Steve Fogarty from TAFE SA explains what to expect from the Certificate III in Signs & Graphics.

Certificate III in Signs and Graphics

While most training institutions do not offer entry into this course without already being employed as an apprentice, pre-vocational courses may become available from time-to-time so it is worth making contacting with the service providers listed below for more details.

This course teaches the practical skills to design, manufacture and install a wide range of indoor and outdoor signage such as:

  • vinyl
  • fabric
  • screen-print
  • digital
  • LED.

You’ll gain the knowledge and skills to work effectively in the sign industry, including:

  • vinyl cutting
  • sign fabrication
  • sign installation
  • sign design
  • graphic design
  • how to operate advanced computer design software
  • how to produce signs on uneven surfaces
  • sign writing
  • how to produce engraved signs
  • advanced vinyl application, such as vehicle wrapping
  • heritage signage.

The course is made up of 7 core units and 9 elective units of which 9 units may be chosen from the elective units listed in the CPC30216 Certificate III in Signs and Graphics qualification (see below) and three 3 units may be chosen from other CPC Certificate III or Certificate IV qualifications, or another current training package or accredited course, provided they do not duplicate the outcome of another unit chosen for the qualification

Core units:

Design and lay-out digital signs for production | Produce and apply vinyl signs | Colour manage signs |Print digital signs | Identify construction work hazards and select risk control strategies | Install LED technology into signs | Fabricate signs

Elective units (availability may vary per training institution):

Apply vehicle body film wrapping | Apply basic levelling procedures | Work safely on scaffolding higher than two metres | Operate elevated work platforms up to 11 metres | Work safely around electrical sources, services and assets | Identify and apply information in construction plans, drawings and specifications | Licence to erect, alter and dismantle scaffolding basic level | Engrave signs | Apply gilding to signs | Paint lines and scrolls | Hand draw chalkboards and showcards | Screen-print signs | Hand render pictorials | Paint letters and decorative effects for signs | Manufacture gas-charged glass-formed illuminated signs | Produce airbrushed signs | Prepare surfaces for signs | Erect and install signs | Perform routine gas tungsten arc welding | Perform routine gas metal arc welding | Apply surface coatings by spray gun | Set up, operate and maintain computer numerically controlled (CNC) machining and processing centres.



Option of several locations with apprenticeship and non-apprenticeship options - click here for flyer.

Contact details:

Sydney: TAFE NSW Ultimo Phone: (02) 92173625
Western Sydney: TAFE NSW Mt Druitt Phone: (02) 92081704
Illawarra: TAFE NSW Wollongong Phone: (02) 4229 0648
Hunter: TAFE NSW East Maitland Phone: (02) 4930 2984

Regional Trade Assessments


Victoria University Polytechnic

This is an apprenticeship course. You must be employed as a signage apprentice.


The following institutions offer the Cert III as apprenticeship courses only. You must be employed as a signage apprentice.

TAFE Queensland

Australian Skills Management Institute (ASMI) - delivery models include:

Apprenticeship (including School-Based) – offered in Queensland, workplace based (combination of training and assessment delivery methods, including written assessment, portfolio of evidence, logbook and practical observation), 4 years full time or 8 years part time. 

RPL – offered in Australia, external based (combination of assessment of written evidence, practical observation and competency conversations), duration and fees will be determined by quality of evidence submitted and amount of gap training required.

South Australia


This is an apprenticeship course. You must be employed as a signage apprentice.

Western Australia

North Metro TAFE WA

This is an apprenticeship course. You must be employed as a signage apprentice.

ACT, Tasmania

Apprenticeship training is done via TAFE Illawarra NSW


VET Certificate II in Signage and Graphics

Cert II is currently only available in Victoria but some training institutions do offer trade-readiness/taster courses so it is worth contacting your local training institutions – start with those listed above.

This certificate course is carried out at Catholic Regional College Sydenham in the Trade Training Centre. The classroom/workspace also acts as a shop front to the business SYD Signs. The business is open to the public, giving the students the opportunity to enhance their customer service skills as well as the specific trade training of this program. 

The Cert II course covers subjects that includes sign design, use of signmaking software such as Illustrator and how to measure and complete calculations relevant to sign production, the production of signs using plotters, large format digital printers and a CNC router.  The student will learn how to create hand painted signs using traditional tools such as brushes and a mahl stick. They will obtain a White Card and First Aid Certificate, all basic skills to continue a career in the Sign and Graphics industry or further their studies into areas such as design, architecture or trades.

The course is comprised of the following core units:

Produce basic signs | Provide First Aid | Conduct workplace communication | Apply WHS requirements, policies and procedures in the construction industry | Carry out measurements and calculations | Operate a flatbed router to produce signage components | Operate a CNC machine to produce signage components | Prepare to work safely in the construction industry | Prepare surfaces for signage | Produced basic computer aided manufactured vinyl signs |Work safely at heights