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Degree Overview: Associate of Arts (A.A.) Degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering Technology

Majors Overview December 9, 2013

Those in this field create and design electrical components, such as communication devices, computer parts, and medical equipment. Community colleges usually provide Associate of Arts (A.A.) degree program and arrange entry-level work for graduates in industries that produce or use electronic devices.

A.A. Programs in Electrical and Electronic Engineering Technology

Coursework in Associate degree programs in electrical and electronic engineering; popularly referred to as electronics or electrical technology, combines classroom lectures and hands-on laboratory training. Some programs involve participation in internships in local firms, whereby students are given the opportunity to practice the skills and knowledge learned during their studies in a real-world environment. Some programs allow graduates to transfer credit earned in the associate degree program toward completing a bachelor’s degree program in a related field. Admission criteria typically require applicants to hold a GED certificate or high school diploma. A few programs offer classes in online format to facilitate students interested in distance learning.

Coursework

Coursework focuses on teaching students about the way engineering components work, and the way the power generation of electronic devices such as computers depend on electrical energy. Students are expected to take classes in electronics, mathematics and physics before they can begin the core coursework of the associate degree program thereby learning how these disciplines correspond. Coursework commonly includes topic areas such as:

•Electricity distribution
•Computer and networking technology
•Micro-processing
•Control, digital and memory systems
•Alternating and direct current circuitry
•Voltage, amp and power measurements

Job and Wage Outlook

Job growth is expected to grow by two percent for electrical and electronic engineering technicians during the period from 2010 to 2020 (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)). While a continued high demand for electronic devices is expected, the job growth this could entail is expected to be offset by competition among qualified workers, outsourcing to other countries and the emergence of more effective designs. In 2010, an electronics technician earned an average annual income of $56,040 (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

These professionals can enhance their employment opportunities by earning a bachelor’s degree in engineering technology or electronics engineering whereby graduates could seek project manager or production engineer positions. At several schools, degree completion programs are offered for the benefit of associate degree graduates.

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