Automotive Technology

Interior of the automotive shop at Honolulu Community College
Parts of a car sitting on a workbench
AMT students receiving classroom instruction
AMT student working on car
AMT student looking at a car manual

Program Mission

The Automotive Technology program's mission is to serve the community as a learning-centered, open door program that provides technical training to meet the demands of the automotive industry and the needs of the individual. An open-exit option allows the students to identify their career objectives and participate in program exploration.

Program Description

The Automotive Technology (AMT) program at Honolulu CC is a comprehensive five semester program master certified by the National Automotive Technology Education Foundation (NATEF) that prepares students for employment as automotive technicians. Students completing the program may earn a Certificate of Achievement after one year or an Associate in Applied Science degree upon program completion. The program has maintained its NATEF certification since 1993, undergoing a review every five years. It is certified in all eight ASE areas: engine repair, automotive transmission and transaxle, manual drive train and axles, suspension and steering, brakes, electrical/electronics systems, heating and air conditioning, and engine performance.

Program Prerequisites

  • Valid driver's license
  • "C" or higher in MATH 50, OR Placement into MATH 150 or higher.

Degrees That Can Be Earned

  • Associate in Applied Science (AAS)


The competencies that students are expected to achieve in the program are based on the tasks described by NATEF. Students who successfully complete the program will be prepared with the skills and competencies necessary for a successful career in the automotive industry with emphasis on marketability by receiving training in all eight areas described by NATEF: engine repair, automatic transmission/transaxle, manual drive train and axles, suspension and steering, brakes, electrical/electronics systems, heating and air conditioning, and engine performance. The program is also structured for individuals exploring automotive as a potential career path, and allows individuals the opportunity to acquire knowledge in theory of operation and experience in vehicle repair for personal gain.

Physical Requirements

The physical requirements of the program include the eye-hand coordination necessary to make precision repairs and to avoid unnecessary material losses and personal injury.

Cost of Textbooks/Supplies

Tools/supplies for 5 semester program approximately $3,500.

Gainful Employment Information

View additional information related to cost, financing, and gainful employment.

Upon successful completion of the AMT program, students will be able to:

  • Gain employment in the automotive industry in any of the eight NATEF areas: engine repair, automatic transmission/transaxle, manual drive train and axles, suspension and steering, brakes, electrical/electronics systems, heating and air conditioning, and engine performance.
  • Increase their marketability through learning time management and team work skills.
  • Gain personal knowledge and experience in vehicle repair.

Our program technical standards have been developed to help students understand the minimum essential mental, physical, and behavioral skills necessary for participation in and completion of all core aspects of our curriculum.

Thinking Skills


Diagnose mechanical, hydraulic, electrical and computer-related automotive failures.


  • Read and interpret automotive manuals, diagrams, charts, meters and gauges.
  • Do searches on computer and in manuals for necessary information.
  • Take measurements and do conversions.
  • Identify automotive components and systems.
  • Recognize indicators of malfunctions.
  • Analyze information and draw conclusions based on a review of findings.
  • Measure and calculate electrical power.

Sensory/Observation Skills


Use sensory cues to inspect and test components to determine root causes of failures and respond properly.


  • Interpret readings on meters, gauges, and computers.
  • Distinguish identifying colors of wires, knobs and other parts.
  • Recognize and interpret colors and textures of residue on parts.
  • Detect and respond to noises, vibrations, temperatures, and smells that indicate problems.
  • Select appropriate materials, tools and equipment for maintenance and repairs.
  • Judge distances and space relationships of objects.
  • Manipulate certain parts and tools by feel only.

Motor Skills


Possess sufficient physical strength, flexibility, and dexterity.


  • Operate necessary tools and equipment.
  • Remove and replace failed components and small parts.
  • Position and maneuver in confined spaces.
  • Work at varying heights.
  • Lift and transport equipment and materials as necessary.

Communication Skills


Communicate effectively to gather and convey information.


  • Obtain necessary information from oral and written sources.
  • Express information coherently.
  • Utilize automotive technical terms and expressions.
  • Document work accurately.

Behavioral Skills


Behave appropriately and safely in a cooperative learning environment.


  • Fulfill personal and shared responsibilities.
  • Work cooperatively with partners and groups.
  • Exercise good judgement.
  • Follow safety procedures.

Environmental Tolerance


Function safely in an auto shop environment.


  • Work for prolonged periods amidst: Extreme noise, Extreme heat, Sharp tools and materials, Electrical equipment, Chemicals and toxins, Dust and fumes, Machinery with moving parts, Moving objects and vehicles, Slippery or uneven surfaces, Variations in lighting