How Drones Are Used in Education - COPTRZ

How Drones Are Used in Education


8:41 am GMT •

May 11, 2016

Drones are no longer just for the military, nor are they the sole remit of the commercial sector! In fact, small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are perfect for teaching a whole range of different subjects for your school, college, or university.

The education sector has been quick to realise that drones are changing the face of a number of industries and that their students need to understand and familiarise themselves with the future if they’re to be successful upon graduation.

Any school, college, or university offering practical training of drones, integrating UAVs into their courses and lessons, will have a clear competitive edge in securing top-grade students.

How are drones being used in education?

COPTRZ have worked with a number of college and universities to enable their students to harness the power of drones in the following subjects:

Geography – Using multispectral mapping cameras to undertake riverbed analysis

Geology – Using HD cameras to observe rock formations in hard to reach places, recording coastal erosion and even using LIDAR

Agricultural Studies – Precision farming techniques, crop spraying techniques, herd management and observation

Surveying / Mapping – Teaching new mapping and surveying techniques. Using Pix4D, students can learn to build extensive and highly detailed 3D models and maps from data collected during a drone flight

Environmental Research – Utilising air emissions sensors to analyse pollution levels and photographic / video evidence of land/water pollution

Wildlife Research – The ability to monitor wildlife from a distance without direct human intervention

Oceanography – Marine mammal monitoring, recovery of samples from the ocean or flora/fauna, recording of ambient oceanic data

Hydrography – Ranges from coastline surveys to bathymetry utilising LIDAR

Engineering – Provides a unique aspect of heavy engineering projects, production lines as well as the actual design and build of drones

Media – This is a bit obvious but we’ll stick it here anyway: media studies students can easily make amazing films with cameras fitted to drones

Higher Education And Drones: A Match Made In Heaven

Higher education courses using drones also offer another clear and immediate advantage for students: the massive booming industry for UAVs is only going to grow exponentially in the next few years. Any educational institute offering drone flying as part of their curriculum is immediately giving their students a strong advantage for their upcoming graduation and new careers. A business already using drones is going to want new graduates who are already familiar with the technology.

Do I Need a Licence to use a Drone?

In the UK, the Civil Aviation Authority stipulate that if you fly a drone for commercial gain, you need a drone pilot’s license to do so. In the case of an educational institute, this would mean that if you wish to publish the footage or findings from your drone then you would need a CAA PfCO (permission for commercial operations) licence.

The process of obtaining a PfCO generally requires attending a 3-day ‘ground school’ course followed by a short flight assessment to determine that you are ready to fly your drone in a commercial environment. Upon completion of both tests it is then a case of submitting your operations manual, and voila, you’re ready to fly!

Getting Started with Drones

It’s easier than you think to get started using drones, and the COPTRZ team of UAV experts can help guide you through the process. COPTRZ can supply a complete drone strategy, including the latest UAV products, software and NQE accredited CAA PfCO training to set you on your way to using drones as a teaching tool. Below are just a number of education facilities that we have helped harness the power of drones:

Speak to the commercial experts

If you have any queries or want to find out more about how you can harness the power of drones, or even have a drone trial at your school, college, or university – get in touch! Email or call 0330 111 7177.


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