Associate Degree in Car Mechanics
Learn about associate's degree programs for aspiring car mechanics. Find out about coursework and career prospects in order to make an informed decision about your education.
Associate's degree programs in this field may be offered in automotive repair or automotive technology. These degree programs can prepare students for entry-level jobs as automotive technicians and mechanics. Through a combination of classroom instruction and hands-on training, students have the opportunity to gain knowledge and skills for performing diagnostic tests and repairs.
Some programs include an internship where students can become proficient in communication and customer service as well as automotive repair. These 2-year programs are typically available at technical schools and community colleges. An applicant must have a high school diploma or GED.
Students in such a degree program can learn how to diagnose, service, test and repair vehicles and their mechanical systems. Typical core courses may include:
- Engine performance
- Automotive brakes
- Steering and suspension
- Automotive service operations
- Electrical and electronic systems
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Upon graduation, students can be qualified for entry-level positions in repair shops and dealerships. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS), employment of automotive service technicians and mechanics was expected to increase by 17% from 2010-2020 (www.bls.gov). Despite the increase in technology and number of cars in use, the consolidation within the automobile industry might have a negative impact on growth. In May 2012, the BLS reported the annual median salary for these technicians and mechanics was $36,610.
The BLS states that certification from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) is standard among automotive technicians (www.ase.com). Applicants do not need to fulfill specific education requirements, but they do need to pass the certification exam as well as possess a minimum of two years of experience. In certain instances, formal training may be substituted with work experience.
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