Automotive service technicians and mechanics inspect, maintain, and repair automobiles, trucks, buses, and other vehicles. The job involves examining vehicles for damage or defects, dissembling and reassembling parts of the vehicle, and changing tires and oil. Automotive service technicians and mechanics generally work in ventilated, well-lit auto repair shops, but are required to work with dirty or greasy parts and occasionally work in uncomfortable positions when inspecting or working on vehicles. They also need to be comfortable working and communicating with customers. The position requires the ability to analyze and think critically about a situation, as well as a high degree of physical dexterity and mechanical aptitude. Most auto mechanics complete a vocational or other postsecondary education program in automotive service technology, though some obtain an associate’s degree and study mathematics, electronics, and automotive repair.
There are two tests that are generally administered for this position. The first is the Criteria Basic Skills Test (CBST) which assesses basic job-readiness skills. This 20 minute, 40-item assessment covers literacy, basic math, and attention to detail. The second is the Wiesen Test of Mechanical Aptitude (WTMA). This is a 30 minute, 60-item test that measures a candidate’s aptitude for learning about, working with, and maintaining machinery and equipment. There are also multiple versions of both tests available, including Spanish translations. When administered together, the CBST and WTMA can offer employers insight on which applicants have the basic skills, level of critical thinking, and problem-solving ability correlated with success in a mechanic role.
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Median wage in U.S.:
Expected growth rate 2016-2026:
Number employed (2016): 749,900