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New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills - Carpentry

Start your career as a builder or carpenter. Learn the essential basic principles and practices in preparation for employment and apprenticeship in carpentry or building related trades.

Level
3
Credits
120 (1.0 EFTS)
Campus
Mt Albert
Start dates
March or July
Duration
Full-time for 1 year

Programme overview

As part of the government’s Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) to help upskill workers in roles critical to the economy, this programme has no fees*. Click here for a list of the programmes that are covered by this scheme.

Become knowledgeable about the basic principles and practices for general construction including calculations, communications, health and safety, site safe and site safe passport, first aid, hand and power tools. 

In the first four weeks (30 credits) of this programme, you’ll develop the essential skills required for a career in the building industry. For the majority of this programme (additional 90 credits), you’ll focus on the carpentry strand. If you want to become a builder, this is the ideal pre-apprenticeship study path before entering a carpentry apprenticeship and/ or entering employment; most employers prefer apprentices who have some form of prior training. In carpentry, you’ll learn the pre-apprenticeship 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 pre-apprenticeship carpentry training. Once successfully completed, you can cross-credit 800 practical hours of your ITABs carpentry apprenticeship training as you continue your training to become a trade-qualified carpenter in the New Zealand Certificate in Carpentry.

Highlights

  • Build a house from start to finish
  • Practical projects using a variety of hand tools, portable tools, and machines
  • Learn in Unitec’s brand new purpose built trades building, Mataaho, with new, top-of-the-line machinery 
  • Designed to prepare students who haven’t had previous tertiary training for employment in the building industry or building related trades 
  • Obtain basic trade skills for anything from DIY jobs, through to pre-apprenticeship carpentry skills in preparation for employment and/or apprenticeship 
  • Work in teams and on collaborative projects similar to what you’ll undertake when in the workforce 
  • Can serve as a pathway into further study including an apprenticeship

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 workforce as an apprentice carpenter or in an assistant role in the building industry. You can also go onto further study in your apprenticeship with the New Zealand Certificate in Carpentry.

Admission requirements

For this programme, you need:

1. Applicants must have NCEA Level 1, including 10 credits each in English (reading and writing) 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 not your first 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

For more details on the courses including timetables, please click on the course names below.

Courses Credits Aim
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.
Carpentry Terminology and Concepts (Sem A) (CIBC3513-SA) 5.0 credits (0.042 EFTS) To introduce students to fundamental carpentry concepts and terminology when carrying out carpentry tasks.
Carpentry Terminology and Concepts (Sem B) (CIBC3513-SB) 5.0 credits (0.042 EFTS) To introduce students to fundamental carpentry concepts and terminology when carrying out carpentry tasks.
Building Technology and Properties (Sem A) (CIBC3514-SA) 5.0 credits (0.042 EFTS) To enable students to understand basic building technology, the properties of timber, steel and composite products, interior and exterior linings and fixings and apply this knowledge to carpentry projects.
Building Technology and Properties (Sem B) (CIBC3514-SB) 5.0 credits (0.042 EFTS) To enable students to understand basic building technology, the properties of timber, steel and composite products, interior and exterior linings and fixings and apply this knowledge to carpentry projects.
Construction and Installation Processes and Techniques (Sem A) (CIBC3515-SA) 5.0 credits (0.042 EFTS) To enable students to identify and apply a range of construction and installation processes and techniques when carrying out carpentry tasks.
Construction and Installation Processes and Techniques (Sem B) (CIBC3515-SB) 5.0 credits (0.042 EFTS) To enable students to identify and apply a range of construction and installation processes and techniques when carrying out carpentry tasks.
Carpentry Project Preliminaries (CIBC3516) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) To enable students to complete a carpentry project that focuses on preliminary work and consent and compliance requirements.
Carpentry Project - Foundations and Support Structures (CIBC3517) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) To enable students to identify and carry out foundation and support structure work within the context of a defined carpentry project.
Carpentry Project - Frames, Structures and Exterior Envelope (Sem A) (CIBC3518-SA) 7.5 credits (0.063 EFTS) To enable students to complete frame and related structures and exterior envelope work for a defined carpentry project.
Carpentry Project - Frames, Structures and Exterior Envelope (Sem B) (CIBC3518-SB) 7.5 credits (0.063 EFTS) To enable students to complete frame and related structures and exterior envelope work for a defined carpentry project.
Carpentry Project - Interior Linings and Finishing (CIBC3519) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) To enable students to complete interior lining and finishing work and investigate and comply with consenting, quality and compliance requirements for a defined carpentry project.
Workplace Safety Framework and Practices (Sem A) (CIBC3911-SA) 10.0 credits (0.083 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.
Workplace Safety Framework and Practices (Sem B) (CIBC3911-SB) 10.0 credits (0.083 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.

Moving to Te Pūkenga

Vocational education in Aotearoa (New Zealand) is changing to better meet the needs of learners like you.

As part of this transformational change, in 2023 Unitec will become fully part of Te Pūkenga, a national network delivering skills training in a wide range of locations throughout Aotearoa.

This means that while you are enrolling with Unitec now, from Semester 1, 2023 you will become a Te Pūkenga learner.

Te Pūkenga has the success and wellbeing of learners at its heart, and a review of all programmes is currently underway to help support this, including this programme. The aim is to make qualifications more portable, consistent and closely aligned with the needs of industry, and more in tune with where the world is headed.

The information contained here is correct at the time of publishing, but as the programme review is ongoing, the courses outlined may be liable to change over time.

Rest assured that we will notify you of any material changes to delivery that might impact what you study, where you study or the ways you learn.