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Still at school? Looking to start college?

Whether you are still at school and are contemplating a career in carpentry or have already started along that path, the internet can be a minefield of information.  So we've put together these pages on our website to try and help! 

Still at school?
If you're still at school and you're interested in a future in carpentry, then you may well be trying to work out which GCSEs to take.  There's no official guidance available about which subjects to take but English, Maths and Resistant Materials and Science are all relevant. You may also want to consider what the entry requirements would be for you to start and apprenticeship later on in your career and you can find out more about the entry requirements here.  More importantly, you should also familiarise yourself with shapes, left and right hand images and spacial awareness. 

Finished school?
If you've 'finished' school then in the UK there are two main ways of moving this forward - both of which involve time at college. Firstly, you can obtain an apprenticeship with a company who will send you to college to study carpentry and obtain your qualifications.  At college you will study for a Technical Certificate at a level 2 (2 years of study) and then you can progress onto a level 3 course which takes another year.  It is best to go for the level 3 qualification.  The carpentry qualification has two parts to it.  Firstly there is the Technical Certificate proving you have passed the college side of the course and then, to obtain your full qualification you will have to be assessed in the work place to prove your competence on site.  This latter part will give you the NVQ qualification and is a must to obtain.

Alternatively, you can attend a college to study carpentry as a private student and either pay your own tuition costs or you can obtain some form of government funding to cover these costs.  Once in college you will follow the same route as above to obtaining your qualifications.  A good starting point would be to contact your local IOC Member College.  Alternatively, if there are not currently any near enough to you, then do contact your local college to see if they run relevant courses and then go and speak with them about funding and the possibility of obtaining an apprenticeship.  They may well know of local companies who are willing to take on apprentices. You could also check our Find a Professional listings to see if there are any IOC members local to you who may be able to help as well as looking at the Apprenticeship website.

If you are a student attending a recognised college course in one of the wood trades, then you may be eligible for free student membership to the IOC. 


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