Want to become a locksmith?

The General Locksmithing Program offers comprehensive lectures and hands-on training sessions to prepare individuals for careers in locksmithing. At the conclusion of the program, students will be familiar with impressioning, lockpicking, safe lock installation, automotive lock opening, troubleshooting, and closed-circuit TV.

Our locksmithing program can be completed within two semesters. We also offer evening classes with two night sessions per week. Topics covered include:

  • Techniques and tools of the locksmithing trade.
  • Locksmith industry standards and practices.
  • Ethics and regulations.
  • Legal and safety issues.

To be eligible for the program, you must successfully pass a criminal background check.

Please email coshba@pgcc.edu for questions and to receive the background check application.


Our continuing education certificate is awarded upon completion of the following courses listed below.

About Our Courses

KEY-300 Locksmithing 101 (4.9 CEUs)

This course teaches entry-level locksmithing techniques and the use of hand tools, power tools, and special equipment associated with the trade. Topics covered include:

  • A review of key blanks.
  • Kwikset, Schlage, and Arrow locksets.
  • Key cutting machines.
  • Introductory impressioning and picking.
  • Auto lock.
  • Lock functions and finishes.

Required Textbook: "The Complete Book of Locks and Locksmithing" by Bill Phillips.

Prerequisite: Locksmith background check.

KEY-301 Locksmithing 102 (4.9 CEUs)

This course emphasizes industry standards, ethics, legal issues, life safety codes, and basic master keying. Topics covered include:

  • Master keying rules.
  • Progression charts.
  • Master key cylinders.
  • Cross keying.
  • Combinations and keypunching.
  • Mortise locksets.
  • Introduction to codes.

Requirements: "The Complete Book of Locks and Locksmithing" by Bill Phillips and locksmithing tools (required by the second week).

Prerequisite: KEY-300

KEY-305 Locksmithing 201 (4.9 CEUs)

Master keying continues on an intermediate level in this course. Topics covered include:

  • Heavy-duty and specialized locksets.
  • Electronic locks.
  • Alarm-sounding devices.
  • Hollow metal door locks.
  • Keyless locksets.
  • Blueprint reading.
  • Hardware selection.

Requirements: "The Complete Book of Locks and Locksmithing" by Bill Phillips and locksmithing tools.

Prerequisite: KEY-301 or background screening and commensurate experience working as a professional locksmith.

KEY-304 Locksmithing 202 (4.9 CEUs)

This course focuses on specialty topics within the locksmithing industry. Topics covered include:

  • Closed-circuit television.
  • Investigative forensics.
  • Safe lock troubleshooting and servicing.
  • Basic electricity.
  • Access control.

Contact Information

Bree Cosh, Program Coordinator | Technology, Engineering, and Construction Department 
Phone: 301-546-8514
Email: coshba@pgcc.edu 

For supplemental information on the locksmithing industry and trade, please visit the Associated Locksmiths of America, Inc.