Electrician Classes in Tennessee (Top Schools)

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The energy sector is Tennessee’s most important industry, and the state has a variety of energy sources: solar, water, and nuclear.

This led to the increased popularity of the electrician trade, with a predicted job growth of 12.9% between 2014 and 2024.

So if you want to enter the trade, here’s how you can become an electrician in Tennessee.

Potential Salary

Tennessee electricians have the following salary information according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2021:

Mean Wage:

  • Annually – $52,220
  • Hourly – $25.10
PercentileAverage Annual Wage


Annual Salary Range:

Average Salary of Electricians in Tennessee

City NameSalary
Johnson City$41,733
* Salary information last updated 2024

Regional Salary

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Chattanooga, TN-GA1,410$56,530$27.18$79,990$37,240
Clarksville, TN-KY290$52,310$25.15$77,090$33,680
Cleveland, TN210$53,030$25.49$68,330$37,240
Jackson, TN290$53,010$25.49$71,110$36,560
Johnson City, TN190$50,600$24.33$69,000$31,610
Kingsport-Bristol-Bristol, TN-VA550$54,750$26.32$77,760$36,420
Knoxville, TN2,830$56,530$27.18$88,480$33,680
Memphis, TN-MS-AR2,430$55,230$26.55$75,750$34,360
Morristown, TN120$53,600$25.77$65,770$36,020
Nashville-Davidson--Murfreesboro--Franklin, TN5,600$58,640$28.19$77,630$37,350
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Electricians, OCC 47-2111, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

How to Become an Electrician in Tennessee

In Tennessee, journeyman and master electrician licenses are issued at the local level.

This means that it’s up to the cities or counties to regulate the issuance of these licenses.

That’s why we encourage you to check with your local jurisdiction for their licensing requirements and procedures.

Let’s take a look at Knoxville, Nashville, and Shelby County as examples.

Obtaining an Electrical License in Knoxville

The City of Knoxville issues 4 electrical licenses:

  • Low-voltage electrical installer – enables you to perform work on LV-PL systems with less than 50 volts and less than 50 watts provided that the project value is less than $25,000
  • Electrical installer – enables you to perform work on electrical systems with a project value of less than $25,000
  • Mechanical installer – enables you to perform work on mechanical systems with a project value of less than $25,000
  • Electrical contractor – enables you to engage in electrical contracting services in Knoxville and within the state through reciprocity with a valid TN electrical contractor license

To apply, you must do the following:

  • Complete the online application form intended for each license type
  • Submit the required documents
  • Pay the applicable application and license fees

You will have to renew your Knoxville-issued electrical license one year from its date of issuance.

Note: The electrical and mechanical installer licenses already include the state license LLE.

Obtaining an Electrical License in Nashville

The City of Nashville leaves the license regulations to the Metropolitan Board of Electrical Examiners and Appeals.

Here are the 5 license types issued by the Board, along with their qualification requirements:

  • Journeyman electrician
    • Completed an apprenticeship program; OR,
    • Work as a journeyman under the supervision of a master electrician or electrical contractor
    • Successfully pass the required exam
  • Low voltage installer
    • At least 3 years of low voltage installation experience
    • Can credit up to 2 years of experience if you completed an education relevant to this field
    • Successfully pass the required exam
  • Equipment installer I – Residential electrical appliances installer
    • At least 3 years of experience relevant to this field
    • Successfully pass the required exam
  • Equipment installer II – Electrical sign installer
    • At least 3 years of experience relevant to this field
    • Successfully pass the required exam
  • Master electrician
    • At least 3 years of experience as an apprentice or helper electrician
    • At least 3 years of experience as an electrician
    • Can credit up to 2 years of experience if you completed a degree in electrical engineering
    • Successfully pass the required exam

To apply, you must submit the following:

  • Completed exam application form
  • Proof of experience or education
  • Letter verifying your character written by a client, supplier, or friend
  • Applicable application and license fees

Your Nashville electrical license will need a renewal on March 31 of each year.

Obtaining an Electrical License in Shelby County

The Electrical Code Board oversees the licensure regulations in Shelby County.

They will issue 8 electrical license types for you to legally perform electrical work in the county:

  • Electrical or specialist licensed electrical contractor
  • Certified electrical contractor
  • Master electrician
  • Specialist electrician
  • Industrial plant electrician
  • Supervising sign installer
  • Low voltage and/or alarm contractor
  • Low voltage contractor
  • Commercial, industrial, and institutional electrical maintenance electrician

In addition to these, the Board allows you to acquire the following licenses as proof of your qualifications.

Note that the Board doesn’t require these licenses and is only availed by interested applicants at their discretion.

  • Journeyman electrician
  • Journeyman lineman
  • Apprentice electrician
  • Specialist electrician
  • Journeyman sign installer
  • Apprentice sign installer

For specific qualifications of each license type, you’ll have to inquire with the Board.

To apply, you must submit the following:

  • Completed application form
  • Proof of experience
  • Other required documents
  • Applicable application and license fees

Your Shelby County electrical license will expire after one year of issuance.

How to Become a Limited Licensed Electrician in Tennessee

The TN Board for Licensing Contractors will issue the Limited Licensed Electrician (LLE).

