Computer Aided Drafting Degree - Online and Campus Programs

Computer-aided drafting plays an important role in all types of design, from fashion to architecture to engineering. CAD programs such as AutoCAD allow 2D and 3D visualization of manufactured products or structures, helping designers and engineers communicate their vision and refine the design.

Computer-Aided Drafting Careers

Computer-aided drafters support product developers by rendering their designs in electronic format. These virtual designs not only aid in visualization, but also provide a detailed schematic, production, or assembly. CAD drawings cover technical details such as specific dimension, materials, and assembly procedures. As a computer-aided drafter, you can put your AutoCAD skills to use in a range of design areas: aeronautics, architecture, civil engineering, electrical and mechanical design, fashion, and product development. Computer-aided drafting classes cover the technical training for work in these drafting specialties.

How to Prepare for a Career in Computer-Aided Drafting

Computer-aided drafting programs prepare you for a career in CAD design support. Choose from training at different levels of expertise, from vocational certificates to college degrees. Options include:
  • AutoCAD certificate (several weeks or months)
  • CAD diploma (several months to a year)
  • Associate's degree in computer-aided drafting and design (two years)
  • Bachelor's degree in electronics, architectural, or specialty drafting (four years)
Programs combine training in AutoCAD and other CAD applications with technical design practice. Studio drafting is an important element of the degree, allowing you to build a professional portfolio.

Career Outlook

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, employment opportunities will be best for computer-aided drafters with at least two years of college training ? i.e., with computer-aided drafting degrees such as an associate's or bachelor's degree. Architectural and civil drafters will experience the most demand, with 9 percent growth from 2008 to 2018. The 2008 average annual wage was $46,390. Play a critical role in technical design by honing your computer-aided drafting skills. CAD classes and degrees help you launch your career.