Electricians install, maintain, and repair electrical systems in homes and businesses. They install, repair, and replace wring and lighting systems, inspect electrical components, and troubleshoot electrical problems using various testing devices. Any person doing electrical work must be state-licensed either as an apprentice-trainee, journeyman, or master electrician. Some electricians begin their career by enrolling in a basic electrical or electrical safety program at a vocational training or technical school. Such programs must be in compliance with the National Electrical Code. Coursework may include electrical safety practices, circuit planning, electrical energy theory, wiring methods, and blueprints. Graduates from electrical training programs typically receive a certificate or diploma and credit toward their apprenticeship.
Electricians must complete a three to five year supervised apprenticeship which includes a set number of hours of both classroom and on-the-job training. In most states, in order to qualify for an apprenticeship, an applicant must be a high school graduate or the equivalent, 18 years of age, and physically capable of performing an electrician’s work. Each state’s department of licensing and regulation should have a list of local electrical apprentice training programs.
Many schools offer online and on-campus continuing education courses for electricians. These courses cover safety practices, changes to the electrical code, and training in products used in the trade. Requirements for maintaining licensure and continuing education varies state-to-state.