FREE | NZ Certificate in Construction Trade Skills (Carpentry) [Level 3]

Study Options



1 year


Level 3

Get your hands dirty! Trade Training at EIT

Are you looking for a hands-on career in the building and construction industry? Get unit standards that count towards the NZ Certificate in Carpentry [Level 4]. You could then be employed as an apprentice by a builder or building contractor to complete your trade qualification.


There are two entry dates per year:

  • February (Hawke’s Bay and Tairāwhiti)
  • July (Hawke’s Bay only)

Career Opportunities and Outcomes

The NZ Certificate in Construction Trade Skills (Carpentry) will give you a foot in the door if you’re looking for a hands-on career in the construction industry. When you’ve graduated with this certificate, you’ll be able to nail it with an apprenticeship as a builder in:

  • Residential construction
  • Commercial construction
  • Associated trades within the construction industry (truss making, framing fabrication)

Study Pathways

In order to complete your trade qualification as a builder you’ll need to continue your studies with The National Certificate in Carpentry (Level 4) while you are working as an apprentice.  



This certificate is required to gain a building apprenticeship. Work experience within the local industry is an important part of the programme. Our facilities and tutors are excellent, with graduates being highly regarded by employers.

Come in and have a chat about your study options with the staff at our Hawke’s Bay or Tairāwhiti campuses. Or, simply give us a call on 0800 22 55 348. And you’re most welcome to visit EIT to view our facilities at any time.

During the NZ Certificate in Construction Trade Skills (Carpentry) [Level 3] programme you will learn the following:

  • Apply basic knowledge, including Workshop Safety Frameworks and Practices
  • Skills for Construction Trades
  • Carpentry Terminology and Concepts
  • Building Technology and Properties
  • Construction and Installation Processes and Techniques
  • Carpentry Project Preliminaries
  • Carpentry Project Foundations and Support Structures
  • Carpentry Project Frames, Structures and Exterior Envelope
  • Carpentry Project Interior Linings and Finishing

Entry Requirements

Standard Entry Criteria

Applicants under 20 years old:

  • NCEA Level 1 (including NCEA L1 Maths and English) or an equivalent qualification

Non-Standard Entry Criteria

  • Successful completion of The NZ Certificate in Foundation Skills (Allied Trades) [Level 2], or the National Certificate in Building, Construction and Allied Trades Skills [Level 2] and successful completion of the alternative academic entry test, OR
  • Successful interview with a member of the academic staff and successful completion of the alternative academic entry test.

The alternative academic entry test will measure applicants’ literacy and numeracy ability to ensure that is of a level to cope with the demands of the programme.

The interview will allow parties to exchange information about what the programme both provides to, and requires of, its students. Included in the interview will be discussion of possible career paths for the student, motivation, and physical and emotional requirements, and applicant’s abilities, background, experiences and interests. Attendance of whānau members and/or supporting associates is encouraged at all interviews.

All applicants are required to have the physical mobility needed to meet the demands of construction site work. If it is determined that an applicant does not have the required physical mobility they will be referred to a more appropriate programme.

English Language Entry Requirements

If English is not your first language you are required to have attained an acceptable level of English language fluency prior to acceptance in the programme. Ways in which English language fluency may be demonstrated include successful study of a programme in which English was the language of instruction (conditions apply), completion of a New Zealand Certificate in English Language (Level 3 with any endorsement), approved scores on IELTS tests (Academic score of 5 with no band score lower than 5) or completion of accepted international equivalents.


EIT offers a variety of scholarships across various subjects and programme levels.  Some scholarships are based on your age, some are specific to the subject you want to study.  Not all scholarships are based on your academic ability and anyone wanting to study should investigate what scholarships are available to them.  

You can find a list of EIT scholarships here however there are many more scholarships offered nationally.  Information about these is on an database called “givME”. givME is accessible at EIT or at some public libraries. If you would like to come to EIT to look through the giveME database don’t hesitate to contact or call in for a chat.