Not sure what to do with your passion for vehicles? Look no further than the Automotive Systems program. The one-year certificate program will prepare you for work in automotive service shops and mechanic garages.

See the Courses tab below for details on program delivery.


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North Americans rely on their vehicles to get them where they need to go and when their favourite ride needs a tune up, they turn to automotive mechanics.

Our one-year Automotive Systems program prepares you for this always in-demand career with a curriculum designed in consultation with industry members.

Working in small labs with lots of hands-on practice, you’ll develop your understanding of automotive technology. From simple components to advanced computerized vehicle systems – you’ll learn it all, gaining practical insight into cars and trucks and what makes them tick.

In our modern shops, you’ll become familiar with the latest equipment and electronic diagnostic technology in the automotive industry. Using these state-of-the-art tools, you’ll work on a variety of vehicles from shop units to customer cars and even your own ride.

Shift your future into high gear with an Automotive Systems certificate – apply today!

Career opportunities

Upon successful completion of the program, you’ll be awarded a total of 600 hours of experience credit and be prepared to write first- and second-year Automotive Service Technician apprenticeship exams. Wherever your future takes you, you’ll be able to drive away from Lethbridge College and into positions such as:

  • Apprentice Automotive Service Technician
  • Automotive Systems Certificate Instructor
  • Equipment Salesperson
  • Journeyman Automotive Service Technician
  • Mobile Repair Service Technician
  • Service Manager
  • Shop Foreman
  • Shop Owner
Starts In: Fall term with a late August program start date.
Application Deadlines:

For current application status, terms being processed and application deadlines visit the Program Application Status page.

Duration: 1 year
Credential: Certificate
Delivery Format

A blended course is intentionally designed to include continuum of both face to face/on-campus and online delivery. This includes both synchronous (in real-time on a set schedule) and asynchronous learning strategies (learning that does not occur at the same time or same place). Communication, instruction and assessment components of a blended course provide consistent information but go further by enhancing and supplementing each other. Students may complete some of their lessons online and may also be required to come to campus.


Learning does not occur at the same time or same place. Instructor provides materials including online readings, recorded lectures or presentations, posted lecture notes, video content, assignments and exams for online completion. Students access the course materials within a flexible timeframe prescribed by the instructor.


Learning happens in real time. Student and instructors interact and engage with each other in a specific virtual space, through a specific online medium, at a specific time. This can include video conferencing, live chatting, and live-streaming lectures.


Learning Environment

Special Note: Students who successfully complete the Automotive Systems one-year certificate program are eligible to write their first and second year apprenticeship exams and earn 300 hours towards first period work experience and 300 hours towards second period work experience of the Automotive Service Technician Apprenticeship program.

Year 1 Term I
Course Code Title Credits
Year 2 Term II
Course Code Title Credits


New students are accepted into the Automotive Systems program for the Fall term only with a late August program start date.

General admission requirements

All applicants must meet the general admission requirements for Lethbridge College program as indicated in the Admissions section of this calendar.

Academic requirements

Applicants to this program do not require a high school diploma; however, they must satisfy the following specific course requirements (or equivalencies):

  • Grade 11 English
  • Grade 11 Math

The following courses or subjects are recommended for the best possible outcome in the Automotive Systems program:

  • Physics, Chemistry and Science
  • Grade 12 Math
  • Grade 12 English

Practicum experience requirements

There is a required practicum component to this program. The college dictates the legal terms and conditions governing the practicum experience.

Prior learning assessment (PLA)

If you have experience working in this field of study, you may be eligible for prior learning assessment.

Applicants who lack the required academic admission requirements can apply to the Academic Upgrading program to upgrade their academic skills.


Upon successful completion of all program requirements, students are awarded a certificate in Automotive Systems.

Apprenticeship Pathway

Students who have successfully completed Lethbridge College's Automotive Systems Certificate program can continue to obtain their Journeyman Certification by registering with Apprenticeship Alberta. For more information about Alberta's apprenticeship requirements go to:


Academic Year Tuition Fees Books & Supplies
Year 1 $5,003.00 $1,421.00 $720.00

Our Budget Wizard is a free self-service tool that can help you make sense of your finances and the cost of your education. Give it a try!

Budget Wizard

  • Costs for supplies may vary considerably depending on what students already have or where they purchased their supplies; cost provided is on the moderately high end.
  • Students will be charged a medical/dental benefit fee unless they opt out by demonstrating alternative coverage prior to the end of the first week of class.
  • Tuition for international students is $16,253. The cost of additional fees, books and supplies is the same for all students.

