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Collision Repair Schools with Program and Course Overviews

Collision repair technicians fix damaged vehicles after an accident or natural disaster. Technicians may straighten or replace damaged panels and trim and then paint them to match the original finish. Collision repairs technicians also work on damaged suspension components.

Collision repair is typically learned through certificate, diploma or training programs. Some associate's degree programs are also available.

10 Schools with Collision Repair Programs

The following schools offer collision repair programs:

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition (2015-2016)*
Hillsborough Community College Tampa, Florida 2-year, Public Certificate $2,506 In-state
$9,111 Out-of-state
El Camino College Torrance, California 2-year, Public Certificate
Associate's
$1,142 In-state
$5,678 Out-of-state
Austin Community College Austin, Texas 2-year, Public Certificate $2,550 In-district
$9,210 In-state
$11,340 Out-of-state
Lansing Community College Lansing, Michigan 2-year, Public Certificate
Associate's
$3,020 In-district
$5,660 In-state
$8,300 Out-of-state
Butler Community College Butler, Pennsylvania 2-year, Public Certificate $4,230 In-district
$7,230 In-state
$10,230 Out-of-state
Tarrant County College Fort Worth, Texas 2-year, Public Certificate
Associate's
$1,320 In-district
$2,064 In-school
$4,920 In-state
Riverside City College Riverside, California 2-year, Public Certificate
Associate's
$1,426 In-state
$7,366 Out-of-state
City College of San Francisco San Francisco, California 2-year, Public Certificate $1,598 In-state
$7,554 Out-of-state
American River College Sacramento, California 2-year, Public Certificate
Associate's
$1,104 In-state
$7,440 Out-of-state
Long Beach City College Long Beach, California 2-year, Public Certificate
Associate's
$1,182 In-state
$7,398 Out-of-state

Source: *NCES College Navigator

School Selection Criteria

Many collision repair technicians learn through on-the-job training; however, technical training institutes and 2-year colleges offer programs in collision repair. Considerations for students in this field include:

  • Some training programs are specific to certain automotive manufacturers, like Ford or Chrysler.
  • An aspiring technician may want to seek a program that prepares them for National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence certification exams.
  • Students should consider the amount of time they are willing to invest into the program. Certificate programs are the shortest option, while associate's degrees can take roughly two years to complete.
  • A modern, well-equipped repair lab is important as a large part of hands-on student education occurs in the lab.

Information on Courses

Although there will be some classroom study, many collision repair schools do the bulk of coursework in the repair lab where students are introduced to a variety of techniques and machines in repairing damage to motor vehicles. Some collision repair schools offer such unique options as street rod repair, custom fabrication and custom chassis fabrication.

In a collision repair program, students learn how to replace or repair damaged parts on vehicles and paint them to match the original condition of the vehicle. Aspiring students may seek out collision repair programs that prepare them for certification or that emphasize a particular auto manufacturer's brand.

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