Construction Technology Degrees: Bachelor's, Associate & Online Class Info

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What will you learn in a construction technology degree program? Read about degree requirements, the pros and cons of an associate's and bachelor's degree and potential careers.
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Studying Construction Technology: Degrees at a Glance

Construction technology degree programs will give you the educational foundation you need to begin a career in construction or advance within your current job. You will learn about topics such as surveying, safety, estimating and construction materials. You may also be required to complete a construction internship to gain hands-on experience.

The study of construction technology is intended for construction professionals who wish to enter a variety of different fields and industries. Degrees in construction technology can prepare you for careers such as construction managers, construction inspectors or cost estimators. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted that construction managers would see average job growth of 17% from 2010-2020 because buildings are becoming more energy-efficient and roads and sewer systems require updating.

Associate's Bachelor's
Who is this degree for? Individuals who wish to begin an entry-level position or transfer to a baccalaureate degree program Those who want to advance in their career
Common career paths (with approx. mean salary)* - Construction and building inspectors ($55,000)*
- Surveying and mapping technicians ($42,000)*
- Construction equipment operators ($46,000)*
- Construction managers ($94,000)*
- Cost estimators ($63,000)*
Time to completion2 years, full time4 years, full time
Common graduation requirements - Liberal arts courses
- Internship
- Professional/technical courses
- General education courses
- Research project
Prerequisites - High school diploma or GED- High school diploma, GED or associate's degree
Online availability NoNo

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2011).

Associate's Degree in Construction Technology

An associate's degree program in construction technology will prepare you for an entry-level construction job. While some of these jobs require a high school diploma and on-the-job training, a degree can aid in advancement. Employers may not require certification, but it is becoming increasingly popular and may help you get a job after graduation. Internships completed in undergraduate programs may also replace work experience, so you can get started on your career faster. With an associate's degree, you may need several years of experience before earning a management position.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • An associate's degree program can help you advance in your career
  • Internships provide hands-on experience and may be substituted for work experience
  • On-campus laboratories allow you to work with building materials and tools

Cons

  • Experience may be valued over education
  • Some employers require a bachelor's degree for construction managers
  • An associate's degree is not necessary to begin some construction careers

Courses and Requirements

Liberals arts courses such as English, math, history, science and public speaking are required in any associate's degree program, and an internship may be necessary. Major courses may include:

  • Computer-aided residential drawing
  • Architectural graphics
  • Statistics and strength of materials
  • Principles of wood frame construction
  • Construction blueprint reading
  • Estimating and specifications
  • Construction law and contracting

Online Degree Options

Online associate's degree programs in construction technology are not available. This is because construction is a hands-on profession, and on-campus programs generally provide laboratories and equipment for you to use. Internships are also a requirement, which necessitates that you are available to be on campus or at a job-site throughout the day.

Stand Out with This Degree

In addition to work experience, certification is an excellent way to stand out above the competition. Associations such as the Construction Management Association of America and the American Institute of Constructors offer certifications and designations to individuals who pass certain examinations. These certifications tell employers that you are competent and knowledgeable about your area of expertise. Additionally, focus on new construction technologies can give you an edge and make you more desirable to potential employers.

Bachelor's Degree in Construction Technology

Students in a construction technology bachelor's degree program will gain a comprehensive understanding of construction materials, energy conservation, design, management and product technology. Graduates of these programs will be prepared to work as professionals in the construction industry. They may pursue careers such as business and construction managers, designers and researchers. Many programs are now also focusing on green initiatives and sustainable environments, so you will learn about building energy-efficient buildings. A bachelor's degree is not necessary to begin working in the construction industry, and experience on a construction site may be required.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • A bachelor's degree prepares you for managerial positions in the construction industry
  • Senior projects allow you to focus on your area of interest
  • A background in energy conservation may make you more desirable to employers

Cons

  • A bachelor's degree is typically unnecessary to begin a career in construction
  • Work experience is necessary to work up to positions of management
  • Certification may also be required

Courses and Requirements

In addition to general education courses in English, math, science and history, students will take courses in computer-aided drafting and design, which prepare them to become construction professionals upon graduation. The curriculum also includes management courses such as industrial organization and total quality management, so graduates can lead a team of construction personnel. Senior projects and hands-on learning supplement your education. Typical coursework may include:

  • Properties of wood
  • Energy efficient housing
  • Architectural blueprint reading
  • Mechanics of building materials
  • Indoor environmental systems
  • Construction project management

Online Degree Options

Online bachelor's degree programs in construction technology are not available. This degree program requires you to work hands-on with building equipment and materials. As a result, it is typically necessary that you are on campus to take advantage of all the college or university has to offer.

Stand Out with This Degree

Studying new or emerging technologies in the construction field is an excellent way to stand out above your competition and be desirable to potential employers. Many construction technology degree programs offer a focus on energy efficient building materials and technologies, which is becoming more and more popular as people are concerned with 'going green.' For your research project, it is a good idea to concentrate on these new developments, which you can then add to your resume.

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. Thomas Edison State University

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • ASAST in Nuclear Engineering Technology
      • ASAST in Nuclear Engineering Technology
  • Online Programs Available
    2. Excelsior College

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • Nuclear Engineering Technology / MBA dual degree
      • AAS in Technical Studies (Nuclear Technologies/Power Plant Technologies)
      • AS in Science in Technology (Power Plant Technologies)
  • Rochester, NY

    Rochester Institute of Technology

  • Okmulgee, OK

    Oklahoma State University

  • Youngstown, OH

    Youngstown State University

  • Orlando, FL

    Valencia College

  • Akron, OH

    University of Akron Main Campus

  • Dryden, NY

    Tompkins Cortland Community College

  • Big Rapids, MI

    Ferris State University

  • Texarkana, TX

    Texarkana College

Featured Schools

Thomas Edison State University

  • ASAST in Nuclear Engineering Technology

What is your highest level of education completed?

Excelsior College

  • Nuclear Engineering Technology / MBA dual degree
  • AAS in Technical Studies (Nuclear Technologies/Power Plant Technologies)
  • AS in Science in Technology (Power Plant Technologies)

What is your highest level of education completed?

Youngstown State University

Valencia College

University of Akron Main Campus

Tompkins Cortland Community College