Mortician Training and School Information

Dec 12, 2019

Morticians - also known as embalmers, funeral directors or undertakers - are responsible for the preparation and disposal of the deceased, as well as attending to the survivors by organizing funeral and burial services. Mortician training programs focus on preparing students by training them in the classroom as well as providing on-the-job training.

There are very few schools in each state that offer programs in mortuary science, so the selection process is limited. Individuals may find undergraduate degree programs in this subject at select community colleges and universities.

10 Schools with Mortuary Science Programs

These colleges offer mortuary science programs at the certificate, diploma, associate and bachelor's degree levels.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition and Fees 2018-2019*
University of Arkansas Community College - Hope Hope, AK 2-year, Public Associate's $2,830 in-district, $3,070 in-state, $4,090 out-of-state
Miami Dade College Miami, FL 4-year, Public Certificate, Associate's $2,838 in-state, $9,661 out-of-state
Southern Illinois University Carbondale, IL 4-year, Public Bachelor's $14,704 in-state, $29,160 out-of-state
Community College of Baltimore County Baltimore, MD 2-year, Public Associate's $4,276 in-district, $7,110 in-state, $10,204 out-of-state
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities Minneapolis, MN 4-year, Public Bachelor's $14,760 in-state, $30,438 out-of-state
Hudson Valley Community College Troy, NY 2-year, Public Associate's $5,812 in-state, $13,087 out-of-state
Fayetteville Technical Community College Fayetteville, NC 2-year, Public Diploma, Associate's $2,544 in-state, $8,688 out-of-state
Mount Hood Community College Gresham, OR 2-year, Public Associate's $5,441 in-state, $10,346
American Academy McAllister Institute of Funeral Service New York, NY 2-year, Private Associate's $17,085
Mercer County Community College West Windsor, NJ 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's $4,206 in-district, $5,394 in-state, $7,638 out-of-state

Source: *National Center for Education Statistics

School Selection Criteria

Students should consider the following when selecting a mortician school:

  • Students should search for programs that have been accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education (ABFSE,, which is the only accrediting organization for morticians accepted by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council on Higher Education Accreditation.
  • Research state licensure requirements and how a mortuary science degree can help an individual earn licensure. Programs should prepare students for licensure.
  • Some programs might offer internship opportunities for students. Internships not only give valuable work experience, but may help students acquire state licensure.
  • Programs may require students to meet certain prerequisites, such as completing a background check.

Mortician Program Overviews

Associate of Applied Science in Mortuary Science

An Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Mortuary Science program typically lasts 2.5-4 years. Students must have completed general education requirements prior to enrollment in an AAS program, and most programs specify that students have completed introductory courses in psychology, accounting and anatomy. Students will receive their associate's degree after successfully completing the program and passing the National Board Examination.

Bachelor of Science in Mortuary Science

A Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Mortuary Science program typically lasts four years. During the first two years, students must complete their general education requirements; the last two years are spent within the mortuary science program. Programs prepare students for the National Board Examination and provide practical knowledge and training through lectures and labs.

Mortuary science degrees typically take two-to-four years to complete, and must be completed at accredited schools in order for students to qualify to take the certification exam and become licensed. Students should look for programs that prepare them for licensure and offer internships for experience.

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