Our Mission

Mission Statement

The mission of the National Test Pilot School is to educate and train military and civilian aviation personnel so that each graduate increases flight test competency, improves flight test and aviation safety, and enhances the aerospace profession worldwide.

Our mission is primarily accomplished through our professional courses and master's programs that provide graduate-level flight test education and training to test pilots and flight test engineers who learn to safely and effectively plan, execute, and report on flight test programs for their military or civilian organizations.

Our mission is further accomplished through NTPS' continuing education programs, flight test-related research programs, and flight test support activities that increase competency, safety, and the breadth of knowledge in the aviation and flight test professions.


NTPS is committed to our core values of honesty, integrity, objectivity, safety, teaching, mentoring, teamwork, and the continuous pursuit of knowledge and excellence.

Institutional Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

Graduates of NTPS are expected to be able to safely and effectively plan, execute, and report on flight test programs.

The NTPS graduate embodies the following ILO attributes:

  • Independently demonstrates professional ethics and practices academic integrity.
  • Demonstrates proficiency in written and oral communication.
  • Interacts effectively with culturally-diverse populations.
  • Reaches well-reasoned conclusions by analyzing problems and data.
  • Displays a mastery of the knowledge and skills required in the flight test profession.
  • Demonstrates the information literacy and computer proficiency skills necessary to support continuous learning in the flight test profession.
  • Demonstrates a working knowledge of flight test safety and risk assessment.

Program Educational Objectives (PEOs)

Within a few years of graduation NTPS MS FTE and MS FT&E alumni can be expected to:

  • Demonstrate increasingly highly specialized skills required to execute safety-critical tests in flight and in the control room.
  • Successfully integrate the roles of a Test Pilot and Flight Test Engineer throughout the aircraft/system design, development, and testing process.
  • Validate the airworthiness and mission capability of an air vehicle and/or system
  • Attain positions with increasing responsibilities in managing developmental flight test projects.
  • Advance the flight test and evaluation discipline through reports, professional papers, journal articles, and/or symposia presentations

Program/Student Learning Outcomes (PLOs/SLOs)

The NTPS Graduate will have:

  • Mastery in the analysis of complex engineering problems and subdivision into less complex tasks.
  • Mastery of effective communications in a high workload, technically complex, interdisciplinary environment, while maintaining sound and supportive working relations with clients, partners, and leaders.
  • Mastery of team leadership where all members create a collaborative and inclusive environment, determine goals, plan tasks, and achieve objectives subject to limited resources and stringent deadlines while ensuring safe practices.
  • An ability to develop new experimentation approaches, determination of alternate paths, and employment of a wide variety of tools to analyze and interpret data, while applying engineering judgment to reach conclusions that uphold and improve safety within the flight test community and the broader aerospace industry.
  • Mastery of the evaluation of engineering test data and outcomes, their comparison to learned theory and concepts, and reporting of well-evidenced findings in a logical, accurate, and concise manner.
  • Mastery of trend recognition in the performance and behavior of an engineering system, to include interdependencies of subsystems and sound recommendations about its use based on engineering methodology.
  • Mastery of engineering design to define iterative processes to produce recommendations to meet an evolving set of requirements with consideration of safety, as well as environmental, and economic factors.
  • Mastery of the identification and characterization of risks associated with engineering test activities and proper management of them in a real-world context.
  • Mastery of discernment and adaptation of new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies and evaluation methods.