Real customers, real cars, real experience

Many of our students secure employment with their host employer.

To provide you with the most realistic working experience, you’ll spend at least 50 per cent of your time in the shop learning what is expected in the automotive service industry. At times, you’ll even be dealing with real customer complaints and working on real customer cars in shops that mirror what you’ll find in the industry.

As an added bonus, you’ll take part in a one-week practicum. You’ll be in a local shop working just as though you were an employee. In fact, this practicum often doubles as a week-long interview with many of our students securing employment with their host employer.

Hands-on, immersive training

Investing in the workforce of tomorrow
Investing in the workforce of tomorrow

A modern facility dedicated to training the next generation of service technicians.


Investing in the workforce of tomorrow

The Crooks School of Transportation resides within the first phase of the Technologies, Trades and Innovation Facility. This 41,317 square-foot building was made possible by Art and Mary Jane Crooks as well as the generosity and ongoing support of our industry partners. They have invested in the workforce of tomorrow – they have invested in you.

The Crooks School of Transportation features:

  • 14 hoists in the automotive lab
  • four agricultural and heavy equipment bays
  • three dynamometers, or "dynos" for short (an engine dyno, a chassis dyno and a transmission dyno), which are devices used for measuring the power produced by an engine, motor or other rotating prime mover
  • the Western Tractor Technology Lab, an advanced agricultural technology room supplied with industry-leading technology from Western Tractor

“As business people, we realize just how important the trades are,” said Art Crooks at the unveiling. “We know the ‘old gang’ is retiring and we need new people to take their place. The purely academic stream has been overemphasized and students are not always encouraged to enter a trade, yet they provide professional and rewarding careers in which skilled people can make a good living. When we moved here, we became much more aware of the work being done by Lethbridge College in trades education. We hope our gift helps keep students in Lethbridge and makes training at Lethbridge College as accessible as possible.”

To be the workforce of tomorrow
To be the workforce of tomorrow

…you need to train on the tools used by tomorrow’s industry.


To be the workforce of tomorrow

…you need to train on the tools used by tomorrow’s industry.

When your program uses state-of-the-art tools that are often ahead of the standard currently used in the industry, you know you’re being trained for the workforce of tomorrow. In addition to all of the standard tools you’ll find in an automotive shop, we have all of the major car manufacturers’ factory scan tools and three dynamometers: an engine dyno, a transmission dyno and a four-wheel chassis dyno – the only one in use at a post-secondary institution in Alberta.

Skills Canada
Skills Canada

Testing the best and brightest in skilled trades and technology.


Skills Canada

After a year or two here, you’ll have what it takes to compete with the best of the best in your field on the provincial and national stage at Skills Canada. The Skills Canada National Competition is the only national, multi-trade and technology competition for students and apprentices in the country. It’s an experience of lifetime, with the possibility of being named the nation’s best in your chosen field. That opportunity starts with the exceptional hands-on training you’ll receive at Lethbridge College.

The first gear in obtaining an apprenticeship

Just one year here can provide you with an Alberta Apprenticeship advanced standing. After successful completion of our program, you’ll be eligible to write both the first- and second-year Automotive Service Technician Apprenticeship exams. You’ll also earn 300 hours of experience towards your first-year apprenticeship and 300 hours towards your second. When you leave our program, you’ll be equipped with the skills and experience needed to land that first apprenticeship job.

From here to there: alumni updates

Lethbridge College isn’t just a place to go to school – we’re a community that is here to support you from your initial interest in our program through to the moment you cross the stage at Convocation and beyond. Just take a look at where an LC education has taken some of our grads.

Stacy Brian Hagen

“After receiving my diploma in Automotive Technology, I worked for Fountain Tire and General Motors dealers and then we opened up our own garage. We now own and operate a Napa Auto Parts store and Autopro shop in Vauxhall.”

– From Winter 2015 Wider Horizons

Jim Giacchetta

Jim is an alumnus of the first automotive trades program. “The courses prepared me for an apprenticeship and from there I worked in the farm implement industry,” he says. “While the curriculum wasn’t always clearly defined it was certainly a starting point.” Ultimately, his training prepared him for an 18-year career with Lethbridge Transit, a position from which he retired in 1998.

– From Fall 2007 Wider Horizons

Success stories from Wider Horizons

Virtual tour

Take a walk through one of the automotive shops in the Crooks School of Transportation. It could be your classroom.