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Carpentry & Joinery Level 2 Apprenticeship at Reading College

Course description

The Site Carpentry and Bench Joinery Apprenticeship provides a rounded training experience for young people employed in the construction industry as carpenters or joiners and covers a broad range of training preparing your for work on different types of sites from private houses to large building sites. 

You will develop skills used in the construction of buildings through installing fixing components erecting structural carcassing components and producing non-structural carpentry work. You will also be taught how to use various hand tools and power tools. An apprenticeship combines hands-on learning at work with studying at college to gain a nationally recognised qualification.

An apprenticeship allows you to learn while you work – you gain knowledge, nationally-recognised qualifications and earnings, all at the same time.

Course content

An apprenticeship qualification includes several elements and you will need to pass all elements to gain your apprenticeship. Course components include the Level 2 Construction Diploma National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) at Level 2 in Site Carpentry or Bench Joinery, depending on your job role, Employment Rights and Responsibilities training, and Functional Skills in English and maths

You will study towards units such as:

Mandatory units are: 
• conform to general workspace safety 
• conform to efficient work practices 
• move and handle resources.

Optional units are: 
• install first fixing components 
• install second fixing components 
• erect structural carcassing components 
• maintain non-structural carpentry work 
• set-up and use circular saws 
• produce setting out details for routine products
• manufacture routine products.

You will have up to 18 months to achieve all the elements of your apprenticeship although you may be able to achieve it quicker than this, depending on your progress.

Apprenticeships are designed to let you benefit from real life work experience which you will get day-to-day on the job. This experience is supported by theoretical knowledge gained at college in both classroom and workshop based sessions/assessments. You will attend college on one or two days a week.You are assessed in the workplace by a qualified and trade competent assessor who will help support you and your employer in achieving your qualification.

Entry requirements

You need to be in employment in the industry. 

Upon application you will be invited in for an interview and an initial assessment to make sure that the training programme is right for you. There are no other restrictions to becoming an apprentice except that you need to be over the age of 16 and to have been settled in the UK for at least the past three years.


The college will assign you with your assessor at the beginning of the course. Your assessor’s role is to guide and support your development as well as to help choose when you are ready to be assessed.

Future opportunities

You can use the training to progress further in your carpentry/construction career. You can also look at a higher-level qualification – we run an advanced apprenticeship too.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Reading College directly.

Last updated date: 12 September 2016
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    • BY RAIL

      Reading train station is a 20 minute walk from the College.

      Travelling from surrounding areas: there are direct lines from many local stations including: Didcot, Slough, Maidenhead, Wokingham, Basingstoke, Newbury, Pangbourne, Twyford and Earley.

      Travelling from London: there are regular trains from London Paddington to Reading taking 25-30 minutes.

      BY BUS

      There are regular bus services that stop along Kings Road:

      Reading Buses - routes 13, 14, 17
      Please Note: Reading buses require the exact fare.

      Arriva - routes 800, 850
      First Group - route 190
      Thames Travel - routes 126, 127

      In partnership with Reading Buses, students can get a weekly Travelcard at a reduced rate by showing the driver their student ID card.

      The Green Bus will be operating two new bus services from September 2014 for Reading College students.

      Service RC1 and RC2 will run once daily according to an agreed timetable on 175 days of each academic year connecting the college with Slough, Maidenhead and the areas in between.