Construction Worker - Pre-Apprenticeship

Course Description:

This competency course-based course prepares students to meet the entry-level requirements for apprenticeship trades. This course provides instruction in relationship of personal and interpersonal skills development to employability, orientation to apprenticeship and apprenticeship preparation, thinking and problem solving skills in the workplace and apprenticeship mathematics. All participants will be exposed to various construction trade applications. The competencies in this course are aligned with the California High School Academic Content Standards.

At completion of course the student will receive a competency certificate that verifies he has met the minimal competencies in the following areas: (Course Hours: 300)


Recognize skills necessary for employment in the construction trades.  

  • Discuss class expectations.
  • Discuss class rules.
  • Discuss industry standards for employment.
  • Discuss wage scales for the trades.
  • Identify standard shop procedures.
  • Describe equipment care procedures.
  • Demonstrate acceptable employee behavior.

(2 Hours)



Demonstrate safe use of shop tools and equipment.

  • Demonstrate proper eye safety.
  • Demonstrate proper use of hand tools.
  • Describe safe practices in operating power hand tools.
  • Demonstrate proper techniques in using electrical testing equipment.
  • Describe how to handle flammable liquids safely.
  • Describe proper use of power machines and related equipment. 
  • Demonstrate safe use of ladders.
  • Demonstrate lifting and materials handling techniques.
  • Describe City of Los Angeles Safety Codes.
  • Discuss the purpose of the Office of Safety and Health Administration Standards (OSHA)

(10 Hours)



Understand the goals of apprenticeship and recognize the qualifications required for entry into an apprenticeship career

  1. Define apprenticeship
  2. Discuss apprenticeship employment issues and myths.
  3. Explain the application process and criteria for entry into various apprenticeship trades.
  4. List various training opportunities in apprenticeship trades.
  5. Discuss different qualifications and requirements for various apprenticeship trades.
  6. Identify various building trade organizations.
  7. Inventory individual knowledge, skills, and abilities as they relate to building trades.
  8. Participate in apprenticeship trade analysis exercise.
  9. Participate in apprentice congruency analysis exercise.
  10. Identify apprenticeship worker qualities.
  11. Differentiate between job duties for apprentices and journeymen for union trades.
  12. List various places where apprenticeship trades are practiced.
  13. List various places where training for the apprenticeship trades is available.
  14. Visit various locations where programs may be evaluated.
  15. Describe entrance requirements/qualifications for various trades.
  16. Describe specific skills required for various trades.
  17. Describe physical work requirements for various trades.
  18. Describe the nature of the work environment for various trades.
  19. Describe the length of training for various trades.
  20. Describe the salary and benefits for various trades.
  21. Forecast employment opportunities for various trades.

(30 Hours)



Understanding how personal skill development – including positive attitude, honesty, self-confidence, time management, and other positive traits – affect employability.

1. Discuss importance of the following personal skills in the apprenticeship trades.

  • positive attitude
  • self confidence
  • honesty
  • perseverance
  • self-management /work ethic
  • pride in product/work
  • dependability
  • identify acceptable occupational attire.

2. Establish goals for self-improvement and future education/training.
3. Prioritize tasks and meet deadlines.
4. Discuss the importance of initiative and leadership.
5. Discuss the importance of lifelong learning in a world of constantly changing technology.

(8 Hours)



    Understand principles of effective interpersonal skills, including group dynamics, conflict resolution and negotiation.

    1. Identify and discuss behaviors of an effective team.
    2. Explain the central importance of mutual respect in workplace relations.
    3. Discuss and demonstrate strategies for conflict resolution and negotiation, and explain   their importance within the workplace environment.
    4. Understand laws that apply to the various types of harassment in the workplace, and identify tactics for handling harassment situations
    5. Work comparatively, share responsibilities, accept supervision and assume leadership roles.
    6. Demonstrate cooperative working relationships and proper etiquette across gender and cultural groups.

    (8 Hours)


Use trade mathematics in solving problems that occur in the workplace.

