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New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills (Allied Trades)

New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills (Allied Trades)

Level 3

Gain the skills you’ll need to start your career in the construction industry with UCOL’s New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills (Allied Trades) programme.

A student using a cutting tool
Quick info

Level: 3

Locations: UCOL Manawatū in Palmerston North

Duration: 20 Weeks

25 Jul 2022 - 09 Dec 2022

Domestic Fees: *
Eligible for fees-free until 31 Dec 2022Scholarship info

International Fees:*
Please enquire for details

Additional Fees
Compulsory course costs may apply.

* Fees are indicative only, and are inclusive of the student services levy and GST (goods and services tax). The fee shown is for one year of study.

The New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills (Allied Trades)  will teach you what you need to know for construction health and safety, using trade mathematics and hand tools, and practical skills through project work. After this, you will be ready to work in the industry with limited supervision.


This programme is eligible for fees-free study under the Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund.

You don’t need to apply to access the fund - just enrol in an eligible programme, and the TTAF process will take care of the fees until 31 December 2022.

Please contact the info centre for more details.

 Career & Study Outcomes

Once you’ve successfully graduated, you’ll be able to:

  • Understand the regulations in the construction industry and requirements for workplace safety.
  • Demonstrate a range of effective workplace communication skills.
  • Interpret and use specifications and drawings to complete construction projects.
  • Perform simple calculations to complete a range of familiar tasks in the construction sector.
  • Understand common construction industry terminology and display job role and inter-relationship knowledge while carrying out allied trades tasks.
  • Identify and use appropriate hand tools and materials in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Manufacture and assemble construction trade items relevant to defined construction projects.
  • Select appropriate materials for construction projects and apply coatings and finishes for the selected materials.
  • Apply compliance requirements to assigned project work.

Employment Pathway
You will be able to work as a labourer or apprentice within the construction industry.

To find out more about possible job prospects and salaries, see Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Occupation Outlook for Carpenters & joiners and Construction Workers.

 Course Information

This programme consists of 60 credits.

Workplace Safety Frameworks and Practices (20 Credits)
Learn about the broad legislative frameworks that regulate the construction industry and requirements for workplace safety in the construction industry. You will be exposed to construction environments where you can apply your knowledge of safe working practices, the legislative framework, and develop effective communication skills.

Skills for Construction Trades (10 Credits)
Learn how to interpret and use construction specifications and drawings. You will develop calculation skills that underpin construction practices in the industry.

Terminology and Job Role Knowledge (10 Credits)
Learn common construction industry terminology, job roles, and inter-relationship knowledge of allied trades. You will then apply these while completing familiar construction tasks using hand tools and materials. 

Allied Trades Project 1 (20 Credits)
You will complete a range of allied trade projects consisting of:

  • Manufacture and assembly of construction trades items.
  • Application of coatings and finishes.
  • Selection of appropriate materials.

 Industry Connections

UCOL staff are well connected to our stakeholders. We will prepare you for the workplace and help manage your apprenticeship.

 Learning Facilities

The Regional Trades and Technology Centre in our Palmerston North campus is a state-of-the-art ten million dollar facility, with the latest industry fit equipment and teaching technology, complete with an indoor space large enough to build a 3-bedroom house.

 Domestic Entry Requirements

NCEA Level 1 or equivalent.


For more information about NCEA Credits see UCOL's NCEA explained page.

 International Entry Requirements

In addition to the Domestic Entry Requirements, the following applies to international student applicants.

English Proficiency Entry Requirements
International student applicants whose first language is not English must have an IELTS General or Academic score of 5 with no band score lower than 5 (or equivalent including TOEFL).  IELTS scores used must be taken from a single IELTS Test Report Form (i.e. combining scores from more than one test is not permissible). UCOL is a TOEFL iBT testing centre.

Applicants under 20 years of age:
For international applicants under 20 years of age who do not hold NCEA, International Academic Qualifications Entry Criteria apply.

 Advice & Guidance

To successfully complete this programme, you need to be aware of the physical demands required for this career pathway.

You must supply your equipment as specified in the Student Handbook.

To optimise chances of success, 100% attendance is strongly recommended. 

Work Experience
There is no work experience component as part of this programme.

Recognition of prior learning
Applications for Recognition of Prior Learning, including Cross Credit, Credit Transfer and Assessment of Prior Learning may be made on the Recognition of Prior Learning Form where a student believes all learning outcomes for a course have already been met. Applications will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis in accordance with the UCOL Academic Statute and other relavant policies and procedures.

Application checklist
It will make the process easier if you prepare the following before you apply:

  • National Student Number (NSN) (If you don't have a NSN, you may request one from NZQA, or you can supply a verified copy of your birth certificate, passport or Whakapapa statement.)
  • Evidence of your highest level of academic achievement (and evidence of prior learning, if applicable)
  • Evidence that you meet the entry requirements of the programme
  • Check if you're eligible for additional support or a scholarship. If you're 19 years or younger, you may be eligible to enrol in one of our free Youth Transition programmes.

Note that you will need to provide any verified documents in person, via post or email (not via the online application form).

Previous Related Programmes
The New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills supersedes and takes the best from the following programme of study, which is no longer offered:

  • Certificate in Carpentry

 Additional Costs

Please note that there are additional costs associated with the New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills:

  • Steel cap boots $100
  • Scientific calculator $30
  • Drawing equipment - set squares (45 and 60 degree), pencils (H and 2H), soft rubber, compass, and scale rule (1:5, 1:10, 1:20 etc) $60

Approx $150.00

  • Faber Castel graphite sketch pencils
  • Pilot Hi Tech Rectractable Roller Pen
  • Pilot Hi Tech Rectractable roller pen fine black
  • Staedler Academy scale ruler 300mm
  • Staedler Mechanical Pencil 0.9mm
  • A3 Sketch Pad, compass set, protractor, usb memory stick 4gb
  • Office eraser max large, french curves, triangles 200mm
  • Pencil sharpener, lecture pad a4 7mm ruled 200 leaf


The programme is approved by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority under the provisions of the Education Act 1989, and Universal College of Learning (UCOL) is accredited to teach it.