Railroad Conductor Degree Program Information
Railroad conductors manage the operation of freight and passenger trains. The railroad conductor associate degree program, though rarely available, is the most advanced degree program offered in this field.
Associate Degree in Railroad Conductor
Students in a railroad conductor associate degree program learn about railroad conducting as it pertains to both freight and passenger trains. This includes career-oriented training in a variety of skills, including personnel management, fare collection, weight distribution management, locomotive technology use and traffic monitoring. Most programs include opportunities for hands-on field experience.
Railroad conductor degree programs are usually offered at 2-year technical and community colleges. Applicants are required to possess high school diplomas or the equivalent. Though not typically required for admission, prior education in computers, mathematics and physics can be helpful in this field.
Associate degree programs for aspiring railroad conductors provide students with broad knowledge of the technical, legal and service aspects of the job. Common courses include the following:
- Introductory railroad conductor service
- Railroad safety and standards
- Railroad operations fundamentals
- General code of operating rules
- Railroad conductor mechanical operations
- U.S. railroad history
- Railroad conductor field experience
Career Outlook and Salary Information
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that there were an estimated 40,800 jobs for railroad conductors and yardmasters in 2010; that number was expected to grow 5% from 2010-2020 (www.bls.gov). While increased demand for both freight and passenger rail was expected, the need for conductors was expected to be offset by increased automation in rail technology. In May 2012, railroad conductors and yardmasters had median hourly wages of $26.30, according to the BLS.
Continuing Education Information
Most new railroad conductors complete training programs offered by their employers. While locomotive engineers are federally required to hold licenses, railroad conductors are not. This is expected to change, however, because of recently enacted federal legislation. Future railroad conductor licensure may require passing a series of tests, similar to the process for locomotive engineers; this licensure process would test an individual's competence in areas including railroad operations knowledge, hearing and vision.
Related to Railroad Conductor Degree
- Recently Updated
Railroad conductors are in charge of rail operations, scheduling, recording and monitoring the traveling cargo or passengers...
Learn what railroad conductors do and the skills required to become a conductor. Find out about education, training and...
A freight conductor assesses the mechanical functioning of a freight train. He or she works in conjunction with other railroad...
Railroad technicians perform a variety of tasks related to railroad construction, evaluation and maintenance. They generally...
- Become a Railroad Engineer: Step-by-Step Career Guide
- How to Become a Music Conductor: Education and Career Roadmap
- Music Conductor: Job Description, Duties and Salary Information
- Technical Support Specialist: Job Duties & Career Info
- Diagnostic Radiologist: Employment Info & Requirements
- Quality Testing Technician: Job Description & Career Requirements
- Q.A. Manager: Job Info and Requirements for a Career in Q.A. Management