Automotive technology programs are designed to prepare students for careers in the auto repair and maintenance industry. Auto techs usually work in auto repair shops, car dealership, or corporate vehicle maintenance settings. They are typically responsible for the inspection, diagnosis, repair, and maintenance of vehicles, and may also handle customer service duties and administrative tasks.
Iowa Auto Mechanic Schools
- Hawkeye Community College: The two-year program at HCC culminates in an Associate of Applied Science in automotive technology. It also offers an option for students to transfer to the University of Northern Iowa's four-year program in industrial technology.
- Northeast Iowa Community College: The NICC program awards graduates an AAS degree and helps prepare them to take the ASE certification exam.
- Kirkwood Community College: KCC's five-term program results in an AAS degree. The program also offers manufacturer-specific partnerships with Toyota, Honda, and Snap-On tools.
- Des Moines Area Community College: DMACC offers manufacturer-specific certificate programs with Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler, as well as specialized programs in auto mechanics, diesel technology, and collision repair.
- Iowa Central Community College: The auto tech program at Iowa Central is a four-term, degree-granting curriculum that results in an AAS degree.
- Iowa Lakes Community College: The auto tech AAS curriculum at ILCC is designed to be completed over five terms: two academic years with a summer term between them.
- Western Iowa Tech Community College: The Auto Mechanic at WIT is not an AAS program, but rather a three-term diploma program that prepares students with instruction in basic auto repair skills.
- Eastern Iowa Community Colleges: EICC offers four different auto technology tracks: a two-year AAS program, a three-term diploma track, and two three-term certificate options.
What to Expect from Iowa Auto Mechanic Programs
The goal of most automotive technology programs is to prepare students to diagnose and repair the major vehicular systems. Students can expect to receive instruction in the following areas:
- Engines and power trains
- Transmissions and brakes
- Suspension and steering
- Electronics and electrical systems
- Fuel systems and emissions systems
- Heating and cooling systems
Along with classroom-based lessons, programs often include hands-on training in an automotive workshop or garage. This gives students the opportunity to apply what they have learned while gaining experience working on actual automobiles.
Iowa Auto Mechanic Certification
Automotive technicians in Iowa are not required to be licensed. However, in order to qualify for certain jobs, they may need a degree, diploma, or certificate. The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence's ASE Certification is the industry-standard certification, and most degree programs aim to prepare students to take the ASE exam. To qualify for the test, techs must have at least two years of on-the-job experience, or a combination of one year one-the-job experience and a two-year degree from an accredited automotive tech program.
Resources for Auto Mechanics in Iowa