How Do I Become a Master Electrician Online?

Only very skilled and experienced electricians are eligible for master electrician licensure. Most of your training will occur during an apprenticeship, and prospective master electricians also need to pass a licensing exam. Schools offering Electrician degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Overview

If you're interested in becoming a master electrician, there really aren't any ways to complete training through online courses. Typically, electricians are trained through apprenticeship programs. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov), apprenticeships typically combine hands-on training with courses in an electrician training program.

Apprenticeships

When you become an electrician's apprentice, you should expect to complete about 144 hours of classroom experience in addition to 2,000 hours of work experience annually for about four years. Once you've completed your apprenticeship, you can then work in construction, for an electric company, or as a contractor. If you're unsure how to find apprenticeship opportunities, many private electrical contracting companies sponsor apprenticeships. You may also look into organizations like the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), Independent Electrical Contractors (IEC), and the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).

Training and Academic Programs

Part of your apprenticeship is likely to be devoted to an electrical training academic program. Community colleges and technical schools around the country offer these programs; however, you're not likely to find any courses offered online due to the hands-on skills required by the work. In an academic program, you can expect to take courses on electrical safety, commercial and industrial electrical systems, and math used in electricians' work.

Licensing

You'll find that many states require electricians to be licensed. In order to obtain this credential, you'll need to pass an exam that tests your knowledge of national electrical code, electrical theory, and local building codes. Because local and state governments license master electricians, exact requirements for carrying the title vary by region. For example, some states require contractors to have master electrician's licenses, while others permit less-qualified electricians to hold that title.

Most states will require you to have a minimum of seven years of job experience. Some states may also require you to have at least a bachelor's degree in a field related to electrical work, such as electrical engineering. The National Electrical Contractors Association outlines the National Electrical Installation Standards (NEIS) on its website (www.neca-neis.org). This resource includes a state-by-state summary of licensing requirements in the United States.

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