Coronavirus update – Exams & Classroom courses

BGS is open – we’re accepting new students & orders   This page was last updated: 24/07/2020

To keep candidates and staff safe, we require anyone sitting exams at BGS to follow our updated Terms and Conditions, as well as our social distancing measures. Please read them here.

UK CAA exams

Many students will have received notification from the CAA that their exams have been cancelled as a result of the CAA cancellation of the second exam sitting each month at BGS. The CAA first mentioned cancelling the second sitting of each month in May claiming falling demand; we did question this in the light of a rising backlog and a reduction in available places from 12 to 6 candidates per sitting due to Covid 19 measures.

In June the CAA confirmed their decision to cancel the second sitting each month and, despite reminders that students needed to be informed, were still accepting bookings for these sessions as late as last week. BGS does not control the booking system or notifications to students and, unfortunately, we do not have access to the booking system to warn students.

The combination of Covid 19 measures and the cancellation of the second session each month has reduced the monthly exam seating capacity to 25 % at BGS. We agreed to extend the July sitting to 5 days with some additional evening sittings sessions and have now offered increased numbers of days in August to October inclusive to ease the backlog and help the CAA with forward planning. We have also asked if some priority can be given to BGS students who have had their exam bookings cancelled. Any queries regarding the cancellation of exams and the availability of alternative bookings should be made directly to the CAA.

Accelerators replaced by webinars

Due to the ongoing coronavirus restrictions we have had to, with regret, cancel accelerator weekends – they are replaced by online webinars. These are available for BGS students who’ve purchased a module or full course.

This includes access to our extensive library of recorded webinars.

Questions can be asked during live webinars, and BGS staff are available to answer questions via the BGS student Facebook group.

Find out more about webinars

Online revision weeks

The Revision Weeks will go ahead as programmed but will be conducted via live webinar, following the normal Revision Week timetables starting daily at 08:30 and concluding at 16:40, Monday to Friday.

Revision weeks are available to BGS students who’ve purchased a module or full course.

3 – 7 August: Module 1 – Fixed Wing and Helicopter

10 – 14 August: Module 2 – Fixed Wing

24 – 28 August: Module 2 – Helicopter

Our revision weeks will be presented online until further notice. As Government and NHS guidelines develop we will continue to review the situation and when able to offer classroom tuition once again we will do so.

UK CAA and Austro Control Exam Schedule

Below is the schedule for exams and revision courses that have been confirmed so far.

3 – 7 August UK CAA exams – BGS students have priority for exams on 6 & 7 August

17 – 19 August Austro Control exams are confirmed on these dates and will be going ahead.

7 – 11 September UK CAA exams

21 – 24 September Austro Control exams

5 – 9 October UK CAA exams

Revision courses will be run online until further notice.

You can view all UK CAA exam sittings on the CAA website

Easing of lockdown restrictions

The Government have now clarified the rules for easing the lockdown. While hotels and B&Bs have started to reopen, social distancing remains in force, including at Bristol Groundschool when conducting exams.

We are running online revision weeks for BGS students who’ve purchased a full course or module – find out more on our revision courses page.

If anyone has any other questions or difficulties with this please contact Alex Whittingham by email at to discuss.

Crediting webinars and online tutorials to ‘classroom time’

The UK CAA have allowed us to replace the classroom courses with online learning so that the mandatory 10% of course time can still be credited. Live webinars are available throughout the working week and a library of recordings is also available. Only live webinars and tutorials can be counted towards the classroom time. This permission goes with our approval and means that webinars can be used prior to exams with any EASA State.

Classroom Hours Requirement

You must complete a total of 650 hours of learning for your ATPL theory. 10% (65 hours) of this must be ‘classroom time’. This works out at a minimum of just under 22 hours per Module.

Currently live webinars can count towards the classroom hours requirement, but recorded webinars do not.

If you have already attended a revision week at Bristol Groundschool this week credits you 32 hours and accelerators are 6.5 hours a day.  Therefore, if you have completed two revision weeks, discounting accelerators, you would need 1 hour of extra webinars.

Someone approaching Module 2 exams who has already done 1 revision course, discounting accelerators, would need 12 hours of webinars to hit the minimum.

Accelerator weekends (both days) count as 13 hours, or 6 hours 30 mins if you attended 1 day.

Students will be able to add up their current attendance to work out their remaining hours requirement before sitting the exams.

Getting close to your 18-month time limit?


Because Covid-19 has resulted in cancellations and delays to exams, candidates who have the UK as State of Licence Issue  (SOLI) and who have already started their Flight Crew Theoretical Knowledge Examinations will be permitted an additional 6 months to complete their exam series extending it from 18 to 24 months.

Details on the conditions of this exemption and how to request are detailed in ORS 4 NO 1353.

Other States have made similar announcements extending deadlines by between 4 and 6 months.

Austro Control

With reference to the constant changes and restrictions in connection with the outbreak of Covid-19, we would like to inform you about the current developments regarding our examination centres. Austro Control has submitted to EASA an “Exemption” based on Article 71(1), which we would like to add accordingly:

All candidates who have taken at least one examination with Austro Control GmbH before 23 March 2020 shall be granted an automatic 6 month extension to the 18 month period.


The IAA have also permitted an additional 6 months to complete their exam series extending it from 18 to 24 months. Details on the conditions of this exemption and how to request it are in their statement

View the IAA statement


Alex talks to Pilot Career News about training and webinars

Advice for students

Head to our blog to look at our general advice for students who are in flight training, about to start, or have just finished. View the post here.

For specific information about exams and revision weeks at BGS, please scroll up.

Online orders are still being taken

We are continuing to process and dispatch any orders made through our website. We will update this page in the event that this changes.

Public Health England advice

View UK Government guidance on coronavirus