What to expect from a career as an Electrician or Electrical Engineering Technician
Skilled trades are always in demand, which means a career as an electrician can open many doors. With the versatility of education in many electrician and electrical programs at Ontario colleges, you can choose to jump-start your career or spend time learning a specialty.
If you’re looking for a career in the field of electrical work and electronics, here’s what you need to know.
Electrician and Electrical Courses
Electrician and electrical engineering courses teach the basics of electronics and electrical work, with classes like solid-state electronic devices, circuit construction, digital circuits and electrical repair. You’ll learn installation and power distribution methods, learn to understand drive and control systems, and also be well-trained on workplace safety and the Canadian Electrical Code.
Hands-on projects and applications done in the lab will be a big part of the curriculum. Sophisticated AutoCAD programs offered by many institutions will help you design wiring layouts for both commercial and residential areas. You’ll also work with other leading technologies in the field, such as Programmable Logic Controllers.
General Electrician and Electrical Program Requirements
Many electrician training programs are one-year certificate programs intended to give students basic knowledge of electrical techniques in preparation for apprenticeship. Requirements include an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent, with a grade 12 English credit. Students must also be registered with the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.
Other Ontario college electrician and electrical programs are two- and three-year programs, depending on their level of specialization. These programs also require an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent, possibly including a grade 12 mathematics credit and / or grade 12 English credit. Communications, physics and other related courses are often encouraged.
Electrician and Electrical Jobs and Salaries
There are a number of electrician careers available after apprenticeship, including (but not limited to):
- Residential or commercial electrical work
- Industrial electrical work
- Quality control
Graduates of electrical engineering tech programs may choose to go in a direction other than an apprenticeship, such as working to create electrical designs of buildings and electronic devices alongside engineers and architects.
Starting salaries in the electrical field can be as low as $14 an hour, but with experience or in the right position, can run as high as the high $30s. Typically, the average salary for specialized field workers, such as industrial electricians, is roughly $25 an hour. Unionized workers can also expect higher salaries.
Ontario Colleges Offering Electrician and Electrical Programs
Use the left-column navigation to refine your search by College, Program Availability, Program Start Date and more, or see the table below for a complete list of electrician programs at Ontario colleges.