NTC Technical Courses: What is it and why study technical courses?

'Technical studies’ is a broad term used to describe a particular category of vocational courses. Technical courses prepare students for careers in engineering-related fields.  Technical courses will teach students how to repair, build, or design things.

The technical courses offered at College SA will give you a great opportunity to learn more about engineering, as well as to prepare yourself for a career in the technical/engineering industry.    

Why study technical courses?

Technical courses are a great starting point for someone who would like to start a career as a craftsperson.

(Craftsman definition: A person who is skilled in a particular craft)

The technical field offers a diverse range of job opportunities. If you are interested in electrical work, mechanics or welding, you are sure to find a career that appeals to you.

There is a shortage of technical skills in South Africa, and trained craftsman are in demand. As a result, there are many job opportunities in this line of work.

Why study College SA technical courses?

  • College SA’s technical courses aim to equip students with the knowledge and skill needed to work in the construction, transportation, mechanical and electrical industries.
  • You can study our technical courses from anywhere in South Africa because we are a distance learning college.
  • We pride ourselves in giving our students only the best service and student support.
  • Our technical courses study material is easy to follow and understand, and our Educational Planners and Tutors are just a phone call away – should you need any help or support.
  • College SA’s technical courses are provisionally accredited by Umalusi. This means that you will be awarded a National Certificate, issued by the Department of Higher Education and Training once you have completed your course and passed the Department of Higher Education examinations.     

What NTC technical courses can I study at College SA?

College SA offers NTC technical courses related to various technical industries. What’s more, our technical courses allow you to level up from an NTC level 1 qualification to an NTC level 3 qualification. We offer the following technical courses:

Careers to pursue in the technical/engineering field

There are many job opportunities in the technical industry. Here is a short list of career paths that you might want to consider:

  • Welding
  • Fitting and Turning
  • Motor Mechanics
  • Boilermaking
  • Electrical

A career in welding

A welder uses intense heat of hand-held metal joining equipment to permanently join metal parts together. After joining the metal parts together, the metal has to be smoothed out, also with the hand held metal joining equipment. 

Welders also have to inspect materials or structures that need welding and keep an eye on the welding process to prevent overheating of the metal. Welders can be found working on bridge structures, construction sites, power-plants, refineries or pipelines. There are also job opportunities for welders in shipbuilding, aerospace applications, automobile manufacturing and any other areas where welding might be required.

Benefits of becoming a skilled welder

  • More and better job opportunities
  • Your skills can potentially increase your earning potential
  • Job variety – welders have transferrable skills
  • Welders can work their way towards job promotion

Responsibilities

  • Using torches and arcs to perform welding in various fields including construction, power plants, and automobile manufacturing.
  • Checking equipment for any defects.
  • Using torches and arcs to add components and also modify parts according to specifications.
  • Checking welding processes and making sure that there is no shrinkage or distortion in the metal or materials.
  • Checking welding work and making sure that it complies with the specifications given.
  • Ensuring that the welding work done is well joint and smooth on the joint area.
  • Maintaining the disc grinders and cleaning all equipment
  • Able to use different welding equipment for welding work
  • Analysing the speed and length of the welding arc for all welding work
  • Able to assemble welding components with help of hand and power tools.

Skills required

  • Good hand-eye coordination
  • The ability to work accurately
  • Good concentration levels
  • Able to work without direct supervision
  • A good understanding of technical plans and drawings
  • Good math skills
  • The ability to solve problems

A career in fitting and turning

A fitter and turner job is a very skilled profession. Fitter and turners maintain and repair various types of machinery. They manufacture, construct, assemble and fit components for machinery. They are also responsible for maintaining and repairing the equipment used.

A fitter and turner shape rough pieces of metal into its final form by following measurements or blueprints provided. They form these pieces of metal by using power-operated tools.   

