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Introduction to Transistors

COURSE NO: E04-010
Introduction to Transistors
Course Highlights

This online engineering PDH course provides a basic understanding of the physical concepts needed to understand the semiconductor fundamentals of semiconductor devices.


A transistor is a small electronic device that amplifies a signal or can turn electricity on or off.  Invented in 1948 at Bell Labs, transistors have become the key ingredient of all digital circuits, including computers. A transistor consists of three layers of silicon or germanium semiconductor material.  Impurities are added to each layer to create a specific electrical positive or negative charged behavior.  There are essentially two basic types of point-contact transistors: the NPN transistor and the PNP transistor, where the N and P stand for negative and positive, respectively. The only difference between the two is the arrangement of bias voltages. To understand how a transistor works, you have to understand how semiconductors react to an electric potential.


This 4 PDH online course is applicable to students, professional engineers, service technicians, energy auditors, operational & maintenance personnel, facility engineers who are interested in gaining a better understanding in transistors.

Learning Objectives

This PE continuing education course is intended to provide you with the following specific knowledge and skills:

  • Define the term transistor and give a brief description of its construction and operation
  • Explain how the transistor can be used to amplify a signal
  • Name the four classes of amplifiers and give an explanation for each
  • List the three different transistor circuit configurations and explain their operation
  • Identify the different types of transistors by their symbology and alphanumerical designations
  • List the precautions to be taken when working with transistors and describe ways to test them
  • Understand how integrated circuits are constructed and the advantages they offer over conventional transistor circuits
  • Name the two types of circuit boards
  • State the purpose and function of modular circuitry
Course Document

In this professional engineering CEU course, you need to review Chapter 2 of Module 7 titled "Transistors" of the Naval Education and Training Materials (NAVEDTRA 14178), Electricity and Electronic Training Series.

To view, print and study the course document, please click on the following link(s):
Introduction to Transistors (1.6 MB)
Course Quiz
Once you complete your course review, you need to take a multiple-choice quiz consisting of twenty (20) questions to earn 4 PDH credits. The quiz will be based on Chapter 2 of Module 7 of this NAVEDTRA publication.


The minimum passing score is 70%. There is no time limit on the quiz, and you can take it multiple times until you pass at no additional cost.
Certificate of Completion

Upon successful completion of the quiz, print your Certificate of Completion instantly. (Note: if you are paying by check or money order, you will be able to print it after we receive your payment.) For your convenience, we will also email it to you. Please note that you can log in to your account at any time to access and print your Certificate of Completion.

To buy the course and take the quiz, please click on: