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Certificate in Fitting, Welding & Machining

Level 3

UCOL’s Certificate in Fitting, Welding and Machining Level 3 will give you the knowledge, skills and insight to become a competent tradesperson in the engineering industry.

A man machining some wood.
Quick info

Level: 3

Locations: Palmerston North

Duration: 1 year, full-time study

To be confirmed

Domestic Fees:*
$8,076.08Scholarship info

Find out if you're eligible for fees-free study

International Fees:*

Additional Fees
Compulsory course costs may apply.

* Fees are indicative only, and are inclusive of the student services levy and GST (goods and services tax). The fee shown is for one year of study.

This comprehensive course will provide you with essential engineering skills in fitting, welding and machining to equip you for the workplace. Through UCOL's Certificate in Fitting, Welding and Machining you'll gain skills in:
  • Calculations, measurement and materials selection
  • Drawing
  • Measurements, tools and machining
  • Welding
  • Machine and equipment servicing
  • Health and safety

 Career & Study Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the Certificate in Fitting, Welding and Machining, you will be equipped for further study in pre-trade, or higher level programmes such as mechanical engineering or fabrication

The qualification will also prepare you to become a tradesperson's assistant in the engineering industries, and you'll be well placed to gain an apprenticeship (bypassing the first year's off-job requirements), and staircase into higher level qualifications that include specialist strands in:

  • Heavy fabrication
  • Light fabrication
  • General and maintenance engineering
  • Machining and tool-making
  • Fitting and Machining

 Course Information

Semester 1
  • Demonstrate knowledge of workplace health and safety requirements
  • Provide first aid
  • Provide basic life support
  • Demonstrate knowledge of safety on engineering worksites
  • Shift loads in engineering installation, maintenance, and fabrication work
  • Demonstrate knowledge of trade calculations and units for mechanical engineering trades
  • Demonstrate knowledge of basic mechanics for mechanical engineering trades
  • Demonstrate knowledge of fasteners used in mechanical engineering
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of engineering metals
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of engineering materials
  • Manually produce and interpret engineering sketches under supervision
  • Manually construct engineering plane geometric shapes  for engineering
  • Select, use, and care for simple measuring devices used in engineering
  • Select, use, and care for, engineering dimensional measuring equipment
  • Select, use and care for engineering marking-out equipment
  • Select, use and care for, engineering hand tools
  • Select, use and maintain portable hand held engineering power tools
  • Assemble mechanical components under supervision
  • *Perform basic mechanical engineering machining operations under supervision
  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of safe welding procedures under supervision

Semester 2
  • Perform basic fabrication operations under supervision
  • Develop fabrication patterns for simple three-dimensional objects
  • Weld steel in the downhand positions to a general purpose industry standard using the gas metal arc welding process
  • Calculate sizes, mass, volumes, and quantities for fabrication
  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of manually controlled machining operations
  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of intermediate heavy fabrication trade practice
  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of intermediate light fabrication trade practice

* Unit standard 21906 is the elective unit offered for the National Certificate in Mechanical Engineering, Level 2 

 Student & Staff Profiles

 Domestic Entry Requirements

Open entry.


For more information about NCEA Credits see UCOL's NCEA explained page.

 International Entry Requirements

English Proficiency Entry Requirements:
The minimum entry requirement for international students is IELTS General or Academic score of 5 with no band score lower than 5 (or equivalent including TOEFL). IELTS scores used must be taken from a single IELTS Test Report Form (ie combining scores from more than one test is not permissible). UCOL is a TOEFL iBT testing centre.

Under 20 years of age
For international applicants under 20 years of age who do not hold NCEA, International Academic Qualifications Entry Criteria apply.

 Advice & Guidance

UCOL's Certificate in Fitting, Welding and Machining comprises 120 credits.

To optimise chances of success, it is recommended that students have a minimum of eight credits at Level 1 or higher in English or Te Reo Māori.  Four Credits must be in reading and four Credits must be in writing. 

Assistance is available from UCOL’s learning support centre for students who experience difficulty.

If you successfully complete this programme, you will also have completed the National Certificate in Mechanical Engineering Level 2.

Work experience
While most teaching will occur on campus, there may be opportunities for industry site visits as part of the learning process. Some cohorts may be offered work experience as part of their learning.

Recognition of Prior Learning
Applications for Recognition of Prior Learning, including Cross Credit, Credit Transfer and Assessment of Prior Learning may be made on the Recognition of Prior Learning Form where a student believes all learning outcomes for a course or unit standards have already been met.

Students who can provide evidence of a current First Aid qualification will be given credit for the appropriate unit standards. If the qualification is no longer current, the student must enrol and re-qualify. Students with an expiring qualification must enrol to revalidate. This incurs a lower fee. No credits are earned through revalidation.

Application checklist
It will make the process easier if you prepare the following before you apply:

  • National Student Number (NSN) (If you don't have a NSN, you may request one from NZQA, or you can supply a verified copy of your birth certificate, passport or Whakapapa statement.)
  • Check if you're eligible for additional support or a scholarship. If you're 19 years or younger, you may be eligible to enrol in one of our free Youth Transition programmes.

Note that you will need to provide any verified documents in person, via post or email.

Equipment supplied by UCOL
At the commencement of this programme students will, providing they have paid their fees in full, be supplied with the following safety items:
  • Welding helmet
  • Welding gloves
  • Ear muffs
  • Safety glasses

 Additional Costs

Students must supply their own cotton overalls, approved protective footwear - steel-capped boots, scientific calculator, drawing equipment, compass set, folders, lecture pads, pens and pencils.


The programme is approved by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority under the provisions of the Education Act 1989, and Universal College of Learning (UCOL) Trading as Universal College of Learning (UCOL) is accredited to teach it.