Review of Aviation and Aircraft Operation Qualifications & Standards

Review of Aviation, Aircraft Operation – Qualifications (2) and Unit Standards (91)

Ringa Hora Services Workforce Development Council invited feedback on the review of qualifications (2) and unit standards (91) listed in Aviation, Aircraft Operation. The purpose of this review is to ensure that the qualifications and standards are and continue to be useful and relevant to the sector.

Ringa Hora asked for interested parties to act as a specialist advisory group, and an initial meeting was held via Teams in March 2023.


The qualifications have had significant usage over the past 5 years.

  • 3688 New Zealand Diploma in Aviation (General Aviation) (Level 5) with strands in Aeroplane, and Helicopter.
  • 3689 New Zealand Diploma in Aviation (Level 6) with strands in Aeroplane Flight Instruction, Aeroplane Airline Preparation, Helicopter Flight Instruction, and Helicopter Airline Preparation.

Preliminary feedback from both the Industry Association and the aviation regulator (Civil Aviation Authority) indicated the qualifications were working well for industry and only required minor changes to align with current NZQA template requirements. Draft changes were made to the qualification documents as tracked copies and shared with the advisory group. Additional feedback was received and incorporated, at which point the qualifications were endorsed by the advisory group.

The qualifications have been submitted to NZQA for evaluation.


A proposal was made to the advisory group to expire most of the unit standards, those which align directly to a CAA syllabus and are assessed through either an ASPEQ examination or CAA flight test. Unit standards which do not align directly to a CAA syllabus or flight test will be retained, along with unit standards used in Gateway and STAR school programmes. Flight training providers will need to move their programmes to modules directly against the CAA syllabus. The credit values and levels currently assigned to the unit standards will be assigned indicatively to the CAA syllabus subjects and published on the Ringa Hora website in due course for reference to assist programme developers. This proposal was supported by both the industry association and the Civil Aviation Authority.

The proposal was well received by the advisory group.

The standards were submitted to NZQA for evaluation and the application has been approved.

The standards listed here show which standards will be expired (unhighlighted), and which will be retained – non-syllabus based standards (highlighted yellow), and Gateway/STAR school standards (highlighted green). The unit standards will expire at the end of December 2027.

A copy of the change report on the NZQA website can be found here.

If you want to contact us regarding the above project, please email [email protected]