Benefits of becoming a skilled fitter and turner

  • You can work with your hands
  • There is opportunity to specialise in a specific field within the fitting and turning job field
  • Good employment opportunities
  • A skilled fitter and turner can work their way to a higher earning potential

Responsibilities

  • Maintaining and repairing parts for machinery
  • Assembling and fitting custom made components for machinery
  • Using blueprints and specifications to measure and shape parts and components
  • Monitor machinery and repairing faulty parts
  • Fitting parts that are required to complete the machine

Skills required

  • Good at working with your hands
  • Have a good understanding of math
  • The ability to measure accurately
  • The ability to work precisely and accurately

A career in motor mechanics

A motor mechanic maintains and repairs motorcars, motorbikes, buses and other vehicles. When vehicle owners experience any type of problem on their automobile, they take it to the motor mechanic’s shop. The motor mechanic will then take the car for a test drive or plug it into a computer that is specially designed to identify problems on automobiles. After identifying the problem, they will speak to the owner of the vehicles and give a quotation on the repairs. After given the okay, the motor mechanic will then order new parts and fix the automobile.

Benefits of becoming a skilled motor mechanic

  • Many job opportunities
  • You can choose to specialise in a specific type of vehicles (trucks, trains, motorcars etc.)
  • The auto mechanic industry often offers medical packages to their employees.
  • You can fix cars in your free time and earn extra money or work from your own garage.

Responsibilities

  • Speaking to clients – discussing vehicle problems and cost to repair it
  • Taking cars for test drives or using computer systems to pick up the problem
  • Removing broken and damaged parts
  • Ordering new parts
  • Replacing old and broken vehicle parts and replacing it with new ones so everything’s back in working order
  • Adjusting brakes, tightening body bolts, aligning wheels and performing routine checks
  • Servicing automobiles
  • Tuning engines and changing oil
  • Keeping record of the vehicles they worked on

Skills required

  • An excellent knowledge of motor vehicle technology
  • Practical skills
  • The ability to work quickly
  • Reasonable fit
  • Good problem solving skills

A career in boilermaking

A boilermaker makes and installs boilers and other large containers such as gas cylinders and oil tanks. They use hand and power tools, flame cutters and welding tools to shape and make these boilers and tanks. Boilers are made out of steel, iron, copper or stainless steel.    

People often think boilermaking and welding are the same thing. The truth is both involves welding but a boilermaker only makes boilers, tanks and vats where a welder can be found working on many different welding and metal projects including bridge structures, construction sites and pipelines.   

Benefits of becoming a skilled boilermaker

  • Your skills and workmanship can potentially lead to a higher earning potential
  • Job variety – you will work on different projects
  • You can work with your hands
  • Many job opportunities

Responsibilities

  • Using blueprints to find the right location and position or to determine the size of the boiler
  • Installing small premade boilers into buildings and manufacturing facilities
  • Laying various parts of the boilers out before joining everything together
  • Assembling boiler tanks – using robotic or automatic welders.
  • Testing and examining boiler tanks for leaks or any defects
  • Cleaning vats, using scrapers, wire brushes and cleaning solvents
  • Replacing and repairing broken valves, pipes or joints, using hand and power tools, gas torches and/or welding equipment

Skills required

  • The ability to work with different tools
  • Doing very precise work expertly
  • Good hand-eye coordination
  • Problem solving skills
  • Comfortable with working in confined spaces

A career in electrical

Electricians are responsible for installing and maintaining electrical power, communications, lighting and control systems in homes, businesses and factories.

Electricians have to follow strict building and electrical regulations when installing and repairing electrical components. They also have to study blueprints and follow technical diagrammes of the electrical systems they are working on. 

Benefits of becoming a skilled electrician

  • Many job opportunities
  • A skilled electrician can earn a livable salary
  • It is a respected profession
  • Each workday will be different

Responsibilities

  • Studying blueprints or technical diagrammes
  • Installing and maintaining wiring, control and lighting systems in homes, factories and businesses
  • Inspecting and repairing electrical components such as circuit breakers and transformers
  • Identifying the electrical problem by using a variety of testing devices specially designed for electrical components
  • Repairing and replacing wiring, electric equipment or fixtures using hand tools and power tools
  • Following building regulations and the national electric code when installing, replacing or repairing any electrical components
  • Supervise and train other workers to install, maintain or repair electrical wiring or equipment 

 Skills required

  • Good practical skills
  • The ability to read and understand technical drawings, and blueprints
  • Good problem solving skills
  • Not afraid of heights and willing to work in all types of weather conditions

 

As you can see, there are many career options available in the field of engineering. Technical courses are not only a good option for those who are great with practical work but it also gives skilled artisans the option to start their own business.