Site Carpentry and Bench Joinery

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Qualification type: Advanced Apprenticeship (Standard)
Level: Level 3
Awarding body Cskills/NOCN
Academic year: 2018/2019
Start date September 2018
Duration 1 year
Location: Darlington College
Attendance: Apprenticeship

Course overview

The construction industry has had for many years a traditional Apprenticeship programme covering the craft occupations.

As an apprentice, you will:

  • be in full time employment
  • gain a nationally recognised qualification
  • get hands-on experience to help you develop the skills you need to kick start a successful career.

If you are already with an employer, then an Apprenticeship is an ideal work-based learning qualification. It is an ideal way for you to ‘earn whilst you learn!’

If you haven't got an employer to support you through your Apprenticeship, we can support you with this.


Throughout your Apprenticeship you will typically get:

  • On the job training – this is structured and agreed with your employer to ensure you learn the right skills. This is typically 4 days per week.
  • Off the job training – this is arranged for you at college. You will complete this training on a day release basis, typically over one day per week.

If you have not achieved a grade C or 4 points or above in English or maths, you will as part of your course be required to work towards this as part of your Apprenticeship programme.


Entry requirements

You will be required to have 4 GCSEs grades A*-C including GCSE maths and English and an appropriate Level 2 in Site Carpentry or Bench Joinery qualification (at a merit if graded).


How to enquire/apply

To apply for this course please click the apply button and complete the online application form. If you have any queries with regards to your application or would like further information and support please contact us on 01325 503030.

Studying and learning

Most apprentices follow a Traditional Apprenticeship route, which combines college attendance with learning on site.

As part of your Apprenticeship, you will achieve an NVQ which is the main qualification to show you can do your job. You can also use this to qualify for one of the industry card schemes, which are essential for getting on site.

Standards Occupational Profile
The occupation involves carrying out advanced skilled work, primarily using timber products, either on a construction site, or in a workshop, creating and installing building components. The advanced carpenter and joiner is able to undertake complex job tasks, requiring high levels of practical skills and knowledge, in addition to managing their own work and leading small teams.

The main differences between a Level 2 site carpenter / architectural joiner, and a Level 3 advanced site carpenter / architectural joiner are that the advanced carpenter / joiner has responsibility for managing their own and other people’s work, as well as being required to complete complex and non-standard work. Examples of complex tasks include curved products, irregular joints and bespoke work.

This is a core and options Apprenticeship, with two pathways:

Pathway 1: An Advanced Site Carpenter will normally work on a building site, or in domestic and commercial premises, preparing and installing complex and often bespoke building components e.g. high quality doors, shaped linings, staircases with turns, complex wall and floor units, erecting bespoke structural carpentry (inclined roofs and joists) and erecting complex roof structures (e.g. inclined roofs with hips, valleys and dormers).

Pathway 2: An Advanced Architectural Joiner will normally be employed in a workshop, producing complex building components by setting out, marking out and manufacturing bespoke architectural products (e.g. doors, windows, staircases with turns and panelling/cladding).

Core Skills and Competencies (both pathways)
On completion of this Apprenticeship, advanced carpentry and joinery workers will be able to carry out all the activities undertaken by a carpenter and joiner, but also be able to:

  • Work safely and pro-actively in the application of good health and safety practice in their work area, to protect themselves and others.
  • Understand the programme and work schedule for their work area and plan their work accordingly.
  • Develop and maintain good working relationships with managers, supervisors and work colleagues.
  • Determine the best way of carrying out the work and ensure this is communicated clearly to colleagues.
  • Interpret technical specifications and ensure compliance with legislation/guidance relevant to the work being done.
  • Select the required quantity and quality of resources required for carrying out complex and non-standard work, including timber, tools and fixings.
  • Be prepared to take a lead when working in a team, especially when complex or non-standard work is involved.
How will I be assessed

Upon completion of your NVQ you may be required to sit an End Point Assessment which consists of a written question paper and a final practical assessment.

Things you may need

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Health and safety are of paramount importance in the construction industry and we place a great emphasis on this part of your education. If you enrol on, and undertake any course in the construction department you will be required to provide and wear at all times (in the college site area) mandatory PPE as follows:

    1. Approved protective footwear with ankle support (Rigger type boots are not allowed)
    2. Approved hi-visibility vest

It is also expected that you will attend college in suitable work wear / clothes; it will be possible to order this directly with suppliers during college enrolment.

What next

A Level 3 apprentice could continue to higher education at college or university, such as undertaking a HNC in Building Studies.

Information, advice and support

Once a construction company offers you an Apprenticeship you can get on with earning and learning.


What if I need support?

Here at the college we have outstanding support. Our support staff are dedicated to providing you with all the help and guidance you may need throughout your college journey.

You might need help and advice on a wide range of issues such as childcare, counselling and additional learning support. For more information on any aspect of student support contact the Course and Information Team, who will direct your call to the appropriate member of the college support team, call: 01325 503030.

Enquiry Form

If you have any questions about this course, send us a message using the form below.