Real Answers from Real Pilots

How important is Statistics if I want to be an airline pilot?

Hi, I’m currently in community college taking a total of 5 classes (One of them is required by the school). I’m going to get A’s in 3 of them (an A+ in the required class for the school, an A+ in English, and an A in Geography) and then I have a solid B in psychology. The one other class I am taking is Statistics. As of right now, my final is in two days and I’m sitting at about a 50% overall because the class just doesn’t make sense to me. My plans for next year were to apply for Western Michigan University’s Aviation program in January so I can follow my dream of being an airline pilot. I would start school there in Fall of 2018 IF I get accepted. So my question is: if I fail statistics, how big of an impact will this have on my future plans of going into Western Michigan’s Aviation program and/or being a pilot in general?

Preston,

Don’t you mean statistically what are my chances of being a pilot if I fail statistics? :slight_smile: I’m sorry I’m just being silly. To be a pilot you need good grades and basic math skills. Don’t let the one class tank your grades. That said I have no idea what Western Michigan’s Aviation Program’s policies are or how they’ll view the failure.

Adam

Thank you for replying. Western Michigan states on their website that any class below a 2.0 will not transfer. What I’m not sure of is if that means that I’ll have a chance to re-take it or if I don’t have a chance of being accepted.

But that brings another question to mind. How much math is really used when you’re a pilot? And is a class like statistics important or not?

Thanks,
Preston

Again you’d have to talk to WM but it sounds like you just won’t get credit for the class so you’ll need to make up those credits elsewhere. As I said you only need good basic math skills.

Adam

Preston,

That really is a question for Western Michigan and their admissions department. As for the airlines, I would not worry so much about one failed class, but try not to make a pattern of it.

Chris

Preston,

You will use absolutely no statistics at all in the course of being a pilot. We really use rather simple math, mostly addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. I would not worry too much about the math aspect if I were you.

Chris

Preston,

I’m sure it is too late at this point to withdraw from the class, but keep in mind for the future to do so. If you think you are going to fail a class or even get less than a C, I would recommend that. While it will show on your transcript as a “W” and you still have to pay for the course, it won’t bring down your GPA like getting a D or F will.

Also, most major universities take transfer credits from community colleges and compare them to classes they offer. So you will get credits towards graduation, but not for those exact classes and they don’t count at all towards your GPA at graduation from the university. Your transcript will likely just say, transfer credits, have the number of credits transferred and say from where. Therefore, I wouldn’t overly be concerned with one class but please check with the admissions dept at WMU as I am just giving you the information I know from my degrees and from looking at many transcripts during hiring.

I will tell you that while statistics is one of the tougher math classes to master, math classes at a major university will be tougher than what you are taking now. I’m not sure how much math you will need to take in order to graduate from the aviation program, but you may want to look into it. Usually you have to take way more than is required. For example, I have my degree in accounting and had to take Calculus I and II plus statistics. I obviously don’t use imaginary numbers in my accounting position (that would probably get me fired :joy::joy:) but I had to have a C or better in those to get my degree. It’s the college scam of making you take things you’ll never use in real life. Hopefully that helps you in the future.

Tom