Why Penn Foster?

  • Accredited
  • Self-Paced
  • Supportive
  • Low monthly payments

Program Overview

Develop your technical abilities and talent for drafting with Penn Foster Career School’s Drafting with AutoCAD® Program. With Penn Foster you can train at home and at a pace that’s right for you. Discover basic sketching techniques, and learn the mathematical skills necessary to the task of drafting. Create drawings for structural, civil, electrical, and electronic schematic drafting with AutoCAD software.

Complete this program in as little as 12 months. As a drafter trained in AutoCAD, you can work for an engineering firm, government agency, automotive company or dealership, or construction, landscaping, or patenting company. Did you know that the current average salary for drafters is $49,630?*

Curriculum Details

Unit 1

Starting Your Program

Succeed by learning how to use your Penn Foster program.

Objectives:

  • Understand how to use your Student Portal, including your My Homepage and My Courses pages.
  • Access the Penn Foster Community and use it to find answers.
  • Connect with Penn Foster on various social media sites.
The Drafter's World Language

Objectives:

  • Study basic techniques used in sketching.
  • Become familiar with occupations that use the drafter’s world language.

Unit 2

Size and Shape Description

Objectives:

  • Study orthographic projection.
  • Learn about points of view.
  • Understand shape descriptions.
Introduction to CAD Technology

Objectives:

  • Use basic CAD equipment.
  • Study coordinate systems.
  • Learn various software features used with CAD programs.
Additional Unit Materials

Project Booklet: Spatial Relationship

Learning Aids: 

  • Appendices and Glossary
  • How to Use Your Architect Scale
  • How to Use Your Mechanical Scale
  • How to Use Your Civil Engineer Scale
  • How to Use Your Metric Scale
  • Drafting Kit 1. This kit includes a drafting pencil, leads, templates, scales, and other common drafting items

Unit 3

Sketching, Lettering, and Lines

Objectives:

  • Sketch lines, circles, arcs, and multiviews properly.
  • Learn important sketching techniques.
Basic Drafting Math

Objectives:

  • Understand basic math ground rules.
  • Learn signs of operation and how they are represented in drafting.
Additional Unit Materials

Learning Aid: Drafting Kit 2 -This kit contains a compass, a divider, and a triangle.

Unit 4

Drafting Equipment, Media, and Reproduction Methods

Objectives:

  • Study various equipment and supplies used in the industry.
  • Learn about scales, drafting machine verniers, and drafting media.
Orthographic Projection (Sketching)

Objectives:

  • Learn size and shape description.
  • Study the three regular views of drafting.
  • Understand the six principal views of orthographic projection.
Geometric Construction

Objectives:

  • Draw parallel and perpendicular lines.
  • Construct bisectors.
  • Create polygons, tangencies, and ellipses.
Additional Unit Materials

Project Booklet: Applied Geometry

Learning Aids:  

  • Orthographic Sketching Workbook
  • Drafting Kit 3 -This kit includes a triangle, a lettering guide, and drafting pencil and leads.

Unit 5

Multiviews and Auxiliary Views

Objectives:

  • Create single-view and multiview drawings.
  • Learn first- and third-angle projection.
Dimensioning

Objectives:

  • Study dimensioning systems.
  • Learn correct tolerancing techniques.
Sections, Revolutions, and Conventional Breaks

Objectives:

  • Make sectional views.
  • Modify standard sectioning techniques.

Unit 6

Geometric Tolerancing

Objectives:

  • Establish basic dimensions.
  • Identify proper feature control frames.
  • Determine the virtual condition of features.
Working Drawings

Objectives:

  • Complete sets of working drawings.
  • Prepare engineering changes.
Pictorial Drawings

Objectives:

  • Draw three-dimensional objects using 3-D coordinates.
  • Create isometric, dimetric, and trimetric drawings.
  • Learn about one-, two-, and three-point perspective.

Unit 7

Introduction to Windows®

Computer operating systems organize and control computer hardware. In this course, you’ll learn about the Windows® XP, Windows Vista,® and Windows® 7 operating systems. Included is the booklet Glossary of Computer Terms.

Objectives:

  • Apply the basic functions of the most commonly used Windows® commands.
  • Identify the procedures to start software programs and shut down the computer at the end of your work session.
  • Customize your computer to suit your individual needs.
  • Use the Windows® Help and Systems Tools feature to solve computer problems.
Using Windows®

Discover how Windows® can help you complete your day-to-day tasks by completing interesting hands-on exercises and learning dozens of professional tips and shortcuts. Practice a number of important commands and functions.

