Automotive Repair Course Curriculum

Penn Foster's auto mechanic school helps you prepare for the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Certification Tests!

Program Goal and Outcomes

Program Goal

To help prepare students to enter the automotive repair field by studying the major automotive systems, the procedures for servicing those systems, diagnosing customer concerns, and suggesting service solutions to those concerns while working toward ASE (National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence) certification.

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to...

  • Recognize the steps necessary to attain certification in the automotive repair field, and identify automotive systems
  • Recognize engine components that make up the lower-end assembly, and describe how the systems and parts work together to make a vehicle run
  • Recognize engine components that make up the upper-end assembly, and describe how the systems and parts work together to make a vehicle run
  • Recognize safety procedures that should be followed in an automotive repair shop, and list the various hand tools and specialized tools used when working with automotive systems
  • Describe how to perform basic automotive preventative maintenance and routine service procedures to include an engine oil change
  • Apply basic mathematical operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division) and interpret the meaning of basic physics concepts of mechanics, forces, thermodynamics, heat, electricity, and magnetism to solve math-related problem
  • Identify and interpret the construction and operation of gasoline engines and explain how to diagnose and repair malfunctions in engine components and subsystems
  • Describe the process of removing an engine from a vehicle and performing an engine rebuild
  • Explain basic electrical concepts and units including resistance, voltage, and current and principles of electricity, magnetism, circuits, and wiring diagrams and how they are used to service all automotive electrical and electronic systems to include using a Digital Multimeter (DMM)
  • Describe the principles and functions of HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning) systems and explain how testing and service procedures are performed on these systems
  • Describe the operation of computerized gasoline-engine controls and performance systems and explain how to diagnose and repair drivability and emissions malfunctions in these systems
  • Identify the components and systems of a Hybrid Electric and Fuel Cell Vehicle and explain their operation
  • Identify and interpret the operation of hydraulic brake systems and describe how to diagnose and repair malfunctions in all automotive brake systems
  • Identify and interpret the operation of suspension and steering system and describe how to diagnose and repair malfunctions in steering and suspension systems
  • Identify and interpret the construction and operation of manual transmissions/ transaxles, rear axles, drive axles, four-wheel drive units and describe how to rebuild transmissions, transaxles, differentials, transfer cases, and perform in-vehicle routine maintenance, inspections, repairs, and external adjustments
  • Identify and interpret the construction and operation of automatic transmissions and transaxles and describe how to rebuild transmissions/transaxles, perform in-vehicle routine maintenance, inspections, repairs, and external adjustments

In this course, you’ll develop the necessary skills to ensure your success in the program. You’ll learn how you can improve your study skills, so you’re able to use a number of tools that will help you to be successful.

Objectives:

  • Identify skills needed to be a confident and independent online learner
In this course, you’ll concentrate on essential components of an automotive repair technician. You’ll also review the parts that make up the lower-end and upper-end assembly and how they work.

Objectives:

  • Connect your goals to the automotive repair technician profession and its essential knowledge
  • Examine parts that make up the lower-end assembly and how they work
  • Examine parts that make up the upper-end assembly and how they work

In this course, you’ll review safety in auto repair technician, as well as maintenance. You’ll also review math used in auto repair.

Objectives:

  • Analyze work safety and equipment use
  • Apply preventative maintenance and service procedures
  • Relate how scientific principle and math aid in auto repair

In this course, you’ll study gasoline and engine repair. You’ll also review engine issues as well as how to remove, disassemble, repair, assemble, and install an internal combustion gasoline-fueled engine.

Objectives:

  • Explain gasoline and diesel engine operation, including cooling and lubrication systems and intake and exhaust systems
  • Define typical engine-related complaints and engine smoke diagnosis
  • Identify the detailed process of removing, disassembling, measuring, repairing, assembling, and installing an internal combustion gasoline-fueled engine

Automotive Technology: Principles, Diagnosis, and Service

In this course, you’ll explore electricity, as well as capacitance, electromagnetism, and electronics. You’ll then identify batteries. Finally, you’ll review interior and exterior safety and entertainment systems.

Objectives:

  • Describe the basics of electricity, including circuits, Ohm’s and Kirchhoff’s laws, the testing equipment used for diagnosis, service wiring repair, schematics, and testing
  • Analyze the fundamentals of capacitance, electromagnetism, and electronics, including solid state devices and the study of controller area networks
  • Explain how batteries work and servicing and operating the engine cranking and electrical charging systems
  • Describe the service and operation of interior and exterior safety and entertainment systems

In this course, you’ll cover the fundamentals of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC), including heating and automatic air-conditioning systems operation. Then, you’ll review the industry procedures used to diagnose and repair HVAC customer concerns. Finally, you’ll discuss the various service procedures used for HVAC systems.

