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What is the ASE?

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Auto mechanics and technicians become infinitely more hire-able if they are certified through the National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence or ASE. It's an industry-recognized certification that tells would-be employers that this person has been trained in the field and has passed the ASE exam.

Getting ASE certified is a two-part process. First, mechanics and automotive technicians must have at least two years of professional, full-time, on-the-job work experience. Allowances are made for training and apprenticeships too. For example, you can satisfy the 2-year work requirement by completing a two-year, factory training degree program, such as the GM ASEP, Ford ASSET, Toyota T-TEN or Honda PACT program. A 3- or 4-year apprenticeship course will also satisfy the requirement. Or, you can use high school or post-high school vocational training to satisfy a portion of the requirement - two years of high school auto shop, for example, count as one year.

Once that requirement is satisfied, applicants take ASE certification exams, which cover specific areas of expertise, including engine repair, electronics, and brakes, as well as diesel engines and other specialty areas.

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