Objectives:

  • Personalize your computer display and input devices.
  • Resize and reposition a window or the portion of the file it displays.
  • Use Windows® Accessories to create notes, documents, and drawings.
  • Save and close a data file, or place it on the taskbar for easy access.
  • Locate a file, open a recently used document, and retrieve a file that has been recently deleted.
  • Use the Clipboard to copy information from one window to another.
  • Use the taskbar to control two windows while multitasking.
  • View and organize files and folders on your local disk.
Working with AutoCAD®, Part 1

Objectives:

  • Learn and use the basic functions of AutoCAD® 2013 software.
  • Open or begin a drawing, save your work, and safely exit the software.
  • Use help menus, dialog boxes, and software features associated with basic drafting options.
  • Construct basic geometric objects.
Working with AutoCAD®, Part 2

Objectives:

  • Study basic operations of AutoCAD.®
  • Build on what you’ve already learned to create new drawings with AutoCAD.®
  • Insert various lines and text.
  • Construct complex geometric figures while using the advanced object selection method.
  • Properly dimension a drawing and properly configure your work for plotting.
Additional Unit Materials

Project Booklet: AutoCAD® Basic Commands

Software:  Students will have access to a free, 3-year student version of AutoCAD® from Autodesk.®

Textbook: Discovering AutoCAD® 2013

Unit 8

Working with AutoCAD®, Part 3

Objectives:

  • Continue to use AutoCAD® to build on what you learned in your previous course.
  • Study dimensioning, plotting, and printing.
  • Learn about hatching commands.
  • Create and insert block references.
Working with AutoCAD®, Part 4

Objectives:

  • Build on skills you developed in your previous course.
  • Attach and detach reference files.
  • Use the AutoCAD® Design Center.
  • Learn utility commands.
Working with AutoCAD®, Part 5

Objectives:

  • Understand and apply the basics of 3-D drawings.
  • Create 3-D drawings with AutoCAD.®
  • Render and digitize tablets.
  • Digitize and customize drawings.
  • Use the Internet within the AutoCAD® process.
  • Learn about digitizing tablets and customizing AutoCAD® for your specific drafting needs.
Additional Unit Material

Project Booklet: AutoCAD® Commands: Blocks and Layers

Unit 9

Structural Drafting with Basic Architectural Applications

Objectives:

  • Prepare a complete set of structural drawings.
  • Draw a site plan.
Civil Drafting

Objectives:

  • Draw transit lines for roadway layouts.
  • Draw plans and profiles from survey information.
Additional Unit Materials

Project Booklets:

  • Structural Drafting with AutoCAD®
  • Civil Drafting with AutoCAD®.

Unit 10

Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning

Objectives:

  • Understand the function of HVAC systems.
  • Prepare complete HVAC drawings.
Electrical and Electronic Schematic Drafting

Objectives:

  • Draw electrical diagrams and cable assemblies.
  • Make a set of electrical power system substation plans.
  • Draw an industrial electrical schematic.
  • Diagram electronic blocks and schematics.
Additional Unit Materials

Project Booklets:

  • HVAC/Sheet Metal Drafting with AutoCAD®
  • Electrical and Electronic Schematic Drafting with AutoCAD®
  • Drafting with AutoCAD® Elective Project

You will need high-speed internet access to begin your program. You will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows® XP SP3 or later, and an email account to complete your program with Penn Foster.

We reserve the right to change program content and materials when it becomes necessary.
Microsoft and Windows are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.
AutoCAD is a trademark of Autodesk, Inc. registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.

Sample Lesson

To view a Drafting with AutoCAD® sample lesson, click here.

Drafting with AutoCAD Program Details

Penn Foster will help you gain the knowledge and skills you need:

  • Basic CAD and drafting equipment
  • Dimensioning, geometric construction, and geometric tolerancing
  • Electrical and electronic schematic drafting with AutoCAD
  • AutoCAD commands

* Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, "Occupational Outlook Handbook," 2014-15 Edition, Drafters, on the Internet here (visited February 5, 2014).

AutoCAD helps drafters to coordinate systems and software to create technical plans. Drafting using AutoCAD gives drafters more job options in fields such as architectural, mechanical, and civil engineering. Here are a few qualities that effective engineering drafters have in common:

  • Detail oriented: It’s important to have a sharp eye and check things twice.
  • Cooperative: You are pleasant, receptive, and work well with others.
  • Honest: Engineering requires integrity and a good sense of ethics.
  • Persistent: Your job requires focus and determination in the face of obstacles.

Penn Foster is a great way to get ahead in a career and the way the program was set up, even the busiest person can get through it. I'm so glad I found Penn Foster.

- Guiseppe S., Penn Foster graduate

I just recently graduated. I would definitely recommend Penn Foster to others. Their support was tremendous. Thank you all for the encouragement.... Penn Foster rocks!!!

- Dahlia R., Penn Foster Graduate

My overall experience with Penn Foster was great. You are allowed to go at your own speed, and the school gives encouragement to keep you going. I would recommend Penn Foster.

- James R., Penn Foster Graduate

We make sure you have everything you need:

  • Graduate debt free with 0% interest
  • Books and learning aids, including AutoCAD software and basic drafting kits
  • Study Planner App to customize your study plans and keep track of your progress
  • Instructional support from our world-class faculty
  • Access 24/7 to Penn Foster’s online campus, plus immediate membership in the Drafting with AutoCAD academic group
  • Your personalized online student homepage and learning portal
  • Additional resources such as our online library and career guidance from Career Cruising

What are the career/education options after completing the Drafting with AutoCAD program?

Career opportunities following the completion of the Drafting with AutoCAD Program include automotive companies and dealerships, the Department of Transportation, and construction, landscaping, or patenting companies.

Is the AutoCAD software provided by Penn Foster?

A free 3-year student version of AutoCAD from AutoDesk® is available for download with your program. Or, you can purchase AutoCAD software independently of Penn Foster.

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