Programme overview

Essential Skills (first 30 credits)

In the first 4 weeks of this programme you’ll develop your essential skills for a career in the building industry. Become knowledgeable about the basic principles and practices in general construction including calculations, communications, health and safety, site safe and site safe passport, first aid, hand and power tools.

Remainder of the programme

For the majority of this programme you will focus the strand of your choice:

Credits: An additional 90 credits
If you want to become a builder, this is the ideal preapprenticeship study path before entering a carpentry apprenticeship and/or entering employment; most employers prefer apprentices who have some prior training. In Carpentry, you will learn the preapprenticeship skills needed to become a carpenter in a practical on site building project by building a 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom house.
This is the NZQA aligned standard across New Zealand in preapprenticeship carpentry training and has replaced the Certificate of Applied Technology (Carpentry). Once successfully completed, you can cross credit 1000 hours off your ITABs carpentry apprenticeship training and continue your training to become a trade qualified carpenter in the New Zealand Certificate in Carpentry.

Joinery – Open soon for applications. Register your interest in this strand if you want to be notified when more information is available or when you can apply.
Credits: An additional 60 credits
Start date: 26 February or 9 April
If you want to become a joiner, this strand is great preperation for this trade. The Joinery strand is an in depth introduction to joinery and includes machining, construction, assembly and installation techniques, while carrying out joinery projects.

Allied Trades
Credits: An additional 30 credits
Learn multiple trades used across building and construction industries in this Allied Trades strand. Allied Trades gives you a broad introductory understanding of multiple trades by introducing you to fence building, plumbing, electrical, carpentry, joinery, plastering and painting.


  • Designed to prepare students who haven't had previous training for employment in the building industry
  • Obtain the basic trade skills for anything from DIY jobs, to trying out different trades, through to getting preapprenticeship carpentry skills to prepare for employment and apprenticeship
  • Study focus (after first 30 credits) in Carpentry, Joinery or Allied Trades
  • Practical exercises where you can apply what you've learnt in additional to virtual learning
  • Small classes, with plenty of one-on-one time with our industry-experienced staff
  • Can serve as a pathway into further study

Qualification and what next

Once you’ve successfully completed this programme you’ll receive the New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills. From here you can enter the construction trades as a carpenter, joiner, journey man, or develop skills and knowledge in Allied Trades which focus on general construction skills such as painting and decorating and interior systems.

Admission requirements

For this programme, you will need the following:

1. 10 NCEA credits at Level 1 in English and Mathematics

2. A minimum of 3 years secondary education

3. Be at least 16 years old by the time the programme begins

4. If English is your second language, you will need one or more of the following:

  • Have achieved NCEA Level 3 and New Zealand University entrance
  • Be able to provide evidence you satisfy our criteria for existing English proficiency
  • Have achieved at least one English proficiency outcome in the last two years

Don’t meet these requirements? We also accept:

  • A relevant qualification at Level 2 on the NZQF or above or an equivalent qualification; or
  • Provide sufficient evidence to be eligible for special or discretionary admission.

For more information download the programme regulations:

Programme Regulations

Courses and timetables

All courses and timetables for 2018 will be available shortly.

Skills for Construction Trades (CIBC3512) 10 credits (0.083 EFTS)To enable the student to identify and apply a range of introductory communication, specification and drawings, and calculation skills that underpin effective practice in the construction industry.
Terminology and Job Role Knowledge (CIBC3526) 10 credits (0.083 EFTS)To introduce students to fundamental construction allied trades concepts, terminology, job role and tools and materials used when carrying out carpentry tasks.
Allied Trades Project (CIBC3527) 20 credits (0.167 EFTS)To enable students to manufacture and assemble construction trade items using appropriate material with consenting, quality and compliance requirements for a defined carpentry project.
Workplace Safety Framework and Practices (CIBC3911) 20 credits (0.167 EFTS)To introduce students to the legislative framework and requirements for workplace safety in the construction industry and to select and consistently apply safe working practices.