To become an auto mechanic, it is necessary to obtain a certificate in auto mechanics from a two-year college or auto mechanics training program. In the past, it was enough to be self-taught. But now, with so much emphasis on computerization, the certificate is highly recommended.
At the most basic level, auto mechanics must complete high school graduation requirements or take the GED high school equivalency exam in order to enter an auto mechanics program. Any deficiencies in high school coursework must be satisfied before moving on to the next level. Once admitted into the auto mechanics program, candidates for the auto mechanics certificate must pass assessments showing their competency in both hands-on and written skills.
Many computerized machines are used to measure calibrations and other measurements with which mechanics are expected to be proficient. Once the certificate is obtained, a successful candidate should receive on-the-job training from an employer or mentor. This experience gives hands-on training on day-to-day job situations that are necessary for success.
The auto mechanic certificate opens doors that the self-taught mechanic cannot open on his own. While it is admirable to be self-educated, today's standards in auto mechanics, coupled with a need for computerized techniques now common in the auto industry, create the need for skilled, certified mechanics. Those who successfully pass the requirements usually obtain lucrative employment and progress in their careers more quickly than their self-taught counterparts.