Cost Comparison (full-time course)

We, at Sheffield School of Aeronautics believe in honesty and integrity, not misrepresentation and incomplete information. Whether or not someone decides to attend our course, we prefer that you are well-informed, not misinformed or misled. If you must consider costs equal to or greater than quality of instruction, job assistance, and career support, you might want to refer to the following table. Figure out a dollar amount per hour with or without certain assumptions. You’ll probably find that each dollar you spend at Sheffield has more value. Remember, this is just a cost comparison. Just ask our graduates, other schools’ graduates, and the hiring airlines for a quality/integrity comparison.

Need more evidence?
From an October 6, 2018 – 7:32pm email:
Hello Eric et al., 

I just wanted  to drop a line and let you know that I was hired as a dispatcher for a carrier based…just 3 miles from my home. They asked what school I went to and when I said Sheffield, I was basically hired on the spot. Thanks for having a great school!

R. Davis

Sheffield School’s 5-week Dispatcher program Some others who claim to be “competitively priced”
Here is what they offer (subject to change). This column does not apply completely at all schools (please read their fine print)
Registration & Tuition = $5,500, or $5,000 or less with coupon(s) or special offers. Also, as a Sheffield graduate, you are offered, indefinitely, FREE recurrent (refresher) training, while other schools charge hefty application or ‘administrative’ fees from $495 to over $3,000. Registration & Tuition =approx. $4,000 – $6,000
(this excludes the cost of attending Sheffield AFTER they’ve already attended another school. Yes, it happens. Some students pay TWICE for their education.)
Each student has access to computer flight planning, weather briefing, unlimited Internet access, FAA test prep, résumé writing and printing, aircraft situation display, etc. Just ask what they currently provide for each student.
Now that some schools are downsizing, what you see in their old web site pictures IS NOT what you receive when you arrive.
Clock hour approval: 200 hours Clock hour approval: 200 – 225 or more hours
Lunch break IS NOT counted as a clock hour. Lunch break counted as a clock hour at some schools. Sheffield won’t charge you for eating lunch.
You can do the math based on the school’s published schedule. The results are enlightening. This is also a Certification legality issue that you do not want to chance.
Actual clock hours you’ll receive is 200 – 215 hrs, this excludes lunch, FAA testing, tours, computer workshops and tutoring.
Since we provide our students with over 200 hours of instruction, which excludes FAA testing time, field trip time, lunch time, etc., our graduates have no fear of FAA retesting or license suspension due to school certification violations. Yes, it has happened at other “schools.”
Typically, the approval amount; however, if lunch is counted as an instructional hour, true clock hours may reduce from 200 to approximately 170-175.
Tuition refund policy – extensive details are enclosed in our online catalog. No full tuition refunds at any time at some schools. One school refuses any refunds within 30 days BEFORE class start date!
Tuition refunds are prorated through the 40% point (80th hour) of our course; however, see our online catalog for updates. Tuition refunds are prorated from the 1st day (no full refunds) and cease at the end of the 2nd week of class. (50-60 clock hours for some).
One operator gives no refund within 30 days BEFORE the class begins!
Housing options include affordable Air BnBs and nice hotels.  The least expensive housing options may be a cheap motel.

Some schools offer NO housing options or options that are NOT within walking distance. You’ll rent a car or require public transportation.

5-week residency Tuition includes all (non-retake) exam fees.

No extra charge for FAA ADX Knowledge test exam.

No extra charge for Practical exam.
All FAA examinations following course are typically conducted by either the Sheffield staff or hired examiners. We have examiners ready to assist you with final certification.

