Advanced Apprenticeship Standards Level 3 Plate Welder

This occupation is found in a wide range of sectors associated with the Fabrication, Construction and upgrade of major capital plant items and facilities. This will include Structural Steel fabrication and construction (e.g. Buildings, Stadia, Bridges, Piers, Jetties etc.), Marine fabrication, construction and upgrade (Ships, Submarines, Wind Turbine Towers), Defence fabrication (armoured vehicles), Process Plant (structures and storage tanks), Engineering Construction (Lifting Beams, Cranes, Construction Vehicles etc.), Mining & Mineral Processing (Shuttering, Structural Supports, Wear Plates, Chutes, Mills, Pulverisers), Transport (Aerospace, Rail and Automotive), and Manufacturing of machinery & equipment. Plate Welders may be employed in any size of organisation from small companies to large multi-national organisations.

The broad purpose of the occupation is to manually weld plate and structural components to high standards of quality. This will involve fabrication, construction or repair of fabricated plate assemblies, extrusions and structural components (e.g. Channel, H-Beams, I-Beams etc.) used often used to fabricate larger components and assemblies. Plate welders will weld to internationally recognised quality standards using more than one manual arc welding process from Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG), Plasma Arc Welding (PAW), Manual Metal Arc (MMA), Metal Inert Gas (MIG)/Metal Active Gas (MAG) and Flux Cored Arc Welding (FCAW) on more than one material group from Carbon Steel, Low Alloy Steel, High Alloy Ferritic/Martensitic Steel, Austenitic Stainless Steel, Nickel & Nickel Alloys, Aluminium & Aluminium alloys, Titanium & Titanium Alloys, Copper & Copper Alloys. For example, a Plate Welder might use Manual Metal Arc (MMA) and Flux Cored Arc Welding (FCAW) to join both Carbon Steel and Low Alloy Steel materials. The occupation requires production of welds in plate and structural components covering three plate welding positions which must include Vertical (either upward or downward progression) and Overhead, and the three main joint configurations (Single or Double Sided Butt, Single or Double Sided T-Butt & Fillet). Each welding process requiring significantly different welding equipment, assemblies, controls, skills and techniques, and represents an individual production process. Each material type requires specific controls and techniques to achieve a satisfactory weld. Plate welding is contributes to the UK economy through the fabrication, construction and upgrade of major infrastructure projects, defence assets and exported goods. Plate welders are employed by the supply chain organisations or the direct owner/operator.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with a wide range of people and organisations including Platers, Metal Fabricators, Erectors, Riggers, Stores Operatives, Supervisors, Engineers, Inspectors, Non-Destructive Technicians and Quality personnel. Plate welders may need to work shifts and flexible work patterns. They can work in organisations ranging from multi-national organisations to very small businesses. They work in a range of environments across the world including Fabrication Shops, Assembly Yards, Construction/Building Sites, Factories and Operational Facilities requiring maintenance & upgrade. This occupation may involve working at height, and beside or over water. Plate welders’ work will be regularly assessed to ensure continued quality of welding and overall integrity of the component being welded, as specified in the applicable component design code. This could include visual inspection, non-destructive testing and destructive testing of production test pieces.

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for the safety, quality and accuracy of their own work whilst ensuring it conforms to a relevant plate welding specification. They work autonomously, or on occasion as part of a wider team, reporting to a workplace supervisor.
An apprenticeship is a paid job where the employee learns and gains valuable experiences. They are a great opportunity for people over the age of 16 in England who are early in their career, looking for a career-change, or looking to upskill in their current job.

Alongside on-the-job training, apprentices spend at least 6 of their working hours each week completing off the job training, usually at college, which leads to a nationally recognised qualification.

An apprenticeship includes:

●  paid employment with holiday leave

●  hands-on-experience in a sector/role of interest

●  at least 6 hours off-the-job training

●  formal assessment which leads to a nationally recognised qualification

Tameside college will work with you to find a suitable employer for your apprenticeship, or you may already have an employer who is willing to support you on your apprenticeship journey.

Apprentices must be paid at least the apprenticeship minimum wage. More information about the apprenticeship minimum wage can be found at https://www.gov.uk/national-minimum-wage-rates
4x GCSE grade 4+ including Maths & English
You will be assessed for your apprenticeship at work by your visiting trainer/assessor and for the knowledge/technical elements at college by your teacher. Evidence produced in the workplace for your apprenticeship programme will be continually assessed on an ongoing basis throughout your apprenticeship.

At the end of your apprenticeship you will sit an end point assessment (EPA). End-point assessments test the knowledge, skills and behaviours that an apprentice has gained during their training. Unique to each standard, EPA demonstrates the competence of an apprentice in their role. This competence is valued by current and future employers.
After completing an apprenticeship, you could continue to train for an advanced, higher, or degree level apprenticeship, or a related vocational qualification. Many people continue their progression with the same employer they undertook their apprenticeship with. Alternatively, on completion of a level 3 apprenticeship, you could go on to university.

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Please Note: While every effort is made to maintain the accuracy of these details, changes can and do occur. Government policy changes rapidly (particularly from one academic year to the next) which often has an effect on availability, eligibility for funding and the fee contribution required. Please confirm the course details when enrolling.

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