American Mechanic Schools

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2014-15 Guide to Online Mechanic Schools

guide to online mechanic schools
Are online mechanic schools the right choice for you? If you have asked yourself this question, you are not alone. There are thousands of people each year that are asking this same question. Let’s take a closer look at online mechanic programs and the answer may surprise you.

Not everyone is cut out to go to an online school. It takes dedication, time and responsibility knowing that you must study without being prodded by schedules or teachers. Sure it sounds great to take a class still in your pajamas or sitting at that coffee shop, but it really takes more than that to successfully utilize distance learning to gain a useful education.

Online mechanic schools are no different than most other online programs. In this guide we will discuss the most frequently asked question that most people have on online mechanic schools. We will cover topics such as the advantages and disadvantages of online schools, what to look for and the kind of classes you can expect to take. Knowledge is power and knowing what to expect can help save you in the long run.

If you have any additional questions on online mechanic schools, please drop us an email and we will get back with you soon.

What Are Online Mechanic Schools?

It might surprise more than a few of you that there are online mechanic schools that you can attend. Online schools are virtual learning centers where you as a student is able to take your classes on the internet. This means that you can study anywhere or at any time of the day as long as you have a computer and an internet connection.

Generally the quality of education in one of the accredited online mechanic schools is the same as you would find at traditional campus-based programs. The classes you need to complete will be the same and more than likely you will even use the same exact material to learn with.

One thing that might not be the same is the hands-on experience you normally receive while attending a traditional school. This issue can be avoided by making sure that any of the online mechanic schools you plan on attending also includes some shop time. We’re very happy to report that most of the accredited online mechanic schools actually require you to undertake some campus-based instruction such as shop time.

Be aware that some of the online mechanic schools might not meet the national certification standards so you may not be properly trained for your career choice. However, this doesn’t mean that all of the online mechanic schools are a waste of time. By learning to know what to look for, you can easily find some of the online mechanic schools that will prepare you for an amazing career.

Reasons to GoAdvantagesDisadvantagesWhat To Look ForQuestions to Ask

Why Attend Online Mechanic Schools?

Typically those who enroll in online mechanic schools do so for a few reasons. No matter the reason, online mechanic schools can be a way to start training for that new job right now.Some of these reasons could be:

  • There isn’t a training program near where they live
  • They want to change jobs but must continue to work full-time while training
  • They have other responsibilities during the day making going to school difficult
This chart shows both the total and online enrollment of post-secondary institutions that offer degree programs. Notice the growth in the number of online students.

Year

Total
Enrollment
Annual
Growth
Students Taking
At Least One
Online Class
Online Enrollment
Increase from
Previous Year
Annual Growth
Rate of Online
Enrollment
Online Students
as a Percent of
Total Enrollment
2008 19,102,811 4.7% 4,606,353 668,242 16.9% 24.1%
2009 20,427,711 6.9% 5,579,022 972,669 21.1% 27.3%
2010 21,016,126 2.9% 6,142,280 563,258 10.1% 29.2%
2011 20,994,113 -0.1% 6,714,792 572,512 9.3% 32.0%

Source: Changing Course: Ten Years of Tracking Online Education in the United States
by: Babson Survey Research Group, Pearson and Sloan-C

What Are Some Advantages of Mechanic Programs Online?

Over the past decade or so, online learning has becoming more popular. Programs like online mechanic schools have seen their student enrollment continue to rise with each passing semester. A major reason for the increased popularity of distance learning programs have to do with the definite advantages or benefits that is part of the online student experience.

Below we will list out some of the top advantages of enrolling in online mechanic schools. The choice is really up to you and your learning style. You can use this list to find out what appeals to you the most.

Advantages

  • Flexible Class Schedules: You can set up your study time so it doesn’t conflict with work and family
  • Student Centered Learning: You control the learning experience
  • Self-Paced Learning: You study at the pace that is comfortable to you on any given subject
  • Comfort Level: You have the ability to learn in your pajamas or next to the pool
  • Convenience: Nothing is more convenient that studying from home
  • No Commute: No worries about traffic, finding a parking spot or walking through terrible weather
  • Anytime, Anywhere: Class materials are available 24/7 so you can study anytime and from anywhere with an internet connection and a computer
  • No Textbooks: Most of the classes in online mechanic schools do not require you to buy a physical textbook and any reading material can be found online
  • Cutting Costs: You can save money on gas, meals and even school supplies through online classes
  • Increased Communication: You may be amazed how much easier it is to talk to other students on the class forums or get quick responses from your instructors
  • Concentrate: Online courses can make it easier to concentrate on the material since you are not distracted by other students or what is happening in a classroom
  • Increased Computer Skill: You can become more familiar with computers and other technologies while taking online classes
  • Diversity: You will be able to work with or meet fellow students from around the country which can be helpful for networking
  • No Relocation: You won’t have to move away from home to go to one of the online mechanic schools you really want to go to
  • Credits: Many of the vocational schools and community colleges will allow you to transfer your credit hours earned through online education
  • Faster Learning: Most online students are able to complete their assignments and even their classes faster online than going by a regular class schedule
  • Same Education: You will find that the quality of the training is at least as good as it is at a traditional school

What Are Some Disadvantages of Mechanic Programs Online?

