Training Courses

Plumbing Apprenticeship



Course / qualification / unit code and title

CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing

Plumbing Apprenticeship

Course overview

This qualification is designed for plumbing apprentices who are employed full time as an apprentice and have a formal contract of training.  The qualification will provide learners with the skills and knowledge required to seek registration with the Victorian Building Authority as a registered plumber.

Master Plumbers offers learners two training plan options in this qualification to meet employer requirements.

  • Mechanical option – five plumbing streams including water, sanitary, gas, roofing and mechanical services
  • Drainage option – five plumbing streams including water, sanitary, gas, roofing and drainage


Prerequisites / entry requirements

There are no specified prerequisites or entry requirements for learners in this qualification.

However it is recommended that learners are able to demonstrate language, literacy and numeracy skills equivalent to Level 3 of the Australian Core Skills Framework (ACSF).

All new entrants to the Certificate III in Plumbing will be required to undergo a pre assessment of their language, literacy and numeracy designed to identify their level of ability against the ACSF.

It is recommended that learners hold their Construction Industry Induction card (CPCCOHS1001A Work safely in the construction industry) prior to enrolling in this qualification.


Students may be eligible for Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding.

Course structure

The qualification has core and elective unit of competency requirements that cover common and specialist skills for the plumbing industry in six specialist streams:

  • Stream 1 Water
  • Stream 2 Sanitary
  • Stream 3 Drainage
  • Stream 4 Mechanical Services
  • Stream 5 Roofing
  • Stream 6 Gas services

Units of competency from a minimum of four streams are required for award of this qualification. Stream 1 Water and Stream 2 Sanitary are mandatory for all learners.

To meet industry expectations, and better develop the skills of our apprentices, Master Plumbers delivers five plumbing streams in either the mechanical or drainage training option.

The following units of competency are required for the award of this qualification:

  • Stream 1 Water (mandatory): 24 core units and 5 elective units from the water stream and
  • Stream 2 Sanitary (mandatory): 6 core units and 4 elective units from the sanitary stream.
  • Stream 5 Roofing: 8 core units and 4 elective units from the roofing stream
  • Stream 6 Gas services: 12 core units and 5 elective units from the gas services stream

Plus either;

  • Stream 3 Drainage: 9 core units and 3 elective units from the drainage stream


  • Stream 4 Mechanical Services: 4 core units and 11 elective units from the mechanical services stream


NB: Units of competency achieved in one stream count as credit for the same unit in the core or elective requirements for any other stream.


Course duration

  • Mechanical services option – 1336 nominal hours delivered over 3 years (block release training)
  • Drainage option – 1087 nominal hours delivered over 3 years (block release training)

Course outcomes

This qualification provides a trade outcome in plumbing.

Occupational titles may include:

  • Plumber
  • Plumber and drainer
  • Plumber and gasfitter
  • Gasfitter
  • Roof plumber
  • Mechanical services plumber.

This qualification is suitable for an Australian Apprenticeship pathway.

Apprentices who successfully complete this qualification will be required to sit the Victorian Building Authority (VBA) external examination if they wish to achieve registration for specific classes of plumbing work.


On successful completion learners will receive the qualification CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing.

Learners who do not complete the full qualification will receive a Statement of Attainment for those unit/s which have been successfully completed. Learners will receive credit for these units where they form part of any other accredited course or training package qualification.

Licensing and registration information

All plumbing work in Victoria must comply with Part 12A of the Building Act 1993 and the Plumbing Regulations 2008.

Part 12A of the Act sets out the legal framework for the registration and licensing of plumbing practitioners, and regulation of plumbing work and other plumbing matters. The Regulations are derived from the Act and set out the requirements that must be complied with.

In accordance with the regulation for registration in Victoria the VBA mandate specific competencies from the Certificate III qualification as a minimum that must be achieved for a plumber to gain registration.

