Wood Machining SVQ3

What is special about this course?

The SVQ in Woodmachining (Construction/Sawmilling Extrusion) has been developed by ConstructionSkills and is intended for people in the craft sector of the construction industry.

These people may be working as woodmachinists and sawmillers. They will require skills and knowledge in, among other things, practical ability, health and safety, interpreting information, and working to timescales.

The SVQs are designed to be assessed in the workplace, or in conditions of the workplace.

Examples of the settings or centres in which the SVQs are likely to be delivered include woodmachine shops, sawmills, carpentry and joinery shops, furniture machine shops, further education colleges and training centres.

Entry requirements

Applicants are required to undergo an initial selection test and in order to undertake the entire course; applicants must be offered a place by a local employer who will provide work experience.

Construction Skills will provide a list of employers but applicants will be encouraged to make the initial approach.

SVQ Level 3 Units

  • Confirm Work Activities and Resources for the Work
  • Develop and Maintain Good Working Relationships
  • Confirm the Occupational Method of Work
  • Produce Sawn Wood and Wood-based Products
  • Resolve Woodmachining Problems
  • Conform to General Workplace Health, Safety and Welfare
  • Produce Planed Wood and Wood-based Products
  • Produce Profiled Wood and Wood-based Products
  • Produce Jointed Wood and Wood-based Products
  • Produce Curved Wood and Wood-based Products
  • Produce and Maintain Woodmachining Tooling
  • Machinery and Equipment Maintenance
  • Integrative Assessment in the Construction Industry (Skills Test)


Candidates must provide their own basic PPE (personal protective equipment).

How will I study my course?

  • Block release

Students spend a total of 19 weeks in year 1, 11 weeks in year 2, 1 week in year 3 and 1 week in year 4 in blocks of 1, 2 or 3 weeks. Candidates are also required to undertake a Skills Test during the final year of their apprenticeship.

You will study by way of class-room based lectures and tutorials in College.

How long will my course last?

4 Year

First 2 years to complete PDA Level 6.

4 Years to complete SVQ Level 3.

Where can I study my course?

    Start date



    Full time

    If you are studying a full time Further Education course (NCs, NQs etc.) the College claims your fees from the Scottish Funding Council for students who are under 18 on the first day of the course. Students over the age of 18 on the first day of the course have to apply to Orkney Islands Council (OIC) for a tuition fees bursary.

    Information on the tuition fees bursary is available on the OIC website.

    Part time

    Normally you are responsible for your course fees but if you are in receipt of certain benefits you may be eligible for a Part Time Course Fee Waiver. Not all part-time courses at Orkney College UHI are covered by the Fee Waiver Scheme and only certain benefits are acceptable as a basis for a Fee Waiver. Please contact the college to enquire.

    If you are eligible, you may be entitled to an ILA of up to £200 a year towards a course.

    What can I do on completion of my course?

    PDA Level 7 in Wood Machining (formerly Advanced Craft).

    Is there more information available online?

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    Apply for Wood Machining SVQ3

    I want to start in 2023/24

    We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at Orkney College UHI. Orkney College UHI operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.