Diesel Technology, A.A.S.

Academic Programs

Career Path

Industrial Technology

Start Term

Program Options

Degree, Certificate or Diploma


Council Bluffs Campus

Program Information

Much has changed over the years when it comes to diesel technology, but you can get the most up-to-date instruction by choosing Iowa Western’s Diesel Technology program. This program focuses on all phases of the diesel industry, including engines, transmissions, drive axles, electrical systems, and auxiliary systems. The result for successful candidates is an Associate of Applied Science degree.

In addition to important classroom instruction, students in this two-year program complete internships – most of which are paid. This will give potential employers an opportunity to see you perform in real-world environments. Many graduates are then hired by those same employers.

Students typically spend twice as much time in our labs as they do in lecture. That way, they get the important one-on-one instruction along with hands-on experience. Also unique to this program is the ability to participate on a part-time basis, a plus if you’re looking for flexibility.

Students who complete this AAS degree will have earned a Diesel Mechanics diploma by completion.

Job Outlook

1,273 Jobs (2020

-0.2% Change from 2020-2025

Data is from the Omaha Metropolitans Area, and the seven counties in Southwest Iowa that Iowa Western serves

What will you do

The Diesel Technology program is designed to place students into the workforce upon completion of this two-year degree. This program takes a more in-depth approach by studying more specific engine designs and procedures, and the repair of those engines, including CAT, Cummins, Detroit, Mercedes, and others. Transmissions and rear axle operation and repair are also reviewed in detail. Students will have the opportunity to explore diesel-related fields through two required internships.


  • Entry: $17.83
  • Average: $22.58
  • Experienced: $34.79

Career Examples

  •  Diesel Mechanics
  •  Maintenance Mechanics
  •  Diesel Technicians
  •  Fleet Mechanics
  •  Truck Technicians
  •  Body Shop Estimators
  •  Equipment Technicians

First Semester

DSL 324 - Introduction to Diesel 4.0 Credit(s)
DSL 144 - Electrical Systems 4.0 Credit(s)
DSL 846 - Diesel Lab I 6.0 Credit(s)
MAT 743 - Technical Math 3.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 17.0 Credits

Second Semester

DSL 654 - Hydraulic/Air Brakes 4.0 Credit(s)
DSL 674 - Chassis/Driveline 4.0 Credit(s)
DSL 856 - Diesel Lab II 6.0 Credit(s)
ENG 110 - Writing For The Workplace 3.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 17.0 Credits


DSL 742 - Air Conditioning/Refrigeration 2.0 Credit(s)
DSL 863 - Diesel Lab III 3.0 Credit(s)
DSL 829 - Preventative Maintenance 2.0 Credit(s)
DSL 837 - Commercial Driver’s License and Tools 1.5 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 8.5 Credits

Third Semester

DSL 354 - Engines I 4.0 Credit(s)
DSL 444 - Fuel Systems 4.0 Credit(s)


DSL 876 - Diesel Lab IV 2 6.0 Credit(s)


DSL 883 - Diesel Internship II 2 6.0 Credit(s)


MGT 195 - Workplace Empowerment 3.0 Credit(s)

Semester Total: 17.0 Credits

Fourth Semester

DSL 364 - Engines II 4.0 Credit(s)
DSL 544 - Transmissions/Drive Axle 4.0 Credit(s)


DSL 886 - Diesel Lab V 2 6.0 Credit(s)


DSL 883 - Diesel Internship II 2 6.0 Credit(s)


  • Social Science/Humanities Elective 3.0 Credit(s)
  • Semester Total: 17.0 Credits


    DSL 893 - Diesel Lab VI 2 3.0 Credit(s)


    DSL 881 - Diesel Internship I 2 3.0 Credit(s)

    Semester Total: 3.0 Credits

    Total Semester Hours Required: 79.5


    2Students must complete 30 credit hours of laboratory courses OR complete a minimum of 21 credit hours of laboratory courses and a maximum of 9 credit hours of internship, with any combination of laboratory and internship credit hours within that range being acceptable.


    Additional Information

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    Program Outcomes

    Upon the successful completion of the program students will:

    • Explain electrical and electronic terminology.
    • Identify engine components and systems using proper terminology and explain their function.
    • Identify hydraulic and pneumatic system components.
    • Describe the interconnection of the engine subsystems.
    • Identify diesel engines according to manufacturer and model designation.
    • Describe the function of the fuel system components.
    • Interpret symptoms of a system malfunction using critical thinking skills to recommend a repair procedure.
    • Read and interpret written repair orders.

    Program Disclaimers

    • Salary information from EMSI Analyst Database