Another Benefit of Flight Training at CBU: Less Flight Hours Needed

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California Baptist University is approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to certify
qualified aviation flight graduates for an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certificate with reduced
aeronautical experience.

This an advantage and benefit for CBU aviation students. The FAA mandates an FAR Part 121 pilot (airline pilot) possess an ATP certificate requiring at least 1,500 flight hours of experience prior to applying for the ATP certificate. However, the FAA has recognized that specific flight training experiences can allow a Restricted ATP (R-ATP) to be earned with less than 1,500 flight hours.

When you complete your bachelor’s degree with CBU in either aviation flight or aviation
management and have completed a minimum of 60 credit hours of the 80+ hours of FAA-approved CBU aviation courses, you are eligible to apply for the R-ATP with just 1,000 hours of flight training experience — 500 less hours of flight experience than previously mandated.

If you complete between 30 and 59 credit hours from the FAA-approved CBU aviation courses, you are eligible for the R-ATP with 1,250 hours of flight experience. The ground and flight portions of the FAA Instrument Rating and Commercial Certificate also need to be earned at CBU.

If you transfer to CBU from a four-year institution of higher learning that is also approved by
the FAA to qualify its graduates for the R-ATP, those earned aviation credit hours that were on the other institution's R-ATP Authorized Aviation Coursework can be counted by CBU towards the R-ATP when you graduate from CBU. But as a transfer student, to remain eligible for the R-ATP, you must fully complete the Instrument Rating and the Commercial Certificate at a single R-ATP approved institution of higher learning. Students transferring to CBU while already enrolled in, but not having completed their Instrument Rating or Commercial Pilot Certificate, would not be eligible for a CBU R-ATP authorization.

View the FAA authorization letter and the list of FAA-approved CBU aviation courses.

“Why is the R-ATP important to me, the prospective CBU aviation student?"
The answer is the reduced aeronautical experience required to earn your R-ATP at 1,000 or 1,250 flight hours allows the opportunity to be hired by a Part 121/airline carrier earlier than those that must have 1,500 hours of flight experience and therefore need an additional year or two to earn those extra flight hours. Being hired by an airline earlier than other pilots earns a higher seniority number, which benefits quality of life — choosing your crew base, choosing the aircraft you fly, choosing the trips to be flown, choosing your vacation time and reducing the odds of being furloughed, to name a few.

Get a jump on your competition. Earn your FAA flight certificates and ratings and your bachelor's degree in aviation flight or aviation management at California Baptist University! Fly nearly new training aircraft equipped with the latest in digital instrumentation in complex Southern California airspace while earning your degree and strengthening your Christian faith.

Learn more about the CBU Aviation Department.

Learn more about the aviation flight bachelor's degree.

Learn more about the aviation management bachelor's degree.

Approved CBU Credit Hours Earned Eligible for Restricted ATP With Reduced Aeronautical Experience?
60 or More Approved Credit Hours Yes, at 1,000 Flight Hours
30 - 59 Approved Credit Hours Yes, at 1,250 Flight Hours
< 30 Approved Credit Hours No, Still Requires 1,500 Flight Hours

Note: Do not confuse the FAA regulations regarding the R-ATP in FAR Part 61.160, Certifications: Pilots and Instructors with the FAA regulations regarding approved flight schools in FAR Part 141, Pilot Schools. To be eligible for the R-ATP at CBU, you may obtain your Private Pilot Certificate in a Part 61 flight school prior to enrolling at CBU. This can be an advantage, as you can become a Certificated Flight Instructor sooner and earn income while building flight hours as a CBU student. CBU can also award you academic credit for those equivalent Private Pilot CBU courses. However, the Private Pilot academic credit hours will not count towards the R-ATP. You will still have ample opportunity to earn the requisite 60 FAA approved credit hours at CBU to be eligible for the R-ATP.

Please also note that to remain eligible for the R-ATP you must obtain your Instrument Rating and Commercial Certificate at an FAA-approved four-year institution of higher learning that is approved under FAR Part 61.160 with the ground and flight courses approved under Part 141. Not all Part 141 approved instrument and commercial flight courses, or four-year institutions of higher learning, can certify their graduates for the R-ATP.

While this can feel like a complex issue, you can rest assured that earning your aviation certificates at CBU gives you the advantages of Part 141 Instrument and Commercial Pilot courses and the FAA authorization for its Bachelor of Science in Aviation Flight or Aviation Management graduates, who have at the appropriate FAA-approved aviation credit hours to be eligible for the R-ATP.

Contact the CBU Department of Aviation Science with any questions you may have. CBU looks forward to equipping you to achieve your aviation goals and deepen your faith.

Contact the Department of Aviation Science

Chair: Dr. John Marselus
Department Secretary: Rosemary Welsh
Phone: (951) 552-8800

Flight Operations Center
6865 Airport Drive
Riverside, CA 92504