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How to Become an Electrician in Utah

With an electrician job market that is predicted to grow 37% in the ten-year period leading up to 2022, now is the perfect time to pursue a career as an electrician in Utah (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2015).

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As you progress from apprentice to journeyman to master electrician, your licensing will be handled through the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing (DOPL).

Follow the steps in the guide below to learn how to become an electrician in Utah:

Get the Technical Training and Experience You Need to Earn a License
Apply for Your Journeyman Electrician License and Pass the Journeyman Exam
Apply for a Master Electrician License in Utah

 


 

Step 1. Get the Technical Training and Experience You Need to Earn a License

In order to qualify for a full Journeyman Electrician (JE) license that would allow you to perform residential, industrial or commercial work, you’ll need to:

  • Complete a formal trade school program and gain a minimum of 8,000 hours (4 years) of on-the-job experience

OR

  • Gain 16,000 hours (8 years) of verified work experience

In order to qualify for a Residential Journeyman Electrician (RJE) license you need to:

  • Complete a formal trade school program and gain 4,000 hours (2 years) of on-the-job experience

OR

  • Gain 8,000 hours (4 years) of verified work experience

You may begin gaining the required training in one of three ways:

  • Union or Non-Union Apprenticeship
  • Trade School
  • On-the-Job Training (if a local employer is interested in hiring you on as an apprentice)

Enrolling in a Trade Program

Your trade school will be able to offer you the opportunity to work under an employer in order to gain the experience required to move on to a journeyman electrician license. These four-year programs combine classroom study with hands-on training in the field that will satisfy the experience hour requirements for journeyman licensure.

You may choose from seven electrical trade programs in Utah:

  • Bridgerland Applied Technology College—Logan
  • Davis Applied Technology College—Kaysville
  • Mountainland Applied Technology College—Lehi
  • Ogden-Weber Applied Technology College—Ogden
  • Salt Lake Community College—Salt Lake City
  • Utah State University—Logan
  • Weber State University—Ogden

During your program you’ll study the following topics in conjunction with gaining experience in the field that would be applied to the total number of hours required for licensure:

  • Trade Electricity
  • Wiring & Commercial Wiring
  • Conduit Bending
  • Motor & Motor Control
  • Basic Voice & Data Cable Installations
  • Basic Designing & Installing Solar Photovoltaics
  • Understanding Electrical Meter Testing
  • Security & Fire Alarms
  • Gas & Oil Burner Control Wiring

Start an Electrical Apprenticeship

If you’d like to complete your apprentice hours through a union-sanctioned organization, you might seek an apprenticeship through the Utah Electrical Joint Apprenticeship & Training Committee (Utah Electrical JATC in Salt Lake City). The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), offers union apprenticeships to aspiring electricians interested in the opportunity to work under a union-sanctioned, licensed electrician in Utah. Union membership would be required.

If you’d rather participate in an apprenticeship outside of a union, you may consider contacting Independent Electrical Contractors of Utah in Middle, a non-union trade group that, among other things, offers apprenticeship programs through local merit shops.

On-the-Job Training

Once you’ve been approved as an electrical apprentice through the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing, you might seek the required experience by becoming apprenticed to a licensed electrician in Utah without enrolling in a formal, structured apprenticeship program through the union or one of the non-union organizations. You can seek out an employer independently, provided that the employer is willing to take on an apprentice.

Registering as an Apprentice

After choosing how you’ll gain the experience required to become a journeyman, you’ll need to fill out the DOPL’s apprentice electrician application. The application will include a section completed by your employer to verify that you are completing on-the-job training under supervision. You’ll also need to include a $110 application fee. You’ll mail the completed application to:

Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing
PO BOX 146741
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-6741

 


 

Step 2. Apply for Your Journeyman Electrician License and Pass the Journeyman Exam

Once you have completed the required supervised work experience, you’ll be eligible to apply for your journeyman electrician license.

First, you’ll need to complete the application for licensure as a full Journeyman Electrician (JE) or Residential Journeyman Electrician (RJE) and mail it to the DOPL. With your application, you’ll also be required to include official transcripts showing completion of an approved apprenticeship program and verification of work experience documenting completion of the experience hours detailed in Step 1.

The application will require you to submit details about your work experience explaining the nature of the electric work you have performed. You will need your employer to fill out a section verifying that you have completed the work under supervision.

