How to Become a Journeyman Electrician: A Comprehensive Guide

How to Become a Journeyman Electrician: A Comprehensive Guide

Are you interested in pursuing a career as a journeyman electrician? This comprehensive guide will provide you with all the information you need to know in order to become a successful journeyman electrician. From the necessary education and training requirements to the steps you need to take to obtain your license, this guide will walk you through the entire process. Whether you’re just starting out in the field or looking to advance your career, this guide is your go-to resource for all things journeyman electrician.

Education and Training

High School Diploma or GED

To become a journeyman electrician, the first step is to obtain a high school diploma or a General Education Development (GED) certificate. This foundational education provides the basic knowledge and skills needed to pursue a career in the electrical field.

Technical School or Apprenticeship Program

After completing high school, aspiring journeyman electricians have the option to further their education and training through a technical school or an apprenticeship program. Technical schools offer specialized training in electrical systems and provide hands-on experience to prepare students for a career in the field. On the other hand, apprenticeship programs allow individuals to learn on the job under the guidance of experienced electricians, gaining practical skills and knowledge while earning a wage.

Journeyman Exam

Once the educational and training requirements are met, aspiring journeyman electricians must pass a journeyman exam to obtain licensure. This exam typically tests the individual’s knowledge of electrical codes, safety regulations, and practical skills related to the field. Passing the journeyman exam demonstrates that the individual has the necessary qualifications to work independently as a journeyman electrician.

Licensing and Certification

Becoming a journeyman electrician requires obtaining the necessary licensing and certification in your state. This process typically involves completing a combination of education and on-the-job training, as well as passing a licensing exam.

State Licensing Requirements

Each state has its own specific requirements for becoming a journeyman electrician. Some states may require a certain number of years of work experience, completion of an apprenticeship program, or specific educational courses. It is important to research the licensing requirements in your state to ensure you meet all the necessary criteria.

Passing the Journeyman Exam

In order to become a licensed journeyman electrician, you will need to pass a licensing exam. This exam typically covers a wide range of topics related to electrical work, including electrical theory, codes and regulations, and safety practices. It is important to study and prepare thoroughly for the exam to increase your chances of passing.

Continuing Education

Even after obtaining your journeyman electrician license, it is important to continue your education and stay up-to-date on the latest developments in the field. Many states require journeyman electricians to complete a certain number of continuing education hours each year to renew their license. This may involve taking courses, attending workshops, or participating in industry events to expand your knowledge and skills.

Skills and Qualities

Becoming a journeyman electrician requires a specific set of skills and qualities that are essential for success in the field. From technical skills to problem-solving abilities, here are some of the key attributes needed to excel in this profession.

Technical Skills

One of the most important skills for a journeyman electrician is a strong understanding of electrical systems and components. This includes knowledge of wiring, circuits, and electrical codes. Being able to read blueprints and schematics is also crucial for successfully completing projects. Additionally, proficiency in using tools and equipment such as multimeters, wire strippers, and power drills is essential for performing tasks accurately and efficiently.

Problem-Solving Abilities

Journeyman electricians often encounter complex issues that require quick thinking and problem-solving skills. Being able to troubleshoot electrical problems and identify the root cause of issues is a key aspect of the job. Whether it’s diagnosing a faulty circuit or resolving a wiring issue, having the ability to think critically and find solutions is essential for success as a journeyman electrician.

Physical Stamina

Working as a journeyman electrician can be physically demanding, requiring individuals to work in various environments and conditions. From climbing ladders to lifting heavy equipment, having physical stamina is crucial for performing tasks safely and effectively. Additionally, being able to work for long hours and in challenging situations is a key quality for those pursuing a career in this field.

Job Outlook and Salary

Demand for Electricians

The demand for electricians is expected to grow by 8% from 2019 to 2029, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is mainly due to the increasing need for electricians in various industries such as construction, manufacturing, and telecommunications. As technology continues to advance, the need for skilled electricians to install and maintain electrical systems will only continue to rise.

Salary Range

The salary range for journeyman electricians varies depending on factors such as location, experience, and industry. On average, journeyman electricians can expect to earn between $50,000 to $70,000 per year. However, those with specialized skills or working in high-demand industries may earn even more. Additionally, overtime pay and bonuses are common in this field, which can further increase a journeyman electrician’s annual income.

Career Advancement Opportunities

As a journeyman electrician gains more experience and skills, they can advance their career in several ways. Some may choose to become master electricians, which requires additional training and certification. Others may decide to specialize in a specific area such as industrial wiring or renewable energy systems. There are also opportunities for journeyman electricians to become project managers or start their own electrical contracting business. With the right qualifications and dedication, the possibilities for career advancement in the field of electrical work are limitless.

Tips for Success

Becoming a journeyman electrician requires dedication and hard work. Here are some tips to help you succeed in this field:

Gain Hands-On Experience

One of the most important aspects of becoming a journeyman electrician is gaining hands-on experience. This can be done through apprenticeships, internships, or on-the-job training. By working alongside experienced electricians, you will learn valuable skills and techniques that will help you succeed in your career.

Stay Updated on Industry Trends

The field of electrical work is constantly evolving, with new technologies and techniques being introduced on a regular basis. To stay ahead of the curve, it is important to stay updated on industry trends. This can be done by attending workshops, seminars, and training programs, as well as reading industry publications and websites.

Network with Other Professionals

Networking is an important aspect of any career, and becoming a journeyman electrician is no exception. By building relationships with other professionals in the field, you can gain valuable insights, advice, and job opportunities. Networking can be done through industry events, online forums, and professional organizations.


In conclusion, becoming a journeyman electrician is a rewarding and fulfilling career path for those interested in working with their hands and solving complex electrical problems. By following the steps outlined in this comprehensive guide, individuals can successfully navigate the apprenticeship program, gain valuable on-the-job experience, and ultimately pass the licensing exam to become a certified journeyman electrician. With dedication, hard work, and a commitment to lifelong learning, aspiring electricians can achieve their goal of becoming skilled professionals in the electrical trade.