How Much Money Do Instructors at Technical Schools Make?

Technical instructors provide education in a variety of different fields.
Technical instructors provide education in a variety of different fields. (Image: Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Technical school instructors provide hands-on instruction to students learning vocations that do not necessarily require a degree. For example, some technical or vocational instructors teach students about the basics of automobile repair so they can work as mechanics. The annual salary of instructors in this field is comparable to the salary of instructors and teachers in other fields.

Average Salary

The average salary of an instructor in a vocational or technical school was $52,030 as of May 2008, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This number was based on the employment of 114,420 instructors in vocational and technical schools nationwide. Of these, approximately 46,310 instructors worked in technical or trade schools and made an average salary of $48,740. Average salary takes into account instructors in all institutions and locations nationwide.

Salary Pay Scale

Understanding the average salary of the technical school instructor is easier to do if placed within the broader context of the instructor pay scale nationwide. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary of technical instructors was $47,950 in 2009. The middle 50 percent of all instructors made between $35,750 and $63,960 per year. At the lower end of the pay scale, the lowest 10 percent made approximately $28,010 per year, while the highest paid teachers made more than $83,060.


Location seems to have some bearing upon the salary made by technical school instructors. The Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that Alaska is the state with the highest annual average salary for technical instructors at $70,940 per year, but this based on the employment of only 160 technical instructors. The next highest-paying state was Wisconsin at $66,170 per year. California instructors earned an average salary of $64,260 per year in 2009. Instructors in New York earned $61,990 per year, while those in Arizona earned $60,800.


Aside from the average salary of $48,740 made by instructors in technical schools, technical and vocational instructors made comparable and, in some cases, higher salaries working in other venues. For instance, those working in community college settings made $55,300 per year in 2009, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. There were 43,180 instructors employed by these schools in 2009. The highest paying industry for technical instructors was the field of architectural and engineering services. Instructors in this industry made an average salary of $69,980 per year.

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