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MST Outline

Learn more about Master Service Technicial (MST) Apprenticeship. 

Master Service Technician (MST) Apprenticeship

What Is ITAC’s MST?

The Independent Technicians Automotive Committee (iTAC) have developed a registered Master Service Technician (MST) Apprenticeship Program for Washington State. This 8,000-hour apprenticeship is designed to develop career-ready skills in the automotive repair industry.

This apprenticeship program combines structured, paid on-the-job training at an iTAC employer and ASE Education Foundation approved online and/or face-to-face instruction.  

What Is a Master Service Technician? 

A Master Service Technician (MST) performs a wide-variety of advanced automotive maintenance, repair, and diagnostic duties used in the trade. MST’s use advanced diagnostic techniques and equipment to determine automotive corrections in electrical, electronic, power train, suspension, brakes, HVAC, hybrid, electric, and alternate fuel vehicle systems.

Registered Apprenticeship Program Outline

Employer Responsibilities for Participation:

  1. Become a Training Agent by signing the ITAC agreement form furnished by the Washington State Labor & Industries Apprenticeship Section and Northwest Auto Care Alliance.
  2. Grant equal treatment and training opportunities for all apprentices and apply those conditions uniformly.
  3. Have equipment available and rotate apprentices in the various processes and equipment of the skilled occupation.
  4. Identify and hire an apprentice to train in the apprenticeship program.
  5. Identify a Master Tradesperson to mentor the apprentice(s), provide proper on-the-job training, and maintain the appropriate 1:1 ratio.
  6. Periodically review and evaluate apprentices before advancement to the next wage progression.
  7. Pay your apprentice(s) the percentage of Journey wage rate for hours worked

Step Number

Step Hours

Journey Level Wage %

























Apprentice Requirements:

  1. Must have a high school diploma or GEDor enrolled in an iTAC approved high school or college automotive program.
  2. Be selected by an ITAC participating employer.
  3. Must pass a drug screening.
  4. Eligible to work in Washington State.
  5. Must have a valid driver’s license.
  6. Able to perform the physical requirements of the occupation.
  7. Sign an Apprenticeship Agreement with ITAC and abide by the ITAC Standards of Apprenticeship.
  8. Attend and pass Related Supplemental Instruction (RSI).
  9. Demonstrate progress on the job.
  10. Submit monthly work progress reports.

Wage Progression for Occupation:

  1. Employers will provide a journey-level wage scale based on the journey level wage rate established for their business. As a registered statewide apprenticeship program, ITAC is required by the Department of Labor & Industries (L&I), to establish the base hourly rate of a skilled/journey level employee participating in the apprenticeship program.
  2. Pay will vary by employer and number of hours worked.

Master Service Technician (MST) On-the-Job (OJT) Tasks & Hours:

  • Vehicle Inspection & Shop Safety: 400 hours
  • Engine Repair: 1200 hours
  • Automatic Transmission & Trans Axle: 320 hours
  • Manual Drivetrain & Axle: 80 hours
  • Suspension & Steering: 800 hours
  • Brakes: 800 hours
  • Electrical/Electronics: 2400
  • Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning: 400
  • Engine Performance: 1600


The above schedule of tasks and hours is designed as a guide. The apprentice shall be instructed, rotated, and trained in all operations and methods customarily used in the industry. Each company will adhere to the schedule as closely as facilities will permit in order to provide the apprentice with well-rounded practical experience on all relevant equipment and processes in the shop.

Master Service Technician RSI Outline

ITAC Apprenticeship provides a mentored educational career path, connecting industry and youth. Earning while learning fosters personal and professional growth as well as providing opportunity for advancement to Master status within a structured educational program. This program teaches fundamentals in shop safety and environmental considerations that are standard in the industry. Also included, detailed theory and operation of advanced vehicle inspections, service and diagnosis. Apprentices will learn critical thinking skills to help then problem solve on a higher level. The curriculum is found in the Related Supplements Instruction (RSI) outlined below.

Vehicle Inspection & Shop Safety | 50 Hours

This course covers proper shop safety procedures including personal protective equipment (PPE), proper lifting and hoisting procedures, fire safety and fire extinguisher usage, hazardous material handling and current environmental practices. Students will learn proper tool and equipment usage, how to perform a comprehensive vehicle inspection, Identify hybrid vehicle service precautions. Inspect for proper fluid levels and condition. Inspect for fluid leaks using Pressure testers and UV dye processes. Perform all vehicle fluid services including oil and filter service. Replace and adjust accessory drive belts, tensioners, and check pulleys. Verify proper pulley alignment. Identify fastener thread types, repair internal and external threads using various inserts and tools. How to communicate in a verbal and written format. Students will also learn workplace culture, customer service, and mentorship.

