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Human Factors in Aviation MSc 2018/19 entry

Course code:

ECT113

Study options:

2 years part-time

 

Location:

Coventry University

Starting:

September 2018

 

Fees:

£15,050 (full time fee for Sept 18)

Find out more

Faculty:

Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:


+44 (0) 24 7765 2152


Overview

From flight crew to cabin crew, air traffic controllers to aircraft engineers, the human element is vital to the safe and efficient operation of all aspects of the aviation industry.

Over the past three decades a better understanding of human behaviour has resulted in significant safety benefits, with the human factors discipline forming a cornerstone of every aviation safety management programme.

Accredited by the European Association for Aviation Psychology (EAAP), this specialist distance learning course is taught by staff with expertise in the academic and professional disciplines of human factors, ergonomics and occupational psychology within aviation. This course aims to equip aviation professionals with a thorough appreciation of all aspects of the discipline and how they can be applied to best effect in the aviation industry.

Please note: As part time you will be expected to take 90 credits each year, so pay 50% of the full time fee. Tuition fees for subsequent years are subject to increase

Why Coventry University?

An award-winning university, we are committed to providing our students with the best possible experience. We continue to invest in both our facilities and our innovative approach to education. Our students benefit from industry-relevant teaching, and resources and support designed to help them succeed. These range from our modern library and computing facilities to dedicated careers advice and our impressive Students’ Union activities.

Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

Employability

Career-ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Student experience

All the support you need, in a top student city

Accreditation and Professional Recognition

This course has been accredited and recognised by the following bodies:

European Association for Aviation Psychology

Accredited by the European Association for Aviation Psychology (EAAP), this MSc course has been approved as an accredited course leading to certification as a European Human Factors Specialist in Aviation/Aviation Psychologist for appropriately qualified members of EAAP. NB: Accreditation does not apply to Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma awards.

Course information

The course covers the theoretical basis for the study of human factors in aviation, demonstrating how these concepts are applied in aspects of aviation operations. Throughout the modules, you are encouraged to apply the theoretical material to real world issues within the aviation industry, as human factors practitioners would.

The course consists of eight mandatory core modules covering the main areas of human factors in aviation and a critical review of contemporary literature on a relevant topic, and then an applied human factors research thesis within the field.

Modules

Overview

In the first year you will study six modules covering the main areas of human factors in aviation (human information processing, decision making and error, flight deck design, selection, stress and stressors, training and simulation), plus a critical review of contemporary literature on a topic within the field.

Previous literature reviews have included just culture, decision making in complex naturalistic environments, psychological stress in aviation, motion platforms in flight simulation, enhancing crew resource management training, non-compliance with procedure, fatigue in aviation, barriers to incident reporting and perceptions towards unmanned aerial systems.

Modules

  • Human Information Processing in Aviation

  • Decision Making and Error in Aviation

  • Flight Deck Design

  • Selection, Stress and Stressors

  • Training and Simulation

  • Critical Literature Review

Overview

In the second year you will study two further modules – crew resource management and human factors and safety management and will undertake an industry-related human factors research thesis. The thesis provides the opportunity to demonstrate some of the skills and knowledge gained during the course and allows you to develop your ability to design, plan, execute and communicate an applied research project in the field.

In the past, students have undertaken research projects into decision making processes and error detection in air traffic control, passenger safety information, safety operators deviating from procedure, perceptions towards training and training feedback systems, the use of new technology and training for flight crew training, public attitudes to laser attacks on aircraft and reporting culture and barriers to effective incident reporting, for example.

Modules

  • Crew Resource Management

  • Human Factors and Safety Management

  • Human Factors Research Thesis

In more detail...

  • The Human Factors in Aviation MSc received 100% overall course quality student satisfaction in the Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES) 2017.
  • Approved by the European Association for Aviation Psychology (EAAP) as an accredited course leading to certification as a European Human Factors Specialist in Aviation/Aviation Psychologist for appropriately qualified EAAP members.
  • Core members of the course team have achieved professional standing as Chartered Psychologists, a Registered Occupational Psychologist and Fellows of the Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors, and are all research active staff who will share their research and industry experiences.

Coventry University has received the prestigious ‘Gold Award’ in the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF).

Your main study themes are:

  • Human Information Processing in Aviation: Introduces the basic concepts of human information processing, and its application in the applied aeronautical context. You should also become familiar with the concepts of workload and situation awareness, associated measurement techniques and their importance in all aspects of system design and evaluation. 

