Petroleum Production Technology | Bismarck State College

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Petroleum Production Technology

Students in Petroleum Production Technology gain a broad background in the safe and responsible operations and maintenance of equipment used in the oil extraction and services industry. Graduates are prepared for a high paying career and exciting employment opportunities throughout the world.


On-campus / Online
The petroleum industry offers exciting, high-paying careers and exciting opportunities for employment in North Dakota and throughout the world. The need for trained operators and technicians continues to increase along with oil and gas production volumes and reserve estimates.  As technologies advance to enhance oil recovery methods, employees with up-to-date technical skills are in higher demand.

The Petroleum Production Technology program at the Bismarck State College (BSC) National Energy Center for Excellence (NECE) provides an overview of petroleum geology, exploration, drilling, production, transportation, and processing, and explains how those operations are related. 

Are you looking for the skills and training needed for long-term opportunities in the oil and gas industry?

The Petroleum Production Technology program at BSC provides a foundation of knowledge used in the petroleum industry, including safety, mechanical, electrical, instrumentation and control, print reading, troubleshooting and communication and the chemical technology needed for working in various petroleum operations.    
Graduates from this program will have an understanding of the framework of the petroleum industry and will be prepared for entry-level employment in exploration, drilling, production, processing, and service sectors.  Graduates will understand mineral rights and leasing, know the components of a drilling rig, different production equipment, production processes, various artificial lift methods, well servicing, and petroleum processing.

Students are prepared to stay ahead of the rapidly changing industry by leveraging state-of-the-art, interactive learning tools aligned to actual on-the-job tasks.

Be in demand

Many employment opportunities are available for operator, technician and service employees in the petroleum industry including service sectors in the Bakken and other areas where petroleum is produced.
Average annual wages for employees in oil and gas extraction in North Dakota were $128,238 in 2017.
There is one resume for every 3 job openings in the oil and gas industry in North Dakota1.

Recent graduates in this program report 100% placement rates with starting wages up to $33/hour2.

Earn a degree quickly

The AAS can be completed in four semesters and consists of 50 credit hours of specialized courses and 15 credit hours of general education courses.

Students seeking the certificate complete 50 credit hours of specialized courses in four semesters, with four credit hours of general education.

There is an option for an accelerated degree path allowing students to complete a certificate or degree in less than two years.  Courses may also be taken individually for professional development.

A limited number of students will be enrolled in August and January for courses on campus.  Courses offered online begin every 3-5 weeks and are not limited to the number of students choosing to enroll.  Online students are required to complete brief on-campus labs or at an approved facility. 

NOTE: Online students in this program are required to complete 80 hours of job shadowing as part of the ENRT 220 - Practical Applications course. The course should be completed in the final semester of the program.  This requirement provides graduates with hands-on field competencies needed for working at an energy site. The Practical Applications instructor will work with students at the start of the ENRT 220 course to find a viable job shadow location. Students currently employed at an energy-related company often satisfy this requirement at their place of employment.

This program has minimum entrance requirements
Prospective students should be prepared for the physical demands of the work of entry-level technician positions when considering this program which can include working a rotating shift and passing a physical exam, which may include: lifting 50+ pounds, climbing ladders, working in confined spaces, heights, etc. When applying for jobs applicants may also be required to pass a drug screen and an eye exam, including the ability to distinguish between colors accurately.

PROD Program Flyer

Additional Program Costs

Please see the Tuition & Fees page for information on credit hour tuition and mandatory fees.

PROD textbook costs are estimated at $275 per semester. There are 4 semesters in this program.


For more information contact:
701-224-5651 • 800-852-5685

1Job Service North Dakota Labor Market Information Center
2Bismarck State College First Destination Reports