The Construction Chart Book 4th Edition

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CPWR - The Center for Construction Research and Training

Summary Statement

A broad collection of tables and charts covering health and safety in the U.S. construction industry, as well as considerable economic and training data.

Annex 2. Apprenticeship Requirements for Construction Workers

Occupation Apprenticeship Requirements
Brickmason 3 years of on-the-job training in addition to a minimum of 144 hours of classroom instruction each year in subjects such as blueprint reading, mathematics, layout work, and sketching. High school education is preferable.
Carpenter Usually 3 to 4 years depending on skill level. On the job, apprentices learn elementary structural design and common carpentry skills. Classes include safety, first aid, blueprint reading, freehand sketching, mathematics, and carpentry techniques. Must meet local requirements.
Carpet and Tile Nearly 3 years to complete. On-the-job training provides comprehensive training in all phases of trade. In addition, related classroom instruction is necessary.
Construction Equipment Operator At least 3 years or 6,000 hours of on-the-job training and 144 hours a year of related classroom instruction. Apprentices learn to operate a wider variety of machines and have better job opportunities. High school education is preferable.
Construction Laborer Between 2 to 4 years of classroom and on-the-job training. Core curriculum of the first 200 hours consists of basic skills such as blueprint reading, use of tools and equipment, and safety and health procedures. Remainder of the curriculum contains specialized skills training in building construction, heavy/highway construction, and environmental remediation.
Construction Manager No formal apprenticeship program. Traditionally, advance to position after having substantial experience as a construction craft worker. Need a solid background in building science, business and management, and industry work experience. A bachelor’s degree or higher is preferred along with Spanish language skills.
Drywall Between 3 to 4 years depending on skill level. Both classroom and on-the-job training are combined. Many of the skills can be learned within the first year. Must meet local requirements.
Electrician About 4 years and each year requires at least 144 hours of classroom instruction and 2,000 hours of on-the-job training. Must have a high school diploma or G.E.D. and good math and English skills. Most localities require an electrician to be licensed.
Heat A/C Mechanic 3 to 5 years of on-the-job training with classroom instruction. Classes include use and care of tools, safety practices, blueprint reading, and theory and design of heating, ventilation, air-conditioning, and refrigeration. Must have a high school diploma or G.E.D. and math and reading skills.
Ironworker 3 or 4 years of on-the-job training on all aspects of the trade and evening classroom instruction. Classes include blueprint reading, mathematics, care and use of tools, basics of structural erecting, rigging, reinforcing, welding, assembling, and safety training. High school diploma is preferable.
Painter 2 to 4 years of on-the-job training, supplemented by 144 hours of related classroom instruction each year with topics such as color harmony, use and care of tools and equipment, surface preparation, application techniques, paint mixing and matching, characteristics of finishes, blueprint reading, wood finishing, and safety. Must have a high school diploma or G.E.D. with courses in mathematics.
Plumber 4 or 5 years of on-the-job training about all aspects of the trade, in addition to at least 144 hours per year of related classroom instruction such as drafting and blueprint reading, mathematics, applied physics and chemistry, safety, and local plumbing codes and regulations. High school education is preferable. Most communities require a plumber to be licensed.
Roofer 3-year program with a minimum of 2,000 hours of on-the-job training annually, plus a minimum of 144 hours of classroom instruction a year in subjects such as tools and their uses, arithmetic, and safety. High school education and courses in mechanical drawing and mathematics are preferable.
Sheet Metal 4 to 5 years depending on skill level. Comprehensive instruction in both sheet metal fabrication and installation with classes consisting of drafting, plan and specification reading, trigonometry and geometry, use of computerized equipment, welding, safety, and the principles of heating, air-conditioning, and ventilating systems. On-the job training, as well as learning the relationship between sheet metal work and other construction work. Must meet local requirements.
Truck Driver No formal apprenticeship program. Some formal training or classroom instruction may be required. Must comply with Federal and State regulations, possess a driver’s license (sometimes commercial) from state of residence, have a clean driving record, and read and speak English well enough to read road signs, prepare reports, and communicate with law enforcement officers and the public.
Welder No formal apprenticeship program. Training can range from a few weeks to several years depending on skill level. Courses in blueprint reading, shop mathematics, mechanical drawing, physics, chemistry, and metallurgy are preferable. Can become certified.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH)

Click the link and follow the instructions below to find information on training and education needed for an occupation that interests you. Get information on the earnings you will make, working conditions, and expected job prospects, as well as what workers do on the job. Also, this link will give you job search tips, information about job marketing in each state, and much more.

  1. Go to:
  2. Use the Search Box and enter an occupation you are interested in. For example, “Carpenter” will generate:
    1. Carpenters
    2. Carpet, Floor, and Tile Installers and Finishers
    3. Motion Picture and Video Industries
  3. If you are interested in “Carpenters,” click on it to see:
    1. Nature of the Work
    2. Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
    3. Employment
    4. Job Outlook
    5. Projections Data
    6. Earnings
    7. OES (Occupational Employment Statistics) Data
    8. Related Occupations
    9. Sources of Additional Information

Additionally, you can also go to the A-Z Index and select a letter and find the occupation you want to explore.

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