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Best 15 Automotive Trade Schools in California in 2021

April 17, 2021 | Staff Writers

Trade Schools in California
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Why automotive technology?  

With rapid innovation and technological advancement has led to the adoption of more sophisticated machines that require the knowledge of automotive technology. This ranges from the small vehicles used on the roads to the small, heavy construction machines and diverse agricultural equipment. The automotive industry understands every sphere of our lives. Knowledge in automotive can come in handy in repairing small machines and appliances at home. A degree in automotive technology from a reputable trade school can earn you career certifications and increase your employment opportunities. Students will work as professionals after graduation, having gained the skills of maintenance, repair, electrical diagnostics, and the vital workshop practices that meet the needs of the automotive technology degree.

Top 5 Automotive Trade Schools in California

RankSchoolLocation
1Skyline CollegeSan Bruno, California
2City College of San FranciscoSan Francisco, California
3Butte CollegeOroville, California
4Golden West CollegeHuntington Beach, California
5Cypress CollegeCypress, California

Why Choose California for your automotive technology career?

California is home to some major cities in the United States of America, such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Jose. Most of the cities have got a number of colleges and universities affording a great variety to choose from. California has a total of 233 trade schools that provide quality education to students from the United States and beyond. After graduation, auto mechanics and technicians can be absorbed into a number of reputable companies such as Tesla Motors, which has a factory in Fremont, California. It is also home to great cooperation such as Chevron, Wells Fargo, Apple, and Disney. The state has more than 15 million automobiles that offer great repair and maintenance opportunities for auto mechanics seeking degrees.

We have ranked the trade schools according to the cost of the tuition fee. Colleges with the lowest tuition fee are considered the best and ranked at the top.

Best 5 Automotive Technology Trade schools in California

1

Skyline College

  • San Bruno, California
  • Points: 95

Skyline College is a public institution located in the city of San Bruno, California, next to the Pacific Ocean. It has a number of programs that increase the knowledge and skills of auto technicians. The institution started in 1969 with a population of more than 17,000. This college has students from different nationalities and races. Students that will graduate with an associate degree in Automotive Technology from the institution could be eligible for a California Smoke Check License. The college has partnered with a number of automobile companies that provide great academic support. Some of the notable manufacturers are Nissan of America, Subaru of America, Mercedes Benz, Ford, and Audi of America. The Automotive program is an ASE Educational Foundation accredited program.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

School Overview

Tuition fee after aid: $ 955
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2

City College of San Francisco

  • San Francisco, California
  • Points: 93

City College of Francisco is a community 2-year institution that has a number of campuses in San Francisco, California. It started as a junior college in 1935 and serves around 10% of the San Francisco locals with a total enrollment of 27008 students. The institution offers a number of great programs of study with a graduation rate of 41%. Some of the programs offered include Genetics, Business, Floristry, and automotive technology. It offers both basic and advanced level courses in the automotive technology program. Students who graduate as automotive technicians can be employed by the well-established automotive businesses in San Francisco. The institution has a special internship program, which is Subaru specific. It boasts of an excellent job placement rate for graduates who have served their community with distinction for a period of more than 30 years.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 3,168
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3

Butte College

  • Oroville, California
  • Points: 90

Butte College is situated in the rural area of California, 120 kilometers north of Sacramento. It is one of the institutions that offer quality international education that adequately prepares their students for real life. Their academic year operates on a semester basis and has over 180 degree and certificate courses. The campus environment is quite friendly that greatly cares for and appreciates the success of their students. Butte College has a student population of 10,872. After completing college, students have got very high chances of joining California State University for further studies. Completion of the automotive technology program from the institution will enable the students to perfectly diagnose, repair, and maintain all parts of the vehicle. Their automobile training for the technicians and mechanics is done in partnership with the Professional Automotive Career Training (PACT). The students have chances of being employed at the American Honda company after completion of their automotive technology studies.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 3,888
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4

Golden West College

  • Huntington Beach, California
  • Points: 88

Golden West College was started in the year 1966, and it is located at Huntington Beach in California. It has a total student enrollment of 11,857. Students can earn degrees and certificates from 24 different fields in the college. It has a student-faculty ratio of 28-to-1. Automotive technology associate degree in the institution is made to prepare the students as entry-level technicians in the automotive industry. Practicing technicians can also advance their skills from the institutions that will enable them to comply with the licensing requirements. The institution has got competent instructors who are well versed in their areas of specialization. Gold West College has a postmodern laboratory that has the best facilities and equipment that makes learning easier and more fulfilling. After graduation, the students in the automotive technology career are offered an internship by the school at the Orange County Dealers Association (OCADA).

