How to Choose an Instrumentation School or Course

Instrumentation commonly refers to devices used in an array of machines and electronic mechanisms that control and operate systems efficiently and safely. Learn how to select the right school, programs available and typical coursework.

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Students interested in the field of instrumentation technology can enroll in a certificate, associate degree or bachelor's degree available at several colleges and universities in the U.S.

Schools with Instrumentation Technology Programs

Instrumentation technology programs can be pursued at these schools.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition (2015-2016)
Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology Okmulgee, OK 4-year, primarily associates, Public Bachelor's In-state: $4,860*; Out-of-state: $10,470*
Lamar Institute of Technology Beaumont, TX 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's In-state: $4,401*; Out-of-state: $13,761*
Houston Community College Houston, TX 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's In-district: $1,632; In-state: $3,360*; Out-of-state: $3,756*
San Jacinto College Pasadena, TX 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's In-district: $1,408; In-state: $2,416*; Out-of-state: $3,688*
Victoria College Victoria, TX 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's In-district: $2,640; In-state: $4,050*; Out-of-state: $4,650*
Delaware Technical Community College Dover, DE 2-year, Public Certificate In-state (per credit): $139.75**; Out-of-state (per credit):$349.50**
Pearl River Community College Poplarville, MS 2-year, Public Associate's In-state: $2,855*; Out-of-state: $5,253*
New River Community College Dublin, VA 2-year, Public Associate's In-state: $4,352*; Out-of-state: $10,190*
Salt Lake Community College Salt Lake City, UT 2-year, Public Certificate $2,432.93 (program)**

Sources: *National Center for Education Statistics (NCES); **School Websites

School Selection Criteria

There are a number of important things to consider when choosing an instrumentation program.

  • Certificate programs in instrumentation technology focus on core principles while associate and bachelor's degree programs offer core coursework with a wide selection of elective coursework.
  • Internship opportunities that allow students to work with trained professionals in specific areas of the industry are more commonly available through degree programs.
  • Review the facilities to determine that the latest technology is being incorporated into your training.

Certificate in Instrumentation

Certificate programs in instrumentation can usually be completed in 1-2 semesters. Coursework includes basic topics in electricity, measurement, equipment management and logic controllers.

Associate Degree in Instrumentation

Associate degree programs feature courses in mathematics and chemistry, as well as more advanced topics in instrumentation. Internship opportunities may be available, and curricula include general education courses.

Bachelor's Degree in Instrumentation

Bachelor's degree programs combine coursework in engineering, mathematics and technology. Some schools offer concentrated studies, such as instrumentation, management or surveying. A capstone project or internship may be required for successful completion.

Choosing an instrumentation program begins with determining which level of credentials are best suited to your goals. Location, cost, facilities and internship opportunities may also play a factor in making a decision on a program in this field.

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