Prospective students of 2-year associate's degree programs in electrical engineering technology might wish to consider programs that are approved by ABET Inc., formerly the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, which might be preferred by professional certification boards or employers. These programs' laboratory experiences allow for hands-on education. In some cases, credits from associate's level programs could be transferred to a 4-year university.
Applicants to associate's degree programs need a high school diploma or equivalent. Some programs may have basic math and science requirements as well. Once accepted, students may have the option to choose a specialization, such as power generation or automation.
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Associate's Degree in Electrical Engineering Technology
Aspiring students learn practical applications of math and science, as well as the principles of designing, maintaining and installing electrical devices and systems. They also learn how to use the tools necessary for professional work in this field. Coursework can include:
- Computer-aided drafting or design
- Digital logic
- Computer programming
Popular Career Options
An associate's degree program in electrical engineering technology is designed to prepare an individual for entry-level work as an electrical engineering technician. These specialists can pursue work in industries such as engineering services, manufacturing and power generation. While many individuals work as general technicians, others specialize in a specific area. Experienced technicians may advance to leadership positions. Some possible career options include:
- Instrument and controls technician
- Test technician
- Relay tester
- Electrical technician
Job Outlook and Salary Information
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that electrical and electronics engineering technicians earned a median annual salary of $61,130 as of May 2015. The BLS also reported that the number of employed workers in this field is expected to drop by 2% from 2014-2024.
Continuing Education and Certification Information
Some schools offer a 2+2 program, which allows students to transfer all their credits toward the completion of a bachelor's degree program in electrical engineering technology, which some positions may require.
Bachelor's degree programs in electrical engineering are also available and can prepare students to become engineers rather than engineering technicians. Possible certification for an engineering technician could come through an organization such as the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies, which may help professionals prove their competency to potential employers.
Graduates of an associate's degree program in electrical engineering technology have the math, science and engineering skills necessary to work as electrical engineering technicians. Graduates can also pursue a bachelor's degree and/or certification if they would like.