Online mechanic schools are not for everyone. There are some disadvantages that many students report. Here is a list of some of those disadvantages.

  • Isolation: Some students may feel isolated or alone and miss the socialization of traditional classrooms
  • Old Tech: If you have an older computer or a slow internet connection you may get frustrated quickly
  • Lack of Routine: Some students can get lost or confused without the normally rigid structure of a regular classroom
  • Lack of Interaction: If you study really late at night or in off-peak hours you might not be able to get a hold of your instructor or other students
  • Hands-On Training: A virtual classroom cannot replace hands-on experience
  • Not Tech Savvy: Those with little computer skills may get overwhelmed learning online by not understanding saving files or how to work the software
  • Motivation: Those with low motivation or just people with bad study habits can get left behind quickly and give up
  • Not Going To An Accredited School: some people do not check the accreditation status of the online mechanic school before enrolling which can lead to a waste of time and money
  • Lack of Competition: Believe it or not some of us need to compete in the classroom which helps stimulate more learning
  • Frustrations: You may not think you are improving or learning without that pat on the back by the instructor

What Should I Look For in Mechanic Schools Online?

When it comes time to pick which of the online mechanic schools you want to attend remember that not all online programs are on the same level. You want to find an online program that best suits you and can provide you a quality foundation for your career. You will need to do a little research, ask some questions and maybe proverbially kick the tires before you can pick which of the online mechanic schools is right for you.

The following list can serve as your checklist of things you should look for in any of the online mechanic schools.

  • Accreditation: This should be near the top of your list when it comes to looking at schools and is extremely important as accreditation ensures that you are getting a quality education
  • Curriculum: Compare the courses offered at the various online mechanic schools to make sure you are getting the training you want
  • Experience: You will want to find an online school that has been around for a while and have a fairly respected name in the industry
  • Success Rate: Check out the graduation and drop-out rate of students enrolled in the online school
  • Average Class Size: The instructor-to-student ratio should be somewhat low so that you are able to interact with your instructor easier
  • Career Services: Check the school’s website to see if has a career placement or career resource center to help you find employment after completing your education
  • Tech Support: Most online schools offer 24/7 tech support but you should double check to make sure
  • Tuition Cost: Compare the cost of going to school not only with other online mechanic schools but also tradition schools too so you can see if the prices are out of line
  • Feedback Policies: Every online school requires that instructors must participate in the class and provide feedback, the rate of feedback should be high so it gives you an idea on how involved the instructors are
  • Student Reviews: Do a search for online reviews of any school you are interested in and see what current and former students say about the program
  • Financial Aid: The actual amount of financial aid can be determined by the reputation and standing of the online school
  • Instructors: Check in to the background of the instructors to make sure they have both real-world experience in your career as well as certified to teach
  • Rankings: There are plenty of reputable agencies out there that provide ranking of both online and traditional schools and compare it to other schools as far as reputation, quality and how people see the school
  • Software: Online schools should be easy to navigate and lets you interact with others easily without much instruction
  • Technical Requirements: Just like buying a new video game, make sure that the tech requirements of the software will work with your computer
  • Credit Transfer: See if your credits can be transferred to another school and at what percentage
  • Alumni Network: Find out if there is an alumni association that could come in handy to network for jobs or opportunities

Questions For the Online Mechanic Program Admissions Rep

You will need to get in touch with one of the online school representatives for more detailed information. Don’t be afraid to ask questions or contact the schools directly.

  • Ask if the programs are “blended” (classes are both online and on-campus) or “open” (strictly online)
  • Ask if the classes are “synchronous” which means you have a set class schedule you must attend or “asynchronous” which means you are self-paced in your learning
  • Ask how you will be able to get in touch with your instructor
  • Ask if the school has a dedicated administrative team that will quickly return your calls or emails to answer your questions or requests
  • Ask when (what date) you can begin your training
  • Ask about financial aid and scholarships as well as what is included in your tuition such as materials
  • Ask each of the online mechanic schools if they are associated with the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE)
  • Ask if they’ve ever had any accreditation issues
  • Ask the representative about program and class availability so that you don’t get stuck waiting for the next class to open up
  • Ask them about the make-up of their certification and degree programs so you know which of these are the most popular
  • See if you can audit or take a demo class to get a feel for online education

Where Can I Find Accredited Online Schools?