  • Decision Making and Error in Aviation: Examines the major schools of thought in the study of decision making and the processes for improving aviation decision making. You will then have the opportunity to consider the nature of error, its root causes and methods by which it may be mitigated.

  • Flight Deck Design: Providing an introduction to the issues relating to human factors in flight deck design, including displays and controls, the use of automation, and human-computer interactions on the commercial flight deck.

  • Selection, stresses and stressors: Introduces the psychology of individual differences, focusing on personality and cognitive ability, as well as the measurement of these concepts. We then examine the areas of psychological stress and environmental stressors within an aviation environment, alongside the effects of such stressors on human performance.

  • Training and Simulation: An overview of the training lifecycle, training methods, media and the evaluation of training is discussed. We then examine the role of simulation in an aviation training context.

  • Crew Resource Management: We introduce the principles of crew/team resource management and look at the literature behind non-technical skills, such as decision making, communication, leadership/team working, situation awareness and fatigue management. You will also be introduced to the process of identifying, training and assessing non-technical skills in the applied aeronautical context.

  • Human Factors and Safety Management: An overview of the organisation-wide safety management function is addressed, where the emphasis is on risk management and avoiding (or managing) error across operations. You will also have the opportunity to consider approaches used to investigate the human factors aspects of aviation accidents and incidents.

  • Research Methods and Data analysis: One major advantage of this MSc is that human factors research design, methods and measurement and analysis techniques are included within each taught module, which allows a more focused approach and demonstration of their application in a range of different contexts.

The MSc Human Factors in Aviation is offered part-time over a minimum of two years on a distance learning, modular basis. It is expected that most students will complete the course in two years (with the option of study lasting up to a maximum of five years). You can start in September. 

You will be exposed to high quality distance learning materials, which may include online distributed module materials providing written topic summaries; links to journal articles, book chapters, e-books and videos; topic exercises; asynchronous bulletin-board based discussion groups; recommended reading lists; links to external webpages; and one-to-one guidance and supervision (via email, online video conferencing, telephone and in person at the University if desired). As the course is distance learning, these methods will form the guided study content of the modules. 

The core teaching team members are all members of the Human Systems Integration Group and have established reputations within human factors. The team is actively involved in applied research and consultancy within the field, and this experience is incorporated into the course material and interactions with students. We have a strong portfolio of industry-related research across safety critical industries including significant work in a range of areas within aviation.

The course is assessed 100% via coursework. There is a range of methods including applied written assessments, formal reports and essays and presentations. Modules include between one and three pieces of assessment, which may include any combination of the assessment methods indicated. The learning outcomes of modules, assignments and projects will be clearly stated. There are no formally timetabled examinations. The pass mark for each module is 40%. Individual module requirements are outlined in the relevant module guide. 

On successful completion of the course you should be able to:

  • Critically apply knowledge of the principles of Human Factors through the systematic investigation of complex issues to produce safe, efficient and cost-effective solutions in the aviation/aerospace industry;
  • Apply Human Factors theories to practical case studies in which aviation-related scenarios are analysed;
  • Critically evaluate research findings and theories in the area of Human Factors in Aviation;
  • Successfully complete an independently conducted research project in a subject area of Human Factors in Aviation; and
  • Demonstrate the skills and qualities required of a Human Factors professional (e.g. demonstration of ethical and legal considerations; critical reflection and personal responsibility) in the safety-critical aviation environment.

This is a distance learning, part time course, with teaching and learning materials distributed remotely online. A typical module is 150 notional learning hours across seven weeks, of which approximately one-third is from guided module material and approximately two-thirds from self-directed independent study during each module to depend and extend learning and to develop independent interests beyond the guided material. This time is likely to be divided between extended module reading, assignment preparation and research and independent self-directed learning.

Aviation is a global industry, with the field of human factors recognised internationally. The core teaching team members are all members of the Human Systems Integration Group and have international reputations in Human Factors, with their experience reflected in the course content where applicable. Due to the distance learning nature, this course attracts UK, European and International students, many of which bring with them experience from working in a range of countries and organisations.

Global ready

Did you know we help more students travel internationally than any other UK university according to data from the experts in higher education data and analysis, HESA?

In 2014/15, we were able to provide a total of 2,264 student experiences abroad that lasted at least five days, 73% of which were our own organised trips for undergraduates and 27% from postgraduate travel. Plus, we've been able to help more than 5,000 students spend time in other countries, from America to China, India and beyond.

Much of this travel is made possible through our Global Leaders Programme, which enables students to prepare for the challenges of the global employment market, as well as strengthening and developing their broader personal and professional skills.

