Start with an introduction to basic tools and before you know it, you will be reading blueprints, building stairs and framing walls.

Develop the practical skills you need to create excellent work. Learn about hand tools, precise measuring and cutting, and how to create what you envision in your mind’s eye. Gain the basic knowledge to build projects from simple shelving to a single-family dwelling.

Using modern industry tools, you will learn in a well-equipped shop with an emphasis on practical, applied learning. Geometry rules in this profession, and general mathematics is very important. Your training will be guided by supportive instructors. Gain experience working with concrete and learning construction safety

Register as an apprentice within two years of completing the program, and you may be granted credit towards Level 1 Carpenter apprenticeship as you continue to gain valuable industry experience.

There are a number of career opportunities for graduates. Work in the construction industry on residential or commercial projects. Learn the skills to do general home repairs, as well as your own woodworking projects.


  • A complete Manitoba Grade 12 or equivalent
  • Consumer/Essential Mathematics 40S or equivalent

English is the language of instruction at Assiniboine. All applicants educated outside of Canada or in a country not on the test exempt list are expected to meet the English language proficiency requirement. See assiniboine.net/elp for more information. 

Program Considerations

To be successful in this program and industry, it is important for you to be able to:

  • Wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including hardhat, safety glasses and steel toe boots
  • Work outdoors in extreme warm and cold weather conditions (+30°C to -40°C)
  • Use ladders and work at varying heights
  • Work as part of a team
  • Take direction from a supervisor
  • Be punctual and attend class on a regular basis

A valid driver’s license and access to a vehicle is strongly recommended given the potential need to travel for practicum placement.

Careers & Connections


Graduates find employment opportunities in commercial and residential construction, materials merchandising, prefabrication centres, millwork and cabinet making facilities and in entrepreneurial ventures in building or woodworking fields.


Students who successfully complete the accredited program with an accumulative average of 70% or better in the trade subjects and level for which the program was accredited, gain employment and register as an apprentice within two years of graduating, will receive credit for Level 1 in-school technical training and 900 hours in the Carpenter apprenticeship program.

Assiniboine has a number of agreements with other colleges, universities and professional organizations, making it possible to apply credit taken at Assiniboine to programs at other institutions. For up-to-date information on agreements, visit the Articulation Agreements page.

Tools & Supplies

This tuition-free program provides tools from the lists below for each qualifies student. 

2023-24 Lists:

Tool List:

Technology Requirements

Students in this program are expected to have a computer at home with internet access that meets the technical needs outlined by the program. Refer to assiniboine.net/tech for detailed information.

Courses & Costs


Estimated Program Costs
  Credits Tuition Course fees Students' Association fees (Inc Health Premium) Estimated textbooks, tools and supplies
Applied Building Construction 47.5 $2,620 $1,250 $400 $1,940

All fees are estimated and subject to change without notice.


To graduate with an Applied Building Construction certificate, students must successfully complete 46.5 academic credits and 1 practical credit. The minimum passing grade for each course is 60% as indicated on the course outline.

Title Credits/CEUs Elective Distance PLAR
Blueprint Reading (CARPW) (DRFT-0001)

This course provides the fundamental skills necessary for students to become familiar with architectural blueprints.

3 credit(s) No No No
Building Materials (CPWW-0004)

Properties and structure of wood are studied in this course, followed by orientation in the types, standard sizes and characteristics of the basic materials of construction.

1.5 credit(s) No No No
Building Science (SCIE-0007)

This course begins by focusing on the concepts of understanding the house as a system. Students then study thermal insulation requirements, types and applications, including energy-efficient construction techniques.

1.5 credit(s) No No No
College Foundations (PEDV-0356)

This course improves students’ ability to navigate the college experience and environment, including student's rights, roles, and responsibilities. In this course, students reflect on their skills, attitudes, and expectations and develop learning strategies to help them to become successful, resilient, and self-directed learners. The course covers topics such as success in online learning, time management strategies, learning strategies, assessment taking strategies, academic integrity, information and digital literacy, and wellness, among others. It integrates elements of student orientation.

0 credit(s) No No No
Communications (COMM-0260)

This course includes instruction in techniques to improve both written and oral communication with prospective employers, co-workers and clients. Effective strategies for customer service are emphasized. It also serves to familiarize students with the regulations related to the workplace. As well, students receive an introduction to the use of computer software and hands-on experience with Windows operating system, Internet and email.

1.5 credit(s) No No No
Concrete Forming Technology (CPWW-0012)

In this course, students study the characteristics of quality concrete, its mixture, transport, placement, finishing and curing. Other course material includes forming for footings, walls, columns, beams, slabs and stairs.

3 credit(s) No No No
Construction Safety (WRKP-0030)

Along with instruction in erection and use of staging and ladders, students become familiar with ropes, rigging and hand signals, as well as construction site health and safety hazards and appropriate personal protection devices.