You have a number of ways you can find accredited online mechanic schools. One is using the search box we have in the upper right hand of this page. We have picked out some of the top schools that offer accredited training.

Another way is checking out the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Post-Secondary Education (OPE). You can also go to any of the online school websites, look on the “About Us” page and they should have their accreditation information for you to see. Lastly, you can do a simple search on your favorite web browser (our choice is Google) for accredited online mechanic schools.

Accrediting AgenciesRequirementsClassesAwards11 Good Traits

What Are Some of the Requirements for Online Mechanic Schools?

Requirements for enrollment in online mechanic schools can vary between institutions. It is best to contact any of the online schools directly to find out their specific policy and requirements for admission. Some common requirements that we’ve seen include:

  • High school degree or GED
  • Be at least 17 years old
  • At least get the minimum score on entrance exam
  • Be able to provide letters of reference
  • Have taken high school math, science and computer classes

What is Taught in Mechanic Classes Online?

Logging in to Mechanic Schools OnlineOne of the greatest things about online education is the number of different classes you can take. While we know that you are searching for the types of classes you will most likely take while in one of the online mechanic schools, we just have to say to keep your options open. Not every curriculum for online mechanic schools are the same so the types of classes may be different. However, here are some of the classes that you most likely will have to take even though the name of the class might be different.

  • English
  • Communication
  • Math
  • Computer Science
  • Basic Automotive repair and Maintenance
  • Engine Performance
  • Electrical Systems
  • Brake Systems
  • Tools Used in Auto Maintenance
  • Ignition Systems
  • Basic Chemistry
  • Engine Colling Systems
  • Safety
  • Business
  • Supervision
  • Charging Systems
  • Suspension and Chassis Systems
  • Emissions and Environmental Safety
  • Lubrication and Fuels

What Can I Get From Online Mechanic Schools?

For the most part there are four levels of awards for those in online mechanic schools. Please note that not every online school has all four of these levels of awards. Some schools only offer diplomas while others have certificates and associate degrees. It is best to ask the school representative for a list.

  • Diploma
  • Certificate
  • Associate Degree
  • Bachelor Degree

Good Traits to Have to Be a Successful in Online Courses

One thing to remember about online mechanic schools or any distance learning program is that it is unlike a traditional school. You will not have the regime of a classroom or a set class schedule to keep you on track. Below are 11 of the top traits that you should have if you want to be a success in online education.

  1. Motivated: You must want to learn and know that you have to make it happen instead of waiting around for someone to tell you to study
  2. Time Management: Budget your schedule so that you can carve out some time to study and do your lessons
  3. Become Focused: Have a place that you normally study that doesn’t have distractions (looking at you, TV) and strictly pay attention to class material
  4. Writing Skills: It is very important that you are able to communicate effectively in the written word
  5. Be Organized: Keep all your class materials and anything else you use to study where you can find it quickly so you don’t have to keep interrupting your class time to find something you need
  6. Tech Skills: You don’t have to be a master computer whiz but you must feel comfortable enough around computers to be able to effectively work with one
  7. Reading Comprehension: Most of the classes you will take online will involve reading so being able to read and understand what you just read is very important
  8. Tenacity: Being persistent is an important trait not only in online learning but in real life, this is the ability to overcome stress or glitches to succeed
  9. Speaking Up: You may be the greatest student ever but at some point you may need assistance, being able to speak up and ask for questions or help can make your training go easier
  10. Discipline: Make studying a habit so that it becomes second nature
  11. Self-Starter: Besides motivation, you need to keep at it every day so you will need to make yourself study instead of continually finding excuses other than studying

Are Mechanic Schools Online Right for You?

Is going to one of the online mechanic schools the right choice for you? That isn’t for us to decide. You should take an inventory of your own self and decide if online mechanic school will help you prepare for your career.

Some people who want to work in the mechanic field take only part of their classes online. They choose the hybrid approach by taking the theory classes online and going to the campus for the practical or hands-on training. To us this seems the best approach especially if going to school full-time isn’t really an option.

Whatever choice you make, it has to be the best one for you, your current situation and your career goals. Take time and decide. If you feel that attending one of the online mechanic schools is the right thing, then you can enroll by using our search in the upper right hand section of this page to get in touch with a school rep quickly.

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