Ontario updates auto body curriculum to include new materials, fundamentals of PDR and electronics

A student at Fanshawe College practices painting techniques. The curriculum standards for Ontario's auto body college programs have recently been updated.

Toronto, Ontario — September 21, 2016 — The repairs and component replacement of motor vehicles has evolved and so have the ways in which we teach those skills to apprentices. The world of automotive repair has come a long way in the last 150 years.

Technological advances, safer vehicle construction and better fuel efficiency are just some of the accepted standards in the industry.

Mike Kennelly is a Program Coordinator for auto body apprenticeship programs at Fanshawe College in London, Ont. He was also a member of the working group that recently updated the curriculum standard for the auto body and collision damage repairer trade.

He says that the updated curriculum reflects what shops are working on during day-to-day operations.

“The updates are a crucial step forward for skills growth and development for apprentices, and to equip them with the foundations they will need to be on top of repairs and the technology they encounter daily,” Kennelly says.  

Kennelly adds that today’s vehicles are built with many types of different materials, like advanced high-strength steel, structural aluminum stampings and extrusions, magnesium reinforced panels, plastics and composites—all of which require individual repair considerations and procedures based on how they are utilized within the vehicle.

Not knowing how to properly handle the varying types of materials during the construction or repair process could be deadly.

“Simply applying the incorrect amount of heat to one location or layer of unfamiliar material could be detrimental to the structural integrity of that vehicle in a subsequent collision causing injury or death,” he warns.

Other changes include added hours to level 1 and 2 of applied mechanical, to train on the collision safety and convenience systems. New additions include fundamentals of paintless dent repair and components of electronic safety and convenience systems, such as adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, frontal crash prevention, lane departure warning and assist. The subject of shielded metal arc welding – stick welding was removed.

The updated curriculum standard can be found on the Ontario College of Trades’ website at collegeoftrades.ca.


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