Important Notice: COVID-19 Institute response

Rotary-Wing Full-time Diploma 100bdipma


Fall 2020 Delivery Mode: BLENDED

  • This program will be delivered for the fall semester as a combination of online and on-campus learning.
  • Faculty will notify students of when their attendance on campus will be required.
  • We are putting measures in place for your safety and well-being, ensuring that all safety protocols are addressed. Please see BCIT COVID-19 Return to Operations for details on the mandatory procedures that have been implemented.
  • Your education is our priority and we will continue to deliver the applied instruction, collaborative experience, and industry connections that you expect from BCIT.

BCIT, one of Canada's largest aviation training schools, Pacific Flying Club, and Chinook Helicopters Ltd. have joined together their experience and expertise to offer a unique training opportunity for men and women who wish to become commercial rotary-wing pilots.

This fully integrated program brings fixed and rotary-wing flight training together with industry-focused academic training to provide learners with a strong set of aviation industry skills and knowledge. BCIT, Pacific Flying Club, and Chinook Helicopters are closely tied to the Aerospace Industry of Canada, Air Transport Association of Canada, the British Columbia Aviation Council, and the Canada General Aviation Association.

Pacific Flying Club (PFC) has been training pilots for over 50 years with a modern fleet of aircraft and simulator equipment. PFC is one of the premier flight training schools in Canada with students attending training from across Canada and around the world. PFC is located at Boundary Bay Airport in Delta, British Columbia.

Since 1982, Chinook Helicopters Ltd. has provided basic and specialized advanced flight and ground training to a local, national, and global community.  It is Canada’s largest and most respected ab initio commercial helicopter flight school. In addition to training Canadian pilots, Chinook Helicopters has substantial experience training students from European, Asian, and Australasian countries.  Chinook Helicopters is located in a large modern facility at the Abbotsford International Airport in Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada.

Pacific Flying Club and Chinook Helicopters Ltd. hold accreditation with the Private Career Training Institutions Agency of British Columbia (PCTIA).

Learners in this program will complete flight training required to qualify for a fixed wing Private Pilot Licence (PPL) in the first two terms of study then proceed to the rotary-wing Commercial Pilot Licence training, all in concert with an aviation Diploma.

The Program

The program is 57 weeks in duration and is offered over three terms of study. It is delivered at the BCIT Aerospace Technology Campus near Vancouver International Airport (YVR), the Pacific Flying Club at the Boundary Bay Airport, and at Chinook Helicopters Ltd. at the Abbotsford International Airport. This program is one of the fastest ways in Canada to qualify for a commercial rotary-wing pilot licence while attaining a post-secondary diploma. The program follows training standards prescribed by both Transport Canada and the aviation industry.

Program Entry

We strongly recommend applicants complete the Transport Canada Category 1 Medical Examination first, as that process takes the longest time to process.

COVID-19 Notice to Applicants

Please visit Admission during COVID-19 to learn how BCIT Admissions is supporting applicants. At this time, there are no program-specific changes for applying to this program.

Application processing

Applications are accepted from June 1st* to January 4th.*

*or next business day

We recommend that you apply early. All supporting documents must be submitted by the application deadline.

Entrance requirements

Competitive Entry: Two-step process

Preference will be given to applicants with:

  • Academic grades above the minimum
  • Requirements completed within the last five years
  • Related experience
  • Additional post-secondary academic courses

Applicants with preferred entrance requirements are to submit transcripts and supporting documentation with their online application.

Step 1: Meet the following entrance requirements

Read more about how to meet BCIT’s entrance requirements

Step 2: Requirements for selected applicants

All complete applications will be reviewed by the program and shortlisted applicants will be required to complete the following:

  • Multiple Mini Interview Process (MMI)

During this process, applicants will be assessed for their suitability for this profession. Final selection into the program will be based on the results of the MMI assessment.

Note: Interviews are usually held the third week of January.

In order to prepare for their interview, applicants are advised to conduct their own research on the profession. Admission is competitive and will be offered to the most qualified applicants.

Recommended for success

  • It is strongly recommended that all applicants attend an Airline and Flight Operation Information Session prior to applying for this program.
  • A driver's licence valid in BC is an asset.
  • A good understanding of MS Office (Word, Excel and PowerPoint) computer software is highly recommended.
  • Applicants should also take a familiarization flight at any flying school that offers them.

