If you are wanting to earn an auto repair degree, you obviously have a strong interest in cars or how things work from a mechanical perspective. When selecting a degree, you have a couple of options. If getting a degree quickly matters to you, a certificate or diploma program would be the best option. On the other hand, if you have more time and would like a more extensive study in being a mechanic or repairing automobiles, an associate of applied science is the way to go. An associate’s degree can take anywhere from two to four years to complete, depending on the program.
As you study, you can concentrate on getting an overview of skills or gravitating towards a specific area of focus, such as fixing or replacing car brakes or air conditioning. Mechanics must know how to work on both the manual and electronic parts that make up a car. Some mechanics may work on commercial vehicles, while others work on heavier machinery, such as construction vehicles. With an auto repair degree, you could work for a high-end auto dealership or retailer, work for a smaller independent auto shop, or even go into business for yourself. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, mechanics earned a median salary of $37,850 in 2015.
Today, many schools offer hybrid auto repair programs allowing students to complete some coursework virtually at their own pace while completing hands-on work in a traditional campus setting. Examples include Universal Technical Institute, Penn Foster Career School, and New England Institute of Technology, just to name a few.
Once you get your degree, you should also seek certification from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence – it will show potential employers how dedicated you are to your craft. Typically, you will need to have a couple of years of work experience under your belt, but if you’ve chosen a longer school program, you may be eligible to apply.
Ready to find the right online school to earn your auto repair degree at? Check out some of our best picks over here.