include:
- Aviation History
- Aviation Industries
- Airport Design
- Applied Statistics in Aerospace Research
Students pursuing the thesis option will engage in original research that will be used in their thesis. Non-thesis students complete an applied research capstone project.
Applicants to the program should possess a minimum GPA of at least 3.0. Students must also have obtained a satisfactory score on the GRE, MAT, or GMAT test. Applicants should also have completed at least 15 semester hours of aviation coursework. Students without the necessary background must complete prerequisite courses before beginning graduate study.
University Of Texas - Arlington
Average Net Price: $11,952
The University of Texas at Arlington is a public research university located in Arlington, TX. It is the fourth largest university in the state of Texas, having enrolled a population of almost 42,000 students in Spring 2017. The Carnegie Foundation defines Arlington as having the highest level of research activity available for a research university.
The University of Texas at Arlington has a Master of Science program in Aerospace Engineering. It is a 30 credit hour program that includes core and elective courses as well as six hours of thesis work. Sample courses from the program include:
- Research in Aerospace Engineering
- Dynamic Systems Modeling
- Structural Dynamics
- Additive Manufacturing
At least nine hours of coursework must be from the Aerospace Engineering program. Students will also take courses from the mathematics and general engineering programs.
It is a research-oriented program, with some students enrolling in the Research in Aerospace Engineering course each semester that they are in the program. Students without the necessary mathematics or engineering background may be required to take preparatory coursework before beginning their graduate coursework.
North Carolina State University
Average Net Price: $13,066
North Carolina State University at Raleigh, often referred to simply as NC State, is a public research university located in Raleigh, NC. NC State is the largest university in the Carolinas, enrolling more than 30,000 students annually. The school forms one portion of the North Carolina Research Triangle, along with Duke University of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.
NC State has an online Master of Science program in Aerospace Engineering. Students complete 30 hours of coursework, and do not have to complete a thesis, final oral exam, or on-campus residency. Courses from the program include:
- Advanced Engineering Thermodynamics
- Acoustic Radiation I
- Smart Structures and Materials
- Fracture Mechanics
New students are recommended to enroll in only one course during their first semester. Full-time employed individuals may only enroll in two online courses per semester.
The program is intended for students with an undergraduate degree in mechanical or aerospace engineering or a closely related field. Students should possess a minimum GPA of 3.0, but do not have to submit GRE scores for admission. Applicants with majors outside of engineering may be required to take undergraduate engineering courses prior to being accepted for admission into the program.
Georgia Technical University
Average Net Price: $13,340
The Georgia Institute of Technology is a public research university located in Atlanta, GA. Georgia Tech specializes in STEM fields including engineering, technology, applied science and natural sciences. They have just under 30,000 total students, evenly split between undergraduate and graduate students. They have a $1.8 billion endowment and 1,700 academic staff members.
Georgia Tech has an online Master of Science degree program in Aerospace Engineering. Courses offered in the program include:
- Turbulent Flows
- Unsteady Aerodynamics
- Turbulent Combustion
- Wind Engineering
The Aerospace Engineering department offers both a “designated” and “undesignated” degree option. The only difference between the two being that the “designated” degree requires completion of all coursework required for a bachelor of science in aerospace.
Online courses coincide with the Georgia Tech academic calendar. Georgia Tech bills its online program as being “designed to provide students with STEM and leadership capabilities to be competitive in their fields.” All applicants to the program must submit at least one standardized test score, such as the GRE or the GMAT.
Iowa State University
Average Net Price: $13,623
Iowa State University, also referred to as Iowa State, is a public research university located in Ames, IA. The school is considered a flagship of the Iowa state university system, with a student population of around 36,000. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching ranks Iowa State as having a very high level of research activity.
Iowa State offers an online Master’s degree program in Aerospace Engineering. The program is available as either a Master of Science or Master of Engineering degree program. Sample coursework includes:
- Airframe Analysis
- System Engineering
- Advanced Engineering Dynamics
- Automatic Control of Flight Vehicles
The Master of Science program is research oriented and requires completion of a thesis. The Master of Engineering program allows students to exchange additional coursework for less research experience.
Students may take up to nine credits of coursework as a non-degree seeking student, which allows students to begin their studies before receiving formal admission into the program. There are no specific courses required for students to take in the program, which gives them added flexibility when deciding on their degree plan. This flexibility also helps to emphasize the mentorship aspect of the program, which ISU touts.
Missouri University Of Science And Technology
Average Net Price: $13,874
Missouri University of Science and Technology, also known as Missouri S&T, is a public university located in Rolla, MO. The school has around 9,000 students, most of whom choose to pursue either STEM or Business programs. The flagship college at the school is its school of engineering, whose students make up more than 70 percent of the university’s overall enrollment.
Missouri S&T has a Master of Science degree program in Aerospace Engineering. It is a fully online, 30 credit hour program that includes both a thesis and non-thesis option. Students take courses such as:
- Applied Computational Methods
- Fracture Mechanics
- Viscous Fluid Flow
At least 21 hours will be coursework, and another six hours will be research credit hours. Students in the non-thesis track may take up to six hours of coursework in out-of-department coursework.
Applicants to the program should have a bachelor’s degree in aerospace or mechanical engineering, or a related engineering or science field. Students should also have a minimum GPA of 3.0 and a GRE Quantitative score at or above 155. Graduates from a Missouri S&T Graduate Certificate program are eligible for automatic admission into the program.
University Of North Dakota
Average Net Price: $14,693
The University of North Dakota is a public research university located in Grand Forks, ND. The university was founded by the Dakota Territorial Assembly in 1883, six years before the state of North Dakota was established, which makes it the state’s oldest university. The school has an academic staff size of around 823, along with a student body of approximately 14,600 graduate and undergraduate students.
UND has an online Master of Science degree program in Aviation. Students complete 30 credit hours of study, which includes a four-credit thesis. Courses from the program include:
- General Issues in Aerospace/Engineering
- Aviation Public Policy and Regulations
- Aviation Safety Management Systems
- Ethics in Aerospace
Students may also elect to pursue one of four available specializations. Specializations offered in the program include Safety, Unmanned Aircraft Systems, Management, and Human Factors.
Students unable to complete a thesis may be able to complete an independent study option when gives special permission by the graduate director. The independent study case would also include a comprehensive exam and require a total of 32 credit hours to be completed. Applicants should have at least a 2.75 undergraduate GPA and must submit GRE general test scores.
University Of Florida
Average Net Price: $14,761
The University of Florida is a public research university located in Gainesville, FL. The school has been operating on its Gainesville campus for more than 100 years, and is often rated one of the best public universities in the country. In Fall 2016 they had over 50,000 total students, including almost 17,000 postgraduates.
UF offers an online Master of Science degree program in Aerospace Engineering. It is a 30 credit hour degree program, which includes 24 credit hours of coursework and six credit hours of thesis work. Sample courses from the program include:
- Thermal Science and Fluid Dynamics
- Solid Mechanics, Design, and Manufacturing
- Dynamics, Systems, and Control
- Analytical Dynamics
There is also a non-thesis option for the program, which requires a student to take a comprehensive exam.
Students have the option of enrolling in a minor, which requires the completion of at least six credit hours of coursework and a minimum GPA of 3.0. For students taking the non-thesis track, at least 18 of the 30 credit hours must be taken within the major field. Students planning on pursuing a PhD make take the doctoral qualifying exam in lieu of the comprehensive examination.