Civil Drafting Course and Class Descriptions

Civil drafting courses prepare students to use computer-aided drafting (CAD) programs to make maps for projects in construction and civil engineering. These courses are normally taken as part of a full certificate or degree program.

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Essential Information

Civil drafting courses are commonly offered within the curriculum of a computer-aided drafting (CAD) or civil and architectural drafting certificate or associate's degree program at a community college or technical institute. Both of these programs meet the educational requirements for working as a civil drafter and can be completed in two years or less. Students may also attend a 4-year school to pursue a more comprehensive bachelor's degree in drafting with a concentration in civil drafting. Some schools offer fully online programs.

Programs often include hands-on lab experience with the hardware and computer software drafters utilize in the workplace. Students may also receive training in traditional drafting and 3-D modeling. Civil drafting programs may also incorporate seminars, a final project and an internship. Graduates may go on to pursue civil drafting certification from the American Design Drafting Association.

Here are some common concepts taught in civil drafting courses:

  • Fundamentals of CAD and Revit software
  • Roadway design
  • Reading blueprints
  • Plumbing, electrical and HVAC systems design
  • Drawing floor and foundation plans

List of Courses

CAD Introductory Course

This course provides an overview of the CAD software used in fields such as civil engineering, architecture and design. Students learn the basic skills to originate and edit drawings. Course topics address layers, dimensioning variables, file management and coordinate systems. While not required, experience with the Windows operating system is strongly recommended.

Introduction to Civil Drafting Course

In this course, participants learn the fundamental theories and procedures of civil drafting. While focusing on manual drafting theory and techniques, the course may also cover software programs. Students learn to use engineering and surveying data to draw plans for civil engineering projects. Specific areas of study include plan and profile drawings, cross-sections and legal descriptions. Participants have the opportunity to work on various types of civil drafting projects while studying the creation of plans, profiles and topographic maps.

Civil CAD Course

Once students have gained a general understanding of CAD software, they learn how it can be specifically applied to civil drafting projects. They use surveyed data to develop civil design drawings, including plan and profile cross-sections, flat and topographic maps, and subdivision maps. Those who complete this civil drafting course come away with a finished set of drawings.

Advanced Civil Drafting Course

This class expands upon the civil modeling concepts taught in lower-level CAD courses. Students learn how to design roadway vertical and horizontal alignments, grade lines, profiles, side slopes and other elements. Industry-standard software is used to create profile and plan drawings of subdivisions, parcel maps and other designs. In addition to cut and fill calculations, grading plan design and data query, this courses covers the development of topographic maps from converted point files.

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