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Become a Pilot

The first step in this process is for you to ask yourself: “Why do I want to learn to fly?” The answer to this question will help you and your Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) guide you in the right direction in obtaining your goal in the most efficient way possible. Some people want to learn to fly airplanes professionally as an airline pilot or a charter aircraft pilot, etc. Others want to learn to fly airplanes for business purposes, such as sales people with large territories, some will even learn to fly to advance military flying careers in the US Army, Navy and Air Force, people who want to fly for personal transportation and folks who just want to fly locally for the fun of it.


What ever YOUR reason for wanting to learn to fly airplanes, you should let your CFI know exactly what your goals are, as this will affect how your training is conducted. It does not matter if you want to fly professionally or just take the family on a nice day trip. You have come to the right place to learn to fly!


The Coleman AeroClub offers flight training programs under Part 61 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs) for all fixed-wing pilot licenses. The Private Pilot License is the most popular tracks an the first stepping stone for any pilot whether recreational or professional.

Private Pilot (PPL) Flight Training

Through a local network of FAA Certified Flight Instructors the Coleman AeroClub can help you realize your goal of becoming a licensed private pilot.


A Private pilot is the holder of a private pilot license. With an FAA-issued private pilot license (PPL), a person is able to fly US registered aircraft that meets the aircraft category and class that their private pilot license designates. Private pilots are not permitted to profit from any flight (except as denoted in 14 CFR FAR Part 91.113). In order to be compensated for flight services, a person must hold a commercial pilot license.


Private pilots are only allowed to fly in Visual Meteorological Conditions (VMC) under Visual Flight Rules (VFR)unless they obtain an instrument pilot rating (IFR.) See instrument rating.




- Be at least 17 years of age (training can start prior to being 17)

- Be able to read, speak, and understand the English language

- Obtain at least a current third-class medical certificate

- Receive a minimum of 40 hours of flight time including training and solo flight

- Pass a knowledge test as well as the practical test

 (PPL) Ground School

The Coleman AeroClub compliments your flight training with additional

Advanced Ground Instructors who will not only help you meet the

following requirements, but ensure you are prepared to pass the written

exam on your first try.




(a) General. A person who is applying for a private pilot certificate must

receive and log ground training from an authorized instructor or

complete a home-study course on the aeronautical knowledge areas of

paragraph (b) of this section that apply to the aircraft category and class

rating sought.


(b) Aeronautical knowledge areas. 


(1) Applicable Federal Aviation Regulations of this chapter that relate to private pilot privileges, limitations, and flight operations;

(2) Accident reporting requirements of the National Transportation Safety Board;

(3) Use of the applicable portions of the “Aeronautical Information Manual” and FAA advisory circulars;

(4) Use of aeronautical charts for VFR navigation using pilotage, dead reckoning, and navigation systems;

(5) Radio communication procedures;

(6) Recognition of critical weather situations from the ground and in flight, wind-shear avoidance, and the procurement and use of aeronautical weather reports and forecasts;

(7) Safe and efficient operation of aircraft, including collision avoidance, and recognition and avoidance of wake turbulence;

(8) Effects of density altitude on takeoff and climb performance;

(9) Weight and balance computations;

(10) Principles of aerodynamics, power-plants, and aircraft systems;

(11) Stall awareness, spin entry, spins, and spin recovery techniques for the airplane and glider category ratings;

(12) Aeronautical decision making and judgment; and

(13) Preflight action that includes—

        (i) How to obtain information on runway lengths at airports of intended use, data on takeoff and landing distances, weather reports and forecasts,               and fuel requirements; and

       (ii) How to plan for alternatives if the planned flight cannot be completed or delays are encountered.


Ground School Dates



Currently no start date due to COVID Restrictions. In the meanwhile, Ground School can be performed ONLINE, please contact us for futher Information. Class will take place on Mondays and Wednesdays from 1800 - 2100 on Vogelweh BLDG 2775. Classes that fall on a US Federal Holiday will be tentatively scheduled to take place the Friday following the holiday.

The ground school is a nine week class. Classes meet two times per week for three hours of instruction at each meeting (an hour consists of 50 minutes of instruction and a 10 minute break). The class provides a minimum of 40 hours of presented material including 2.5 hours for issuing stage exams and a final exam.

Ground School Presentation Sequence

The ground school presented consists of three stages. Stage One covers Chapters 1-3 of the Gleim Pilot Handbook. Stage Two covers Chapters 4-8. Stage Three covers Chapters 9-11. At the end of Stage One and Stage Two, an exam is given. A final (Stage Three) exam is scheduled at the end of the nine week class period. The Stage Three exam is a comprehensive exam given on the last official day of class.

The ground school is designed to allow a student to join the class at any time during the nine week class cycle. Each class is an individualized module of learning that is independent of the information presented in a prior ground lesson.

Joining the Class Mid-Session

A student may join the class at the beginning of any scheduled class session. The student will not be eligible to take the Stage One or Two exam or the final (Stage Three) exam until that student completes all of the lessons covered by those stages.

Example 1: A student begins class during Ground Lesson 4. The student will forgo the Stage One exam. The student is eligible for the Stage Two exam after completing Ground Lessons 5-8. When the student completes Ground Lessons 9-11, that student is still not eligible for the final (Stage Three) exam. However, once the student completes Ground Lessons 1-3, that student is now eligible for the Stage One exam and the final (Stage Three) exam. Once eligible, these exams may be given to the student by any authorized instructor.

Example 2: A student begins class during Ground Lesson 8. The student will forgo the Stage Two exam and the final (Stage Three) exam as the class progresses. The student will then be eligible for the Stage Two exam and the final (Stage Three) exam only after completing Ground Lessons 1-7 (during which time that student will have completed the Stage One exam at the end of Ground Lesson 4). Once eligible, the Stage Two exam and the final (Stage Three) exam can be given to that student by an authorized instructor.

Students who have attended a Coleman AeroClub (CAC) Private Pilot (PPL) Ground School and paid full tuition may audit any future PPL Ground School presented by the CAC.

Directed Self-Study

In the event a student misses not more than four ground lessons (i.e., four, three-hour class sessions), that student may complete the ground lessons missed by directed self-study, which will be conducted under the supervision of an authorized instructor. Once the student completes the ground lessons missed, that student is eligible for the appropriate stage or final exams.

Ground Training Objectives

This syllabus prescribes the course of training necessary for a student to obtain the required knowledge for the Private Pilot Knowledge Exam specified in CFR Part 61/Part 141

Ground Training Completion Standards

Students will demonstrate by written exam that the knowledge required for the Private Pilot Knowledge Exam as prescribed in CFR Part 61/Part 141 has been met. This is not a test prep class. You will receive a self study online test prep software included in order to practice for the FAA written exam.

The official FAA Private Pilot Written test may be taken at the Ramstein Education Center with an endorsement from a certified ground or flight instructor. 

Ground School Materials and Tuition

Rod Machado Online Ground School at a discounted rate. Contact us for details.

It would be great to order:

- Frankfurt Sectional Chart
- FAA Pilot Logbook
- E6B Calculator

- Headset with standard GA plugs 

There is a pilot shop Friebe at Mannheim City Airport

order online there or stateside (better prices)

Please use either the banner below or the QR code to order the required Private Pilot Handbook and the Private Pilot eWorkbook. You may choose the physical books or eBooks based on your personal preference. By using the special banner or the QR code below your purchase will support the ground school at no extra cost to you via an affiliate program:

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