As part of its proactive leadership role, the Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO) has commissioned Workbase to develop a literacy profile of a carpenter.
The profile lists the literacy skills sets required of a carpenter, as well as outlining the tasks that require a certain level of literacy.
Literacy profiles are used to provide information about the specific literacy requirements of a role and to help identify where trainees may need additional literacy skills training.
Literacy profiles also help the BCITO to improve the quality and content of the qualification, as well as identifying to potential trainees the skills they need to be effective in their industry.
Workbase selected four companies of different sizes and observed carpenters on the job, as well as talking to the different people who work with carpenters, such as managers, assessors, supervisors and trainers.
From this, Workbase was able to obtain a detailed knowledge of the range of literacy tasks involved in a carpentry role and collect examples of the documentation a carpenter was expected to work with.
Job literacy important in key areas
For carpenters on the job, literacy was important in several key areas, including reading building plans and instructions, working out how to build a structure, building structures as set out in plans, following building standards and regulations, working with other carpenters and tradespeople on site and discussing progress with site managers and clients.
For instance, reading skills were important for carpenters to be able to understand and perform tasks such as interpreting information from graphical material such as tables and price lists, and following written instructions and diagrams.
Likewise, the literacy profile identified that writing tasks were important for carpenters to be able to perform tasks such as using diagrams and sketches to clarify a point, and writing points in a logical order.
BCITO will continue to work with Workbase to develop and pilot suitable literacy assessment options and appropriate methodologies to assist apprentices identified as having literacy difficulties.
The profile can be viewed on the News page of the web site www.bcito.org.nz in the reports and studies section.