Advanced Gunsmithing Certificate 2018 Update

Sonoran Desert Institute

Improve your gunsmithing skills and learn the techniques needed to operate a gunsmithing business. Gain valuable credentials and expand your hobby into a career.

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Curriculum Update

As of January 8, 2018, SDI’s curriculum has changed. If you enrolled at SDI prior to January 8, 2018, your program will be located at the following link.

Pre-2018 Programs and Courses

Advanced Gunsmithing Certificate

For students looking to hone their gunsmithing skills, learn the techniques needed to operate a gunsmithing business, gain a valuable credential or expand their hobby into a career, SDI’s Advanced Gunsmithing Certificate program is a perfect fit. In this 32-credit program, you’ll learn gunsmithing techniques and practices, shooting sports management, and more—you’ll also complete a build of your choice!


The Advanced Gunsmithing Certificate program is broken into 2, 16 week semesters. Because of our flexible learning options, students choose to study at whatever time of day works best. Each student will work with a member of the SDI Student Services staff to select their personal semester schedules from the following list:

Firearms Technology Discipline BBS 100: Basic Ballistics 3 8
FTT 100: Introduction to Firearms 3 8
FTT 104: Gunsmithing Tools Lab 2 4
FTT 111: Firearms Inspection and Troubleshooting 4 8
FTT 114: Custom Kydex Lab 2 4
FTT 201: Firearms Finishes and Engraving 4 8
FTT 221: Sights, Optics, and Accuracy 4 8
FTT 231: Machining and Manufacturing of Firearms 3 8
FTT 240: Shooting Sports Management 3 8
*FTT 299: Firearms Technology Elective 4 8

*FTT 299: Elective Options:

  • FTE 210: AR 10 Advanced Armorer
  • FTE 211: 1911 Advanced Armorer (Students must be 21 years of age to sleect FTE 211 course)
  • FTE 215: AR 15 Advanced Armorer
  • FTE 225: Developing a Business Plan

Course Tools List

To view the tools list for this program, please see our tools list here. It is truly our goal to prepare you for success in the firearms industry.


For tuition information, please click here. No-interest payment plans are available. This program is approved for use of the GI Bill® and other VA and military benefits. Please contact the Admissions department for more info at or (480) 314-2102.

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at

Additional Program Information

Program Outcomes

With the successful completion of this program, a student will be able to do the following:

  • Perform the basic functions of an armorer, to include cleaning firearms; diagnosing, troubleshooting, and repairing a variety of common malfunctions, and assembling a firearm from parts.
  • Explain machining operations as used in firearms manufacture and customization.
  • Improve firearms by applying custom finishes.
  • Explain the principles of ballistics as they relate to ammunition production, and explain various procedures for making ammunition.
  • Evaluate the industry of firearms service, sales, and repair.
  • Improve firearms accuracy by installing and adjusting metallic sights or optics.
  • Exhibit best-practices of firearms and firearms-repair safety.
  • Explain, in detail, the operating principles of all major types of firearms.
  • Classify firearms by type, action type, and platform by defined characteristics, and describe the functionality of each.
Course Descriptions

For full course descriptions, please click here.

Advanced Gunsmithing Certificate Gainful Employment Disclosure