Carpentry is a skilled trade in which the primary work performed is the cutting, shaping and installation of building materials during the construction of buildings, ships, timber bridges, concrete formwork, etc. Carpenters traditionally worked with natural wood and did the rougher work such as framing, but today many other materials are also used and sometimes the finer trades of cabinetmaking and furniture building are considered carpentry. Carpenters are usually the first tradesmen on a job and the last to leave. Carpenters normally framed post-and-beam buildings until the end of the 19th century; now this old fashioned carpentry is called timber framing. Carpenters learn this trade by being employed through an apprenticeship training. It is also common that the skill can be learned by gaining work experience other than a formal training program, which may be the case in many places.. Source: Wikipedia


Where can I learn?

Finikiti Woodworks
They offer beginners, intermediate and advanced courses in woodwork. They are based in Benoni. The only thing students need to bring with them is an open mind and writing materials!

INTEC Carpentry & Joinery short course certificate
The entrance requirement for this course is Grade 10 (Std. 8) with Technical Drawing and Mathematics or equivalent, or relevant work experience (2 years). You will gain sound knowledge of building construction procedures and methods, focusing on carpentry and joinery.

Ekurhuleni Artisans and Skills Training Centre
Our practical skills training facility focuses on skills development and training for unskilled labourers or labourers looking to expand their skills and knowledge base. We offer courses in the following disciplines:Boilermaking, Rigging, Pipe Fitting, Welding, Plumbing, Electrical, Carpentry, Brick Laying, Painting / Decorating, CNC Programming, Aircon & Refrigeration, Sheet Metal Work, Fitting, Glazing, French Polishing,Tiling, Fibre Optic Technician, OSP Civil Works Specialist, Surface Grinding, Turning, Milling, Carpentry and Joinery, Instrumentation WITH Process Control, Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) and Electronics.Our courses last 15 days or less, meaning students will not be away from work for prolonged periods of time. Secondly as soon as the course is completed students are able to commence work immediately.They are based in Kempton Park.Mercury School of Woodwork
All classes are conducted at our workshop in Paarden Eiland, Cape Town.

  • All three of our Foundation in Woodwork Courses (Beginners’, Intermediate & Advanced) comprise of five lessons of about two-hour duration each.
  • Students can start at any of these three levels, depending on your previous experience with woodwork.
  • After a level is completed, there is no obligation to carry on with the others not yet done.
  • All classes are conducted at our workshop in Paarden Eiland, Cape Town.
  • We start with the Beginners’, then go on to the Intermediate & Advanced.

Artisan Development Academy
Artisan Development Academy is an internationally bench-marked artisan training and development institution.

Currently accredited with 5 SETAs as a training and trade test centre for a bouquet of Engineering and Construction trades, ArtisanDev offers world-class apprentice training, learnerships and other client customised technical training interventions.

Carpenters build and repair a vast array of structures made of wood, wood-substitutes, concrete and other materials.  You will find carpenters employed by construction companies, contractors and maintenance departments and still others entrepreneurs.  Carpenters assemble and erect forms for concrete, assemble wood and metal frame construction and use plans and instruments to prepare for excavating and shoring.   They direct concrete placement and install exterior and interior finish materials such as siding, doors, windows and cabinets.  Carpenters also install floor beams, lay sub-flooring, erect walls and roof systems and fit and install trim.

Carpenters are to be highly precise to avoid loss from poor management of material.

Northlink College
Located in centres throughout the Western Cape.The courses presented at Northlink College are career-orientated to bridge the gap between the workshop and the world of work with the least disruption at the end of the training period. Students who attend the simulated training are expected to wear the required safety attire (Helmet, Safety Shoes and an overall) at all times. The Competency Based Modular Training (CBMT) is the first stage in your career path that will allow the student to attain artisan status by successfully completing a trade test, after the prescribed work-based (on-site) experience accredited by the Construction Education and Training Authority (CETA). Note that only the CETA has the authority to approve your work-based experience.

Accredited Trade Test Centre for Carpentry (CETA)

  • Apprenticeships in Trades
  • Learnership in Trades
  • Self Employment

Grade 9 or equivalent qualification

The Furniture Technology Centre is registered with the Department of Education as a Private Further Education and Training College and is accredited by the Fibre Processing and Manufacturing Sector Education and Training Authority (FP & M SETA).

We offer skills development learning programmes in the Core and Elective Unit Standards of the Furniture Making Qualifications towards the following qualifications at NQF Levels 2 and 3. They are located in Cape Town.

*If you are aware of any other training organisations that offer carpentry courses, or you are such a provider, please let us know your details by emailing

Associations and Organisations


We suggest you first have a look at the listings found on AssociationFinder.


The Woodworking Association of Pretoria

The Woodworking Association of Pretoria was established during 1989 as a non-profit association with the purpose of bringing together woodworkers in all disciplines in  the Pretoria area of South Africa. Its objectives are, amongst others, the dissemination of information on wood and woodwork, to create co-operation between members, to exchange ideas and knowledge, to organise regular meetings, workshops and competitions of members in the various disciplines of woodwork, to issue a regular newsletter to members and to liaise with other similar associations and clubs in South Africa.  Membership is open to any person interested in woodwork who applies on the prescribed application form and pays the annual subscription. The Association currently has more than hundred members.

The monthly meeting of the Association takes place on the last Wednesday evening of every month.  (Next meeting) At these meetings we usually arrange for one or two people from outside the Association to talk to us about woodworking-related products, equipment or techniques.

There are three interest groups in the Association namely the Cabinet Makers -, the Woodturners – and the Woodcarvers Group.

Association of Woodturners of SA (AWSA)
The Association of Woodturners of South Africa(AWSA) is a South African non- profit organisation dedicated to the advancement of the art of woodturning. The Association is comprised of numerous individual turners from around the country. The association hosts an annual symposium featuring numerous renowned South African demonstrators who share their skills and insights, as well as hosting a different overseas demonstrator at each event. Other highlights of each symposium include a trade show of machinery, tools, supplies and turning stock, and an exhibition of wonderful turned art.

Witwatersrand Woodworkers Association
Established in 1990, the Witwatersrand Woodworkers Association (WWA) is a non-profit organisation that exists to promote and maintain interest, skill and excellence in the working of wood. We support all facets of woodworking, and have amateurs from all walks of life and many professional woodworkers among our members.



Carpenter – Careers in construction
Ask yourself…

  • Do you like working with wood or steel?
  • Can you be precise and accurate in your work?
  • Are you creative?
  • Do you have an eye for detail?
  • Are you good with your hands?
  • Do you have strong math skills?

If the answer to these questions is yes, then a career as a Carpenter could be right for you.

Carpenters: Career, Salary and Education Information
Although this is an American website, and the salaries they indicate are based in the US, it is still a useful website to read. Carpenters construct and repair building frameworks and structures—such as stairways, doorframes, partitions, rafters, and bridge supports—made from wood and other materials. They also may install kitchen cabinets, siding, and drywall.

Careers 24 – I want to learn about careers as a Carpenter
This South African website will give you an idea of the requirements to pursue a career in carpentry.

Career Planet – how to become a carpenter
Includes a section on how to become a carpenter. This is a South African website.

Carpenter salary in South Africa
Get an idea of what salary can be expected as a carpenter.