On this page ...
Electrical & Instrumentation Technician Apprenticeship
Did you know?*
*Statistics retrieved from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Electrical & Instrumentation Technicians install, service, troubleshoot; and perform preventive and predictive maintenance functions on equipment. This includes plant lighting equipment and receptacle circuits, motors, starters, motor control centers, programmable controllers, control panels, electrical control systems and transformers. They may also service high voltage electrical systems, and ensure that work is in accordance with relevant codes. They repair, test, adjust, calibrate or install electronic equipment, such as industrial controls, transmitters, and antennas.
- Electrical Maintenance- Service and maintain existing electrical and electrical related equipment, including plant lighting and receptacle circuits, motors, starters, relays, push buttons, limit switches, special control switches, timers, counters, motor control centers, control panels and transformers, as well as the test equipment needed to do this servicing, including: VOM voltmeters, ammeters, ohmmeters, oscilloscope, brush records, and other test equipment.
- Power Distribution, including: high voltage transformers, switchgear, circuit breakers, starters, motors, and transmission lines.
- Electrical Construction, including: installation of conduit and wiring for power distribution and lighting; panel building; installation of conduit and wiring for machine and equipment controls; layout, planning and installation of control systems including programmable controllers, drives, servo systems, etc.; installation of communication and data systems.
- Electronic Maintenance and Troubleshooting- Service and maintain all electronic equipment as well as familiarizing oneself with the equipment they service. Also be able to use the necessary test equipment to service this equipment. This will include drive systems, programmable controllers, microprocessors, recorders, counters, speed indicators, process control type equipment, and any and all other electronic equipment in the plant.
- Pressure Instruments- Work in shop and field to learn to adjust and calibrate pressure measuring and recording devices. Adjust and calibrate pressure measuring devices, repair and replace damaged parts.
- Temperature Instruments- Work in shop and field to learn to adjust and calibrate temperature measuring and recording devices. Adjust and calibrate temperature measuring devices, and repair and replace damaged parts.
- Level Measurements- Work in shop and field to learn to adjust and calibrate level measuring and recording devices. Adjust and calibrate level measuring devices, repair and replace damaged parts.
- Flow Measuring and Control- Work in shop and field on repair, adjustment, calibration, and inspection of flow measuring and control instruments. Mechanical and electrical devices. Variable orifice-fixed orifice-volumetric. Computation of flow data, flow of solids in suspension.
- Instrument Mechanisms- Repair, adjust and replace worn parts, gears, racks segments, hair springs, jewel bearings, and clock works. Repair and replace electrical contacts and coils. Repair hydraulically operated valves, diaphragm valves, and solenoid operated valves.
- Control Valves and Devices- Shop and field work in the adjustment of control valves, involving diaphragms, hydraulic cylinders, hydraulic valves, floats, and dampers. Adjustment of pneumatic, electric, and electronic controls.
- Instrument Shop- Troubleshooting and special applications, general shop and field troubleshooting with instrument mechanics, inspect, adjust, repair, and calibrate miscellaneous control and recording instruments. Work on special controls, special applications; and build and maintain panel installations.
- Safety- Safety equipment and procedures.
- Perform scheduled preventive maintenance tasks, such as checking, cleaning, and repairing equipment, to detect and prevent problems.
- Examine work orders and converse with equipment operators to detect equipment problems and to ascertain whether mechanical or human errors contributed to the problems.
- Install and maintain high voltage equipment (anything above 600 volts); Circuit design and drafting; Schematic and/or blueprint reading.
Most electrical and instrumentation technicians work in manufacturing including; paper mills, food processing, and a variety of other industries including printing, brewer and metal machinery. Industrial E & I Technicians must be able to stand for long periods of time and work in cramped or uncomfortable positions on ladders or lifts. They often work with hands above head, in confined spaces and in a variety of conditions and temperatures; both hot and cold. They use personal protective equipment to avoid common hazards; such as safety belts, protective glasses and hard hats.
- 5 to 6 year training program
- 9,392 hours on-the-job training
- 1,008 hours paid related instruction
- Additional related instruction may be required
- Classroom training includes study of electrical codes, electronics, electrical systems, safety, controllers, instrument mechanics and process measurements.
- Applicants must be at least 18 years of age
- Entry requirements vary by employer
- High school diploma or equivalent
- Physically able to perform trade
- Applicants apply directly to participating employers
- Mathematics- Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, and their applications.
- Mechanical- Knowledge of tools, including their uses and maintenance.
- Public Safety and Security- Knowledge of relevant equipment, high pressure safety, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions, including OSHA regulations, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations and Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations.
- Computer- Knowledge of basic computer functions and their applications.
- Communication- Oral and written with an emphasis on understanding verbal instructions, written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents. Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Critical Thinking/Troubleshooting- Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems. Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it safely and in a reasonable amount of time.
- Time Management- Managing one's own time and the time of others.
- Arm-Hand Steadiness- The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
- Reasoning- The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense. The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Near Vision- The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Problem Sensitivity- The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Manual Dexterity- The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
- Trunk Strength- The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics maintains information on all occupations. For more information on the Electrician & Instrumental Technician trade in the United States, visit:
Sources: Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards Position Descriptions,
Apprenticeship in Wisconsin Handbook