Computer-Aided Design Program: NorthWest Arkansas Community College

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Computer-Aided Design Program - Mechanical Design

A Computer-Aided Design (CAD) technical specialist commonly works under the direct supervision of an architect, engineer, or as an independent design professional providing drafting and design services.

Primary responsibilities of CAD specialists include creating detailed drawings of mechanical parts and systems, buildings, and structures, and construction site plans that are used by machinists and construction workers. 

CAD specialists must be able to work both independently and in project groups, skills that are developed while earning their Associate of Applied Science CAD Degree.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Use Computer Aided Design and Drafting systems to prepare and store drawings.
  • Prepare accurate engineering drawings showing the detail and method of assembly of machinery and mechanical devices.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of current industry standards and codes.
  • Coordinate with others to design and detail components and systems or to resolve design problems.
  • Consult and use technical handbooks, standards, and tables.
  • Pass the Autodesk Certification exams.


CISQ 1103 Intro to Computer Information
DRFT 1122 CAD Careers and Applications
DRFT 2114 Auto CAD I
DRFT 1234 Engineering Graphics I
ENGL 10013

DRFT 2154 AutoCad II
DRFT 1244 Engineering Graphics II
ENGL 1023 Composition II
MATH 1204 College Algebra with Review

DRFT 2333

DRFT 2533
DRFT 2293 OR DRFT 2343 Design and Production Tech
Social/Behavioral elective

(see degree plan for elective information)

COMM 2503 Small Group
DRFT 2123 Advanced Engineering Graphics OR DRFT 2553
DRFT 2553 OR DRFT 2543

(see degree plan for elective information)

BADM 2703 Internship Experience

Degree, Transfer Options, and Careers

Many courses at NWACC carry transfer credit to four-year institutions and can fulfill general education requirements.

Drafters can have different specializations such as

  • Architecture deisgn
  • Mechanical design
  • Drafter
  • Designer
  • CAD technican