B.S. in Unmanned Systems Applications

Worldwide Embry-Riddle Bachelor of Science in Unmanned Systems Applications

Once the domain of military and government agencies, unmanned systems have entered the civilian and commercial sectors and are transforming the world as we know it. From the driverless cars roaming our streets to the unmanned aircraft soaring through our skies to the robotic rovers operating on distant planetary bodies, leading enterprises all over the world rely on unmanned systems for critical aspects of their operations. Yet we’ve only scratched the surface of what these systems can do.

As one of the first-degree programs to focus on this promising field, the Bachelor of Science in Unmanned Systems Applications (BSUSA) focuses on the growth, innovative development, and effective use of unmanned system technology across the respective domains (air, space, ground, and maritime). The focused curriculum addresses major challenges within the industry, including interoperability, autonomy, airspace integration, communications, education and training, propulsion and power, teaming, and regulation. Students will choose from three distinct learning tracks:

  • Administration - Focuses on managerial aspects of unmanned systems applications.
  • Operations - Focuses on task-oriented mission planning and execution in unmanned systems operations.
  • Development – Focuses on engineering and design aspects of unmanned systems.

BSUSA graduates will be prepared to help develop and apply the advanced technologies necessary to support the growing and dynamic needs of the industry. They will also be qualified to help guide the policies and regulations that govern this emerging field.

Students are also eligible to engage in cooperative study/internships and may elect to seek out those enriching opportunities.

BSUSA students who wish to continue on to a master's degree may enroll in the BSUSA to MSUS 4+1 program as outlined in this program.


General Education

General Education
Embry-Riddle courses in the general education categories of Communication Theory and Skills, Humanities, Social Sciences, Physical and Life Science, Mathematics, and Computer Science may be chosen from this list, assuming prerequisites are met. Courses from other institutions are acceptable if they fall into these broad categories and are at the level specified.
Communication Theory and Skills
ENGL 123English Composition3
HUMN 330Values and Ethics3
Humanities elective3
Social Sciences
ECON 210Microeconomics3
Social Science elective3
Physical and Life Science
PHYS 102Explorations in Physics3
Physical Science Elective3
MATH 140College Algebra3
MATH 142Trigonometry3
Computer Science
Take one of the following courses to satisfy Computer Science requirements. The course used to satisfy the General Education Computer Science requirement cannot also be used to satisfy a Core/Major or Minor requirement.3
Introduction to Computers and Applications
Introduction to Computing for Data Analysis
Computer and Network Technologies
Total Hours36


Program Core
ASCI 309Aerodynamics3
UNSY 315Unmanned Aircraft Systems and Operations3
UNSY 316Operational and Business Aspects of Unmanned Aircraft Systems3
UNSY 318Unmanned Aircraft Systems Robotics3
UNSY 410Unmanned Systems Sensing Technology3
UNSY 205Applied Physics for Unmanned Systems3
UNSY 307Unmanned Systems Networking3
UNSY 311Unmanned Ground Systems and Applications3
UNSY 313Unmanned Maritime Systems and Applications3
UNSY 331Unmanned Systems Legal and Regulatory Compliance3
UNSY 405Unmanned Systems Operational Environments and Conditions3
UNSY 415Unmanned Space Systems and Application3
UNSY 431Unmanned Systems Human Factors Considerations3
UNSY 491Operational Applications in Unmanned Systems3
STAT 211Statistics with Aviation Applications3
RSCH 202Introduction to Research Methods3
Total Credits48

Tracks of Study

Tracks of Study **36
Students will select from one of three available tracks of study, each containing a total of 12 courses (36 credit hours). Students will fulfill six (6) required support courses (18 credit hours) within the track of study and will fulfill six (6) additional courses (18 credit hours) by selecting one of the available minors and making up remaining credit shortage with upper level electives (300 or 400 level courses). ** Students who select the Development Track will complete 19 credits and will complete 121 total degree requirements.
Students will chose from the respective list of available minor (selection of existing minor within the WW catalogue) to complete their chosen track requirements. Course requirements for the selected minor are as outlined in the minor description (within the Worldwide catalog), with which students will have to comply. The depicted number (in parenthesis) of additional electives that result from each choice of minor is for reference only and is based on current course/credit requirements for the minor and course/credits requirements already accomplished in the BSUSA Program Core and/or Track support. (This number of remaining electives may be subject to changes with catalogue changes to a minor).
Total Degree Requirements **120

