A student works on an electrical box

HVAC - Associate Degree

Heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration (HVAC/R) technicians install, service, troubleshoot, and repair HVAC/R systems used for the environmental control of buildings and product processes. This includes work on a wide variety of equipment types including residential (homes), commercial (restaurants, offices, hotels), institutional (schools, hospitals), and industrial (manufacturing plants). Typical careers in this field include mechanical contractor HVAC/R technician, facilities maintenance HVAC/R technician, wholesale service representative, commercial HVAC/R systems technician, industrial HVAC/R systems technician, and residential HVAC/R systems technician.

Program Code: 106011

Program Costs & Financial Aid

See costs of tuition, books, and supplies.

This program is fully eligible for financial aid.

Estimates based on in-state residency. Learn more about tuition and fees.

Explore Locations

Offered At:


  • Day
  • Full-time

How do I get started in this program?

Requirements for Program Entry

  • Please note that all new students apply to the technical diploma program. While attending you may later have the associate degree added.

What are my courses?


Students following the study plan below will complete the HVAC/R associate degree in the number of semesters shown.

Total Credits 66
  • Curriculum Note: The credit for 10-890-101, College 101 is an Institutional Requirement for graduation. Consequently, it is not part of the program requirements, but must be passed with a C or better.

Program Outcomes

  • Install HVAC/R components.
  • Service HVAC/R systems.
  • Troubleshoot HVAC/R systems.
  • Evaluate HVAC/R system designs.
  • Startup, service, and repair HVAC/R systems.
  • Develop, wire, and troubleshoot HVAC/R control circuits.
  • Perform HVAC/R performance tests.
  • Design and install HVAC/R systems.
  • Evaluate airflow systems for new and existing applications.
  • Determine heating and cooling demand requirements.
  • Select heating and cooling equipment and auxiliary components.
  • Safely utilize industry standard tools, meters, and test instruments.
  • Communicate and document detailed service reports effectively.
  • Prepare for EPA Refrigerant Handling Exam.
  • Earn OSHA 30 certification.

What careers are in my future?


Graduate Employment

with 100% in field

Employment Potential

A graduate of this program will have the potential for employment in the following areas:

  • Mechanical Contractor HVAC/R Technician: installs, services, troubleshoots, and repairs HVAC/R systems at a customer’s job site.
  • Facilities Maintenance HVAC/R Technician: installs, services, troubleshoots, and repairs HVAC/R systems as part of a maintenance staff.
  • HVAC/R Equipment Manufacturer Technician: assists service companies in locating, repairing, and preventing factory defects and service problems.
  • Wholesale Service Representative: assists HVAC/R contractors with the selection, application, and procurement of HVAC/R equipment.
  • Commercial HVAC/R Systems: works with the HVAC/R systems used in commercial applications such as office buildings, schools, stores, supermarkets, and restaurants. Duties include, but not limited to, installing, servicing, troubleshooting, and repairing walk-in coolers/freezers; reach-in coolers/freezers; ice makers; large air conditioning, heating, and air distribution systems; hydronic, steam, and forced air heating systems; roof top HVAC/R systems; and digital building automation control systems.
  • Industrial HVAC/R Systems: works with HVAC/R systems used in an industrial setting such as manufacturing, processing, and packaging plants. Duties include, but not limited to, installing, servicing, troubleshooting, and repairing large HVAC/R equipment used in the manufacturing process, such as drive-in coolers/freezers, process chillers and boilers, dust collection systems, plant air conditioning and heating, digital control of process, and building HVAC/R equipment.
  • Residential HVAC/R Systems: require the Technician to work with HVAC/R systems used in the home. Duties would include, but not limited to, installing, servicing, troubleshooting, and repairing refrigerator/freezers, central air conditioning system operating controls.

Employment opportunities with additional education

  • HVAC/R Business Owner
  • Energy Management Technician
  • Engineering Assistant for HVAC/R Systems

What's next after graduation?

Start here. Finish at a four-year.

NWTC transfer programs are offered through collaborative agreements with our four-year college and university partners. See where your associate degree credits will transfer.

What else do I need to know about the program?

Industry Credentials

Prepare for EPA Refrigerant Handling Exam

Earn OSHA 10 Certification

Earn CPR Certification

Earn AED Certification

Study Abroad Opportunities

The International Programs staff continually seeks opportunities for students to travel abroad for educational experiences that may be offered in association with program courses.

Learn more about upcoming study abroad opportunities.

Defy expectations and follow your passion

Dream jobs have nothing to do with gender. Discover the benefits of nontraditional occupations.


Classes wherever you have an internet connection. 

  • An in-person career experience, such as an internship, practicum, or credit for prior learning, may be required.
  • Some online courses may be held at specific dates/times.
Classes between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.
Classes between the hours of 5:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
A combination of online classes and Saturday and/or Sunday classes.
12 or more credits per term.
Fewer than 12 credits per term.