The FAA just published a free online training course called ALC-451: Part 107 Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS). It takes about 2 hours to go through. There are a healthy mix of video and text lectures.
The course was built for existing Part 61 licensed manned aircraft pilots who have a current flight review and wish to obtain a Part 107 Remote Pilot Certificate (without having to take the same Aeronautical Knowledge Test as everyone else).
That said, anyone can register for and take the course, even if you don’t already have a pilot license.
But Alan, you sell Drone Pilot Ground School for $299…why should I take that when I can take this FAA online course for free?
So, if you’re not already a licensed manned aircraft pilot, you’ll need to pass the Part 107 Aeronautical Knowledge Test. The FAA provides all the different knowledge areas you’ll need to be responsible for in order to successfully pass the test and receive your Remote Pilot Certificate.
Why is this important?
Because the FAA’s free online course only covers some (not all) of the tested knowledge areas.
Here is a breakdown of the knowledge areas that you’ll need to know:
Some, but not all of this curriculum is tackled in the FAA’s free online course. And the FAA shares this information quite clearly on Screen 8 of 17 in its Course Introduction module:
You may complete this course as one part of your independent study efforts to prepare for the FAA UAG Knowledge Test. However, you are also encouraged to review reference materials that focus on the topic areas that are required in part 107.73(a), but are not covered in this course:
Airspace classification, operating requirements and flight restrictions affecting small unmanned aircraft operation
Aviation weather sources
Radio communication procedures
Physiological effects of drugs and alcohol
Aeronautical decision-making and judgment
Our position at Drone Pilot Ground School is that we are VERY happy that the FAA has put this free resource out for everyone, and we think it’s a great supplementary study aid for your Remote Pilot Certificate.
Just remember, it won’t prepare you for everything you’ll need to know to operate sUAS safely, confidently, and professionally. And it won’t prepare you for everything you’ll need to know to pass your Part 107 Aeronautical Knowledge Test.