home | contact us | disclaimer  

Mortuary Technical Schools: Mortician Training Colleges for Mortuary Science

Anyone interested in becoming a professional mortician needs to complete mortician training at a mortuary school or mortuary technical schools. Mortician training programs provide hands-on training in the field of preparing bodies for burial, and for making funeral arrangements on behalf of a family or individual. Most mortuary school programs last approximately two years and grant students a diploma, certification of completion of Associate's Degree.

Many students choose to attend mortuary science schools so that they can get the supervised one-on-training they need to be successful in their field, and find a job after school through an internship placement program.

Mortician Training at Mortuary Science Schools

Individuals that want to become funeral directors or morticians must complete formal training at an approved school or technical college and obtain a license. State licensing laws vary, but most require the individual to have completed at least two years of formal education, a one-year apprenticeship program and successfully pass an examination.

The American Board of Funeral Service Education accredits approximately 60 mortuary science programs in the United States, and approximately six bachelor's degree programs at colleges and universities around the country. Mortuary science schools typically offer courses and programs in the following fields:

  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Pathology
  • Embalming Techniques
  • Business Management
  • Restorative Art
  • Accounting
  • Computers
  • Funeral Home Management
  • Client services

Some mortuary schools also offer continuing education programs and courses in the fields of law, ethics, psychology and grief counseling so that the graduate can offer a wide range of services in the funeral home setting.

What to Expect at Mortuary School

Mortuary science schools provide both classroom instruction and hands-on training so that students can learn the key processes and techniques involved with embalming, refrigeration, memorial services and burials. Mortuary colleges also provide training in funeral services and procedures for different cultures and religions, and provide students with an overview of the different processes and procedures at the house of worship, gravesite, crematory and funeral home.

Mortuary colleges also provide in-depth training in funeral laws and regulations, the Federal Trade Commission's Funeral Rule, and provide resources for major funeral service associations in the region or state.

By attending mortuary school, students learn how to:

  • Use specialized equipment, instruments and tools for the embalming process
  • Learn the duties and responsibilities of becoming a funeral director
  • Understand the basic structure of the skulls, face and muscles
  • Learn about embalming solutions and chemicals
  • Understand the basic process of completing death certificates and burial permits
  • Learn different customs, beliefs and funeral service practices of different cultures
  • Understand the laws related to the disposition of the deceased
  • Learn the law of sales and Uniform Commercial Code

Morticians are expected to work long and irregular hours, and are trained to work in small spaces and specialized rooms independently for long periods of time. Mortuary colleges may provide hands-on training at a local funeral home or at a training facility on site so that students not only learn key techniques and procedures, but also become comfortable working in a closed environment with the deceased.

Some morticians choose to work independently, while others work with a team of funeral directors and morticians for a funeral home.

Licensing Requirements for Becoming a Mortician

After successfully completing training at a mortuary school, some students must take separate licensing examinations. Some States require all funeral directors to be licensed in the field of embalming, and some states have reciprocity arrangements so that they can grant license to funeral directors who received licensure from another state.

Mortuary technical colleges may offer both degree and certification programs, and some schools offer continuing education courses so that the mortician can renew their license.

Career Options after Mortician School

Most people who have successfully completed a mortician training program work for a funeral home, or they may open up their own business to offer embalming, burial and funeral event planning services.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of funeral directors and morticians is expected to be as fast as average for all occupations through 2018. Median annual wages for funeral directors and morticians were $52,210 in May 2008 and salaries vary depending on the location, years of experience the individual has and the level of formal education they have completed.

Back to Mortuary Technical Schools: Mortician Training Colleges for Mortuary Science