PCB Training Courses



At Nine Dot Connects, we have built a business on sharing our PCB knowledge with you. This knowledge has been gained through years of design experience, EDA tool support experience, and experience in course writing and instructing. In fact, across the 5 members of our team, we have taught 500+ EDA related courses in our accumulative careers. (And that’s a bunch of them!)

In doing these training, patterns have emerged that beg the question – can we present this better? Can we create a training class that goes beyond showcasing a bunch of disparate functions? Can we provide the big picture rather than get tangled in the tool nuisances?

We have set out to do just that – provide training courses that not only provide instruction in an EDA tool, but to give the big picture as well.

We currently offer 5 standard PCB and EDA training courses and more are under development:


  • Fundamentals - PCB Design - This training is complete overview of the PCB process, from conception to manufacturing. It was written to provide all the necessary details one needs to know. In addition to looking at the schematics and PCB from a process point of view, lesser known but vitally important topics of fabrication, assembly, DFM and specification writing are also presented.


 




  • Boot Camp - Altium Designer – This training was developed to provide the key elements of Altium Designer to get one up and running in the tool. It is streamlined to provide information on three key features of the tool – Library, schematic and PCB editors.



 




  • Schematics - Altium Designer – This training walks students through placing schematic components from various sources into Altium Designer schematics. Students connect the schematic components and check the design for errors. PCB footprints are linked to the schematic components, as well as parameters to be placed into a Bill of Materials. Output files are rendered from the schematics (BOM and .PDF) and the Outjob file introduced.



 




  • Libraries - Altium Designer – This training teaches Altium Designer users how to create basic schematic component libraries (.SchLib) and associated printed circuit board footprint libraries (.PcbLib). Students will also learn how to create Library Projects (.LibPkg), Integrated Libraries (.IntLib) and Database Libraries (.DbLib).



 




  • Spec Ops – Altium Designer – This is a follow on course to the Altium Boot Camp. However, this is not just another round of learning more features. This class has been specifically designed to demonstrate methods and practices to help make the PCB process more efficient and practical within Altium Designer.




  • Stealth Training - There are topics that we are very capable of presenting, though not enough to warrant a full scale formal training effort at this time. To accommodate the your needs when it comes to topics of this nature, we offer the Area 9.51 training series. These informal training courses are customized to your needs and agenda. The training can be done on-site or on-line, depending on best way to interact with you and your colleagues.


  • Onsite - Training – Why travel when the experts can come to you! Let’s face it – training, while it has a very positive long term impact, is an investment in time and money in the short term. In most cases, a significant cost of training is travel expense. It is not often that a training of interest happens to be in your local area. If you have 3 or more interested students, we can come to you at your convenience.


  • Customized Training – We realize that some clients may have some specific training needs that just aren't going to get adequately addressed even with our various course offerings. This is especially true when it comes to tool flow, cabling, libraries, and process flow. The customized onsite training can be customized to meet the needs of your organization.




This course (PCB Fundamentals) helped me fill many knowledge gaps. I never knew the details of the whole PCB design process. This was never taught at my University, and I had to learn about the PCB process by myself. The course helped me understand each step of the process in a detailed manner. I thoroughly enjoyed the course and Dan is an outstanding instructor and was available to answer all of my questions and concerns. I hope to take other courses in the near future.

Rafael Diaz - EE, Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc.


The material (PCB Fundamentals) was a very good and detailed overview of the entire PCB process. Good resource of information for beginners as this information isn't really written down all in one place... until now. The practical, real life examples are always good. A lot of details. It's all about the details. Wish I had this 16 years ago when I started.

Sr. Printed Circuit Board Designer - MSA Innovation, LLC


"We first worked with Nine Dot Connects via their Altium Designer Boot Camp course. This course was both informative and practical. The instructor gave us a lot of advice that only a seasoned veteran of PCB design and Altium could provide. We also contracted with Nine Dot Connects for PCB layout services. The work was done very quickly and with high quality. I can wholeheartedly recommend them for both design and layout. Thanks to their services we have been able to keep our project on schedule."

Timothy Benson - EE, Xylem Inc.



"Nine Dots Connects is a unique collection of Altium User Experts. They provide the rarest combination of electronic design theory & practice, printed circuit board design theory and practice with the art & practice of efficiently teaching others. They have an understanding of the application of the Altium tool set that is second to none. After 35 years of private consulting, they are my "Go To" place for all things Altium."