Explore our international experiences

1st for

international experiences

Sending more students overseas than any other UK uni (HESA)


2,264

Student experiences

The number of student trips abroad for at least 5 days in 2014/15



12,000

and counting

The number of students we’ve helped travel internationally so far

21

global programmes

As well as trips, we offer other opportunities like language courses


Entry Requirements

Applicants should ideally hold a good honours degree 2.2 or an equivalent international qualification or above in a relevant academic discipline, and be involved in the operational aspects of the aviation industry. However, applications from candidates with relevant experience and professional qualifications will also be considered on an individual basis.

Applicants should ideally hold a good honours degree 2.2 or an equivalent international qualification or above in a relevant academic discipline, and be involved in the operational aspects of the aviation industry. However, applications from candidates with relevant experience and professional qualifications will also be considered on an individual basis.

English as a Foreign Language: This course requires IELTS 6.5. Pre-Sessional English is available if required.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Applicants should ideally hold a good honours degree 2.2 or an equivalent international qualification or above in a relevant academic discipline, and be involved in the operational aspects of the aviation industry. However, applications from candidates with relevant experience and professional qualifications will also be considered on an individual basis.

English as a Foreign Language: This course requires IELTS 6.5. Pre-Sessional English is available if required.

Our International Student Hub offers information on entry requirements for your country, as well as contact details for agents and representatives should you need more advice.

More detail

Tuition Fees

We pride ourselves on offering competitive tuition fees which we review on an annual basis and offer a wide range of scholarships to support students with their studies. Course fees are calculated on the basis of what it costs to teach each course and we aim for total financial transparency.

Starts

Fee


September 2018

£10,650 (full time fee for Sept 18)


Scholarships

If you're a truly outstanding undergraduate candidate we may be able to offer you a Coventry University Scholarship. Coventry University Scholarships are awarded to recognise truly exceptional sports achievement and academic excellence.

Starts

Fee


September 2018

£10,650 (full time fee for Sept 18)


Scholarships

For the September 2017 and January 2018 intakes, we're investing £1 million into scholarships for high achieving and enterprising students.

Our scholarships are worth up to £10,000 and every student that applies will be considered. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!

Starts

Fee


September 2018

£15,050 (full time fee for Sept 18)


Scholarships

For the September 2017 and January 2018 intakes, we're investing £1 million into scholarships for high achieving and enterprising students.

Our scholarships are worth up to £10,000 and every student that applies will be considered. Fulfil your potential this academic year with Coventry University!

Please note: As part time you will be expected to take 90 credits each year, so pay 50% of the full time fee. Tuition fees for subsequent years are subject to increase.

Career prospects

After the United States, the UK has the second largest aerospace industry in the world, employing around 230,000 people in over 3,000 companies, including BAE Systems, GKN and Rolls-Royce, and a range of international companies with operations in the UK, such as Airbus, Cobham, AgustaWestland, Finmeccanica, Thales, Boeing and Bombardier.

It is estimated that up to 75% of all aircraft accidents have a Human Factors aspect to them, (Civil Aviation Authority, 2013). As a result work is ongoing by human factors professionals to understand human factors issues to promote the safe and efficient operation of all aspects of the aviation industry.

Potential destinations for human factors professionals include airlines and aircraft operators, air traffic control services, engineering organisations, aerospace manufacturers, safety consultancies and research organisations.

In addition to the knowledge and application of the areas of human factors addressed, you will have the opportunity to develop a wide range of transferable professional skills during your studies, including the ability to produce written reports, engage in self-directed study, design, plan and execute a piece of applied human factors research and demonstrate a critical awareness of professional, legal, social and ethical issues.

Following the course, if you wish to look at a change of employment, you will also have the opportunity to receive support from our award-winning Faculty careers service, EC Futures, which won the ‘Best Placement Service in the UK’ award at the National Undergraduate Employability Awards in 2015 and 2016. Support can be adapted to distance learning students where applicable.

Disclaimer

By accepting your offer of a place with us, a Student Contract (“the Contract”) will be formed between you and the University. The Contract will detail all of your rights and also the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and will also contain all of the obligations that the University owes to you.  We would encourage you to read the Student Contract before you accept any offer of a place at the University. A copy of the Contract can be found here.

The tuition fees stated on the course webpage, prospectus and your offer letter will apply for the duration of your course, subject only to changes to the law or government requirement. Please note that we set fees for individual courses, and fees from previous years are no indication of fees for future years.