Tuition may include exam fees; however, you may be overcharged to retake the FAA knowledge exam or practical exam if you are unsuccessful.
The FAA examinations are not usually conducted by the School staff, but rather individuals who do not know you on a personal level.
AS OF LATE 2009-EARLY 2010, SOME SCHOOLS HAVE NO DESIGNATED EXAMINER HELP FOR YOU. Confirm that there will be a designated examiner for your certification exam following the course or INSIST that an FAA Inspector give it. They are required to and it is FREE. Contact us if you need help! In recent years, one applicant could not locate an examiner in (a western state) to provide the FAA Aircraft Dispatcher Practical exam – we have written documentation.
Sheffield produces their own popular comprehensive manual – a multitude of small digital books. In addition, Sheffield GIVES each student a 400+ page electronic set of bookmarked airport/approach and en route charts pages & charts – pages that ALL airlines use. No books that we issue are returned to us. We also provide links to FREE books – the ones other schools claim “they bought and included in their tuition.”
Some schools claim that tuition includes all books. Be careful, it may turn out that the school loans you a set of USED books, then collects them at the course conclusion – say good-bye to ALL of your books. In addition, some schools DO NOT teach any non-Government material. Good luck during Initial airline training when you are presented with a review and quiz on material you’ve never seen.
(Airlines not only hire graduates, but FIRE them as well.)
Field trips are taken outside of valuable class time, if at all. With the wealth of extra material covered in our classes and the technology accessible within our 3 classrooms, we try to emulate the decision-making and operational control procedures used within an operations control center. Field trips, if offered, are taken during class time, according to some catalogs. This is an easy marketing ploy for schools which do not instruct details and specifics, yet need to fill time. This was recently confirmed from one of our students- a student who already graduated from another school.
Many videos are after the official class ending time. (After 5:00 p.m.) All videos are during the official class time, according to some catalogs. (Prior to 2:00 p.m. for some).
Much FAA Knowledge test instruction (workshops) may be offered on the weekend. We focus more on Sheffield material and real-life scenarios, and provide electronic assistance toward the ADX exam, which is available BEFORE you even arrive at Sheffield!
This produces graduates who are prepared for the Practical examinations AND airline training. Many of our graduates consider the verbal phase of the practical “thorough, yet enjoyable and a learning experience.”
Much FAA Knowledge test instruction is during the first 3-5 weeks of the course. Some schools “test-prep” you for the full course-this is one of the many reasons Sheffield is not, and will never be referred to as a “License mill.”
This produces graduates who are under-prepared for the Practical examinations; therefore, many graduates of other schools may consider the Verbal phase of the practical “nerve-racking.” Airlines are aware of these issues.
Tutoring is everyday if requested, is provided by an instructor, does not require scheduling and is FREE. Tutoring may be:
“whenever we can find a tutor for you”, is done by a “part-timer”, and may cost you some cash. One recent tutor from another school applied for employment with us. That person “saw the difference” in the Sheffield grads in the industry. See our Testimonials.
A $1,000 refundable/transferable tuition deposit reserves a slot in the class. A $500 or more Nonrefundable deposit reserves a slot in some classes.
Unless there is an emergency, our class schedules are firm! Some class schedules are “ON Demand.” Some course operators cancel class at the last moment, leaving students, especially those who’ve taken loans, in a bad spot. Sheffield knows, since we helped these students out!
No 5-week weekend classes! A true FAA-approved course requires FAA oversight, which typically occurs during normal business hours; therefore, you’re not in danger of having your Certificate questioned by the FAA. Some operators may conduct weekend classes or night classes. Is there adequate FAA oversight? You may be in danger of having your Certificate suspended by the FAA. And if it’s a “quickie” course, you’ve just added a risk.
Finally, included in our cost is “time.” Whether you need advice, help, or someone to talk to, we are typically in our offices from 8-9:00 am to 5-6 pm on weekdays. We occasionally conduct optional tutoring sessions during weekend days. Whether you are a student or a graduate, we try our best to maximize our schedule for you. We also provide online and email help after hours. Some Administrations are only in their offices a few hours a day, if at all.
Highest Registration & Tuition = $5,500, or less with coupon/special offer.
Student receives an education, hardcopy manual, valuable electronic manuals, tech support, job assistance, FREE refresher training for life in EVERY course attended. And typically, the FAA Aircraft Dispatcher Certificate.
Typical Registration & Tuition = approx. $4,000 – $5,500*
*some tuitions approach $6000 after converting their “Euro” value to USD using
(this excludes the cost of attending Sheffield AFTER they’ve already attended another school. Yes, it happens. Some students pay TWICE for their education.)
Be wary of schools with no printed documentation, no published tuition fees, or unclear enrollment/refund/payment policies. Beware of claims of ‘Tuition free lifetime refresher training’ yet being charged a $500 registration fee “only.” Then it is not free. Sheffield has had graduates use online refresher training coupled with in-classroom refresher training multiple times, including before successful airline interviews. We would never charge our grads $500 or $1000 or more for reviews!