John Painter - Lead Engineer, CyberESI



The course (PCB Fundamentals) gave me an overview of the entire PCB manufacturing and design cycle and good practices to follow at each step. Without this course, I think I would be like an architect who has never seen a construction site and would make crazy, unreasonable demands.

Yuji Iwai, Applications Engineer - Hamamatsu Corporation


Thanks for an awesome private training on PCB layout this week. I learned a ton. Now that I’m back, I think I have to pretty much trash a layout that I was working on. I basically designed an un-buildable board. It’s not ALL bad though. I am happy with my component placement and I have a pretty good sense for how routing has to flow for the design.

Mike Frank, Sr. Electrical Engineer


Dan Goddard performed training for 5 people for three days at our facility, and it was absolutely worth it. By the end of the third day, all persons under training were capable of taking a design from a sketch to a PCB layout. The training was absolutely worth every penny, and Dan’s industry knowledge and expertise in PCB design was the key to this success.

Scot Shermer, Senior Engineer - GE Oil & Gas



We had three days of some of the best training I can remember in my career. Chip handled all questions and maintained a formidable pace that covered a lot of territory and yet made sure no one got left behind. I have received a number of positive comments from the attendees. Things like “I wish I had had this training 3 years ago!” or “spent days trying to figure this out and it can be done on just a few clicks!” All in all it was a very valuable experience.

Jeffrey Milsap, P.E. - Medical Device Electrical Engineer, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals



“Dan explained the subject very well. His pace was smooth even when stopping to discuss historical PCB issues shared among the students. He hit all the marks when it came to preventing PCB respins - make sure to have requirements and specification nailed down. Seeing the actual PCB manufacturing process was golden. I was very happy to learn about advancements in PCB fabrication - why so many layers, backdrilling, via in pad, microvias. Thank you Dan, Roy, and Nine Dot Connects for a great experience."”

Jason Zeman - Electronics Engineer, PdMA Corporation



"The PCB Fundamentals class was great for me as an experienced EE, but without experience in PCB design & fabrication. I would recommend the class to anyone interested in learning more about the details of how PCBs are made and the process for getting [that circuit] onto a PCB. Do not be intimidated by the technology, the instructor and this class will educate you no matter your current familiarity with PCB design."

G. Brandon Jordan - Altria Client Services, Staff Engineer



“The combination of a structured training course and flexible coaching hours for diving into detail questions has greatly increased the value we extract from Altium Designer. Nine Dot Connects gives us the experience of having an in-house Altium expert to bounce questions off, but at a much lower cost than trying to hire someone with this experience.”

Colin O'Flynn - CTO, NewAE Technology Inc.



"Taking a design from a start to end in the proper order. I took this course from (another provider) a couple of years ago. (it was) taught out of sequence - didn't get around to talking about library parts until day 3. Complete waste of time. Your course was far more valuable."

Ken Gott - Development Engineer, Sciton Inc.



"Chip Pierce was an outstanding instructor. Deep understanding of and experience with the material, and ability to tailor the course to the skill level of the class made it an enjoyable 3 days. The flow of course material was logical and easy to follow, building on the lessons and days before.

Michael Rodzinski - Mechanical Test Systems Engineer, Tesla Motors, Inc.



“Nine Dot Connects trainer, Dan Goddard, is the best software instructor that I have seen in my 30 year engineering career. I have never seen an instructor so familiar with every feature of such a complex software product like Altium Designer. His extensive experience in using the software for numerous PCB designs allows him to impart extremely practical knowledge upon the trainees related to pitfalls encountered while using the software. There was no question that Dan could not answer. Outstanding course!”

John Tarmas - Electronics Engineer, Department of the Navy



“Dan Goddard taught a 3-day Altium class in Jacksonville from 9/6 to 9/8. He did an excellent job. I have not had such a good training class in long time. I had to leave before he finished the PCB routing section, so I did not get to say thanks for a job well done.”

Robert Loe, Fleet Readiness Center Southeast (FRCSE)



“I’ve attended the Nine Dot Connects webinars and training covering PCB Fundamentals, High Speed Design, DFM, and Altium Library Management. All have proven to be useful and informative, and well worth the time spent.”

William Letendre - EE, Airmar Technology Corp.