Validation of previous Private Pilot Licence (PPL) flying time

Candidates that hold a full or partial Private Pilot Licence (PPL) or full Recreational Pilot Permit (RPP) may be eligible for an exemption from a portion of their flying time.

Exemptions from flying time are subject to the following conditions:

  1. You may apply for credit if you have a full and valid PPL, a full RPP, or if you have completed a PPL flight or written test.

  2. Your exemption will be determined for flight training and licensing courses in Term 1 and 2 only.

  3. If granted credit, you will still need to complete a minimum of 20 hours of flight training and a mock flight test with a designated flight test examiner

  4. The maximum flying time you can be credited is 45 hours.

All exemption assessments will be evaluated on an individualized basis by the program selection committee.

Apply to program

To submit your application:

  • Include proof of meeting all entrance requirements.
  • Convert all transcripts and supporting documents to PDF files.
  • Have a credit card ready to pay the application fee.
Apply Now

Learn more about how to apply

Scheduled intakes

May each year.


Within two business days of submitting your completed application, BCIT will send a message to your personal and myBCIT e-mail addresses. All correspondence regarding your application will be posted to your online myCommunication account at We'll send you an e-mail when a new message is posted. It's important to watch for these e-mails or regularly check your account online.

You can expect to receive communication concerning the status of your application within four weeks.

Costs & Supplies

Tuition fees

Please see the Full-Time Studies Tuition & Fees page for full-time tuition fees.

Additional fees (subject to change)

  • Examination and licence fees: $1,885.00 plus applicable taxes.

Note: Flying fees have been estimated for an industry average qualifying time. If more flying hours are required for a student to demonstrate competency in flying, then the flying fees increase accordingly. Pacific Flying Club reserves the right to apply an insurance and fuel surcharge should increases exceed a base rate.

Tuition fees for terms two, three and four are to be paid by the first day of the term in order to commence flying.

Commitment fee

Applicants must confirm their acceptance into the program by paying a non-refundable, non-transferable commitment fee to secure their seat.

The commitment fee is $1,000 for domestic students, or $3,000 for international students.

This fee is payable within 14 days of acceptance. Failure to meet the 14 day payment deadline may result in the applicant's acceptance being cancelled and their seat offered to another qualified applicant.

Books and supplies

Terms 1 and 2: $2,000
Term 3: $400
(general estimated cost, subject to change).

Additional costs such as travel expenses for field trips and cross country flights are the responsibility of the student.

Students are required to supply their own coveralls, if desired. A supply of coveralls are available through the BCIT Bookstore. Please check the uniform authorization voucher [PDF] to determine the type of coveralls appropriate for your program.

Financial assistance

Financial assistance may be available for this program. For more information, please contact Student Financial Aid and Awards.


Class hours

0800-1530, Monday through Friday

Flexibility may be required for flight training due to weather and air space restrictions.

Program matrix

Term 1 (16 weeks) Credits
  AIRC 1001 Employability Skills for Aviation Professionals 10.0
  AIRC 1004 Introduction to Airport and Airside Operations 4.0
  AIRC 1005 Air Navigation and Air Traffic Services 3.0
  AIRC 1006 Aviation Meteorology 2.0
  AIRC 1007 Occupational Health and Safety in Aviation 2.0
  AIRC 1008 Introduction to Safety Management Systems 3.0
  AIRC 1009 Introduction to the Airline Industry 4.0
  AVFO 1145 Private Pilot Flight Training 1 4.0
Term 2 (16 weeks) Credits
  AIRC 2126 Aviation Safety and Risk Management 4.0
  AIRC 4420 Community and Public Relations for Aviation 3.0
  AVFO 2010 Airline Ground Handling Procedures 2.0
  AVFO 2030 Meteorology for Private Pilots 1.5
  AVFO 2035 Private Pilot Ground School 4.0
  AVFO 2045 Private Pilot Flight Training 2 5.5
  AVFO 2060 Private Pilot Flight Licencing 1.5
  AVFO 2102 Meteorology for Commercial Pilots 2.0
  AVFO 2106 Air Carrier & Airport Security Systems 2.0
  AVFO 2132 Aircraft Maintenance for Pilots 3.0
  AVFO 2165 Survival Skills 3.0
Term 3 (25 weeks) Credits
  AVFO 3116 Crew Resource Management 1: Human Factors for Pilots 3.0
  AVFO 3165 Commercial Rotary-Wing Ground School 1 6.0
  AVFO 3175 Commercial Rotary-Wing Ground School 2 3.0
  AVFO 3185 Commercial Rotary-Wing Ground School 3 6.0
  AVFO 3205 Commercial Rotary Flight 1 6.0
  AVFO 3210 Commercial Rotary Flight 2 3.0
  AVFO 4050 Commercial Rotary Flight 3 6.0
  AVFO 4150 Commercial Rotary Flight 4 6.0
  AVFO 4155 Commercial Rotary Flight 5 6.0
  AVFO 4165 Rotary Flight Licensing 4.0
  AVFO 4305 Aviation Career Planning 1.0
Total Credits: 113.5