(If you’re paying in non-US currency elsewhere, you will NOT receive an FAA certificate!) FAA Part 65 Certification must be within the USA.

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  • Testimonials

    “This school came highly recommended by multiple past students and EVEN OTHERS FROM OTHER SCHOOLS. Reputation is fantastic from multiple companies that I have worked for.” A. – September 2020
    “I entered my profession, with more knowledge and information than dispatchers who have been practicing their craft for more than ten years. Not only has Sheffield provided a top notch education, but they have also instilled in me the confidence to succeed.” A.Z. Sidebar AZ – Student Testimonial
    “I am a graduate of the Sheffield’s Dispatcher Program. I have been a Captain-Part 121 Airline, Certified Flight/Grnd Instructor, and FAA Designated Check Airman and Sim Instructor (Part 121). From my experience I would rate Sheffield School as outstanding in their field.” PT PT
    Good afternoon Eric, I wanted to reach out to let you know that training at (airline) is in full swing and I couldn’t be happier that I chose Sheffield. My classmates, while very smart, definitely had subpar training and that has been very evident. I have waited to write a full scale review of the […] Attending Sheffield School benefits airline new hires in preparation for airline training
    “now that I’ve been in an indoctrination class with students from other schools, I know I made the right choice with Sheffield.”   Kindest regards,  A.R.  All schools are created equal?! yeah…sure ;)
    “As a graduate of Sheffield School of Aeronautics I am a firm believer that I received the most thorough and well thought out aircraft dispatcher training available. I owe my position in the industry to Sheffield School of Aeronautics.” BF Sidebar BF
    “After receiving my certificate, I joined a class of 4 experienced dispatchers for Part 121 initial training. Without experience, my preparation at Sheffield enabled me to become active at the same time after the initial training.” PR PR
    “These men represented the highest caliber of professionalism and integrity. The education I received from these gentleman has afforded me to be gainfully employed while having the opportunity to use the education received, all over this country, and more than a few others.” WG sidebar wg
    “Going to Sheffield prepared me for the real world challenges of Aircraft Dispatching. I certainly believe that the method Sheffield used is one not only for success in a real world career, but also one that prepares students to correctly dispatch aircraft.” T.Z. Sidebar TZ
    “If you want to be the best, first you need to be trained by the best!” P. Hill P.Hill – DHL
    “Your school has offered me an incredible advantage in the Dispatcher job market.” D.K. D. Kircher
    “I am a month into my new job at a airline coming out of reorganization, and am helping the training department by referencing the excellent and up to date course book provided to all Sheffield grads.” RW RW
    “I am so glad they are like this because it made me a better dispatcher and I really appreciate their high standards. I would highly recommend Sheffield to anyone who is willing to study hard and is serious about obtaining a Dispatcher Certificate.” MC MC
    “As a graduate of the aircraft dispatcher program at the Sheffield School of Aeronautics…My training was intense and thorough and furnished me with the requisite skills for performing my current job as a Flight Dispatch Supervisor.” N.S. Sidebar NS
    ” I have received 4 (job) offers…many of the interviews I have gotten have been because of my “pedigree”…going to Sheffield. I am amazed at the respect your school has….I am honored to be a graduate. Thank you for all the work you ..!”  Testimonial – J. Ganci
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