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Computer Numerically Controlled Machine Tool Programmer, Metal and Plastic

Minimum Education Required for this Career

Basic Certificate
Advanced Certificate
Associate's Degree
4+ year Degree
Advanced Certificate
$28,518

City Colleges Program Options

Computer Numeric Control Machining

CNC Operations

Nature of the Work

Computer numerically controlled machine tool programmers typically:
  • Determine the sequence of machine operations, and select the proper cutting tools needed to machine workpieces into the desired shapes.
  • Revise programs or tapes to eliminate errors, and retest programs to check that problems have been solved.
  • Analyze job orders, drawings, blueprints, specifications, printed circuit board pattern films, and design data to calculate dimensions, tool selection, machine speeds, and feed rates.
  • Determine reference points, machine cutting paths, or hole locations, and compute angular and linear dimensions, radii, and curvatures.
  • Observe machines on trial runs or conduct computer simulations to ensure that programs and machinery will function properly and produce items that meet specifications.
  • Compare encoded tapes or computer printouts with original part specifications and blueprints to verify accuracy of instructions.
  • Enter coordinates of hole locations into program memories by depressing pedals or buttons of programmers.
  • Write programs in the language of a machine's controller and store programs on media such as punch tapes, magnetic tapes, or disks.
  • Modify existing programs to enhance efficiency.
  • Enter computer commands to store or retrieve parts patterns, graphic displays, or programs that transfer data to other media.
Click here to learn more about 51-4012 Computer Numerically Controlled Machine Tool Programmers.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement

Future Trends

Career Pathways

Success at City Colleges

Career Disclaimer

Wage estimates are based on Occupational Employment Statistics and the American Community Survey. Wage estimates are also affected by county-level Economic Modeling Specialists Intl. (EMSI) earnings by industry. The Nature of the Work description is from O*Net Online, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor.