Technology Education - CTE

The Technology Education program assists students in developing an understanding of industry and technology and in discovering and developing individual potential. This program provides students with competencies for occupational readiness that are useful for the future craftsperson, technician, engineer, designer or consumer. It provides a foundation for career preparation at either the secondary or post-secondary level. 

The Technology Student Association (TSA) is a co-curricular student-led organization that reinforces the technology curriculum and provides opportunity for competition, travel, leadership and career development.

Work-based learning experiences are available as a part of Career and Technical Education courses through an application process. Juniors and seniors who are currently enrolled in CTE courses who have completed a coherent sequence of CTE courses are eligible. The application process includes student narrative and teacher recommendation. Students participating in the work-based learning experience are required to complete a reflective exercise. 

Industry Certifications: The High School Industry Credentialing initiative encourages students to work toward a selected industry credential or state license while pursuing a high school diploma. The Virginia Department of Education evaluates on an on-going basis industry credentials against prescribed criteria for graduation requirements for the Standard Diploma (8VAC20-131-50.B) and student-selected verified credit (8VAC20-131-110.C). Credentialing exams are available to any student taking a Career and Technical Education course.

Electronics Systems I

8416 (ELEC TECH I)
1 Credit
Grades: 9–12

Prerequisite: Algebra I or teacher recommendation

Students receive an introduction to the principles of electrical theory and application. Areas studied include simple DC and AC circuits and devices. In this lab course students will assemble, test, and analyze electrical components and devices. This course is recommended for students planning a career in a technical field. A lab fee is required.

Electronics Systems II

8412 (ELEC TECH II)
1 Credit
Grades: 10–12
Prerequisite: Electronics Systems I

Students work with electronics devices, instruments and circuits, building projects to apply theories and laws with electronic components such as resistors, capacitors and transistors. Students study digital circuit devices and systems. This course is recommended for students seeking postsecondary education in a technical field. A lab fee is required.

Technical Drawing and Design

8435 (TECH DR & DES)
1 Credit
Grades: 9–12

Students learn the fundamentals of drafting and the basic language of industry and technology as they design, sketch, and produce drawings of mechanical and technical design. Students are introduced to Computer Assisted Design and Drafting (CADD) applications. Students explore the capabilities of CADD as a drawing tool. This course provides the foundation for the Technical Design and Illustration Cluster and is especially recommended for technology students and future architecture and engineering students. A lab fee is required.

Architectural Drawing and Design

8437 (ARCHDRAW/DES)
1 Credit
Grades: 10–12
Prerequisite: Basic Technical Drawing/Design and CADD

Students learn the principles of architectural design including floor plans, elevations and pictorial illustrations. Computer applications are emphasized as the primary design tool. Students will use a carbon laser to cut out components of architectural models designed in AutoCADD. Students interested in architectural careers will benefit from the course. A lab fee is required. Note: This course may not be taken concurrently with Engineering Drawing/Design and CADD.

Engineering Cluster

The Engineering Cluster will offer students a completer sequence in engineering. The sequence of courses will provide students with experiences in creative problem-solving relative to the world of engineering. These courses will help students develop skills in teamwork, idea sharing and technical reporting. The courses will include content from the Engineering Drawing/CADD course, as well as using Inventor® software to develop and test models and prototypes.

Engineering Explorations I

8450 (ENGINEERING)
1 Credit
Grades: 10–12
Prerequisite: One of the following: Basic Technical Drawing, Electronics I, Manufacturing Systems I 

Students will use problem solving and critical thinking skills along with math and science skills to develop, plan and implement engineered solutions to problems. Students will build models and prototypes using Inventor® software, CNC machines, and laser engraving and cutting. They will communicate through seminars, technical reports and idea sharing. Students will explore engineering careers. A fee is required.

Advanced Engineering Studies

84911(ADV ENGINEER-NON)
1 Credit
Grades: 11–12
Prerequisite: Engineering Explorations I

84912(ADV ENGINEER-CO)
2 Credits
Grades: 11–12
Prerequisite: Engineering Explorations I


Students will learn the application and design processes of engineering. Students will form engineering teams and create and select a design, models, and presentation that addresses a specific engineering problem. Teams will use communications, graphics, mathematics and community resources to solve problems. Students will work with 3-D CADD design and robotics systems and will have an opportunity to participate in engineering competitions.

