Countdown to the 2023 Education Forum


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What is Education Forum?

The ETA Education Forum event offers individuals the opportunity to network, collaborate and train. Event participants are given an opportunity to discuss training demands, recent developments in emerging technologies and industry trends. Those attending the available training sessions will have the opportunity to become certified as part of the class. Certification is important in this competitive job market, and remains a vital part of electronics-related industries.

Co-Hosted with

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Who attends Education Forum?

Attendees at the ETA Education Forum include: faculty in technology programs who want to gain knowledge about new technologies, and how to expand existing programs; college representatives, program development specialists, and counselors who are interested in creating and maintaining electronics programs and in developing strategies for recruiting students; industry trainers and managers who want to gain insight from educators; workforce development personnel from government, labor, business, and education who are involved in shaping electronics programs; individuals concerned with current industry trends, emerging technologies and educational programs.

Why attend the Education Forum at IWCE?


Need a justification letter to convince your boss? Try this one!




2022 Education Forum

March 27-30, 2023

LV Convention Center
North Hall
Las Vegas, NV




2023 Technical Training

ETA International is proud to provide training through outside vendors in popular technology areas leading to ETA certification. ETA will provide opportunities to test in each area during Education Forum/IWCE, and will also offer a series of Short Courses. Training courses must be purchased separately and are not part of any IWCE conference package. Please check back often for updates. Map of North Hall, Las Vegas Convention Center (Level 2).


Associate Certified Electronics Technician (CETa)

Presenter: Christopher Miller, CETsr, Heartland Community College
Date: Wednesday, 3/29 & Thursday, 3/30
Time: 8:00am–5:30pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification
This is a multi-day course that takes place on Wednesday and Thursday with a 2.5 hour lunch break to allow time to visit the IWCE exhibit hall.

Important:

Due to the similarities in both certification programs, ETA does not recommend taking both the Associate CET (CETa) and General Communications Technician – Level 1 (GCT1). The Associate CET is the foundational electronics certification for ETA’s Journeyman program. The General Communications Technician – Level 1 is similar to the Associate CET, but with a more communications focus. The General Communications Technician – Level 1 is only accepted as a substitute for the Associate CET for those Journeyman options in the Communications category. You can read more about ETA’s Certification Pathway here.


The Associate certification is designed for technicians who have less than two years of experience or trade school training for electronics technicians. Topics covered include: DC Electronics, AC Electronics, Components & Semiconductors, Analog Circuits, Re-cabling & Telecommunications, Digital Circuits & Microprocessors, Troubleshooting, Test Equipment & Repair, Shop & Service Management. Every Certified Electronics Technician (CET) candidate must pass the Associate exam before they can qualify to sit for the full Journeyman certification. Once a technician has completed the four-year term, they should specialize and take a Journeyman option. It is strongly encouraged to have CETa study guide for this training. A CETa study guide can be purchased at www.etai.org.

CETa

Course Cost: $630 or $730 onsite | Test only option $65

Certification: ETA's Associate Certified Electronics Technician (CETa)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

Cybersecurity and Information Technology Security Training (ITS)

Presenter: Chuck Brooks, eITPrep
Date: Wednesday, 3/29 & Thursday, 3/30
Time: 8:00am–5:30pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification

This is a multi-day course that takes place on Wednesday and Thursday.
STUDENTS MUST BRING A LAPTOP OR TABLET TO THE CLASS.

This course that will give you all of the necessary skills in order to be successful in today's CYBERSECURITY industry. After completing this course, attendees will: Have an in-depth understanding of all ITS domains; Achieve the comprehension of hardware and software of network security; Have a clear awareness of security in relation to wireless networks; Gain the basic understanding of device security such as Bluetooth and IoT; Develop a detailed comprehension of software exploitation and vulnerabilities; Gain a clear awareness of operational policies, standards, and risk assessment; Have a firm grasp of disaster recovery and computer forensics; Understand the fundamentals of cryptography and its relationship with IT infrastructure; and develop a cognizance of social engineering attacks and countermeasures in-depth.

ITS

Course Cost: $949 or $999 onsite | Test only option $105

Certification: ETA's Information Technology Security (ITS)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

Distributed Antenna Systems (ERRCS) - Code Compliance (DASC)

Presenter: Ira Wiesenfeld, PE, CETms(RF), IWA Technical Services, Inc.
Date: Monday, 3/27 & Tuesday, 3/28
Time: 9:00am–5:00pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification

This training addresses recent code changes that include requirements needed to approve, design, build, and test procedures as spelled out in the recently updated International Fire Code (IFC) Section 510-2021 Emergency Responder Radio Coverage (ERRC) and National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1225-2022 code. This class incorporates specific discussions to ensure that the ERRCS is in compliance with the current standards.

This two-day course is for anyone interested in learning the fundamental theories, components, installation, maintenance and support of in-building Public Safety Distributed Antenna Systems. It also focuses on the application and optimization of active and passive BDAs used in today’s Public Safety DAS systems. Students completing this course will better understand how DAS systems function and why the design is critical to proper operation. Exposure to RF energy and related safety subjects will be addressed.

This two-day course is for anyone interested in learning the fundamental theories, components, installation, maintenance and support of in-building Public Safety Distributed Antenna Systems. It also focuses on the application and optimization of active and passive BDA’s used in today’s Public Safety DAS systems. Students completing this course will better understand how DAS systems function and why the design is critical to proper operation. Exposure to RF energy and related safety subjects will be addressed.

Discussions will include:

Antenna types, mounting techniques, propagation, gain and losses, decibels, pattern distortions, return loss, distance-to-fault, range, impedance matching, bandwidth, efficiency, power levels, types of BDA’s, selecting the correct components for optimal results, polarization, transmission line selection, fiber optic connectivity, antenna diversity, splitters, couplers, taps, lightning protection, donor antenna to distribution antenna isolation, FCC licensing requirements, commissioning, optimization, and troubleshooting, along with NFPA 1225-2022 and IFC 510-2021 Code Compliance.

Hands-on demonstrations will include:

Testing fundamentals, connectorization, reflectometers, RF wattmeters, calibration, determining problems, distance-to-fault measurements, system sweeps, spectrum analyzers, fiber optic test equipment, and specific tests required by the new code.

DASC

Course Cost: $949 or $999 onsite | Test only option $105

Certification: ETA's Distributed Antenna Systems - Code Compliance (DASC)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

Fiber Optics 1-2-3 (FOI)

Presenter: Phil Shoemaker, FOT-OSP, Light Brigade
Date: Monday, 3/27 - Thursday, 3/30
Time: 9:00am-5:00pm (Mon/Tues) & 8:00am–5:30pm (Wed/Thurs)
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification
This is a multi-day course that takes place Monday through Thursday with a 2.5 hour lunch break Wednesday/Thursday to allow time to visit the IWCE exhibit hall.

This instructor-led course provides a fundamental understanding of fiber optics, coupled with the practical hands-on skills training required to install and maintain fiber optic networks. Perfect for those new to fiber or those looking to enhance their current skill set. Two days of classroom time are dedicated to the understanding of fiber technology and network components, followed by two days of hands-on skills training to develop cable preparation, termination, splicing, and testing skills.

Classroom Topics (Monday/Tuesday):

  • Fiber Basics
  • Fiber Optic Transmission Theory
  • Multimode and Single-mode Fibers
  • Fiber Optic Cables
  • Connectors and Connector Endfaces
  • Splicing
  • Fiber and Cable Management
  • Installation
  • Test Equipment
  • Testing Best Practices
  • Restoration
  • Active and Passive Devices
  • Loss Budgets
  • Safety

Hands-On Skills Lab (Wednesday/Thursday):

  • Connectors
  • Prepare Fibers for Termination
  • Hand-polished Anaerobic Connectors
  • Cleaning and Inspection
  • Mechanical Splice-on Connectors
  • Identify Nearby Bends and Breaks
  • Assemble an ETA-compliant Patchcord
  • *Cable Preparation for Termination
  • Prepare Stranded Cable for Panel Installation
  • Prepare Buffer Tube for a Splice Tray
  • Prepare a Fanout Kit
  • Splicing and OTDRs
  • Modify Typical OTDR Settings
  • Recognize and Interpret Events
  • Use a Launch Box
  • Modify Typical Splicer Settings
  • Perform Arc Calibration
  • Fusion and Mechanical Splicing
  • Optical Loss Testing
  • Wet and Dry Cleaning Methods
  • One-, Two- and Three-cord Reference Testing
  • Create a Sample Loss Budget
  • Detect Active Fibers
FOI

