STEM • CTE • P-Tech
Give your students the SkyOp edge!
SkyOp’s High School Drone Pilot curriculum takes high school juniors and seniors and students 16 years of age from being drone newbies to FAA certified commercial UAV pilots, ready to do aerial imaging, data collection, and autonomous flight programming. The jobs of the immediate future!
Unlike other STEM drone programs, SkyOp's program focuses on high-value, high-demand skills that prepare students for the real world of drone operation. Students who graduate from this curriculum will have an FAA Remote Pilot Certification and two paths after graduation from high school.
Our unique and proven curriculum includes:
- Introduction to sUAS (small Unmanned Aircraft Systems)
The SkyOp STEM program begins with all the basics regarding drones, how they function and fly, teaching students to fly effectively without GPS, discussion of uses and applications and how drones are utilized, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) rules, and preparation for FAA Part 107 Remote Pilot testing and certification as a commercial drone pilot.
- FAA Remote Pilot Knowledge Test
Students will gain an understanding of the ground-school information covered in the FAA’s knowledge test. Topics covered include regulations relating to sUAS; airspace classification, interpretation of sectional navigation charts, operating requirements, and flight restrictions; aviation weather sources and effects; small unmanned aircraft loading and performance; emergency procedures; aeronautical decision-making and crew resource management; radio communication procedures; physiological effects of drugs and alcohol; airport operations; and maintenance and preflight inspection procedures. The remote pilot knowledge test Unmanned Aircraft – General includes 60 questions and requires a passing score of 70%. The test costs $150, paid separately to the Knowledge Testing Center.
- Hands-On DJI Phantom Training
Students will advance to outdoor flight training with the DJI Phantom 4 Pro, the most popular drone flight system in the world. This training is hands-on, with students using all flight modes. Hands-on practice will include calibration, take-off and landing using both automatic and manual modes, hovering using the vision positioning system, obstacle avoidance, Course Lock, Home Lock, Point of Interest, Follow Me, Waypoints, Sport Mode, TapFly, follow-me using ActiveTrack, Atti Mode, return-to-home, camera operation, and emergency procedures.
- Introduction to Drone Photo and Video Production
Students will move on to one of the most basic applications – aerial photography and video. They will use their flight skills to capture outstanding aerial imagery (stills and motion), then be taught to use software in the Adobe Creative Cloud Suite, such as Photoshop and Premiere Pro to edit and create video productions.
- Understanding Autonomous Flight Uses and Applications
The ability to determine, plan, and program a flight mission -- across a specified area with varying waypoints and altitude changes -- to perform a specific set of functions for data collection, site inspection, package delivery, etc. is a highly valued skill set that will be in great demand. Students will gain an appreciation of how autonomous flight will become the primary mode of operation for most drones performing commercial applications. And more important, they will become proficient in the execution of these autonomous flight protocols.
- Introduction to Pix4Dmapper
Pix4D is the leader in drone data-collection systems worldwide. Pix4DMapper can process thousands of images and generate output like point clouds and orthomosaics. These files can be imported into GIS software and used to turn raw data into actionable intelligence. Students will be introduced to mosaic mapping, infrared for Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), production of 3D models of buildings, creation of point clouds for bridge and structural integrity inspections, and annotation of the data that is collected.
These six elements feature over 300 hours of instruction and will completely prepare students to become FAA-certified drone operators and begin a career. They will also be prepared to continue with degreed programs in colleges and universities. SkyOp is also working to establish credit transfer into colleges and universities.
SkyOp’s Unique LMS
SkyOp courseware is downloaded through our Learning Management System (LMS), but that system is not just a delivery system for computer-based instruction. Instead, it functions as a support mechanism for both instructors and students.
For instructors, it works as an online teaching edition, with background explanations and training information. The instructor portal also contains the Powerpoint courseware, which is downloaded prior to each class and used for teaching.
For students, the LMS offers a blended learning experience. Their portal contains videos, quizzes, and other homework assignments to work through. The rest of the classroom experience is hand-on, interacting with drones, the flight simulator, and other materials. The quizzes are based on standard testing technologies, and when completed and automatically graded, will be available to the instructor for review.
Class Scheduling Options
In addition to offering a completely new program, we have also created an integrated STEM drone training curriculum that can be delivered in multiple formats. A subset of approximately 90 hours is available and designed to be integrated into other courses to provide a general introduction to sUAS and their uses and applications, as well as prep students for the FAA Remote Pilot Knowledge Test. The course length can be tailored to your needs and timeframes by adding or subtracting labs and flying exercises.
Our flexible curriculum enables you to integrate drone training into your current school year programs or summer programs. SkyOp will work with you by providing 19 configurable units through our LMS to meet your exact requirements and timeframes.
Funding Your Program
For more information on funding options for your drone program, click here.