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Aviation and aerospace

Aviation Australia is a unique world-class training organisation with campuses in Brisbane and Cairns. Aviation Australia offers courses in flight attendant and engineering training for domestic and international students and is a training partner to over 60 airlines and aerospace companies, governments, defence forces and regulatory authorities.

Aviation Australia and the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) offer a Bachelor of Business (Aircraft Maintenance Management) qualification where graduates emerge with two qualifications - a Diploma of Aircraft Maintenance Engineering (Avionics) or a Diploma of Aircraft Maintenance Engineering (Mechanical) issued by Aviation Australia, and a Bachelor of Business (Aircraft Maintenance Management) issued by USQ.

Aviation High, Australia's first dedicated aviation high school, is a secondary school in Brisbane that offers students direct pathways into the aviation and aerospace industries. Course content is specifically tailored to these industries and subjects offered include basic aeronautics, airport and airline operations, and air traffic management. The school has close industry relationships, with support from major Australian aerospace and aviation companies. All students are eligible to gain a Queensland Certificate of Education and/or an Overall Position (OP) score.

The Aerospace Gateway Schools Program is a partnership between the Queensland Government and the aerospace industry to develop career pathways from schools to the aviation industry. Currently 26 secondary schools across Queensland are participating in the project offering Aerospace Studies for senior students in years 11 and 12.

A number of Queensland companies, including those listed below, have state-of-the-art simulators used for training both defence and commercial pilots.

  • Airline Academy of Australia (Brisbane)
  • Becker Helicopters (Sunshine Coast)
  • Brisbane Training Centre - Virgin Blue Airlines and Boeing Flight Services (Brisbane)
  • Cubic Defence Australia (Townsville)
  • Geosim Technologies (Ipswich)
  • Nova Systems (Brisbane)
  • Simjet (Brisbane).

Queensland universities offer a range of courses related to the aviation and aerospace sector. These include:

Research and development into unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), advanced composites, alloys and hypersonics is one of Queensland's strengths. Significant organisations include:

  • the Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) for Advanced Composite Structures
  • the University of Queensland - Queensland Centre for Advanced Materials Processing and Manufacturing (AMPAM)
  • the Defence Science and Technology Organisation and the University of Queensland (hypersonics).

Queensland is leading Australia's hypersonic research, with collaboration between the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO), the University of Queensland and Boeing Defence Australia on the Hypersonics International Flight Research Experimentation (HiFire) project. Initial Queensland Government support for the University of Queensland's research was supplemented by an additional $70 million to support an eight-year project involving DSTO and the US Air Force.


TAFE Queensland SkillsTech has a purpose built heavy commercial vehicle and diesel fitting training facility at its Acacia Ridge campus in Brisbane. The facility provides workshop areas and laboratories equipped with the latest technology to deliver pre-apprenticeship, apprenticeship/traineeship and post-trade training. SkillsTech is the leading TAFE institute for trade and technician training.


The Great Barrier Reef International Marine College offers marine industry skills training in Cairns, including training to support the ADF's Pacific Patrol Boat program. The college also has a Kongsberg Maritime simulator, which is identical to the Royal Australian Navy's simulator at HMAS Watson.

General defence

The Queensland University of Technology offers an Executive Master of Business (Complex Program Leadership), which was developed in consultation with the Department of Defence, global defence industry and other relevant government organisations. The program develops highly skilled future project leaders capable of effectively managing large, complex projects and strategic procurement typical of the defence market.

Queensland's Centre for Advanced Materials Processing and Manufacturing (AMPAM) is a core partner of the Defence Materials Technology Centre (DMTC), which develops and delivers new materials technologies and manufacturing processes to improve defence capability in Australia. DMTC does this through collaboration between the Department of Defence, defence industries, universities and research organisations. The DMTC was established in May 2008 and is Australia's first Defence Future Capability Technology Centre. This Federal Government initiative is based on the successful Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) model.

PARTEC provides plastics industry training for apprentices, tradespeople and a range of businesses. The centre is an Australian registered training organisation (RTO) and is Queensland's only RTO for the toolmaking, composites and plastic industries.

The training centre, which has campuses in both Brisbane and Townsville, is equipped with full-scale manufacturing equipment and laboratory testing facilities, which are accessible to all students and can be hired for special project work.