Drive your career goals with a real-world skill set.

Auto Tech students learn in the classroom and the lab, can earn Automotive Service Excellence certification and attend the Detroit Auto Show.

Learning Environment
Through classroom and lab experiences, students may have the opportunity to take tests to gain State of Michigan certifications. Students should have good reading and problem-solving skills. Most work is done indoors but is often dirty and greasy, and may require long periods of standing.

What's It Like?

Instructor Don Maurer says:
“This course is a combination of classroom work and hands-on learning. Every student, no matter what his or her current level of knowledge and experience, will learn new things. Whether you want to be a premiere mechanic or you just want to understand your vehicle, this course will provide you with those skills. You will also have the opportunity to take both the state and national certification tests. Automotive technologies are constantly changing, so basic reading and math skills are very important. A car is the second most expensive thing you will ever purchase; you should understand what costs you so much money.”

Automotive Technology

Students learn to diagnose problems involving a car’s electrical and electronic systems, brakes, engine performance and suspension and steering. Skill development focuses on repair of drums, disc, hydraulic, power assist and anti-lock brake systems, as well as electrical systems. Applied skills include math, communications, technology and teamwork
in a professional setting.

As long as people drive cars, the high demand for qualified Automotive Service Technicians isn’t going anywhere. Auto mechanics diagnose and repair problems in vehicles such as transmissions, brakes, front ends, radiators, and electrical systems. It is a demanding job and there are many opportunities to advance.

Course Overview

Students study automotive maintenance and light repair, incorporating entry-level development in seven areas of repair, including engine repair; automatic transmission/transaxle; manual drive train and axles; suspension and steering; brakes; electrical; and heating and air conditioning. Skill development focuses on diagnosis and repair of drum, disc, hydraulic, power assist and anti-lock brake systems, as well as electronics, voltage, current, resistance, series and parallel circuits, magnetism, application of Ohm’s Law and wiring diagrams. This course is designed to improve communication, math, decision-making, thinking, reading, writing, work ethics, team-building skills, and safety attitudes. Math and reading are a large part of this class, which prepares students for positions working with brake systems, vehicle maintenance, and electrical systems. It is possible to earn college credit while completing this course.


It is if you... with accuracy to fix things
...can accept responsibility
...can work under stress
...are detail oriented
...can communicate in a friendly way
...can perform a variety of duties
...have good reading skills
...are good at problem solving

Potential Careers
Participation in Automotive Technology can help prepare you for jobs in areas like:

  • Brake Systems
  • Vehicle Maintenance
  • Electrical Systems
  • Engine Repair
  • Transmission Repair
  • Auto Sales
  • Suspension and Steering Repair
  • Heating and Cooling Repair
  • Service Management / Service Writing
  • Parts Management and Sales

And with further training and education:

  • Heating/Air Condition Systems
  • Master Mechanic
  • Engine Rebuild
  • Management
  • Front End Repair
  • Automatic Transmission

Primary Units of Instruction (lecture, demonstration and lab work):

  • Tool/Equipment & Shop Safety
  • Circuits (series and parallel)
  • Customer Service
  • Diagnoses of Malfunctions
  • Wiring and Vacuum Diagrams
  • Automotive Careers
  • Brakes and Braking Systems
  • Work Ethics
  • Electrical Circuit Repair
  • Electronic Fundamentals
  • System Maintenance

Length of Program:
One Year, two semesters; second year is optional for qualified students

Program Schedule:
A.M. Session - 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
P.M. Session - 12:05 p.m. - 2:40 p.m.

Going to college? Start with CTE

College Partnerships

  • Delta College
  • Ferris State University
  • Kirtland Community College
  • Mid Michigan Community College
  • Northwestern University of Ohio
  • Universal Technical Institute

It is possible to earn articulated college credit through an articulation agreement between CTE and many Michigan community colleges and universities. This credit can only be granted after successful completion of the CTE program and future enrollment at a college or university that has a current articulation agreement with Clare-Gladwin CTE. See your school counselor for more information.

Students in Automotive Technology have the opportunity to earn Automotive Service Excellence student certification.

Who’s Up For a Second Helping?
Students interested in returning for the program’s second year must:

  • Have 10 or fewer absences and fewer than three tardies in the second semester of Year One
  • Have a ‘C’ average or better each semester
  • Be an effective and collaborative team member, stay on task, have good work ethics and maintain safety requirements
  • Complete classroom requirements

High School Credit and CTE Certification
Students may earn the state-required fourth-year math-related course credit through this program. Local schools will award high school credit upon successful completion of this program. The CTE Certificate of Completion will be awarded to students who successfully complete their programs.