How to become a licensed electrician in NSW Australia?
There are four crucial steps that need to be taken to become a licenced electrician in Australia. It may take up to around five years or more to become a qualified electrician. This is because electricians need to be highly skilled and provide a range of services. You can see our range of services here.
Step 1: Earning Senior Secondary Certificate
Before enrolling in TAFE or obtaining an apprenticeship you will need to have completed senior secondary school (grades 11 and 12). You need to be able to demonstrate that you have great numeracy skills and reasonable literacy skills. As an electrician it is expected that you can do trigonometry, electrical equations, work out percentages and have a knowledge of vectors.
Literacy skills are also required for an electrician because you will have to write a job report and read and understand important documents. Having a Senior Secondary Certificate demonstrates that you are capable with literacy and numeracy.
Students who want to become an electrician can apply to do the TVET (“TAFE-delivered vocational education and training”) Electrotechnology program while still in grades 11 and 12. Students who enrol in this program are more likely to gain an apprenticeship than those who are not in the program. When a student successfully completes their Electrotechnology TVET course they will automatically be awarded a Certificate II in Electrotechnology which is the second step.
Step 2: Earning a Certificate II in Electrotechnology
For those who do not complete the TVET program in senior secondary school, they can always go to TAFE or any vocational college such as TAFE NSW to gain a Certificate II in Electrotechnology. Completing this Australian recognised certificate will increase your chances in obtaining an apprenticeship. It also allows you to enrol for a Certificate III in Electrotechnology.
Step 3: Getting an Electrician Apprenticeship
The third and most important step to becoming a licensed electrician is gaining an apprenticeship. This is where you will get practical experience in doing the job in the real world rather than in a controlled environment. Some jobs you may be taught to do are surge protection installation, internet installation and new builds wiring. Due to the large competition in Australia gaining an apprenticeship can be difficult.
However, if you keep in contact with the Australian Apprenticeships Support Network and search for paid electrician apprenticeship programs, you will eventually find an apprenticeship place somewhere in Australia.
Step 4: Earning a Certificate III in Electrotechnology
Once you have completed a Certificate III in Electrotechnology you will officially be recognised across all States and Territories in Australia as a fully qualified licenced electrician. This certificate will take around four years to complete. It involves both on-the-job and off-the-job training. This certificate will be available to enrol in through most vocational colleges and all TAFE colleges in Australia. This certificate is also a stepping stone to a Diploma of Electrical Engineering which can potentially lead to a high paying career.