Fabrication technicians use blueprints to shape material involved in the assembly of finished products for a wide variety of industries. Relevant training for this career is most commonly available through metal fabrication and welding programs.
Schools with Fabrication Technician Programs
Fabrication technician programs in the United States are offered at a number of institutions, including those listed here.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered*||Undergraduate Tuition** (2015-2016)|
|Everett Community College||Everett, WA||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||In-state $3,643; Out-of-state $8,981|
|Moraine Park Technical College||Fond du Lac, WI||2-year, Public||Diploma, Associate's||In-state $4,322; Out-of-state $6,295|
|San Juan College||Farmington, NM||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||In-state $1,474; Out-of-state $4,114|
|South Seattle College||Seattle, WA||4-year, Public||Bachelor's||In-state $4,130; Out-of-state $9,550|
|Eastern Florida State College||Cocoa, FL||4-year, Public||Certificate||In-state $2,496; Out-of-state $9,739|
|Wiregrass Georgia Technical College||Valdosta, GA||4-year-Public||Certificate, Diploma||In-state $2,734; Out-of-state $4,870|
|Tallahassee Community College||Tallahassee, FL||2-year, Public||Certificate||In-state $2,026; Out-of-state $8,062|
Sources: *School websites, **National Center for Education Statistics
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School Selection Criteria
When choosing a fabrication technician program there are several things to consider.
- Prospective students may want to find out about the school's lab facilities, in order to ensure that they will gain hands-on experience with the latest computer-aided design (CAD) software, lathes, dies, drill presses and power saws.
- Students may want to find out what the pass rates are for graduates on voluntary certification exams, such as that offered by the American Welding Society
- Some programs offer courses in specialized areas of the field, such as pipe welding, so it is important for students to evaluate the curriculum and choose a program based on their academic interests.
- Students who are considering certificate programs may want to find out if credits can be applied to associate's degree programs in the future.
Certificate programs in metal fabrication and welding technology cover the basics of weld fabrication. Students take basic courses in welding theory, materials and testing, and lift truck operator. They also get hands-on fabrication training, learn to read blueprints and gain experience with common industry software. At some schools, there are more advanced certificates for experienced fabricators who want to boost their expertise in the field.
Associate's Degree Programs
Students in Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Welding programs take basic conceptual courses in mathematics, thermodynamics and metallurgy. These programs provide the same general introductory coursework and practical training as most certificate programs. However, students must also take general education coursework in topics such as communications and composition. In total, associate's degree programs take two years of full-time study to complete.
It is possible to prepare for a career as a fabrication technician by completing a certificate, diploma, or associate's degree program in fabrication technologies or welding. It is important for prospective students to review program classes to ensure that the course of study fits with their long-term career goals.