3 credit(s) No No No
Construction Trades Geometry (MATH-0013)

This course provides students with a review of the basic geometry skills required for working in the construction trades.

1.5 credit(s) No No No
Hand Tools (CPWW-0031)

This course, along with Woodworking Machines, is a prerequisite to all program elements. It teaches students how to select, care for and use the tools of the trade, and provides instruction in basic procedures.

9 credit(s) No No No
Practicum - APBLC (PRAC-0298)

Prerequisite: Cumulative weighted grade point average (CWGPA) of 2.0 or greater, WRKP-0030 Construction Safety
Students spend 6 weeks on the job to gain experience in a work environment. The work practicum is subject to prior approval of and monitoring by a faculty member. Credit is based on successful completion of the work practicum plus submission of evaluation by the employer. Work experience acquired prior to registration in the program in not eligible for this credit.

1 credit(s) No No No
Roof Framing (CPWW-0007)

Prerequisite: MATH-0123 Construction Trades Geometry
In this course, students learn how to calculate, lay out, cut and install rafters for equal slope gable and hip roofs.

6 credit(s) No No No
Shop Layout (CPWW-0003)

This course enables students to develop the skills needed to prepare shop drawings using drafting conventions and commonly available shop tools.

3 credit(s) No No No
Wood Frame Construction (CPWW-0005)

Students learn terminology, techniques and applicable codes relating to wood frame house construction. Practical elements include joist and plate layout and construction of floor, wall and ceiling components.

6 credit(s) No No No
Woodworking Machines 1 (CPWW-0002)

Prerequisite: CPWW-0031 Hand Tools
This course introduces students to basic stationary and portable power equipment through introductory machine woodworking exercises.

3 credit(s) No No No

Fast Facts

Frequently Asked Questions

How is the Applied Building Construction program able to offer funding incentives to NEET Youth?

The college is able to offer the Applied Building Construction program through a partnership with Algonquin College.

How much is the application fee for the Applied Building Construction program?

There is no application fee for this program. However, you must attend an information session before applying. It is a mandatory part of the application process.

I don’t live in Manitoba… can I still apply?

Yes, the Applied Building Construction program is open for application to anyone. Funding incentives for Indigenous (First Nations, Métis and Inuit) youth between the ages of 18 to 30 not in employment, education, or training (NEET Youth) are available.

Can I apply to Applied Building Construction as an international student on a study visa?

No, the Applied Building Construction program is not open to international students. Please see assiniboine.net/international for more information on studying as an international student.

How will applicants be chosen for the Applied Building Construction program?

Acceptance to this program is based on a combination of attendance at an online program information session, your online assessment results, your high school and/or post-secondary transcripts and resumé, and your ability to meet program admission requirements.

Who should take the Applied Building Construction program?

This program gives students the basic skills in carpentry and woodworking.

This tuition-free program is open to Indigenous (First Nations, Métis and Inuit) youth, 18 to 30 years of age, not employed, education and training (NEET Youth).

I can’t make any of the Applied Building Construction information session dates; can I still apply?

No, attendance at an information session is a mandatory part of the application process for Applied Building Construction.

What can I expect at the online assessment session?

You will be assessed in English, Mathematics, Mechanical Aptitude and general software/document skills.

Details on the assessment will be provided via email once you have attended an online information session.

What do I need to bring to each session?

You do not need to bring anything to the initial online program information session.

Details on the online assessment will be provided via email once you have attended an online information session.

If you are selected to proceed to the next step in the application process, please ensure you have original, official transcripts (high school and post-secondary) and your current resumé.

What does the Applied Building Construction program give me when I graduate?

Students who successfully complete the accredited program with an accumulative average of 70% or better in the trade subjects and level for which the program was accredited, gain employment and register as an apprentice within two years of graduating, will receive credit for Level 1 in-school technical training and 900 hours in the Carpenter apprenticeship program.

What happens if I’m not accepted to the Applied Building Construction program; can I apply again next year?

At this time, the tuition-free opportunity for NEET Youth is only available for the February 2023 intake. Applied Building Construction is an annual program and can be applied for each year. In future, you will need to submit a new application to this program, and the program may or may not have funding available for NEET Youth.

What are my other options for taking Applied Building Construction at Assiniboine?

Assiniboine continues to offer the Applied Building Construction certificate program with an annual February intake; it may or may not have NEET Youth funding. Assiniboine also offers a nine-month Carpentry and Woodworking certificate in Brandon; the program begins each September and is open to International students.

Do I need prior experience in carpentry?

No; however, you will be assessed for overall mechanical aptitude during the assessment session.

Where do I get my transcripts if I’ve been out of high school for a long time?

Contact your high school or the student records area of the education department in the province where you completed high school. In Manitoba, visit the Student Records website.