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What is AutoCAD?

Written by Autumn Granza on Friday, 22 May 2020. Posted in Career

Person working on computer.

AutoCAD stands for Auto Computer Aided Design. The commercial computer design and drafting software develops applications in 2- and 3D formats. It’s used to create designs that can be drawn by hand, and the software allows you to make adjustments and changes to objects, including size shape and location. The software is preferred in many areas of the construction and engineering industries.

What does an AutoCAD designer do?

AutoCAD designers, or drafters, use the CAD program to digitally create designs that are used for designing interiors, logos, engineering designs. architectural designs, and more. As a designer, you may use different tools within the software based on the industry you work in.

What types of fields does an AutoCAD designer work in?

AutoCAD designers work to generate designs across a variety of fields including construction, engineering, architecture, and mechanical design. CAD designers may work with architects to design blueprints for buildings or bridges. On the other hand, drafters may work with manufactures or other industries to create drawings of products in production, or visit a jobsite to oversee the project and make design adjustments as needed. In any job, CAD designers work with clients to meet their business needs through design. While pay may vary depending on the job, in 2021, a drafter's median salary was $60,290, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

How do you become an AutoCAD designer?

To become a drafter, you need training. Drafters must have strong computer skills. Communication is also key as CAD designers work with team members to complete projects on time. With Ashworth’s online AutoCAD Career Diploma program you may gain the tools to help you enter the field. You’ll take lessons such as

  • Lines and Essential Tools. In this lesson, you’ll learn to create new drawings, explore command entry methods, draw, undo, and erase lines, and more.
  • Templates, Copies, and Arrays. You’ll learn to set limits and create and save templates in this lesson. You’ll also learn the MOVE and COPY commands and how to use the ARRAY command for rectangular arrays.
  • Dimensions. In this lesson, you’ll create and save dimension styles, draw linear dimensions and multiple linear dimensions using QDIM. You’ll also draw angular dimensions, dimension arcs and circles, and more.
  • 3D Modeling. In this lesson, you’ll create and view a 3D wireframe box. You’ll explore the 3D Basics workspace and create solid boxes and wedges, access different, visual styles, and more.

Once you complete the program you may be prepared to sit for certification. Our program includes the cost of the Autodesk AutoCAD Certified User Certification Exam*, practice test, and retest.

Design your career path with Ashworth

If you’re ready to start sketching your career path, start today with Ashworth College by calling an Admissions Adviser at or enroll online.

*Certification Exam Requirements: Certification exam prerequisites vary. Please check with Autodesk for their requirements.

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