Course Cost: $2,300

Certification: ETA's Fiber Optics Intaller (FOI)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

General Communications Technician Training - Level 1 (GCT1)

Presenter: Chris Miller, CETsr, Heartland Community College
Date: Monday, 3/27 & Tuesday, 3/28
Time: 9:00am–5:00pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification
This is a multi-day course that takes place on Monday and Tuesday.

Important:

Due to the similarities in both certification programs, ETA does not recommend taking both the Associate CET (CETa) and General Communications Technician – Level 1 (GCT1). The Associate CET is the foundational electronics certification for ETA’s Journeyman program. The General Communications Technician – Level 1 is similar to the Associate CET, but with a more communications focus. The General Communications Technician – Level 1 is only accepted as a substitute for the Associate CET for those Journeyman options in the Communications category. You can read more about ETA’s Certification Pathway here.


The General Communications Technician-Level 1 certification program introduces the attendee to basic elements of various communications concepts and technologies. This includes basic electronics, fundamentals of radio, tools, test equipment, power systems, cabling and installations, environmental systems, antennas, transmission lines, operating principles and details on radios and radio systems, serial data and IP networks, basics of fiber optic lines and systems, telephony, satellite communications, physical plant considerations, site procedures and safety practices. LMR communications, satellite, telephone, data, and computer technologies used in incident response and planned events.

General Communications Technician-Level 1 trains technicians on the practices and procedures common to radio communication technicians. This course will help communications technicians work within the Incident Command System (ICS) organizational structure. It is intended for the novice technicians or anyone that needs a basic technical understanding of communications systems. This course is ideal for federal, state, local, and tribal emergency response professionals and coordination/support personnel with communications backgrounds. Individuals who are responsible for managing a Strategic Technology Reserve (radio cache, mobile communications vehicle, or other deployable communications assets) are encouraged to attend. GCT1 is modeled after the US Department of Homeland Security's COM-T program.

GCT1

Course Cost: $949 or $999 onsite | Test only option $105

Certification: ETA's General Communications Technician-Level 1 (GCT1)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

General Communications Technician Training - Level 2 (GCT2)

Presenter: AJ Wiesenfeld, PE, IWA Technical Services, Inc.
Date: Monday, 3/29 & Tuesday, 3/30
Time: 8:00am–5:30pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification
This is a multi-day course that takes place on Wednesday and Thursday with a 2.5 hour lunch break to allow time to visit the IWCE exhibit hall.

Important:

The General Communications Technician – Level 2 (GCT2), an ETA Journeyman certification, has two years of electronics experience by field experience, trade school, or college as part of its program requirement. By registering for this class, you must have this experience or your certification may not be issued until that experience is attained.


The General Communications Technician program is customizable “hands-on” instruction modeled after the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) guidelines that cover all the disciplines listed in the COMT program and the APCO/ANSI technician standards. GCT-2 brings the GCT-1 apprentice to the next level on the pathway of becoming a seasoned Certified Electronics Technician by taking a much deeper dive into everyday problems encountered by the field engineer. GCT-2 expands the attendee’s knowledge base to include advanced elements of various communications concepts and technologies. The course focuses on everyday activities including, field installation, troubleshooting, and service procedures.

You Will Learn

  • The critical aspects of LMR that are used daily in the field
  • Applications of radio theory that are easily understandable
  • Hands-On troubleshooting using state-of-the-art test equipment
  • All of the technical competencies contained in the DHS COMT
  • All core competencies found in APCO / ANSI 3.107.1.2015 communications technicians standard
  • FCC / FAA rules and regulations
  • Safety in the work environment

GCT2

Course Cost: $949 or $999 onsite | Test only option $105

Certification: ETA's General Communications Technician-Level 2 (GCT2)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

Line and Antenna Sweep (LAS)

Presenter: Jay Thompson, CETsr, TACtical RF
Date: Monday, 3/27 & Tuesday, 3/28
Time: 9:00am–5:00pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification
This is a multi-day course that takes place on Monday and Tuesday.

