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Associates Degree Programs in Computer Aided Drafting

Associate's degree programs in computer-aided drafting offer students instruction in mechanical and architectural drafting techniques through hands-on work. Programs prepare students for entry-level careers or further education.

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Essential Information

Introductory training in computer-aided drafting, or CAD, is available through 2-year associate degree programs. These CAD programs train students in design and manufacturing processes. The career-oriented associate degree programs also train students in problem solving, since design modifications are required throughout the development stages of a product. Some programs include study of such related fields as mathematics, metallurgy and communications. Graduates can pursue further education or get an entry-level drafting job with this degree.

Applicants are required to be high school graduates or holders of an equivalent qualification. CAD programs do not typically require the submission of ACT or SAT scores.


Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Architectural Drafting and Design
  • CAD Drafting and Design Technology
  • Civil Engineering Drafting and Design
  • Mechanical Drafting and Design

Associate's Degree in Computer-Aided Drafting and Design

Associate degree programs in computer-aided drafting and design are most commonly available at 2-year technical and community colleges. Courses in CAD associate degree programs cover a wide spectrum of drafting and design types, preparing students for multiple career options upon graduation. Common courses may include these:

  • 3D graphic design
  • 2D graphic design
  • Technical drawing
  • Architectural drafting
  • Electronic drafting

Popular Career Options

Graduates of associate degree programs in computer-aided drafting can pursue entry-level careers working alongside engineers in a variety of positions, including the following:

  • Mechanical drafter
  • Engineering aide
  • Electronics drafter
  • Structural designer
  • Civil drafter

Continuing Education Information

Upon completing an associate degree in computer aided drafting and design, an individual can pursue further education at the bachelor's degree level in CAD or a related field. Most drafting jobs require only an associate or bachelor's degree. Though certification is infrequently required, the American Design Drafting Association (ADDA) offers certification through the Drafter Certification Test; the test covers foundational drafting concepts, including design terminology, geometric construction and industry standards. Additionally, some students pursue degrees in engineering or architecture at the bachelor's or master's degree levels.

Associate degree programs in computer-aided drafting and design cover the basics of computer drawing, drafting, and design. Graduates can easily pursue bachelor's or master's degrees in engineering or architecture, or work entry-level jobs working with engineers.

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