UAV Coach Drone Pilot Ground School Part 107 Review
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Under the new FAA rules, flying a drone for commercial reasons falls under the jurisdiction of the Part 107. Aside from rules on drone flight, such as when or where you can fly your drone, Part 107 also requires that commercial drone pilots get a remote pilot certificate, or what is more commonly known as a drone license. Getting a drone license involves passing a 60-item multiple choice exam known as the Part 107 knowledge test.
Passing the Part 107 knowledge test is no simple matter. For this reason, resources and courses on how to prepare for the knowledge test are all over the internet. One of the more popular training courses is offered by Drone Pilot Ground School. Being a paid training course, the most important question is: is it worth it? Read on as we answer that question.
What topics does the training course cover?
Drone Pilot Ground School was designed specifically to help people pass the Part 107 knowledge test. Using the list of topics helpfully provided by FAA, Drone Pilot Ground School has carefully crafted their training course to cover all the subject areas which may be included in the knowledge test. These topics include basic aeronautical knowledge, meteorology, drone inspection, drone flight, national airspaces, and many more.
Keep in mind that the 60 questions in the Part 107 knowledge test are randomly selected from a much larger set of questions, meaning that each test will be different. There is no guarantee which subject will or will not be included, so it makes sense to be knowledgeable in all of them.
On top of all the essential topics, Drone Pilot Ground School has even included bonus content which may be useful in running your future drone business. These bonus lectures cover subjects such as how to price your drone service, how to use your drones for real estate marketing, and pointers on key legal considerations when you start a drone business.
What resources does the training course offer?
The training course is done completely online. The course will take you through more than 65 distinct lessons, each of which includes a video lecture, a detailed text lecture, and an end-of-lesson quiz. The course material can be viewed anytime and can also be accessed through a mobile device. Text lectures can also be printed and downloaded, so you literally can continue with the course anytime or anywhere.
At the end of the lecture series, you have the option of taking up to 5 full-length practice tests. These tests cover all of the topics and is an effective simulation of the actual Part 107 knowledge test. You are also given access to a 12-page “cram” sheet which summarizes all the key points of the course. You can use this cram sheet as a quick reference when you suddenly forget something, or as a quick review material right before taking the knowledge test.
On top of all these resources, signing up to the training course gives you access to a dedicated support line that will be more than happy to assist you should you have questions or run into issues with the training course.
Who administers the training course?
Drone Pilot Ground School’s team includes an FAA-certified flight instructor, an experienced aircraft pilot, a former US Air Force member, and a former investment banker with experience in corporate finance. The members of the team represent a combination that is more than qualified to help budding drone hobbyists become fully-certified commercial drone pilots.
How long will it take to finish the entire course?
Going through the course should take a total of 15 to 20 hours. It is not recommended to go through it all at once though, since knowledge retention will not be as effective. Drone Pilot Ground School recommends that you budget around 2 to 3 weeks to finish the course to leave enough time to take and review your notes, ask questions to the instructors, and go through the practice tests.
There is no need to rush through the course, as signing up for it gives you lifetime access to all of the resources. The best thing about lifetime access is that Drone Pilot Ground School continuously reviews and revises the content of the training course to reflect real-world changes. Having lifetime access means having access to this revamped content whenever and wherever you want them. You have to take the test every two years to maintain your certification, so having access is valuable.
Does Drone Pilot Ground School offer a money back guarantee?
Drone Pilot Ground School does not offer a money back guarantee for their training course, but they do offer to pay the $150 testing fee for the Part 107 test should you fail it your first time. This essentially lets you re-take the knowledge test for free.
The conditions for this guarantee are that you should have gone through all of the content of the training course and scored at least 85% on one of the five full-length practice tests.
What is the passing rate for people who have taken this training course?
Drone Pilot Ground School claims that more than 99% of the students who took their training course have passed the knowledge test on their first try.
How much is the training course?
The one-time fee for the training course is $299. This fee includes lifetime access to all of the lecture materials, practice quizzes, full-length practice tests, cram sheet, as well as the bonus lectures.
Is it the Drone Pilot Ground School training course worth it?
At $299, the price for the training course of Drone Pilot Ground School is admittedly steep. Other companies offer more affordable training courses, which have also resulted in solid passing rates for their students. However, the Drone Pilot Ground School training course has a few advantages which may swing the argument to their favor.
The first big benefit is the lifetime access to their training material. Drone Pilot Ground School continues to review and improve their resources to reflect any new bodies of knowledge or changes in regulation concerning drone flight. In fact, they have just released version 2.0 of their training course early in 2018. The new course now has better videos, more difficult practice questions, and better explanations for their quiz questions. Having a lifetime access means that students who signed up for the course years ago still have access to the new and revamped course.
Drone Pilot Ground School also offers extra content in their training course that touches on real world matters, such as how to price drone services and how to market your drone business. This is not something that other companies offer but is undoubtedly valuable knowledge for when your drone business takes off. Just for the bonus lectures, perhaps the steep price tag of this training course can be sufficiently justified.
In the end, we always stand by the principle that the best investment you can make is in yourself. After all, it is the asset that has the best returns. If you believe that the business intelligence you develop will be worth the $299 training fee, then we suggest you go for it.