Instrumentation Technology Degree


Instrumentation technology degrees are essential in training students to work in chemical plants, electrical power plants, oil refineries, and cross-country pipeline companies. These programs are often found at two-year institutions and eventually lead to either a certificate or an associate’s degree.

The coursework for an instrumentation technology degree involves laboratory practice in addition to lectures. Students learn about instrumentation principles, such as the calibration, testing, and operation of such equipment. They learn about different types of automatic control systems and programmable logic controllers. Such programs, more often than not, involve hands-on training.

The following are common concepts taught in instrumentation technology courses:

  1. Basic electrical theory
  2. Circuits
  3. Control systems
  4. Maintenance
  5. Networking systems
  6. Protocols

List of Courses

Programmable Logic and Distributed Control Systems

This course is taken toward the beginning or middle of an instrumentation technology program.

This course teaches students the basic concepts of programmable logic controllers, operation techniques, and numbering systems. Students learn how to configure, build, operate, and install hardware, firmware, and software. The course includes exploring communications and networking systems, modes of operation, troubleshooting, and maintenance for distributed controls. Students learn how measurement, data analysis, and control data acquisition are used for resource planning and management.

Industrial Measurements and Principles of Instrumentation

In this course, mostly done at the start of an instrumentation technology program, students learn how to measure temperature, pressure, level, and flow through lectures and labs. Topics related to temperature include thermistors, filled thermal systems, thermocouples, and the resistance temperature detector. Introduction to terminology and basic concepts of process control systems is done. They learn how to operate equipment, test set-up, and calibrate machinery.

Principles of Automatic Control

Carried out at the start of an instrumentation technology program with a possible requirement in industrial equipment, this course familiarizes students with automatic control systems and design, control modes, control loop configurations, control loop analysis, and controller tuning. The objective is to comprehend control loops of equipment.

Unit Operations

This course is entry-level but may have one or two prerequisites. This course acquaints students aware of basic processes used in various plants and industries, including fluid power systems, material movement, distillation, and extraction. Students are instructed on different pipe systems, cooling towers, refrigeration, agitators, and utility distribution. Students will be able to keep records, provide routine and preventive maintenance, and adjust control equipment.

System Troubleshooting

This course covers the techniques of troubleshooting in a conceptual and complicated instrumented environment. Troubleshooting courses are often taken towards the middle or end of an instrumentation technology program.

Students are introduced to troubleshooting situations in chemical processes through lab exercises. Simulations of input and out problems, students use logical analysis when problem-solving.