ATPL (A) Information for ATOs



Why Padpilot

Currently more than 70 pilot training organisations in 26 countries use Padpilot education materials for their ground school courses. And every month more ATOs are joining us. Here’s why:

  • The books are the best in the market. That’s what our instructors and students tell us! We’ve been developing the content of our theory books for more than 10 years. Much of the effort has been to make the books straightforward and clear – and to optimise the flow of explanation.
  • We have the right education philosophy. Our education philosophy chimes which what airlines now want. Less emphasis on exam-passing more emphasis on developing a well-rounded, well-informed budding line pilot. We don’t think of books as mere exam-passing manuals; we write reference material which is relevant and valuable to all pilots.
  • We finely calibrate our content. All our material is either written or master edited by current or former professional pilots. We make qualitative judgements about the content; not only addressing each EASA LO appropriately, but also thinking beyond the LOs. Those which refer to obsolete technologies and procedures are dealt with as briefly as possible. Those which deal with technologies and procedures relevant to the modern commercial environment are explained in much greater detail. By doing this, we ensure that the student spends the most time on what is most important for his/her professional career.
  • We’re the only publisher who can demonstrate 100% syllabus compliance. No other publisher reconciles the EASA LOs down to the level of individual paragraphs or chapter sections. And we do this transparently. Excel spreadsheets document every LO, showing where it’s covered in the books. Other publishers might claim 100% compliance, but you just have to take their word for it because they give you no easy means to confirm it.
  • We use modern education techniques. Our education techniques chime with what young students are looking for: illustration; interactivity; simple prose; self-contained learning tools.
  • We have the widest scope of content. We can offer you something for every stage of training up to the end of CPL licence issue. Our foundation course explains pilot career options, teaches STEM and introduces basic studies, the PPL course covers the PPL theory requirements and serves as a Phase 1 introduction to the ATPL. The ATPL(A) material goes well beyond the exam LOs to explain and describe modern CAT operations and is supported by editable classroom slides. Our ATPL(H) series is in production, the first 3 volumes are out now; another 3 will be added by Q1 2021.
  • Go anywhere, read anywhere books. Our digital-only format lets students carry their entire course on something as small as an iPhone. Our ebooks aren’t mere reproductions of paper-based volumes. They’re designed from the bottom up to take advantage of digital platforms. This means that text is replaced by videos, animations and 3D models where possible. We don’t just use these features to augment text-heavy books.
  • Solid, reliable delivery platforms. Because we only use Apple IOS we know that, if it works when we test it, it’ll work on the students’ devices. This one fact alone means that there is almost no tech support necessary. The books just work!
  • We’re extremely proactive, forward-thinking content developers. Book development never ceases.
    • We have a full-time team whose sole purpose is to improve the text and interactive content. We never stop developing the core product. Every book is under constant review to see what we can do to make it better, what illustrations we can add to ease understanding and how we can continue to develop our teaching philosophy.
    • We’re also constantly reading the aviation press to find new accident case studies to include and new technologies and procedures that need to be described in the books (regardless of what the EASA syllabus LOs dictate).
    • We’re constantly evaluating new and emerging delivery technologies. This why we’re the first to offer VR and AR capable 3D models as teaching aids. We’re also developing a new and exciting delivery platform for our books.
  • Our support is second to none. We pride ourselves on offering comprehensive support to ATOs and students.
    • Just pick up the phone (no call centre or tedious call menus) and talk to Jill or Sammy directly. Alternatively email us.
    • Though we don’t contractually guarantee it, we usually monitor emails and respond to the most urgent ones 7 days a week. We will never leave you in the lurch and we’ll never shrug off our responsibilities to you.
    • We are acutely responsive to comments from your teaching staff and students. If a significant error is discovered, we aim to correct it and republish within a matter of a few days. If a minor error is discovered, we’ll correct it as part of our programme of regular updates.

