Carpentry School: Degree and Certificate Program Overviews

Discover carpentry certificate and degree program information here. This article discusses program coursework and popular career options as well as employment outlook and salary statistics.

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Essential Information

Carpentry is a construction trade that is focused on the building and installation of wooden structures and fixtures, including building frames, cabinetry and flooring. Many community colleges, trade schools and vocational schools offer certificate or associate's degree programs in carpentry wherein students can learn skills in remodeling, maintenance and code compliance.


Certificate in Carpentry

Certificate programs in carpentry provide students with the necessary skills for entry-level careers in the carpentry trade. They emphasize proper tool use, job site safety and basic construction practices. Some programs provide opportunities fir students to enter journeyman apprenticeship programs. A high school diploma or equivalent is required for admission.

Program Coursework

The curriculum in certificate programs focuses specifically on skills necessary for the carpentry trade, although a basic math course may also be required. Courses include the following:

  • Blueprint reading
  • Framing
  • Interior finishing
  • Cabinet making
  • Construction methods
  • Estimating
  • Construction materials
  • Safety

Popular Career Options

Carpenters may take on specialized roles, such as framer or finish carpenter. They can also work in general carpentry. Those with more experience and additional training may work as general contractors or operate their own small carpentry businesses. Other job outcomes might include the following:

  • Cabinet maker
  • Construction foreman
  • Building superintendent
  • Construction estimator
  • Project manager

Associate's Degree in Carpentry

Associate's degree programs in carpentry provide the technical skills necessary for a carpentry job, as well as general education courses that can be beneficial in any work environment. The program covers carpentry techniques, construction theories, workplace safety and business principles as related to the carpentry industry. A high school diploma or the equivalent is required to enter the program.

Program Coursework

Courses cover the specific skills used in carpentry along with general education coursework, such as technical math, writing and computers. Carpentry topics include the following:

  • Alternative construction materials
  • Basic welding
  • Roofing, floors and walls
  • Stair systems
  • Concrete work
  • Metal framing
  • Contracting laws
  • Environmental issues and solar construction

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expected a 20% job growth rate during 2010-2020 for carpenters (www.bls.gov). Carpenters in areas of the U.S. with large populations were expected to see good job opportunities. As of May 2012, the median annual salary for carpenters was $39,940, according to the BLS.

Certification and Continuing Education

Carpenters who complete formal apprenticeship programs become certified journeymen. Continuing education opportunities are offered by a number of professional trade organizations, such as the Home Builders Institute, the Associated General Contractors of America and the Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.

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Popular Schools

  • School locations:
    • Online Learning
    • Ohio (1 campus)

    Online and Classroom-Based Programs

    • Bachelor
        • Bachelor in Construction Management
        • Bachelor in Construction
    • Associate
        • Associate in Construction Technology

    What year did you graduate from high school?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be 17 years of age or older
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be 18 years of age or older
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    What is your highest level of education?

Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • Montana (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at The University of Montana include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Construction Management and Trades
        • Carpentry
        • Property Management and Maintenance
      • Heavy Equipment Maintenance
      • Precision Metal Working
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
  • School locations:
    • Mississippi (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Pearl River Community College include:
      • Non-Degree: Coursework, Diploma
      • Undergraduate: Associate
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Construction Management and Trades
        • Carpentry
        • Electrician
      • Heating, Air Conditioning, Ventilation, and Refrigeration Maintenance
      • Precision Metal Working
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
  • School locations:
    • Michigan (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Northern Michigan University include:
      • Graduate: Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Construction Management and Trades
        • Carpentry
        • Electrical Systems Lineworker
        • Property Management and Maintenance
      • Heating, Air Conditioning, Ventilation, and Refrigeration Maintenance
      • Heavy Equipment Maintenance
      • Precision Metal Working
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
  • School locations:
    • Alaska (2 campuses)
    Areas of study you may find at University of Alaska include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Construction Management and Trades
        • Carpentry
      • Electrical Repair and Maintenance
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
  • School locations:
    • Wisconsin (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Milwaukee Area Technical College include:
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Construction Management and Trades
        • Cabinetmaking
        • Carpentry
        • Concrete Finishing
        • Drywall Installation
        • Electrical Systems Lineworker
        • Electrician
        • Glazier
        • House Painting and Wall Paper
        • Masonry
        • Metal Building Assembly
        • Pipefitting
        • Roofer
      • Electrical Repair and Maintenance
      • Heating, Air Conditioning, Ventilation, and Refrigeration Maintenance
      • Heavy Equipment Maintenance
      • Precision Metal Working
      • Vehicle Repair and Maintenance
  • School locations:
    • California (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Stanford University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering
      • Biomedical and Medical Engineering
      • Chemical Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
      • Electrical Engineering and Electronics
      • Environmental Engineering
      • Industrial Engineering
      • Materials Engineering
      • Math
      • Mechanical Engineering
      • Petroleum Engineering
      • Systems Engineering
  • School locations:
    • Massachusetts (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Harvard University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
      • Math

Popular Schools

Avg. Wages For Related Jobs

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

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