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Degree Overview: Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) Degree in Diesel Technology

Majors Overview January 4, 2014

Receive information on service technicians and diesel mechanics who are proficient in repairing engines that are found in large equipment and heavy vehicles. Students that want to pursuit a career in Diesel mechanics and technology is recommended to earn an A.A.S. degree in Diesel Technology.

A.A.S. Programs in Diesel Technology

Students enrolled in a 2-year Associate of Applied Science Degree Program in Diesel Technology are provided with the technical skills and knowledge base they would need for installing, maintaining and repairing marine, industrial and construction equipment and vehicles. The basic techniques of diesel engine maintenance are imparted to students who can thereafter apply those techniques in workshop settings under supervision. They can expect to become adept at identifying diesel engine issues, devising a corrective plan and repairing the engine by implementing the plan.

An associate’s degree program in diesel technology covers many skills and processes including those related to refrigeration, fuel injection, chassis maintenance, brakes service, engine overhaul and transmission repair. Those interested in assuming managerial positions in may also benefit by completing an associate’s degree program in the field.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require applicants to hold a GED certificate or high school diploma. Students enrolled in these programs offered at vocational schools and community colleges are also expected to complete at least two years of high school-level English, math and science classes.


Coursework relating to an associate’s degree program in diesel technology covers the vocational skills necessary for working on vehicles with diesel engines with a combination of classroom instruction and practical hands-on training and may include topic areas such as:

•Diesel electronic fuels
•Shop skills lab
•Fuel systems
•Truck chassis
•Diesel air conditioning systems
•Diesel engine technology
•Heavy duty brake systems

Job and Wage Outlook

A slower-than-average job growth of 15% has been predicted for diesel technicians and mechanics during the period from 2010 to 2020 (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Job opportunities in the field are expected to be brighter for individuals with a formal educational background. In 2012, there were more than 230,000 diesel mechanics and technicians employed in the United States, who earned an average annual wage of about $42,000.

Continuing Education Choices

It is not legally mandatory for diesel mechanics and technicians to obtain certification before being allowed to practice their trade; however, many of these professionals volunteer for certification to showcase their skills and knowledge in the field. Interested diesel technicians can aim for a credential specifically targeted at them by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. Passage of an exam and two years of experience are needed to acquire the credential.

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