Flight simulatorFlight Simulator

The Microsoft Flight Simulator is located on the Innovation Station, J.D. McKean Library, Room 102. It is available for walk-up use; no reservation is needed.

The  Flight Simulator has a re-creation of the entire planet in-game using high resolution satellite imagery. This simulator accuracy allows you to explore geography worldwide and identify landmarks from pyramids of Giza all the way down to your own house.

The simulator incorporates many historical aircraft, including the original Wright Flyer, Lindberg's Spirit of St. Louis and others. While it includes many  military aircraft from WWI,WWII, and the  modern era, this is not a combat simulator. A collection of 'local legend' aircraft representing significant aviation history representing aircraft from around the world is also available.

There are no guns, bombs or missiles on these aircraft.

Students can use the simulator to stretch their understanding of a variety of STEM subjects in a fun, but authentic environment. The avionics depicted in some of these aircraft closely resemble the actual systems found in airliners, corporate jets, and general aviation aircraft.

In addition to learning how to pilot an aircraft, there are many opportunities to explore history, geography, science and technology, all while enjoying amazing scenery.

Student Skills

Critical Thinking -- Decision-Making -- Eye-Hand Coordination -- Situational Awareness -- Confidence Building -- Spatial Awareness -- Problem Solving

The Flight Simulator replicates the experience of flying an aircraft and, although it is designed for entertainment purposes, it supports many student skills.

  • Students assess situations, analyze information, and make strategic decisions as they fly around the country or world. They may need to make decisions based on changing weather conditions, emergencies, and navigation changes.
  • As a gaming pilot, they manages instrument and controls, simultaneously.
  • When flying, students need to have a constant awareness of their instruments and surrounding, and monitors the controls accordingly.
  • As students learn new technology and develop their skills advancing to higher levels of "piloting," their confidence increases.
  • By interpreting three-dimensional spatial information, students can develop spatial awareness.
  • Problems-solving skills are developed as the "pilot," or student, navigates and responds to challenging weather and complex terrains.



Aji, C. A., & Khan, M. J. (2019). A Flight Simulator-Based Active Learning Environment. Open Journal of Social Sciences, 7(3), 192-203. https://doi.org/10.4236/jss.2019.73016

Korteling, H. J. E., Helsdingen, A. S., & Sluimer, R. R. (2017). An Empirical Evaluation of Transfer-of-Training of Two Flight Simulation Games. Simulation & Gaming, 48(1), 8-35. https://doi.org/10.1177/1046878116671057