Open to high school graduates, electrician courses can be found at community, vocational and technical colleges. Topping out at about 5-12 months, the shortest training options are a diploma or certificate, but there are associate's degree programs that are 2 years long. Additionally, there are apprenticeships that may last 4 years. Some schools offer standalone electrician courses through their continuing education divisions.
Common topics covered in these courses include:
- Electrical safety
- Principles of DC/AC electricity
- National Electrical Code
- Cabling and wiring
- Electrical system design
- Trigonometry and algebra
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List of Classes
Electrical Safety and Tools Course
This course covers general and accepted safety rules and practices for working with electrical circuits. Students gain a thorough understanding of federal, state and local safety rules and regulations. The selection and use of hand and power tools for electrical wiring as well as the instruments used for electrical measuring are addressed.
Commercial Wiring Course
Students learn commercial and industrial wiring through the examination of building plans. They also examine the wiring of appliances and equipment in a commercial structure. Areas of study include safety procedures, grounding techniques, over-current protection and raceway panel board installation. The course may include a lab section wherein students can practice wiring.
Blueprint Reading Course
This course teaches students to read electrical blueprints. The class uses the National Electrical Code manual, the national safety standard for electrical wiring used by national, local and state law. Curriculum covers circuit analysis, branch circuit calculations, electrical theory and load calculations. A lab component affords students the opportunity for hands-on experience wiring a building according to blueprints.
Photovoltaic (PV) Theory and Systems Design Course
As solar energy becomes a more viable alternative to the electrical energy supplied by power plants, there is an increasing need for people who know how to install PV systems. This course provides an introduction to the various types of photovoltaic cells and how they are put together to form modules. Students learn how to use the National Electrical Code to design and install PV systems correctly. This combination lecture and lab course prepares those interested in solar energy installation to take the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Entry Level Certificate of Knowledge test.