Is working with metals and the great outdoors something that interests you? Then maybe you should consider becoming a welder.
Welders are specialists in metalworking who create and repair a wide range of products. Heavy equipment, specialized welding equipment, and a variety of both power and hand tools are used to ensure a quality finish.
In Australia, you need to complete an apprenticeship and earn a “First Class Welder” certification before you can start working as a welder. Yes, you heard that right if you’re thinking about making a career change into this highly physical and hands-on field.
If you are interested in becoming a certified welder (first class) in Australia, this article is a great resource for you. Everything from the personal traits employers look for in a welder to the formal education, certifications, daily responsibilities, and career path you need to get started as a welder will be covered in this guide.
How Do I Become A Certified Welder In Australia?
To become a certified welder in Australia, you will need to follow these general steps:
1. Complete A Welding Course:
To complete a welding course in Australia, you can choose from a variety of options, including vocational education and training (VET) courses, apprenticeships, or full-time diploma programs.
VET courses are typically short-term and can be completed in a matter of weeks or months. These courses cover the basic principles of welding and provide hands-on training to help you develop your skills.
Apprenticeships are a longer-term option that combines on-the-job training with classroom instruction. They typically last for 3-4 years and involve working under the supervision of an experienced welder to gain practical experience.
Full-time diploma programs are more comprehensive and provide a more in-depth understanding of welding principles and techniques. These programs typically last for 1-2 years and cover topics such as welding safety, welding codes and standards, and advanced welding techniques.
To find a welding course in your area, you can search online or contact your local TAFE or vocational training provider. It’s important to choose a course that is recognized by a welding certification body such as the WTIA to ensure that you will be eligible for certification upon completion of your course.
2. Gain Practical Experience:
To gain practical experience as a welder in Australia, you have several options depending on your situation:
- Apprenticeship: An apprenticeship is a great way to gain practical experience while earning a wage. In Australia, welding apprenticeships typically last for 3-4 years and involve working with an experienced welder who can guide and mentor you. You will also attend classes to supplement your on-the-job training.
- On-the-job training: If you are already working in a welding-related job, you can gain practical experience through on-the-job training. Ask your employer if you can work with an experienced welder or if they can provide training opportunities.
- Volunteer work or internships: You can gain practical experience by volunteering with a local organization or seeking internships with welding companies. This is a great way to gain experience while building your network and exploring different welding industries.
- Personal projects: You can also gain practical experience by working on personal welding projects. This allows you to practice your welding skills and experiment with different welding techniques.
Regardless of the option you choose, it’s important to seek out opportunities to work with experienced welders who can provide guidance and mentorship. This will help you to develop your skills and gain the practical experience needed to become a certified welder in Australia.
3. Obtain A Welding Certification:
To obtain a welding certification in Australia, you will need to pass a welding test that is conducted by a certified welding inspector. The welding test assesses your welding skills and ability to perform welding work to the required standard.
The certification you will need to obtain depends on the type of welding work you will be doing. The most common welding certifications in Australia are:
- Welding Supervisor Certification: This certification is for those who supervise welding work or those who manage welders. The certification is issued by the WTIA and requires passing a written exam.
- Welding Inspector Certification: This certification is for those who inspect welding work to ensure it meets the required standards. The certification is issued by the WTIA and requires passing a written exam.
- Welder Certification: This certification is for those who perform welding work. The certification is issued by a third-party certification body recognized by the WTIA and requires passing a welding test.
To obtain a welder certification, you will need to pass a welding test that assesses your welding skills and ability to perform welding work to the required standard. The welding test is conducted by a certified welding inspector and involves welding a test piece in a specific position and with specific welding parameters.
Once you have passed the welding test, you can apply for certification from a recognized certification body such as the WTIA. It’s important to note that the requirements for welding certification may vary depending on the state or territory in which you reside in Australia, so it’s important to check with the relevant certification body in your area.
4. Apply For Certification:
To apply for welding certification in Australia, you will need to follow the process outlined by the certification body that is recognized in your state or territory. In general, the following steps are involved in applying for certification:
- Complete the application form: You will need to complete an application form provided by the certification body. The form will require you to provide your personal and contact details, as well as information about your welding experience and qualifications.
- Provide supporting documentation: You will need to provide supporting documentation such as copies of your welding course certificates and welding test results.
- Pay the certification fee: You will need to pay a fee to apply for certification. The fee may vary depending on the type of certification you are applying for.
- Wait for processing: Once you have submitted your application, it will be processed by the certification body. Processing times may vary, but you can expect to receive a response within a few weeks.
- Attend an interview: Some certification bodies may require you to attend an interview before issuing the certification. This is to ensure that you meet the requirements for certification and to verify your welding skills and experience.
- Receive certification: If your application is successful, you will receive a certification that confirms your status as a certified welder in Australia.
It’s important to note that the process for applying for certification may vary depending on the certification body and the type of certification you are applying for. Be sure to follow the instructions provided by the certification body and seek guidance if you have any questions or concerns.
5. Renew Your Certification:
In Australia, welding certifications typically need to be renewed periodically to ensure that certified welders are up-to-date with the latest welding standards and practices. The renewal process may vary depending on the certification body and the type of certification you hold, but the following steps are generally involved:
- Check your certification expiration date: You can find your certification expiration date on your certification card or certificate. It’s important to keep track of your expiration date so you can renew your certification before it expires.
- Complete continuing education requirements: To renew your certification, you may need to complete continuing education requirements, such as attending welding courses or workshops or earning a certain number of professional development points. The specific requirements may vary depending on the certification body and the type of certification you hold.
- Apply for renewal: You will need to complete a renewal application provided by the certification body. The application will require you to provide your personal and contact details, as well as information about your continuing education and professional development activities.
- Pay the renewal fee: You will need to pay a fee to renew your certification. The fee may vary depending on the certification body and the type of certification you hold.
- Wait for processing: Once you have submitted your renewal application and fee, it will be processed by the certification body. Processing times may vary, but you can expect to receive a response within a few weeks.
- Receive renewed certification: If your renewal application is successful, you will receive a renewed certification that confirms your continued status as a certified welder in Australia.
It’s important to renew your welding certification before it expires to avoid any disruption to your work or certification status. Be sure to check with the certification body that issued your certification to understand their specific renewal requirements and deadlines.
It’s worth noting that the requirements for becoming a certified welder may vary depending on the state or territory in which you reside in Australia, so it’s important to check with the relevant certification body in your area.
Not everyone is interested in a career in welding. If you enjoy working with your hands in a dynamic setting, this may be a great option for you. As a welder, you can take immense satisfaction and pleasure from the finished product.
To become a certified welder in Australia, you will need to complete a welding course and gain practical experience before obtaining a welding certification through a certified welding test.
It’s important to follow the requirements and deadlines set by the certification body to ensure you maintain your status as a certified welder in Australia.
For more information, check out welding certification australia.