While we would encourage you to attend this course in-person if you can, there is an option to study solely online.

This course will provide you with in-depth knowledge of a wide range of human factors issues in aviation maintenance. You will also gain practical skills to manage human error, through the application of key theories and tools covered throughout the course.

At a glance

  • Dates
    • Please enquire for course dates
  • DurationFive days
  • LocationCranfield campus
  • Cost£2,050 Concessions available

Course structure

The course provides a broad overview of the nature and management of human error in the aviation maintenance domain. Key theories and frameworks for investigating maintenance human error, contributing factors and their effects on operations are discussed by scientists as well as practitioners.

What you will learn

The challenges associated with practical application of currently-available safety tools are examined together with the latest strategies to enhance understanding and management of maintenance error. Practical exercises will enable you to apply your knowledge and skills to real-life scenarios. 

By visiting Cranfield’s B737-400 aircraft, you will have the opportunity to observe the specific features of the aircraft systems and understand the challenges faced by frontline operators. Groups are expected to conduct an investigation based on a specific maintenance error scenario by using well-known investigation tools and taxonomies such MEDA, HFACS etc.

On successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • Describe the regulatory background and the environment within which aviation maintenance takes place
  • Evaluate current methods for maintenance error management (reactive, proactive and predictive)
  • Appraise the links between aircraft maintenance and safety
  • Analyse ways in which maintenance errors can be reduced at the design stage

Core content

  • The nature of the maintenance environment: this includes both civil and military environments. 
  • Maintenance management: organisation, line and base maintenance, planning, maintenance control, error management systems, shift handover, blame cycle, communication in the workplace, workplace environment, work/job design. Regulatory framework. Legal requirements. EASA/Part 145. Maintenance. Human factors.
  • Designing for human factors: what can be done by the designer to reduce and mitigate human error? Design philosophies and human-centred design.
  • Human error management in maintenance: the benefits and challenges associated with the use and application of reporting systems and safety tools.

Who should attend

  • Licensed aircraft maintenance engineers
  • Maintenance managers
  • Human factors instructors/trainers
  • Safety and quality managers (compliance monitoring managers)
  • Airworthiness surveyors/inspectors
  • Design engineers


The course is part of MSc Airworthiness, which is accredited by the RAeS and the IMechE.


  • Dr Simon Place
  • Dr Sarah Flaherty
  • Dr Simon Gill
  • Dr Bill Johnson
  • Jenny O’Donnell
  • Andy Evans


Where three delegates or more are booking from within one site or one organisation, a discount of 10% will apply to the invoice for the course tuition fee. Accommodation fees are not included in the discount scheme. Please ask about our discount scheme at time of booking

Accommodation options and prices

This is a non-residential course. If you would like to book accommodation on campus, please contact Mitchell Hall or Cranfield Management Development Centre directly. Further information regarding our accommodation on campus can be found here.

Alternatively you may wish to make your own arrangements at a nearby hotel.

Location and travel

Cranfield University is situated in Bedfordshire close to the border with Buckinghamshire. The University is located almost midway between the towns of Bedford and Milton Keynes and is conveniently situated between junctions 13 and 14 of the M1.

London Luton, Stansted and Heathrow airports are 30, 90 and 90 minutes respectively by car, offering superb connections to and from just about anywhere in the world. 

For further location and travel details

Location address

Cranfield University
College Road
MK43 0AL

How to apply

To apply for this course please use the online application form.

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.