Manufacturing Systems I

8425 (MFG SYSTEMS)
1 Credit
Grades: 9–11

Students will learn the fundamentals of manufacturing theory and technology. Students participate in teams and use design applications, jig and fixtures and a variety of machines to learn the process of mass production. A fee is required.

Manufacturing Systems II

84271 (ADV MFG SYS-NON)
1 Credit
Grades: 10–12
Prerequisite: Manufacturing Systems I
Recommended: Any Technical Drawing Class

84272 (ADV MFG SYS-CO)
2 Credits
Grades: 11–12
Prerequisite: Manufacturing Systems I
Recommended: Any Technical Drawing Class 


Students develop an in-depth understanding of automation and its applications to manufacturing. Students will use computers and interactive multimedia modules to design, engineer and produce products, control robots and program computer controlled machines. Activities center on flexible manufacturing processes, product quality assurance, applied electrical controls, mechanical drive systems, fluid power, and Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM) in the management and control of the manufacturing process. Students will learn to program and use a carbon laser to produce, refine, or engrave a project. A lab fee is required.

Cybersecurity in Manufacturing

84991 (CYB SEC MANU-NON)
1 Credit
Grades: 10–12
Prerequisite: Cybersecurity Fundamentals

84992 (CYB SEC MANU-CO)
2 Credits
Grades: 11–12
Prerequisite: Cybersecurity Fundamentals

This course will emphasize manufacturing systems, safety, materials, production, business concepts, and the manufacturing process. Students will learn the principles of cybersecurity, explore emerging technologies, and examine threats and protective measures. Students will participate in enterprise team activities to create products that demonstrate elements of business and manufacturing while demonstrating cybersecurity concepts and policies, including risk management.

Communication Systems (Graphics Introduction)

8415 (COM SYS)
1 Credit
Grades: 9–12 

This graphic technology course introduces students to the world of visual communications where they receive an overview of materials, tools and techniques used in different career opportunities. Students will explore history of communication systems, computer and visual literacy, video production, typography, color theory and workplace readiness skills. This course will also introduce basic animation along with digital and fine art photography. Students will use industry standard design software, such as Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to design and produce a variety of graphic productions using different equipment such as a laser engraver and vinyl cutter. A lab fee is required.

Graphic Communications

84581 (GRAPH COM-NON)
1 Credit
Grades: 10–12
Prerequisite: Communication Systems
Recommended: Grade “C” or better in prerequisite class

84582 (GRAPH COM-CO)
2 Credits
Grades: 11–12
Prerequisite: Communication Systems
Recommended: Grade “C” or better in prerequisite class


This level 2 graphics course is recommended to those students who have an interest in pursuing a career in print graphics, visual arts, marketing, audio/video technology. Students explore the history and development of graphic communications and how culture is affected by graphic communications. Students learn to use the design process to incorporate images and text to communicate ideas in a variety of graphic productions. Using industry standard design software, such as the Adobe Creative Suite students produce full-page documents such as flyers, posters, vinyl products, screen printing and other marketing materials. Students will create a portfolio at the end of the course. A lab fee is required.

Imaging Technology (Photography)

84551 (IMAGING TECH-NON)
1 Credit
Grades: 10–12
Prerequisite: Communication Systems
Recommended: Grade “C” or better in prerequisite class

84552 (IMAGING TECH-CO)
2 Credits
Grades: 11–12
Prerequisite: Communication Systems
Recommended: Grade “C” or better in prerequisite class

This level 2 graphics course introduces students to the basic principles of photography, imaging technology and composing images. Students learn to use DSLR cameras, image-editing software to manipulate digital images and study the development of photography as a communication medium and its evolution into the digital realm. Students will explore different careers in photography and will maintain a portfolio that organizing a collection of photographs or created images to reflect a student’s progress and ability. A lab fee is required.

Digital Visualization (Animation)

84591 (DIGITAL VISUAL-NON)
1 Credit
Grades: 10–12
Prerequisite: Communication Systems or Basic Technical Drawing Design and CADD

84592 (DIGITAL VISUAL-CO)
2 Credits
Grades: 11–12
Prerequisite: Communication Systems or Basic Technical Drawing Design and CADD

This course helps students gain experiences related to computer animation using graphics and design concepts. Students solve problems involving 3-D object manipulation and storyboarding. This course involves exturing/mapping, lighting concepts, and environmental geometry. Students create a variety of animations that reflect real-world applications and are introduced to interactive and 3-D animation software. Production of a portfolio showcasing examples of original student work is included.