Transfer credit

Do you have credits from another BC/Yukon post-secondary school? Do you want to know if they transfer to courses here at BCIT? Check out BCIT's Transfer Equivalency Database to find out.

Program Details

Program length

57 weeks, full-time

The program consists of three terms and is delivered over 15 months with scheduled breaks for flying during each term to accommodate possible inclement weather. Each term must be passed to progress to the next term.

The fixed and rotary wing flight training portions of the program are competency based. However, a minimum number of flying hours is required to qualify for the Transport Canada written exams and flight tests.

Fixed-wing flight training (Terms 1 and 2)

Most learners can expect to qualify for their Private Pilot Licence (PPL) in Term 2 after flying between 45 hours (Transport Canada minimum requirement) and 65 hours (the average for most people). Cost for Terms 1 and 2 cover 65 flying hours. The Private Pilot Licence course allows for a maximum 80 flying hours. Any flying to qualify for the Private Pilot Licence that is over 65 hours will be at an additional cost to the learner.

Rotary-wing flight training (Term 3)

Most learners can expect to qualify for their Commercial Rotary Wing Licence in Term 3 after the completion of 100 hours of training (Transport Canada minimum). Any flying that is over 100 hours will be at an additional cost to the learner.


A 70 percent pass mark is required for each course. The exception to this rule is that a minimum of 90 percent is required to qualify for a Student Pilot Permit.

To obtain pilot licences and ratings, students will be required to complete Transport Canada examinations and flight tests. If students do not complete the examinations and flight tests within the hours allotted, they will be involuntarily withdrawn from the program.

Note: Students must pass all courses in a term to successfully complete the term. Students who fail or withdraw from one or more courses in a term may be prohibited from continuing in the program and be required to apply for re-admission. When students are permitted to continue in the program, it is their responsibility to present evidence of successful completion of the failed course(s) to the Registrar's Office either before the end of the next term or before the credential is awarded, whichever condition is specified.

Program location

Aerospace Technology Campus
3800 Cessna Drive
Richmond, BC

Pacific Flying Club
Boundary Bay Airport
4 - 4335 Skeena Street
Delta, BC

Rotary-wing ground school and flight training will also take place at:

Chinook Helicopters
30720 Rotor Drive
Abbotsford, BC

Faculty, Advisors & Staff

Faculty & Staff

Advisory committee

  • Clark Duimel
  • Pat Kennedy
  • Cathy Press
  • Glenn Oerzen (Chair)

Contact Us

For more information about the Airline and Flight Operations program, please contact the Chief Instructor, Cheryl Cahill.

Questions or comments?

Please ensure you have reviewed the detailed information on this site, using the navigation to the right, before submitting the form below.

As well, if you meet any of the following criteria, please follow the links for more information, instead of sending the form:

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The personal information on this form is collected under the authority of the College and Institute Act (RSBC 1996, Ch.52). BCIT will use this information to communicate with you regarding relevant BCIT programs, courses and services. This information is only used by authorized BCIT staff. Email communication sent to and from BCIT is routed through the United States of America. If you have any questions about BCIT's collection and use of this information, please contact BCIT’s manager of Information Access and Privacy.

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