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Apprenticeship in Construction: Painting and Decorating - Intermediate at West Thames College

Course description

Painters and decorators work on domestic and industrial projects ranging from redecorating homes to applying heavy-duty finishes to large structures like bridges. Average salaries for qualified painters and decorators are between £17,000 and £21,500 a year, while decorators with supervisor duties or specialist skills can earn over £23,000 a year. Self-employed painters and decorators set their own rates. Apprenticeships are a common entry route into this career and achieving relevant qualifications can enhance your income and progression opportunities.

Course content

Overview of units for Level 2 NVQ Diploma in Decorative Finishing and Industrial Painting (Construction)

The following units are mandatory:

  • Conforming to general health, safety and welfare in the workplace
  • Conforming to productive working practices in the workplace
  • Moving, handling and storing resources in the workplace
  • Erecting and dismantling access/working platforms in the workplace
  • Preparing surfaces for painting/decorating in the workplace
  • Applying paint systems by brush and roller in the workplace

You will also complete optional units including:

  • Applying wall coverings to a range of wall surfaces
  • Applying decorative finishes to a range of surfaces

Entry requirements

For the Intermediate Apprenticeship programme, you should be 16 years or older and working as a painter or industrial painter on a construction site or in domestic and commercial premises. You may have already completed a young apprenticeship scheme in construction, the 14-19 Diploma in Construction and the Built Environment, or a craft occupation at Level 1. Alternatively, you may have previously worked in construction (e.g. as a labourer), or been referred through the Women and Work Sector Pathways Initiative or the Construction Youth Trust. You should have functional skills in English and maths or key skills in application of number and communication.


To successfully complete your Apprenticeship you will need to achieve the following elements:

Competence qualification

Level 2 NVQ Diploma in Decorative Finishing and Industrial Painting (Construction). You must achieve a minimum of 55 credits to achieve this qualification. Some of these units are mandatory and some you may choose with the agreement of your employer and assessor. Your assessor will go through these units with you and your employer in more detail and discuss how the credits work so you may achieve your qualification successfully. Your assessor will visit you in the workplace to assess you to ensure you meet the minimum national standards.

Knowledge qualification

Level 2 Certificate in Painting and Decorating. Most of the knowledge you will learn in the classroom in college. Some may also be delivered online and in the workplace.

Personal learning and thinking skills

Evidence will be collected to show that you have acquired the following skills: creative thinking, independent enquiry, reflective learning, self-management, teamwork and effective participation. You will be required to keep an ongoing reflective journal for the duration of the course.

Financial information

You do not pay to complete an apprenticeship.

Future opportunities

On successful completion of the Intermediate Apprenticeship, you may decide to go on to the Advanced Apprenticeship in Decorative Finishing. After gaining work experience in your chosen occupation, there may be opportunities for you to progress to occupational work supervision, management or technical support.

Further information

For details call our apprenticeship team on 020 8326 2010 or email

View all apprenticeships at West Thames College.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 02 August 2017
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Key information

  • Start date: Throughout the year
  • Duration: 18 months, one day at college, four days in the workplace
  • Course code: APP0129
  • Web url:

Contact details

    • Contact name:
    • General Enquiries
    • Contact telephone number:
    • 020 8326 2000
    • Email address:


  • More information
    • As part of West Thames College London, the West Thames College Skills + Logistics Centre in Feltham is a smaller campus with a friendly atmosphere, offering a range of trade courses in West London.

      Around 650 students study at the Skills Centre to gain the practical skills needed for a career in Motor Vehicle Mechanics, Engineering, Catering or Construction trades (Plumbing, Brickwork, Painting & Decorating, Electrical Installation and Carpentry).

      We have excellent links with employers too, so there are lots of job and apprenticeship opportunities.

      The Centre has its own Common Room, Careers Advisors, Library, Cafeteria, IT Suite and Outdoor Leisure Activities. Students at Feltham also have full access to the Isleworth campus.

      Courses at the West Thames College Skills + Logistics Centre are very popular and, as places are limited, you are advised to apply early.