Alumni Page

To update your Alumni information, please send a message to
mailto:TPSAdmissions@us.af.mil with the e-mail subject "Alumni Update."

Accreditation

SACS accredited M.S. Degree in Flight Test Engineering

Contact Us

TPS PhD Program

TPS is soliciting application packages to select two officers for the TPS Faculty-Pipeline PhD program. This opportunity is available to all active duty Air Force graduates of a formal military test pilot school. For instructions on how to apply and specifics on eligibility, please click here

Admissions

For a list of questions and answers on Admissions requirements, click here.

For additional Admissions information, click here.

USAFTPS

Welcome to the Home Page of the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School

The United States Air Force Test Pilot School (USAF TPS) is where the Air Force's top pilots, navigators and engineers learn how to conduct flight test and generate the data needed to carry out test missions. Human lives and millions of dollars depend upon how carefully a test mission is planned and flown.

The comprehensive curriculum of Test Pilot School is fundamental to the success of flight test and evaluation. Upon graduating from TPS, graduates will have earned a Master of Science Degree in Flight Test Engineering. Explore the tabs and links below to find out more.

About TPS

What TPS Is All About...

The fundamental key to success in aerospace flight test and evaluation is the individual member of the flight test team: the flight test pilot, of course, but nowadays the trained flight test engineer and navigator as well. Without him - and increasingly, her - the fundamental work of the Air Force Test Center at Edwards Air Force Base would literally be impossible.

Bravery and flying skills of the highest order have always been requirements for the flight test mission, but much more is demanded of today's flight test professionals: scientific and engineering knowledge, critical and reasoned judgment, and managerial skills of the first order. A well-devised flight test program, skillfully carried out, calls forth the absolute performance of the aircraft and its associated systems. Finding the people who are capable of planning and flying such a program is not easy, nor is the process automatic.

Contrary to the romanticized view of old Hollywood films, test pilots are not "born" to their talents - they are painstakingly made. Natural ability in the air is necessary, of course, but a delicate touch on the controls and absolute precision on the air are needed - not slapdash bravado.

The test pilot will be following carefully-crafted flight profiles, not daring aerial maneuvers. They must be taught to handle his airplane with extraordinary precision: to control their airspeed to the nearest knot, and their altitude virtually to the foot--every time. Beyond this, the student test pilot must have a natural affinity for mechanical systems, an ability to "feel" the airplane and have a well-honed sense of what is happening at any given time. Mature and reasoned judgment is also vital - human lives, and millions of dollars, depend upon how carefully a test mission is planned and flown. But all of these skills would be useless without knowledge and training - systematic training in gathering flight data, and then interpreting it. Minutes spent in precision flying must be matched by hours of painstaking effort at computers, in the library, and around the conference table.

It is obvious that in the world of flight testing, there simply is no room for "second best." That is why the Air Force Test Pilot School (TPS) takes such pains to make certain that its graduates are the equal to any in their profession.

Announcements

TPS Board

The U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School selection board held July 24-26, 2017, is now in the process of selecting candidates from the pool of applications received as per PSDM 17-32. Those applicants selected for the Comprehensive Candidate Evaluation Program (CCEP) interview panel will receive notification to appear before the panel at Edwards AFB. Detailed information about the application and selection process may be viewed at AFI99-107.

Annual application process and timeline for year 2018:

April/May - USAF Test Pilot School Selection Board announcement is released in a PSDM calling for applications with a deadline in June 2018 for classes beginning in July 2019 (19B) and January 2020 (20A).

June - USAF Test Pilot School applications are due on the date specified in the PSDM.

August - Selection Board members convene to choose top candidates to attend the Comprehensive Candidate Evaluation Program (CCEP) at TPS.

October - CCEP events occur at TPS to make final selections of candidates admitted to TPS.

December - Final selection results for both 19B and 20A are posted on MyPers.

Notes: 

The U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School selection board convenes annually in July. Those interested in becoming a test pilot, test combat systems officer, test remotely piloted aircraft pilot or flight test engineer are encouraged to apply. Applicants from all aircraft types and backgrounds must have strong academic and technical experience.