Line and Antenna Sweep (LAS) testing has been with us for more than 50 years but it was primarily lab based. Handheld units now bring line sweeping into the field at a technician level. Carrier and equipment manufacturers develop installation Methods of Procedures to ensure every decibel of signal strength is maximized in the increasingly crowded RF spectrum. Line and antenna sweeping are critical tests for the installation, maintenance and troubleshooting of antenna components and networks. The course is about moving beyond a simple wattmeter test when installing or maintaining any antenna system.

A review of decibels, Return Loss and VSWR along with the standard tests used for LAS will be covered. Many examples will be presented and hands on exercises will be conducted to ensure students are prepared to better understand antenna systems. The ETA LAS certification test will be available upon completion of this course.

LAS

Course Cost: $949 or $999 onsite | Test only option $105

Certification: ETA's Line and Antenna Sweep (LAS)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

Microwave Fundamentals - Microwave Radio Technician (MRT)

Presenter: Bill Bailey, PhD, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Date: Wednesday, 3/29 & Thursday, 3/30
Time: 8:00am–5:30pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification
This is a multi-day course that takes place on Wednesday and Thursday with a 2.5 hour lunch break to allow time to visit the IWCE exhibit hall.

With the explosion of new digital applications in today’s communication networks microwave radio offers many advantages. They are capable of carrying large amounts of information (voice, video, and data); they require smaller antennas than other RF communication bands; microwaves signal easily propagate around objects; and microwave equipment has proven very reliable. The microwave spectrum is generally described as running between 500 MHz and 300 GHz. At these frequencies wave-lengths become relatively short, and measure between 1 cm and 60 cm in length. Microwave systems have proven capable of effectively processing and transmitting both analog and digital intelligence. Microwave technicians, therefore, must be equally versed in frequency modulation (FM) and digital modulation techniques. In this course we will take a system approach in our examination and analysis of microwave radio communication.

Participants will be exposed to: RF safety fundamentals; RF spectrum and frequency concepts; microwave radio system configurations; RF modulation schemes (CW, AM, FM,& PW) ; digital microwave coding/decoding techniques; principles of Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM) and Phase Shift Keying (QPSK); microwave radio equipment (TX & RX block diagrams, microwave/digital interfaces, performance indicators, bit error rates (BIT), microwave timing and synchronization schemes, and radio protection configurations); microwave propagation characteristics (line-of-sight restrictions, electromagnetic waves, path-related anomalies, and Fresnel zone clearance); microwave antenna systems; and common microwave test equipment and procedures. Upon successfully passing ETA’s microwave radio technician (MRT) examination participants will be awarded ETA certification.

MRT

Course Cost: $949 and $999 onsite | Test only option $105

Certification: ETA's Microwave Radio Technician (MRT)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

Practical Antenna Basics (PAB) - Making Sense of RF Propagation in Everyday Communication Systems

Presenter: Bill Bailey, PhD, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Date: Monday, 3/27 & Tuesday, 3/28
Time: 9:00am–5:00pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification
This is a multi-day course that takes place on Monday and Tuesday. A lunch break is built into the schedule.

In this course participants will be introduced to basic antenna theory. We will examine the fundamental principles of RF propagation and explore the antenna’s critical role in wireless communication systems. A major problem in any wireless communication system is the efficient transformation of internal circuit voltage and current into electromagnetic energy. Encoded and modulated with analog intelligence or digital data, electromagnetic radiation can then be propagated though space. The transformational complexity often results in an over-simplified explanation of an antenna as just a passive device with strange and magical abilities. Those attending this course will learn to dispel any mystical nature and develop a sound practical understanding of how antennas work.

