The Complete Guide to becoming a Journeyman Electrician

How to become a Journeyman Electrician


If you are interested in becoming an electrician it is important that you do your research and find out the process of becoming one, the skills needed and what a typical day is like in the life of an electrician. You can do this by doing your research online or talking to people who are already in this field. This can help you decide whether you should pursue your interest of becoming an electrician or not. To succeed as an electrician one must put in a lot of time and effort and have a genuine interest in this field.


Who should become a Journeyman Electrician?

Anyone who is interested in working as an electrician must fulfill the legal requirement of getting a license to work as an electrician in a state of USA. A journeyman license can help you get decent wages for your electrical work as the license is a proof of your skills and is recognized throughout the country.


Becoming an Electrician – An Overview

Although the requirements are a bit different in the different states of US, an overview of how one can become an electrician in the US is as follows:

The first thing you must do is complete your high school diploma or get a degree, which is equivalent to the GED. You must also have a drug free background, be 18 years old and have a valid driver’s license to move onto the next step of becoming an electrician, which is the apprenticeship. As soon as you graduate from high school, it is important that you start looking for electrical apprenticeships and find electrician training schools near you so that you can take courses relevant to your field.

This is important so that you can complete the educational and work experience requirements for your journeyman license. Some Electrician training schools offer apprenticeships as well so you can get in touch with them. These schools give you valuable theoretical concepts that you can use throughout your career. The apprenticeship period usually lasts 4 to 5 years and the training helps you acquire crucial skills under the expert supervision of professional electricians. You get the physical and technical skills needed in order to succeed in this profession and you also get paid during this process.

A number of local and national bodies are working in different states of US to provide electrical apprenticeships to those who are interested. Two of the most popular ones are IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) and JATC (Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee.

Once you are done with your apprenticeship, the next step is becoming a licensed electrician so that you can offer your services legally in the state where you plan to work. If you fulfill the education and work experience requirements, you must get an application approved and pass the relevant exams to get the journeyman license. These requirements differ with each state and some states offer multiple licenses so you can choose the one that best suits your interests.

Therefore, find out all the relevant details before applying. You can also become an electrical contractor or a master electrician after getting your journeyman license and these are highly paid positions that come with a lot of responsibility.


The Journeyman Electrician Exam

The exam is designed to test the applicants’ ability to perform the tasks that a fully licensed electrician must be able to perform. It tests their knowledge about the laws, codes and regulations related to electrical work. It is important that you familiarize yourself with The National Electrical Code before you give this exam. The syllabus of the exam tends to differ from state to state so it is important that you contact someone who has already given the exam.

There is also a continuing education requirement in some states for the renewal of the journeyman license. Continuing education helps one stay in touch with all the recent developments in the field by attending seminars and taking courses so that they can provide the best services to their clients.


What does a Journeyman Electrician do?

Since journeyman electricians have the necessary training and skills from their apprenticeships which qualify them to work independently, these electricians handle a number of things including electrical wiring, control systems in residential and industrial buildings, handling of electrical tools and equipment, installing light fixtures and systems and testing other electrical systems. Although they cannot plan or approve the electrical systems for different infrastructures, journeyman electricians do play a big role in the implementation these plans. They can also inspect the existing wiring systems and supervise apprentice electricians.


How much do Journeyman Electricians are paid?

Journeyman electricians have comparatively higher salaries than apprentices as these electricians have the experience and skills to take up projects individually. With time, the salary also tends to increase although this depends on the kind of work you do and the state in which you work in.


Why Become a Journeyman Electrician?


  • You get paid reasonably well for the services you provide
  • You can supervise apprentice electricians
  • Work in a range of environments and make use of the diverse skills you learn in your training
  • You get the work experience which can help you decide what you should do next in your career as an electrician


  • Continuing education maybe required
  • Physically straining work
  • Long working hours with weekends and night shifts
  • Must complete the training and educational requirements before becoming eligible for the journeyman license which can take a lot of time.



Even though we might take electricians for granted, the fact is that we are dependent on them and their services and with the increasing use of technology and electricity, their demand is bound to rise. This is why it is advisable to pursue a career in this growing field especially if you have the mathematical and analytical skills needed to complete all the educational and work experience requirements.

Journeyman electricians are responsible for a number of tasks including installation, repair work, supervising apprentice electricians and checking the electrical wiring of different kinds of buildings and houses. These people have a lot of responsibility and need to stay updated with all the recent developments by attending seminars and courses. With the right amount of passion and dedication, you can easily become a successful electrician!


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