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 4,475
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5

Cypress College

  • Cypress, California
  • Points: 84

Cypress College is a public trade school in Cypress, California. The student population is 15,794. The institution operates on a semester basis, with the admission policy being open. It offers degrees and certificates in 25 different disciplines. Humanities and social sciences are some of the most popular courses that are offered by the college. An Automotive Technology associate degree is also offered to meet the high standards of automotive technicians. It majorly specializes in producing Toyota and Subaru auto mechanic specialists.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

School Overview

Tuition fee after aid: $ 4,745
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6

American River College

  • Sacramento, California
  • Points: 79

American River College began as a training premise for soldiers in the Second World War. It is situated at the capital of California, which is Sacramento. The undergraduate enrollment is 6,173 students. It offers degrees and certificates in over 80 academic disciplines. Automotive technology is one of the careers that is taught in the institution. Classroom and hands-on experience fully prepare the student technicians for a career in the automotive systems industry. The College also ensures that their graduates undergo an internship and work experience program.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 4,796
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7

Bakersfield college

  • Bakersfield, California
  • Points: 78

Bakersfield College is located in the city of Bakersfield, California. It has a population of 24,589 students. Students graduate with degrees and certificates from the institutions in 31 different disciplines. It does not have an application fee and operates on a semester basis. It offers business, security and criminology, management, and automotive technology associate degrees. This automotive technology program enhances the expertise and skills of the technicians in repairs, maintenance, and troubleshooting exercises.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

School Overview

Tuition fee after aid: $ 5,425
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8

Antelope Valley College

  • Lancaster, California
  • Points: 73

The Antelope Valley College is situated in Lancaster, California. It has an acceptance rate of 100%, with only 26% of the students graduating. Their automotive technology program was the first to be licensed by the Automotive Repair Coalition (ARC).

Visit https://www.avc.edu/academics/autotech for more information.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 5,961
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9

San Diego Miramar College

  • San Diego, California
  • Points: 70

The famous city of San Diego is home to the San Diego Miramar College. It has a 100% acceptance status with a student population of 2,769. Around 9% of the students do default on the student’s loan advanced to them to aid them in their studies. Some of the programs in the institution are business, medicine, and automotive technology. Their automotive technology associate degree includes some theory in class and an elaborate hands-on training that prepares the students to competent professionals in the automotive industry.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 6,155
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10

Santa Rosa Junior

  • Santa Rosa, California
  • Points: 67

Santa Rosa Junior College is located in Santa Rosa, California. The city of Santa Rosa is classified by U.S News & World Report’s list as one of the nicest places to live in the US. The safe, friendly, and student-oriented environment makes it one of the best choices for focused students. Santa Rosa Junior college has a lively student life involving a great athletics squad, vibrant debate club, and outgoing arts club that has drama, music, and dance programs. The college offers a program of automotive technology that requires one to complete 48 units. Both theory and hands-on training on auto motives adequately prepare the students to face the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Exams.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

School Overview

Tuition fee after aid: $ 6,229
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11

Lose Angeles Trade Technical College

  • Los Angeles, California
  • Points: 63

Los Angeles Trade-Technical College (LATTC) is a community college that offers a wide range of vocational training programs and associate degrees. The college is situated near South Park in Los Angeles. This includes but not limited to Construction Technology, Graphics, and Fashion Design, and obviously automotive technology. LATTC promotes online learning, which can be accessed all the time. The majority of the residents of LA are obsessed with automobiles, which provides a great employment opportunity for students graduating from LATTC.

  • Accreditation: Nationally accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music, Commission on Accreditation.

School Overview

Tuition fee after aid: $ 7,376
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12

Palomar College

  • San Marcos, California
  • Points: 61

Palomar College is located in San Diego, California. It offers programs in automotive technology that adequately prepares students for an entry-level technician course in the automotive repair industry. Some of the areas covered under the program are auto chassis and drivelines, auto collision repair, and general mechanics.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 8,898
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13

Santa Barbara City College

  • Santa Barbara, California
  • Points: 59

Santa Barbara City College was founded in 1909 and is located in Santa Barbara, California. It offers a number of courses, including automotive technology. The department has a number of requirements that students must meet in order to be accepted into the program. It has an acceptance rate of 100% and a graduation rate of 44%.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 8,976
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14

San Joaquin Delta College

  • Stockton, California
  • Points: 54

The San Joaquin Delta College is situated in Stockton, California. The Student population is 6,296, with a graduation rate of 31%. It offers a program in automotive body repair and restoration.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 11,000
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15

Evergreen Valley College

  • San Jose, California
  • Points: 52

Evergreen Valley College is a college located in San Jose, California. Students are required to achieve a minimum of a grade of ‘C’ in order to be awarded the certificate in automotive technology. The student enrollment in the college is 3,138. It has an acceptance rate of 100%. It has a graduation rate of 33%.

  • Accreditation: Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges

School Overview

Tuition after aid: $ 11,000
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Ranking Methodology

This ranking was based on the analysis of best software data from the U.S. Department of Education’s College Scorecard and the respective university websites. The schools were ranked based on tuition amounts per academic year and level of accreditation. Both factors were accorded 50 points and each school was assigned points based on how it compared with others on tuition amounts and level of accreditation. The points earned for both ranking factors were then added together to get each school’s total score. In this case, the school with the most points lists first and the protocol is observed down the list.

We strive to provide current and accurate information to our readers to help them find their school of choice. If you’re associated with one of the schools we ranked above and you realize an error in the information provided, please feel free to contact us and let us know so we can make any necessary corrections.

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