View Suggested Plan of Study

Administration Track

MATH 112Applied Calculus for Aviation3
SFTY 311Fundamentals of Occupational Safety and Health3
MGMT 221Introduction to Management Information Systems3
MGMT 311Marketing3
PMGT 325Concepts and Practices of Project Management3
MGMT 390Business Law3
Total Credits18
Available Minor for the Administration Track (with courses from existing minors)18

Aviation Safety (no electives)
Helicopter Operations and Safety (no electives)
Small Unmanned Aircraft System (sUAS) Operation (no electives)

Operations Track

MATH 112Applied Calculus for Aviation3
SFTY 311Fundamentals of Occupational Safety and Health3
UNSY 319Cybersecurity and Countermeasure Considerations3
UNSY 321Unmanned Systems Localization and Path Planning3
UNSY 325Unmanned Systems Testing and Inspection3
UNSY 421Unmanned Systems Mission Planning3
Total Credits18
Available Minor for the Operations Track (with courses from existing minors) 18

Aviation Safety (no electives)
Helicopter Operations and Safety (no electives)
Small Unmanned Aircraft System (sUAS) Operation (no electives)

Development Track

Development **
MATH 241Calculus and Analytical Geometry I4
CESC 220Digital Circuit Design3
ENGR 101Introduction to Engineering3
ENGR 115Introduction to Computing for Engineers3
SFTY 326System Safety3
UNSY 329Unmanned Systems Computation and Programming3
**Students who select the Development Track will complete 19 credits and will complete 121 total degree requirements.
Total Credits19
Available Minor for the Development Track (with courses from existing minors) 18

Aviation Safety (no electives)
Helicopter Operations and Safety (no electives)
Small Unmanned Aircraft System (sUAS) Operation (no electives)

BSUSA-MSUS 4+1 Program: A Unique Opportunity

This program is for exceptional students who are committed to continuing their education through the Master’s degree. This fast-paced program allows qualifying students the opportunity to complete both the Bachelor of Science in Unmanned Systems Applications (BSUSA) and the Master of Science in Unmanned Systems (MSUS) in five academic years.

After spending three academic years in undergraduate-level study, BSUSA students who are accepted in the BSUSA-MSUS 4+1 program option will be allowed to take up to three (3) MSUS courses to replace an equal number of remaining BSUSA courses during their senior year. The selected courses can only replace BSUSA minor requirement or additional electives in each respective BSUSA track and may not replace program core or track support courses. Before selecting the courses to be taken, students must confer with an advisor to ensure that the courses selected are suitable and align with their selected MSUS area of concentration. A grade level average of B or better must be maintained for selected MSUS courses while enrolled in the BSUSA-MSUS 4+1 program. Any final BSUSA credit hour requirements not accomplished through MSUS course selection will have to be satisfied through upper level undergraduate electives. Upon successful BSUSA program requirement completion, students will be automatically enrolled in the MSUS program and their chosen area of concentration and can complete their degree within one year.

Students who fail in any of their selected MSUS courses or fail to maintain a grade average of B or better while still completing BSUSA degree requirements will be removed from the 4+1 program option, have credit awarded to the BSUSA degree only, and may continue to complete their BSUSA degree program. In this case, published BSUSA minor requirements and/or upper level electives can be used to fulfill remaining BSUSA credit requirements.

This special program will challenge students and develop their knowledge, skills, abilities, and attitudes in the concepts of unmanned systems while integrating their gained experience in unmanned systems applications. As a minimum to be considered for acceptance to this BSUSA-MSUS 4+1 option, applicant students must hold at least a 3.00 GPA, completed at least 88 credit hours of the BSUSA program requirements to apply and demonstrated superior academic capability.

Students initiate program acceptance through their Academic Advisor or Campus Advisor; to help ensure program criteria are met.  Student Advisor will complete the request for processing into the 4+1 program.

Estimated Cost of Attendance