Suspension & Steering | 50 Hours

This course covers theory, operation and servicing of tires, wheels, wheel bearings, suspension, manual and power steering systems used on modern vehicles. Students will learn proper tire and wheel mounting, balancing, rotation and tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) resetting procedures. Identifying and servicing shocks, struts as well as identifying other worn or damaged components. Performing pre-alignment inspection, measure vehicle ride height. Prepare vehicle for wheel alignment, perform four-wheel alignment by checking and setting vehicle to proper manufacturer specifications.

Brakes | 50 Hours

This course covers theory and operation of brake systems. Identification of brake system components and configuration used on modern vehicles. Students will learn to diagnose and service brake pads, shoes, hydraulic components, rotors, drums, and various power assist and parking brake systems, anti-lock brake, wheel bearings, traction and stability control systems.

Electrical Electronic & Computer Systems | 50 Hours

This course covers theory and operation of modern vehicle electrical, electronic, computerized, and emission control systems. Hybrid electric vehicles, high voltage and regenerative systems. Students will learn electrical theory including Ohm’s law, Series and Parallel circuits, proper diagnosing and testing procedures using circuit testers, digital multimeters, scan tools and oscilloscopes. Students will learn to diagnose service and repair batteries, charging, starting, lighting, body control and convenience systems. Students will also learn to check, record and/or clear diagnostic data and trouble codes from the computer modules.

Engine Repair I 50 hours

This course covers theory and operation of modern vehicle engine diagnosis and repairs, engine removal and reinstallation (R&R), cylinder head and valve train systems, engine block and rotating assemblies, lubrication and cooling systems, fluid servicing, and leak diagnosis and repair.

Automatic Transmission and Transaxle I 50

This course covers theory and operation of modern electronic automatic transmission/transaxle operation, diagnosis and repair. Students will learn to perform electrical/electronic and hydraulic system diagnosis and repair, fluid level and condition checking procedures, removal and reinstallation (R&R) procedures as well as reprogramming procedures.

Manual Drive Trains and Axles I 50

This course covers theory and operation of modern manual transmission/transaxle operation, diagnosis, and repair of front, rear, all-wheel, and four-wheel drive systems. Students will learn the components and operation of the clutch, mechanical and hydraulic release systems, transmission, axle, differential, and transfer case assemblies.

Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) I 50

This course covers theory and operation of modern HVAC systems and the operation, diagnosis, service and repair procedures. Students will learn about environment (EPA) rules and regulations, different types of refrigerants in use today as well and recovery and recharging procedures.

Engine Performance I 50

This course covers advanced engine mechanical repairs, noise and vibration diagnosis, fuel, air induction, ignition, and exhaust systems. We will also cover performance upgrades and tuning to enhance engine performance and drivability.

Advanced Vehicle Performance I 50

This course covers the use of advanced diagnostic procedures and equipment. The student will use digital multi-meters, scan-tools, and oscilloscopes to diagnose the various electronically controlled systems such as, fuel, ignition, emission, transmission, electronic power steering, brake and throttle by wire systems. 

Advanced Electrical Systems I 50

Using the skills equipment learned in Advance Vehicle Performance the student will diagnose more complex issues like multiplexing and CAN Buss networks. Students will also learn the theory and operation of hybrid, electric, and alternate fuel vehicles and basic diagnosis and repair of these vehicles.

Advanced Mechanical Repair I 50

Using previous knowledge, the student will learn more advanced skills related to timing belts, head gaskets, controls, mechanical engine repair, drive train, tires and wheels, drive axles, CBT and CVT diagnosis and hybrid, electric, and alternate fuel vehicle repairs.

It is the mission of the Independent Technicians Automotive Committee (ITAC) that the training of apprentices shall be without discrimination based on race, sex, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, veteran status or as otherwise specified by law. ITAC also encourages women, minorities and veterans to apply with their employer.

Master Service Technician Application

Are you ready to apply for the apprenticeship program? Please fill out apprenticeship application form below. If you have any questions or concerns please contact us at or call (253) 660-ITAC


    Related Supplemental Instruction (RSI) may occur at an approved Secondary or Post-Secondary institution or through approved on-line offerings or a combination depending on apprentice needs. COURSE GRADES Apprentices must pass each class with a grade equivalent of at least 75% (3.0 gpa). Written notice of failed classes will go to your employer. ON-THE-JOB TRAINING (OJT) REPORTING Apprentices are required to submit monthly work progress on the approved Apprentice Work Progress Form by the 15th day of the following month. TUITION The apprentice will be responsible for payment for their classes and fee’s, subject to their employer’s tuition reimbursement policy. COMMUNICATION ITAC staff uses e-mail as the primary form of communication with apprentices. With emergent needs, the staff will call or text the phone number provided on your registration form. It is the apprentice’s responsibility to notify ITAC staff if there has been a change to address, e-mail, or phone number.
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