The Fabrication and Welding Department at Northampton College are working to fully prepare learners for successful careers in industry.
As a Skills and Education Group Awards Recognised Centre, they currently deliver the Level 2 Certificate in Fabrication and Welding Techniques and Skills plus the Level 3 Diploma in Fabrication and Welding Techniques and Skills. We visited the college recently to find out how they deliver the qualifications and how their learners are benefiting.
Adrian, learner undertaking the Level 3 Diploma in Fabrication and Welding Techniques and Skills
What would you say was your favourite part of the course?
“Probably the TIG (Tungsten Inert Gas) welding. Now I am doing TIG Welding at work, I’m doing it all the time and I enjoy it. I learnt the skills on the course to take into the workplace. TIG welding is a good skill to have because there are good progression opportunities and it is well paid.”
What do you think of the resources on the course and were they easy to access?
“Any time I need resources, I can go on my phone or the laptop I’ve been given or I can go on the college computers. I just bring up the browser, go on to SharePoint and all the resources I need are there. If I miss something, I can go back on the SharePoint at home.”
Do you feel that you were well supported on the course?
“Every time I need help, I can go to any of the tutors and they will give me a hand. Even if I’m not in the workshop I can still go to them. The college provides tutorial videos too. When we were doing a CAD (computer-aided design) development, the tutor would record all the CAD stuff so we could watch it on video and follow along. It means you can learn at your own pace.”
Do you feel the qualification has given you the skills you need for employment?
“I am employed currently and am looking to gain a year of experience before maybe venturing out somewhere new. I’ve just started my job and it wasn’t too much of a jump because of all the knowledge and skills I have gained at college. It all came back to me so adjusting to the job was very easy.”
Mark Clifford, Lecturer and Programme Manager
What do you think of Skills and Education Group Awards’ fabrication and welding qualifications?
“The qualifications are very comprehensive, providing the building blocks for the skills, resilience and soft skills that students need for industry. At both Level 2 and Level 3, the courses ensure that students have the skillset required for employment.
“I think it is really good that the learners have to develop something of their own for the CAD part of the course. It gave the learners the chance to explore different things because it was something they could design for themselves.
“We have invested in new equipment, and we use what would be used in the industry, so we are preparing learners to work in the real world. We invest heavily in time and resources to give students the practices they deserve.
“Presently, we have been developing our assessments through the investment in a 3D printer. We have been using it to check the quality of students’ developments and it has proven to be a real hit with students for visualising drawings and self-assessing their achievements.
“Furthermore, the addition of the new hemming tooling for the department’s CNC (Computer Numerically Controlled) press brake has lifted students’ work to an even higher level of quality. It reflects industrial expectations in both the quality and the finish of students’ work.
“The safety in assessment training and practices criteria is excellent and a prime reason why we use Skills and Education Group Awards.”
How do you find working with Skills and Education Group Awards?
“The External Quality Assurers, Tony Cook and Stephen Pask, are a credit to Skills and Education Group Awards, giving sound advice and guidance on the assessment criteria.
“At the head office, Niall Broderick (Customer Support Officer) and Melody Coomes (Relationship Manager) have been active in keeping us informed about the development of the new qualifications.”
Interested in delivering fabrication and welding qualifications at your organisation?
Skills and Education Group Awards offers several fabrication and welding qualifications across Levels 1-3. Our qualifications have been developed with Lincoln Electric, a world leader in welding. Learners who take our qualifications can access Lincoln Electric’s high-quality learning resources, ensuring they can develop the latest best practices in fabrication and welding.
You can find out more about our partnership with Lincoln Electric by watching this video.
If you are interested in delivering our fabrication and welding qualifications, please contact our Relationship Managers, who will get you started in no time.