Objectives:

  • Describe the fundamentals of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC), including heating and automatic air-conditioning systems operation
  • Explain the industry procedures used to diagnose, service, and repair HVAC customer concerns

In this course, you’ll cover details about gasoline, alternative fuels, and diesel fuels along with the fundamentals, diagnosis, and service of ignition systems.

Objectives:

  • Describe gasoline, alternative fuels, and diesel fuels along with the fundamentals, diagnosis, and service of engine ignition systems
  • Define fuel systems operation, including computer operation fundamentals, input sensors, fuel supply systems, fuel delivery systems, and fuel system diagnosis
  • Identify the many different systems used for engine emission control
  • Explain onboard diagnostics generation II (OBD-II) and strategy-based diagnosis

In this course, you’ll study how to identify the components and systems of a Hybrid Electric and Fuel Cell Vehicle and explain its operation.

Objective:

  • Identify the very specific service procedures needed to maintain an HEV

In this course, you’ll cover how to Identify and interpret the operation of hydraulic brake systems and describe how to diagnose and repair malfunctions in all automotive brake systems.

Objectives:

  • Describe the components and function of hydraulic brakes and how to service them
  • Explain drum and disc brakes, how they work, and how to service them
  • Define antilock braking systems and electronic stability control and how they work

In this course, you’ll study how to identify and interpret the operation of suspension and steering systems. You’ll also review how to diagnose and repair malfunctions in steering and suspension systems.

Objectives:

  • Discuss the operation of wheels and tires and describe their diagnosis and repair
  • Describe the operation, diagnosis, and repair of suspension systems
  • Identify steering systems and how to perform an alignment

In this course, you’ll study how to identify and interpret the construction and operation of manual transmissions/transaxles, rear axles, drive axles, and four-wheel drive units. You’ll also review how to rebuild transmissions, transaxles, differentials, and transfer cases as well as perform in-vehicle routine maintenance, inspections, repairs, and external adjustments.

Objectives:

  • Discuss the operation, diagnosis, and repair of clutch and manual transmissions and transaxles
  • Describe the axles, differential, four-wheel drive, and all-wheel drive

In this course, you’ll study how to identify and interpret the construction and operation of automatic transmissions and transaxles. You’ll also study how to rebuild transmissions/transaxles and perform in-vehicle routine maintenance, inspections, repairs, and external adjustments.

Objectives:

  • Define how automatic transmissions and transaxles operate
  • Explain how to diagnose, service, and repair automatic transmissions and transaxles

Additional Details

  • Licensing and/or certification requirements for jobs in this field are not the same in every state and may include educational, testing, and/or experiential requirements beyond those offered in the Penn Foster Program. Prospective students should contact the state professional licensing board or similar regulatory body in the state(s) where they plan to work to determine their requirements before enrolling in this Program. Click here for contact information for state licensing/regulatory boards and certain industry licensing information.

Penn Foster College Accreditation & Licensing Details

Penn Foster College has been nationally accredited for over 40 years, and has met the high standards of integrity and performance set by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC) in Washington, D.C. Penn Foster College has been thoroughly reviewed and has earned several important accreditations and licensing. We also participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements.

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Sample Auto Repair Technician Lesson

Penn Foster courses are written in a way that is easy to understand, and materials are broken down into manageable lessons. Take a look at what an auto repair technician course would look like.

Progress Tracking and Goal Setting Tools

Our customizable goal-setting tools will help you create a schedule and stick to it. Need some extra time to complete a lesson? Not a problem — you can adjust your study plan at any time to set a pace that works for you.

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Student Community

Looking to connect with other Penn Foster students? Our Student Community is the perfect place for you to interact with your peers — as well as Penn Foster faculty and staff — to discuss your online learning experience, congratulate fellow students, and share your Penn Foster experience.

A Committed Support System

While you can study independently, you’re not alone! With a dedicated Student Services department, the Student Community, and instructors just a call away, you’ll have access to the support you need.

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Computer Specifications
As you know this is an online academic program. This means you will need access to high-speed internet to begin your program. In addition, you will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows 10® or later or an Apple® Mac® computer running macOS® or later, Microsoft® Office 2019 or Microsoft 365®, and an email account to complete this program.
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.
Apple, Mac, and macOS are trademarks of Apple, Inc. registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.