The Padpilot ATPL(A) Offering


The Padpilot ATPL(A) course is designed to cater for modular distance learning or integrated students. The books are the same for both, the difference is in how they are used.

Because each book assumes no prior knowledge – other than that contained in Padpilot’s STEM-A book – distance learning students have enough content at their disposal to absorb and understand even the most complex topics.

End-of-chapter summaries and electronic quizzes consolidate essential syllabus knowledge covered in the chapter. Regular progress tests administered via the PadpilotACE leaning management system provide a more formal test of the student’s progress and allow ATOs to monitor their progress and performance.

Customised test or additional remedial tests can be uploaded by schools for use by their distance learning students. End of subject exams are conducted via the LMS which produces certificates indicating successful completion.

Customised test or additional remedial tests can be uploaded by schools for use by their distance learning students. End of subject exams are conducted via the LMS which produces certificates indicating successful completion.

The fully editable classroom presentation sets can be adapted and repurposed for in-class brush-up sessions.


ATOs offering integrated training can follow the lesson order set out by Padpilot or can adapt it to their own requirements. Progress tests can be taken online in-class to provide an audit trail.

The Padpilot classroom presentation sets provide a rock solid basis for lesson plans which cover the entire course. A detailed Excel spreadsheet gives a fully customisable hours breakdown for the course which helps for planning purposes and compliance audits.


ATOs who contract with us receive an on-boarding pack comprising:

  • A set of 16 digital books covering the entire EASA ATPL(A) syllabus.
  • Editable classroom presentation sets in Apple Keynote incorporating text, all the images and animations from the books and links to the online 3D models.
  • An online learning management system (the PadpilotACE LMS) which uses non-proprietary modules to deliver the 46 progress tests and 14 final exam papers. Tests and exams are drawn from our own custom database of 5300 questions tailored to the EASA 2020 syllabus.
  • A complete set of on-boarding materials comprising:
    • A training manual annex, detailing the course structure for distance learning.
    • A training manual annex detailing the course structure for full time courses.
    • The Padpilot ATO Interface Compliance Monitoring Manual which sets out the relationship between Padpilot and the ATO and the QA procedures which the ATO must demonstrate to its Authority.
    • A certificate of compliance with the EASA syllabus.
    • A series of Excel spreadsheets reconciling each and every EASA LO to a numbered paragraph in a Padpilot book.
    • A series of help videos detailing how to use the LMS.

We’ll walk you though all aspects of on-boarding and continue to help your teaching staff as they bed down the new courseware.

The Padpilot ATPL(A) Books

At Padpilot, we believe that the knowledge which underpins flight training matters. Airlines want pilots with more than just exam passes; an intelligent approach to the operation and the ability to navigate unexpected challenges is paramount.

Padpilot theory books deliver exceptional results, both in the regulatory exams and, later, on the flight deck. Our manuals build a solid understanding of the theoretical knowledge syllabus in the context of the modern airline industry.

Student engagement and long-term knowledge retention are enhanced by the interactive features throughout, that bring the theory off the page, and into 3D.

We publish digital books only, because a lot of our content is interactive. Printed books simply can’t deliver the same learning experience.

Our ATPL(A) theory books are available in two different editions:

  • The original 1st Edition for the old/current theoretical knowledge syllabus (expires June 2022)
  • The new 2nd Edition for the EASA 2020 syllabus with updated content and new features.

The Padpilot ATPL books are:

  • Air Law
  • Aircraft General Knowledge: Electrics
  • Aircraft General Knowledge: Engines
  • Aircraft General Knowledge: Airframes and Systems
  • Basic Instrumentation
  • Advanced Instrumentation
  • Mass and Balance
  • Flight Planning and Monitoring
  • Human Performance and Limitations
  • Meteorology
  • General Navigation
  • Radio Navigation
  • Operational Procedures
  • Principles of Flight
  • Communications (IFR and VFR)
  • Aeroplane Performance

Download a free sample of any of our books here