Want to Get Certified? Try These Popular Electrician Certifications

Certification is a requirement for any professional conducting electrical work, but with so many options available, it’s easy to become confused. As an electrician ponders his career, he may wonder which direction is best.

As you consider your licensing options, here are a few benefits of each of the most popular electrician certifications. Each state has its own licensing requirements, so check with your governing licensing board to determine what you will have to do to reach each level.

Assistant Electrician

Many electricians start out as an apprentice, working while they achieve their certification.  An apprenticeship program is generally a multi-year process that combines work with classroom learning. Many technical schools with electrician programs offer apprenticeship programs to allow entry-level electricians to gain on-the-job experience while still learning the information they’ll need to do the job.

An electrician is required to work a minimum number of hours for completion, usually collecting industry standard apprentice-level rates for the work. The apprentice may be required to work with a local company to ensure he gets the minimum hours per week he needs to complete the program. Until he achieves his license, the apprentice will be required to work under the supervision of a licensed electrician.

Certified Electrician

Once an electrician has hundreds of hours as an electrician, he’ll qualify to supervise assistant electricians and apprentices. This level of certification also requires a minimum number of hours of safety training. Once an electrician advances to this level, he is responsible not only for his own safety, but the safety of those under his supervision.

An electrician will generally be required to pass a qualifying exam before advancing to this level, but having this certification can qualify him for more advanced jobs. This is a great way for an electrician to move forward in his career, bringing in higher pay and gaining additional respect.

Master of Electrician

Eventually, an electrician may choose to advance to “master” level in order to oversee projects and earn a more lucrative paycheck. A minimum level of experience is necessary to qualify for this certification, as well as an extensive education in worksite safety and building regulations. A master electrician is often required to oversee a project, as well as supervise other electricians.

Not all electricians will choose to advance to master level. Some electricians are born leaders, while others prefer to work as part of a team. Once he has his master certification, an electrician often takes on greater responsibility.  Some masters decide to open their own business, employing electricians and apprentices, while other masters work directly for contractors.

At any level, an electrician tackles challenges with ease, keeping worksites safe and working in collaboration with other electricians. Whether an electrician chooses a residential or commercial career, he has many opportunities for advancement within that career. With so many career paths available, the life of an electrician can include the exact types of jobs he wants. An electrician should check with his local governing boards to determine the exact requirements he’ll be expected to meet before he can achieve certification.