Topics addressed will include: the evolution of antenna theory (Maxwell’s equations, Faraday’s law, Ampere’s law, Marconi and Hertz); electrical to electromagnetic conversion (E and H field interaction, polarization, wave-fronts); characteristics of RF propagation (refraction, diffraction, fading, and travel path); half-wave dipole antenna development (effects of impedance, radiation and induction); antenna power ratios (dB’s and dBm’s); antenna performance (gain, directivity, reciprocity, radiation fields, beam-width, directionality); antenna feed lines (resonant and non-resonant); antenna design considerations (monopole antennas, antenna arrays, and electrical vs. physical length); specialized antennas (log-periodic, small-loop, folded di-pole, and slot antenna); microwave antennas (horn, parabolic reflector, lens and patch antennas); and common non-proprietary antenna installation, alignment, and maintenance practices. Upon successfully passing ETA’s antenna competency examination participants will be awarded ETA’s practical antenna basics (PAB) certification.

PAB

Course Cost: $949 or $999 onsite | Test only option $105

Certification: ETA's Practical Antenna Basics (PAB)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

Radio Frequency Interference Mitigation (RFIM)

Presenters: Tom Brinkoetter, LAS, Radio Site Test & Rob Rowlands, Gap Wireless
Date: Wednesday, 3/29 & Thursday, 3/30
Time: 8:00am–5:30pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification
This is a multi-day course that takes place on Wednesday and Thursday with a 2.5 hour lunch break to allow time to visit the IWCE exhibit hall.

This course will provide a background in the frequency spectrum and RF technology and review causes and sources of interference. Spectrum analyzers will be covered in detail along with software functions and tools to support interference hunting. Many interference hunting cases will be presented.

Students will have hands-on time with a variety of modern commercial spectrum analyzers. A “Tiny SA” spectrum analyzer will be given to the students for use during the labs.

The content will include:

  • Basic RF Signal Theory
  • Frequency Spectrum
  • Decibels
  • Unlicensed vs. Licensed
  • Modulation
  • Radio Propagation
  • What is interference?
  • Sources of Interference
  • Interference Examples
  • Antennas
  • Spectrum Analyzers
  • Key specifications
  • Real Time vs. Swept
  • Spectrum Analyzer Measurements
  • Interference Hunting Tools
  • Field Measurements

RFIM

Course Cost: $1,049 or $1,099 onsite | Test only option $105

Certification: ETA's Radio Frequency Interference Mitigation (RFIM)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop

Wireless Networking Technician (WNT)

Presenter: Eric Ingram, CETsr, University of Massachusetts Global
Date: Monday, 3/27 & Tuesday, 3/28
Time: 9:00am–5:00pm
Room: TBD

Course Description Certification

This course provides students with an introduction to the world of wireless communication technology that is impacting every sector of our interconnected world today. The fundamental knowledge of RF technology used in wireless communications and how intelligent information is communicated for specific applications along with system design components and their requirements is presented. Antenna theory, transmission lines, RF propagation, and modulation schemes are discussed.

Brought to you by UMass Global, this two-day program prepares students to sit for the ETA Wireless Network Technician (WNT) Certification exam. The course explores wireless solutions and standards used today in Personal, Local, Metropolitan, and Wide Area Networks. This includes solutions for both fixed wireless and mobile wireless applications. An in-depth look into WiFi technology (802.11), the predominant technology used for Local Area Networks (LANs) is presented. The course provides a comprehensive study of Wide Area Network technology including microwave and satellite solutions.

Upon successful mastery of this course, you will be able to:

  • Discuss the fundamentals of the electromagnetic spectrum and RF technology used to facilitate wireless communications
  • Identify and describe the basic components of an RF system including propagation behaviors and system performance factors
  • Explain the various technologies and components used to facilitate Wireless Personal Area Networks
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the IEEE 802.11 and WiFi standards used in Wireless Local Area Networks and explain the architecture and components used in the various types of networks
  • Discuss mobile wireless communications systems and technologies and the evolution between the generations of mobile communications from 1G to 5G
  • Identify and explain the technologies used to provide fixed wireless networks
  • List the most important aspects regarding safety with working with RF Systems
WNT

Course Cost: $949 or $999 onsite | Test only option $80

Certification: ETA's Wireless Networking Technician (WNT)

Certification Cost: included in the price of the workshop