You will be required to complete a certain number of training hours in the following areas:

  • Boxes, Fittings, Conduit, Wireways & Cableways (RJE 600 hours, JE 4,000 hours)
  • Wire and Cable (RJE 3,000 hours, JE 800 hours)
  • Distribution and Utilization Equipment (RJE 300 hours, JE 400 hours)
  • Specialized Work (RJE 300 hours, JE 400 hours)

You will mail your completed application with a $110 application fee to the DOPL.

Next, you’ll need to take the Utah Electrical Licensing Theory, Code and Practical Examination at the journeyman level, which is proctored by PSI exams. You’ll register online through PSI and take the test in a Utah testing center, located in either Hurricane, North Orem, Sunset, or North Salt Lake City. The exam is split into three parts: code, theory, and practical.

The journeyman code exam is made up of 80 questions to be completed in 180 minutes, and you will need a minimum score of 75% in order to pass. It will cover the following areas:

  • Voltage—10 questions
  • Current—10 questions
  • Resistance—10 questions
  • Power—10 questions
  • Voltage Drop—10 questions

The theory test is made up of 50 questions to be completed in 100 minutes, and a minimum passing score is a 75%. The test involves material identification and conduit bending.

The practical examination will involve the following wiring projects:

  • Motor control project
  • Transformer project
  • Light switch project

These will be completed in 90 minutes on a pass/fail basis.

For sample questions and additional details, consult the Utah Electrical Candidate Information Bulletin.

Your journeyman license will expire every two years on November 30th of even-numbered years. You can renew your license online through DOPL, provided that you include proof of at least 16 hours of continuing education completed through Utah-approved entities. Three hours must be core education, and the remaining hours may be core or professional related.

Once you have completed four years (8,000 hours) of practical experience as a licensed journeyman electrician, you will be eligible to apply for a master electrician license.

 


 

Step 3. Apply for a Master Electrician License in Utah

You are qualified to apply for a Master Electrician (ME) license once you have met one of these criteria:

  • Four years of experience as a licensed journeyman electrician
  • An associate of applied science (AAS) degree from an electrical trade school and can prove that you have at least 2 years (4,000 hours) of electrical experience as a journeyman electrician
  • A BS in electrical engineering from an EAC/ABET accredited program and one year of experience as a journeyman electrician

You are qualified to apply for a Residential Master Electrician (RME) license after two years of experience as a Residential Journeyman Electrician (RJE).

First, you’ll need to fill out the master electrician application form and mail it to the DOPL. Within this application, you’ll need to include a detailed summary of your work experience, and you’ll need the statement and signature of the master electrician who has supervised your journeyman experience. You’ll also need to include official transcripts and a $110 application fee and mail it to the DOPL.

Next, you’ll apply through PSI examsto take the Utah Electrical Licensing Theory, Code and Practical Examination at the master electrician level at one of the PSI testing centers in Utah .

Like the journeyman exam, the master electrician exam is split into three parts: code, theory, and practical.

The code examination is made up of 80 questions to be completed in 180 minutes, and the minimum passing score is a 75%.

The code examination covers the following topics:

  • Definitions & General Requirements—8 questions
  • Raceways & Enclosures—8 questions
  • Services, Feeders & Branch Circuits—12 questions
  • Overcurrent Protection—5 questions
  • Conductors & Cables—6 questions
  • Grounding & Bonding—10 questions
  • Lighting & General Use Equipment—5 questions
  • Special Occupancies & Equipment—7 questions
  • Motors & Controllers—8 questions
  • Communications Systems—3 questions
  • Special Conditions—3 questions
  • State Laws & Rules—5 questions

The theory examination consists of 50 questions to be completed in 100 minutes. The minimum passing score is 74%.

The examination will cover the following:

  • Voltage—10 questions
  • Current—10 questions
  • Resistance—10 questions
  • Power—10 questions
  • Voltage Drop—10 questions

The practical examination consists of wiring projects that are graded on a pass/fail basis. The projects include:

  • Motor Control Project
  • Transformer Project
  • Doorbell Project
  • Light Switch Project
  • Material Identification
  • Complex Bending Project
  • Simple Bending Project

For sample questions and more details on the master electrician exams, you may consult the Utah candidate information bulletin.

Your master electrician license will expire on November 30th of even-numbered years. You can renew it online through the DOPL system. You will also need to provide proof of 16 continuing education hours through approved providers. Three credits must be for core education, while the remaining hours may be either core or professional development.

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