Common Searches

Future-proof your career with a degree in a fast-growing industry

Heating, Ventilation, & Air Conditioning (HVAC) jobs are seeing explosive growth, rising 13% through 2026. To meet this demand, we’ve created a hands-on HVAC associate degree program that gets you Day 1 Ready for a new job in this exciting field. Ready, with an understanding of the newest systems and technologies. Ready, with experience working on real equipment. Ready, with mentorship from skilled pros, who can teach you the skills that help you stand out.

NCCER CertifiedWhether you are starting out in this industry or giving yourself a wider background in the building trades, our Associate of Applied Science in Trades Management – Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning (HVAC) program equips you for the long run. Having an HVAC associate degree could help with requirements for advancing down the road or give you the confidence to manage your own crew.  Our program and instructors are NCCER-certified, giving our graduates industry-wide recognition for their qualifications. Potential employers could include:

  • HVAC Installation and Service Vendors
  • Institutional/Building Maintenance
  • HVAC Manufacturing Companies

This HVAC degree program goes beyond basic instruction. Our personalized career services focus on all aspects of career readiness, from finding the right jobs to resume building to interview prep—help and support you won’t with most HVAC certifications. We are always in touch with potential employers and may be able to help connect you to real opportunities. If you are ready for the challenge, we’ll work with you to get you Day 1 Ready.

The opinions expressed here are the personal opinions of Vista College and Computer Career Center, a Division of Vista College. Content published here is not read or approved by NCCER before it is posted, and does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of NCCER.

Fast Facts

Next Start Date
November 15

Course Length: 21 Months *
Class Hours:
Lab Hours:
Clinical Hours:

* Based on successful, full time enrollment

Career Opportunities for Graduates

Graduates of our Associate of Applied Science in Trades Management – Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning (HVAC) program may seek employment in entry-level HVAC positions.

Potential Job Titles: A/C General Maintenance Technician, HVAC Sheet Metal Installer, Commercial Refrigeration Technician, HVAC Sales

Why Vista College?

The Right Skills for Real Jobs

Vista College designs its trades programs around the real skills that employers seek, getting you Day 1 Ready for jobs that are hiring today.

Course Title Credits
Basic Craft Skills 6.5
Introduction to HVAC * 6.5
Principles of Electricity * 6.5
Brazing, Soldering and Piping * 6.5
Duct Systems * 6.5
Air Conditioning * 6.5
Heating * 6.5
Commercial HVAC * 6.5
Commercial Refrigeration * 6.5
Supervisory Skills and Crew Leadership * 6.5
Business Operations 9
Project Management * 8
Communications * 9
Introduction to College Mathematics 9
Introduction to Computer Science 4.5
Introduction to Psychology 4.5
English Composition I 4.5
English Composition II * 4.5

Basic Craft Skills


This course introduces students to basic craft skills including the proper use of hand tools, power tools, and rigging. Students will receive instruction on handling techniques for hazardous and non-hazardous construction materials, basic skills in drawing and reading blue prints, and working in confined spaces. In addition, students review basic mathematical functions, communication, and job readiness skills.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Introduction to HVAC


Students will be instructed in the fundamental theories, knowledge and skills pertaining to the HVAC trade.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Principles of Electricity


Students will be introduced to the concept of power generation and distribution, common electrical components, AC and DC circuits, and reading and interpreting wiring diagrams.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Brazing, Soldering and Piping


Students will be introduced to types and sizes of tubing, the purposes of tubing and piping, tubing insulation, cutting tubing, bending tubing, heat sources for soldering and brazing, brazing techniques, soldering techniques, make flare joints, swaging techniques, general safety practices and tools and equipment.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Duct Systems


Students will be introduced to plenum systems, duct system standards, duct materials, galvanized-steel duct, fiberglass duct, combination duct systems and air distribution and balance.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Air Conditioning


Students will be introduced to refrigeration systems applied to air conditioning, air distribution and balance, installation, controls, typical operating conditions, and troubleshooting. Additional topics include compressors, refrigerant and oils, leak detection, evacuation, recovery, and charging.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours



Students will be introduced to gas-fired forced-hot-air furnaces, other types of furnaces, multi-purposes of multi-positional gas fuels, manifold pressures, oil heat, oil-fired forced-warm air furnaces, hydronic heat, indoor air quality, electric heat, and troubleshooting.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Commercial HVAC


Students will be introduced to high-pressure, low-pressure, and absorption chilled-water systems; cooling towers and pumps and operation; maintenance; and troubleshooting of chilled- water air-conditioning systems. Hydronic systems and water treatment principles will also be explored.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Commercial Refrigeration


Students will be introduced to the evaporator and the refrigeration system, condensers, compressors, expansion devices, special refrigeration system components, application of refrigeration systems, commercial ice machines and troubleshooting, and typical operating conditions for commercial refrigeration.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Supervisory Skills and Crew Leadership


This course introduces students to human resource criteria, concepts, and skills for craftspeople in leadership roles. Topics include leadership styles, communication, delegating, problem solving, job-site safety, project planning, scheduling, and estimating. Students will also study green topics as they relate to HVAC.

6.5 credits
45 theory hours
45 lab hours

Business Operations


This course provides a fundamental understanding of the concepts, principles, and operations of the private enterprise system. Students compare and contrast sole proprietorships, partnerships, and corporations, as they evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of each. This course also discusses the functions of modern business management, marketing, human resources, motivating employees, ethics and social responsibility. Bookkeeping, accounting, financial management, and financial statements are also examined.

9 credits
90 theory hours

Project Management


Students build on their knowledge of business by analyzing the essential aspects of project management. Students will explore project management topics such as modern practices in project management, planning, budgeting, scheduling, leadership, teamwork, and project management information systems. Students will address business organizational systems and communication, as well as evaluate employee selection processes and methods for managing employee success.

8 credits
70 theory hours
20 lab hours



In this course, students will analyze strategies for successful customer-focused service in the service-sector industry. Verbal and nonverbal communication skills are fully developed and effective listening skills are practiced. In addition, students will learn how to effectively communicate amongst colleagues using a teamwork mentality to be successful in the workplace. Furthermore, various components of human resources will be explored including: motivating and managing employees, designing and evaluating roles of employees, compensation and incentive pay.

9 credits
90 theory hours

Introduction to College Mathematics


Introduction to College Mathematics covers basic math topics such as solving for whole numbers and equations, understanding proper and improper fractions, converting decimals and figuring percentages. Other topics covered include calculating simple interest, annuities, loan amortization, checkbook reconciliation, and business statistical problems such as mean, median and mode.

9 credits
90 theory hours

Introduction to Computer Science


This course introduces various information and communications technologies and explains how information systems are used to solve problems.

4.5 credits
45 theory hours

Introduction to Psychology


This course includes the study of the theories and concepts of psychology including the scope of psychology, biological foundations and the brain, sensation, perception, motivation, personality, learning/memory, emotion, states of consciousness, personality theories, cognition, life-span development, and applied psychology.

4.5 credits
45 theory hours

English Composition I


This course introduces students to critical reading and writing, research techniques, citation and documentation formats, as well as the use of correct grammar and sentence structure to communicate effectively.

4.5 credits
45 theory hours

English Composition II


This course builds on the skills learned in English Composition I. It develops written communication skills with an emphasis on the use of the writing process, the analysis of readings, and the practice of writing for personal and professional applications.

4.5 credits
45 theory hours

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