AVIA230: Unmanned Aerial Systems

11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 02/01/2024

Course Description

This is an introductory course in unmanned aerial systems (UAS). The course includes the history of unmanned aircraft; the elements of command and control; the National Airspace System and how it relates to UAS; current and planned Federal Aviation Administration regulation; and the very latest operations and challenges currently facing this industry. 

**NOTE: This course is not approved for R-ATP credit.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


The purpose of this course is to provide students with a broad overview and general understanding of autonomous systems and how they impact our society. This is a foundational level course with a broad overview of the UAS industry and associated fields. This course will enable students to adapt to the increasing influence autonomous systems have on the aviation industry.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview.

The student must submit a 2–3 minute video introduction. The student may use a multi-media platform of choice to record his/her video. However, Kaltura is recommended. Specific elements stated within the Discussion must be included. This will be a graded assignment. The student must also reply to at least 2 classmates’ introductions. Each reply must contain at least 150 words, including a question or a relevant follow-up response to guide the discussion.

Discussions (4)

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to provide a thread in response to the provided prompt. Each thread must be at least 250 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge and a biblical reference. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to at least 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be at least 100 words. (CLO: C, G)

Research Paper Assignments (5)

Topic Submission

The student will submit the topic he/she wishes to write about, along with a 50–75-word overview and/or rationale for the topic chosen. Examples of approved topics include RF Systems, Autopilot Control Logic, and UAS use cases such as wildfire and agriculture. Topics may not include specific aircraft or aircraft manufacturers and the student may not write about integrating UAS into the National Airspace System.


In preparation for the final paper, the student will create an outline of the Research Paper that consists of both major section headings and at least 2 sub-headings for each area. Current APA format must be used.

Research Log

In preparation for the final paper, the student will create a list of a minimum of 5 scholarly sources from the last 7 years. Each source must be presented in current APA format. For each source, the student must provide a 2–3-sentence summary of the information contained in that source. Annotations must demonstrate critical thinking skills regarding interpretation and application of material. A sample is provided.


The student will complete the introduction and thesis statement for the paper. This must be 300–500 words and be in current APA format.

Final Submission

The student will write a 1,250-1,500 word research-based paper in current APA format that focuses on a unique challenge and/or aspect of UAS. At least 5 scholarly sources from within the last 7 years must be referenced.

(CLO: C, D)

Research Presentation Assignment

The student will make a presentation that communicates the content of the Research Paper written for this course in a clear and concise manner. The presentation will consist of 10–12 slides that use bullet points and media such as pictures, videos, and animations to present the ideas from the research paper. At least 5 scholarly sources from within the last 7 years must be referenced. (CLO: C, D)

Quizzes (8)

Each quiz will cover the Learn material for the assigned Module: Week. Each quiz will be open-book/open-notes, contain various questions, and have a 1-hour time limit. (CLO: A, B, D, E, F, G)

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