Graduate Diploma of Aviation (Flight Operations)

Duration1 year full-time, 3 years part-time
Online and Cairns
Next start termTerm 3, 2023
Study modeOn Campus, Online
Course codeCL17
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The Graduate Diploma of Aviation (Flight Operations) will provide you with the aeronautical experience required for a career as a commercial pilot. To enrol in the Graduate Diploma of Aviation you must have successfully completed Term 1 of the first year of the Bachelor of Aviation (Flight Operations) or Associate Degree of Aviation (Flight Operations).

You will build your skills as a pilot, starting with short flights constrained within the aerodrome training area and circuit area right through to commercial pilot licence level. You will conduct long-distance flights, visiting multiple aerodromes in regional and outback Australia. You will be required to attend a flight training provider approved by the Head of Course in order to complete this course. This will include practical flight training of up to 220 hours.

You will develop your critical reflection and self-analysis skills as well as analytic, communication and presentation skills. During your study, you will gain the aeronautical experience required to apply for a Recreational Pilot Licence, Private Pilot Licence, Command Instrument Rating, and Commercial Pilot Licence.

Career Opportunities

This course prepares you for aviation careers in the air transportation industry as a commercial pilot. When you graduate with the Graduate Diploma of Aviation (Flight Operations) you will meet the aeronautical experience requirements for careers as a commercial pilot in the air transportation industry. When studied in conjunction with CQUniversity’s Bachelor of Aviation (Flight Operations) or Associate Degree of Aviation (Flight Operations) you would normally be legally qualified to work as a commercial pilot and have access to aviation careers in the air transportation industry.

CQU's partnership with Skytrans and a national airline provides you with the first-of-its-kind pathway from a pilot career with a regional airline to a major national airline within two years of graduating.

Structure & Availability

Course structure

You are required to complete a total of seven core units.

Unit information

For information on the units, you could study as part of this course, visit the Handbook and select the "Course Structure" tab.

Credit transfer information

If you have already completed study relevant to the course you have enrolled in, you may be eligible for

On-Campus Availability

Term 3, 2023Cairns

Online Availability

Term 3, 2023Available Online

Majors and minors are not applicable to this course.

There is a compulsory residential school which will allow students to deliver all of their assessable presentations.


Recommended study

No recommended study.

To be eligible for entry into this course, applicants must supply:

  • Current Aviation Reference Number (ARN), and
  • Current Australian Security Identification Card (ASIC), and
  • Aviation English Language Proficiency (ELP) level 6, and
  • Current Class 1 Aviation Medical, and
  • At a minimum, a passing grade in both AVAT11002 Basic Aeronautical Knowledge and AVAT11003 Basic Aeronautical Practice, and
  • Completed Student Checklist - to be signed and submitted with the application (as per instructions on the checklist).

Note: The Graduate Diploma of Aviation (Flight Operations) is available to current CQUniversity Bachelor/Associate Degree of Aviation (Flight Operations) students only. Students completing the Graduate Diploma must be enrolled concurrently in either the CQUniversity Bachelor/Associate Degree of Aviation (Flight Operations) to maintain their place in the Graduate Diploma.

All other prospective students for this course will be assessed by the Head of Course on a case by case basis, and require, at a minimum:

  • Completion of an equivalent Bachelor of Aviation, and
  • Current Australian Security Identification Card (ASIC), and
  • Current Class 1 Aviation Medical, and
  • Aviation English Language Proficiency (ELP) level 6, and
  • Evidence of passing the Civil Aviation Safety Authority Commercial Pilot Licence, and
  • Evidence of passing Command Instrument Rating examinations.

English Language Proficiency Requirements:

If you were not born in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Ireland, South Africa or United States of America you are required to meet the English Language Proficiency requirements set by the University. Applicants are required to provide evidence of completion of:

· A secondary qualification (Year 11 and 12, or equivalent), or

· An Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) diploma level qualification, or

· Bachelor level qualification study for a period of at least 2 years full time with a minimum overall GPA 4.0

Completed within Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, South Africa, Ireland, or United States of America, which will meet the English proficiency.

If you do not satisfy any of the above you will need to undertake an English language proficiency test and achieve the following scores as below:

· An International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic) overall band score of at least 6.0 overall with a minimum 5.5 in each subset; or

· Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) - Requires 550 or better overall & minimum TWE score of 4.5 (Paper Based Test), or 75 or better overall and no score less than 17 (Internet Based Test); or

· Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic) - Requires an overall score of 54 with no sub-score less than 46; or

· An Occupational English Test with Grades A or B only in each of the four components.

English test results remain valid for no more than two years between final examination date and the date of commencement of study and must appear on a single result certificate.

International Students should visit for further information.

Each student will be assessed individually.

Students are required to hold a current Class 1 Aviation Medical

Students are required to hold a current Australian Security Identification Card (ASIC)

You will have to meet this course's inherent requirements by demonstrating essential skills and attributes.

Fees & Scholarships

2023 Indicative Fees

Fee TypeFees
Domestic Full Fee Paying – Indicative First Year Fee$133,188

The fees table above shows indicative total course fees for the Graduate Diploma of Aviation (Flight Operations). It is based on all seven units contained within this course. Your first-year fees will vary, depending on the number of units you study. Typically, you will study two units in your first year. You can view unit fees in the Cost Per Unit table. Fees are reviewed annually and are subject to change.


Fee Category Full fee paying place
What is a Full Fee Paying Place As a full fee-paying student, you are required to pay full tuition fees for your course.
Fee Type Tuition Fees
What is my tuition fee?

Your tuition fees are charged per unit of study based on the credit point value of each unit. Our Tuition Fee Schedules provide an estimate of fees per unit. You can also view fees specific to the course, and units, you are interested in studying by using our Cost Per Unit table.

FEE-HELP and payment options

FEE-HELP is the loan scheme provided the Australian Government to help eligible students pay their tuition fees through a loan. Eligible students can use a FEE-HELP loan to pay for all or some of their tuition fees. If you elect to use a FEE-HELP loan, this means that you will defer payment of your tuition fees and repay your FEE-HELP loan when your income is above the compulsory repayment threshold.

You must meet specific eligibility requirements to be able to use FEE-HELP assistance. If you are not eligible for a FEE-HELP loan, or you are required to pay your tuition fees upfront, you will need to pay your fees no later than the census date for the term in which you are studying.

Other Fees You will also incur a Student Services and Amenities Fee.
Other study costs You may have other study costs such as travel expenses related to residential schools or work placements if they are a requirement of your course. There are also textbooks, stationery and other sundry costs associated with studying.

At CQUniversity, we believe higher education should be for everyone. No matter your situation, we know that everyone needs a helping hand from time to time, and we are proud to offer a wide range of scholarships, bursaries and stipends.
Our scholarships could help you pay for things like relocation, living on campus, laptops and technology, childcare, study and living expenses, travel and more. 

How to apply

If you have decided what you would like to study and are ready to apply, we’re here to help you along the way.  Before you apply, you will need to have a Unique Student Identifier (USI).  If you do not have a USI, creating one is quick and easy.  Simply visit to create one.

Want to know more about application dates and other admission information?
View our important dates information and read about other admission considerations such as information for domestic students with overseas qualifications, indigenous support, and elite athlete, coach and performer support.

To apply for this course, submit your application directly to CQUniversity using the Apply button below.