You’ll only need to obtain an LLE if you meet these qualifications:

  • Your local jurisdiction doesn’t have electrical license regulations
  • Your project value is less than $25,000
  • Successfully pass the LLE exam

To apply, you must submit the following:

  • Completed application form
  • Application fee – $50
  • Copy of your LLE exam score report
  • Copy of your government-issued ID

Your license will need a biennial renewal on the last day of the month of issuance.

Note: The LLE isn’t considered nor will it replace a local- or state-issued electrical contractor license.

How to Become an Independent Electrical Contractor in Tennessee

The TN Board for Licensing Contractors will oversee the issuance of the electrical contractor license.

You’ll only need to obtain this license if your project’s valued at $25,000 or more while acting in the capacity of a prime contractor, subcontractor, or employee.

To apply, you must submit the following:

  • Completed online application form
  • License fee – $250
  • Documented experience
  • Contractor’s affidavit signed by you, the qualifying agent, and duly authorized officers
  • Reference letter from an employer, client, or code official
  • Power of attorney for the qualifying agent (if you aren’t the one who’ll take the exam)
  • Financial statement prepared by a CPA
  • Proof of insurance
  • General liability – minimum insurance amount depends on the monetary limit
  • Worker’s compensation or exemption
  • Business registration with the Secretary of State, if applicable
  • A copy of your or the qualifying agent’s exam score report

Your license will need renewal every 2 years.

Electrical Training Programs and Schools in Tennessee

You can acquire education, training, and practical experience in two ways:

  • Enroll in an accredited technical college
  • Apply with a sponsored apprenticeship program

Technical College

Before enrolling in a technical college, you should know that their programs are meant to meet the requirements of the jurisdiction in which they operate.

As such, they have different programs designed for different kind of certifications, as seen below:

  • Level 1 Apprentice Certificate Programs require 432 clock hours
  • Level 2 Apprentice Certificate Programs require 864 clock hours
  • Level 3 Apprentice Diploma Programs require 1,296 clock hours

No matter which program you enroll, in, expect to study the following topics:

  • OSHA regulations
  • National Electrical Code
  • Hand tools and power tools
  • Construction drawings
  • Basic rigging
  • Material handling
  • Electrical safety
  • Conductor terminations and splices
  • Grounding and bonding
  • Circuit breakers and fuses
  • Control systems
  • Electrical circuits
  • Electrical theory
  • Device boxes
  • Raceways and fittings
  • Conductors and cables
  • Residential electrical services
  • Electrical test equipment
  • Alternating current
  • Electric lighting
  • Conduit bending
  • Pull and junction boxes
  • Conduit installations
  • Cable tray
  • Transformers
  • Commercial electrical services
  • Motor calculations
  • Motor controls load calculations-branch
  • Feeder circuits
  • Conductor selection and calculations
  • Hazardous locations
  • Overcurrent protection
  • Distribution equipment

Some schools have partnerships with local electrical companies, so apprenticeships or entry-level positions might be made available to you.

Apprenticeship Program

Union and non-union sponsors offer apprenticeship programs to interested applicants.

If you want to join a union, the easiest way is to contact your local JATC and inquire about the available apprenticeship positions.

These programs also include classroom education, though not at the same level as those at the technical college.

Requirements to join:

  • Be 18 years old
  • Have a high school diploma/GED
  • Pass a high school algebra class
  • Pass a general aptitude test covering reading and math skills
  • Be able to transport yourself to job locations and school

If you prefer to join a non-union program, you can apply with the Independent Electrical Contractors (IEC) and Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC).

To join a non-union apprenticeship program, you’ll have to meet similar requirements as for the union programs.

The table below lists some of the schools and associations offering approved electrical programs in Tennessee.

16 Electrician Schools in Tennessee

School NameAddress
Chattanooga State Community College - Dayton Campus200 North 4th Avenue Dayton, TN 37321
Chattanooga State Community College - Kimball Site2100 Main Street Kimball, TN 37347
Chattanooga State Community College - Main Campus4501 Amnicola Highway Chattanooga, TN 37406
Dyersburg State Community College1510 Lake Road Dyersburg, TN 38024
JATC of Chattanooga3924 Volunteer Drive Chattanooga, TN 37416
JATC of Knoxville (ETAK)6107 Central Avenue Pike Knoxville, TN 37912
JATC of Local Union #1925402 Jackson Street Martin, TN 38327
JATC of Memphis6211 Shelby Oaks Drive Memphis, TN 38134
JATC of Oak Ridge138 North Lincoln Circle Oak Ridge, TN 37831
JATC of the Tri-Cities AreaP.O. Box 388 Blountville, TN 37617
Mid-South Chapter IEC2814 Stage Center Drive Memphis, TN 38134
NEJATC — JATC of Nashville310 Fesslers Lane Nashville, TN 37229
Nashville State120 White Bridge Nashville, TN 37209
Northeast State Tech2425 Highway 75 Blountville, TN
Tennessee College of Applied Technology1303 Old Fort Parkway Murfreesboro, TN
Tennessee College of Applied Technology1233 East College Street Pulaski, TN 38478

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