Download the VBA Gazette list of competency units here 

Delivery arrangements

This qualification incorporates approximately 3 years off the job (RTO based) structured training and delivery.  The units required to complete the qualification have been grouped into stages to reflect the skill and knowledge development of apprentice learners over that time. Each stage roughly equates to a year.

Stage 1 – Foundation skills

This stage is delivered over 9 x single week blocks of training approximately every 4 weeks.

Stage 2 – Plumbing installation skills

This stage is delivered over 7 x single week blocks (drainage stream) or 8 x single week blocks (mechanical services) of training approximately every 4 weeks.      

Stage 3 – Trade level skills

This stage is delivered over 7 x single week blocks (drainage stream) or 8 x single week blocks (mechanical services) of training approximately every 4 weeks.    

Training delivery methods include;

  • Practical activities and learning tasks completed in the practical workshop (approximately 50% of the course)
  • Face to face teacher lead classes (approximately 50% of the course)
  • Self directed learning activities using learner resource text books, Australian Standards and industry reference materials

The course is delivered at the purpose built facilities at the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre (PICAC).

The units CPCPCM2055A Work safely on roofs and HLTAID002 Provide basic emergency life support may be delivered and assessed by CEPUTEC (RTO #4612).

Assessment arrangements

Assessment methods include;

  • Completion of practical installation tasks, individually or in teams, relevant to plumbing work
  • Oral and/or written questioning related to underpinning knowledge
  • Application of knowledge during practical activities  (e.g. write material lists, plan tasks, develop drawings, read plans)
  • Tests /quizzes to confirm knowledge retention
  • Preparation of SWMS to ensure fundamental WHS requirements 

Reasonable adjustments to our assessment methods are available for learners with specific needs.  These will be discussed with a Master Plumbers assessor.

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is available to learners in accordance with Master Plumbers’ policies and guidelines.

Note that this qualification sits within a regulated licensed industry. Individuals undertaking the job tasks and skills identified within the qualification must be registered to practice legally. Recognition of prior learning may be deemed invalid if an individual is found to have been working illegally. Recognition may be possible for generic skills for unregistered individuals.

Where individuals can demonstrate plumbing skills and knowledge have been acquired under the direct supervision of a licenced or registered plumbing practitioner within Australia an RPL application would be deemed valid.

RPL in any aspect of this qualification will generally be determined by a challenge test against the unit assessment tasks.

Fees, charges and eligibility

Master Plumbers (TOID #3937) delivers the qualification CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing with Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding.

Learner fees for government funded courses are calculated in accordance with the State Government of Victoria’s 2018 Standard VET funding contract – Skills First program fee guidelines. Learner fees include tuition fees and materials fees, including text books. This course also may incur an additional cost for tools.

Learners may be eligible for a government funded position in this course.

Are you eligible for a government funded place?

Tuition fee concessions may also be available for eligible learners.

Contact Master Plumbers on 9356 8921 for more information or to confirm your eligibility for a government funded place.


For further information visit the Victorian Skills Gateway to find out more about your eligibility to receive a Victorian Government subsidy.


Fees summary

The following fees and charges are valid for apprenticeship enrolments after 1 January 2018. This table below is indicative of fees for Year 1 of the apprenticeship only.

Please note that apprentices will be invoiced for fees on a yearly basis.

If total yearly fees are in excess of $1500 apprentices will be invoiced in two (2) instalments;

  • first instalment (tuition and materials fees) at the start of the apprenticeship year
  • second instalment (materials fees) at the midpoint of each year.

Download the Master Plumbers MPD14d Fees and payment schedule - apprenticeship 2018 for complete course fee details. Note that learner tuition fees as published are subject to change given individual circumstances at enrolment. 

CPC32413 Certificate III in Plumbing - Year 1 2018 


Tuition fees

Materials fee

Other costs

Total Year 1
course fees

Gvt contribution

Government funded learner






Fee concession learner






Indigenous learner






Full fee paying learner*






1 Fees may vary slightly depending on actual enrolled units.

* All learners who enrol in CPC32413 are trade apprentices and are eligible for government funding.