    1. List practical situations in which math is used in the construction trade.
    2. Solve various whole number problems, using addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
    3. Solve various fraction problems, using addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
    4. Solve various decimal problems addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
    5. Change fractions to decimals.
    6. Change decimals to fractions.
    7. Describe the English system of measuring length.
    8. Describe the English system of measuring weight.
    9. Describe the English system of measuring volume
    10. Describe relations between various English system linear units of measurement, such as inches, feet, yards, and miles.
    11. Describe relations between various English system units of capacity or volume, such as cups, pints, quarts, and gallons.
    12. Solve various English system measuring problems, using addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
    13. Measure various objects, units English system measuring tools common to the trade.

(60 Hours)



Use proper tools and materials for masonry repair.

    1. Describe various safety issues specific to masonry.
    2. Identify various types of brick by size, and composition, and application.
    3. Describe various methods of bricklaying.
    4. Describe various types of blocks by size, composition and application.
    5. Describe various ways of mixing mortar.
    6. Describe the use of various types of trowels used in masonry repair.
    7. Lay various types of ceramic.

(10 Hours)



Demonstrate the ability to perform various carpentry skills.

  1. Discuss various safety issues specific to carpentry.
  2. Describe various types of nails common to carpentry.
  3. Demonstrate proper use of a framing hammer.
  4. Demonstrate safe and proper use of power circular saw.
  5. Demonstrate use of a combination square.
  6. Identify various types and sizes of lumber.
  7. Describe various applications for different types of lumber.
  8. Frame a wall.
  9. Describe the process of framing a wall that includes a window or a door.
  10. Explain the procedures of layout.
  11. Differentiate between hip and gable roofs.
  12. Describe the process of framing a roof.

(60 hours)



Understand basic plumbing systems and the use of plumbing tools and equipment.

  1. Describe various safety issues specific to plumbing.
  2. Describe various types of wrenches uses in plumbing repair.
  3. Demonstrate use of cutting threading tools.
  4. Identify various types of pipe, such as iron, galvanized, copper, and plastic.
  5. Describe applications for various types and sizes of pipes.
  6. Describe the operation of various types of plumbing fixtures, such as sinks, toilets, sprinklers, and appliance hook-ups.
  7. Describe various types of valves.
  8. Demonstrate proper soldering techniques.
  9. Install plumbing into a wall for sink.
  10. Describe various types of landscape sprinkler set-ups and fittings.
  11. Demonstrate proper landscape sprinkler pipe assembly.

(20 Hours)



Understanding basic wiring systems and how to make minor repairs.

  1. Discuss various safety issues specific to electrical work.
  2. Demonstrate proper use of various types of pliers used in electrical repair.
  3. Demonstrate proper use of various types of cutting and splicing tools.
  4. Describe various types of electrical connectors.
  5. Describe uses for various types of electrical receptacles.
  6. Differentiate between metallic and non-metallic sheathed cables.
  7. Describe the instillation of various types of light fixtures.
  8. Describe the function of main switches, circuit breakers, and fuses.
  9. Explain national electrical code specifications.
  10. Discuss electrical troubleshooting techniques.
  11. Install wall receptacles and switches.
  12. Install light fixtures.
  13. Describe procedures used in hand wiring appliances.

(72 Hours)



Demonstrate skills needed for cutting, replacing, and taping drywall.

  1. Discuss various safety issues specific to drywall work.
  2. Demonstrate uses of drywall saws and utility knives.
  3. Identify various types and sizes of drywall nails and screws.
  4. Tape and spackle drywall.
  5. Apply drywall compound and match various surface finishes.
  6. Apply corner beading.
  7. Hang drywall, using nail patterns according to local codes.

(20 Hours)


Methods and Procedures

  1. Lectures and Discussion
  2. Guest lectures
  3. Multimedia presentations
  4. Visual aids
  5. Projects
  6. Individualized instruction  


  1. Teacher prepared tests based on the competencies in this course outline
  2. Class participation
  3. Self-evaluation
  4. Written assignments
  5. Teacher evaluation
  6. Safety test