Becoming a Professional Locksmith & Home Security Technician - Course Details

Penn Foster Career School's Locksmith & Home Security Technician program helps you to gain the knowledge and skills relevant for becoming a locksmith and home security tech.

Program Goal and Outcomes

Program Goal

The program goal for Penn Foster’s Locksmith & Home Security Technician Program is to prepare students for an entry-level career as a locksmith and/or home security technician.

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to...
  • Identify roles and career opportunities for locksmiths and home security technicians.
  • Explain how to identify, create, and duplicate keys.
  • Differentiate types of locks and the common methods and tools used to open locks without keys.
  • Recognize the components of a common mechanical safe lock and the procedures used to dial open, service, and change combinations.
  • Describe home security and the role of the home security technician.
  • Discuss electrical knowledge and licensing requirements needed as a home security systems technician.
  • Explain the components that make up an access control system and how choose components to fit the needs of the system.
  • Identify installation options for closed circuit TV and other detection and monitoring systems.
The course orients the student to Penn Foster’s program. It introduces the student to the curriculum, the externship, the student portal, and Penn Foster’s Community.


  • Understand how to use your Student Portal.
  • Access the Penn Foster Community and use it to find answers.
  • Connect with Penn Foster on various social media sites.
In this course, you'll start by learning how to identify a variety of keys by looking at the shapes and characteristics of the key. You'll then learn how to make new keys from key blanks by using a key machine. Finally, you'll learn how to duplicate both standard and cylinder keys, one of the most common tasks of the professional locksmith.


  • Identify the tasks performed by locksmiths
  • Summarize the common types of locks and keys encountered by locksmiths
  • List the common tools used by locksmiths and the safe practices for their uses
  • Identify various types of keys using identifying marks and reference materials
  • Explain the process of creating keys from key blanks
  • Outline the process used to duplicate a cylinder key
  • Duplicate a key using manual key duplication techniques
Additional Materials

Learning Aids:

  • Bench Vise
  • Solid Brass Padlock
  • Brass Key Blanks
  • Locksmith File Set
In this course, you’ll learn how locks are designed to fit many different security needs. You’ll learn how many standard and specialty locks operate, as well as how they’re bypassed when the correct key is missing. You’ll learn how to pick or rake open common types of locks and rekey locks when they need to be fit to a new key. You’ll also learn how safes and vaults operate and how to perform maintenance on them.


  • Describe the various types of locks and their applications
  • Explain how to rekey a pin tumbler cylinder
  • Summarize how to open locks without using a key
  • Identify the components of safes and vaults
  • Rekey a Kwikset lock for use with a different key
Additional Materials

Learning Aids:

  • Kwikset Lock
  • Miscut Key
  • Kwikset Pinning Kit
  • Key Step Gauge
  • Pinning Tweezers
  • Mortise Cylinder Pin
  • Lockpick Rake
  • Lockpick Half Ball
This course provides an overview of the role of the home security technician. You'll start by learning about how the home security technician works to provide modern security solutions for homes and businesses. Then, you'll learn some of the fundamentals of electricity, which home security technicians need to know in order to successfully wire for and install security systems. Finally, you'll learn about low voltage electricity, which is used to power many control and security systems.


  • Explain the role of the home security technician in relation to locksmithing
  • Explain how circuits function using Ohm's Law
  • Describe how electricity functions in low-voltage circuits
In this course, you’ll learn the basics of wiring a home security system. You'll learn about access control systems, as well as how to identify the physical and electrical properties and characteristics of conductors. These areas of knowledge are essential for any wiring job you'll work on throughout your entire career. Many of the skills you'll learn in this program build on these basic fundamentals.


  • Describe various types of access control systems and their components
  • Describe how to select and install various types of conductors, wires, and cables
This course covers the different components that comprise a complete home security system. You’ll first learn about the types of detection and alarm systems that sense hazards in the home, including break-ins and fires. Then, you’ll learn about home monitoring systems that use CCTV and recording options both to monitor and protect a home. Finally, you’ll learn about system management software, which allows all of these systems to work together to keep a home safe from dangers.


  • Explain how CCTV and recording hardware are used to monitor a home
  • Describe the various components and uses of detection and alarm systems
  • Identify types and functions of common system management software for home security systems

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.
Requirements may vary for Locksmith professionals based on location. Penn Foster Career School recommends you check with the appropriate agency in your area for specific requirements.

Penn Foster Career School Accreditation & Licensing Details

Penn Foster has been accredited for over 50 years. Penn Foster Career School has been thoroughly reviewed and has earned several important accreditations, certifications, and licensing. Most importantly, Penn Foster Career School is both regionally and nationally accredited.

Surround Sound Support

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.

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.
Penn Foster Student Community
Sample Professional Locksmith Lesson

Sample Locksmith & Home Security 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 a Locksmith & Home Security Technician course would look like.
Computer Specifications
As you know this is an online academic program. This means you will need high-speed internet access 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, a digital camera and video recording device (or high resolution camera phone), and an email account to participate in and complete your 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 OS X are trademarks of Apple, Inc. registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.
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