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  • RII30815

Certificate III in Civil Construction Plant Operations

At a glance

At a glance

Build your plant operations career with this apprenticeship course. Become a trade-qualified, skilled plant operator in the civil construction sector.

  • Civil Construction Worker
  • Plant Operators
  • Earthmoving Plant Operator

RII30815 Certificate III in Civil Construction Plant Operations

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Course overview

Course overview

Progress your career in civil construction with this plant operations apprenticeship qualification. Become a recognised skilled plant operator and continue to further your career.

According to the Australian Government's Job Outlook service, there are strong job prospects for earthmoving plant operators in Queensland. This large occupation is likely to create around 30,000 job openings across Australia over the next five years.  

Build your skills or get recognised for your experience with this course in work areas including infrastructure-related projects, subdivisions, bridge works, railways, harbours, sewerage and drainage, electrical infrastructure, and pipeline and recreation works. Work safely with a range of equipment including excavators, front end loaders, water carts and haul trucks to carry our civil works.

Successful completion of this qualification will give you the skills and knowledge to become a trade qualified plant operator and set up you for further study in the civil construction sector.


The successful achievement of this qualification requires you to complete all core and 5 elective units from the list below.

Plan and organise work
Carry out measurements and calculations
Identify, locate and protect underground services
Read and interpret plans and job specifications
Carry out manual excavation
Support plant operations
Spread and compact materials manually
Carry out basic levelling
Communicate in the workplace
Work safely and follow WHS policies and procedures
Handle resources and infrastructure materials and safely dispose of nontoxic materials
Use hand and power tools
Operate small plant and equipment
Drain and dewater civil construction site
Conduct erosion and sediment control activities
Construct conservation earthworks
Place and fix reinforcement materials
Carry out concrete work
Install trench support
Erect and dismantle temporary fencing and gates
Repair potholes
Lay pipes
Load and unload plant
Conduct tractor operations
Conduct roller operations
Conduct civil construction skid steer loader operations
Conduct backhoe/loader operations
Conduct civil construction excavator operations
Conduct civil construction dozer operations
Conduct civil construction grader operations
Conduct civil construction water cart operations
Maintain and monitor site quality standards
Conduct local risk control
Conduct tip truck operations
Control traffic with stop-slow bat

Note: For some courses, not all electives are available at all campuses.

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Ways to study

Ways to study

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University pathways

If you want to go on to further study at university, TAFE Queensland has a pathway option to get you there. In many cases, completing one of our diplomas may give you a full year of credit towards a degree with one of our partner universities.

Learn more about university pathways
  • James Cook University
  • Southern Cross University
  • University of Canberra
  • Griffith University
  • Queensland University of Technology
  • Federation University
  • University of Southern Queensland
Payment options

Payment options

No matter what your circumstances, TAFE Queensland has a payment option to suit you. If you are unsure of what's right for you, get in touch. We're here to help.

Money IconUpfront payment

This may be the full fee for the course, or the student contribution amount if you are eligible for a subsidy or concession.

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Money IconPayment plan

If you have difficulty paying for the full cost of a course upfront, you may be eligible for a payment plan.

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Important Information
Important Information

Important Information

Entry requirements

There are no formal entry requirements for this course.

Selection criteria

To study an apprenticeship or traineeship program you must be indentured as an apprentice or trainee with your employer.

Employers need to be able to provide the necessary human and physical resources to qualify for an apprentice.

Resources required

You are responsible for meeting the minimum occupational health and safety requirements in practical classes. This includes the use of safety glasses, protective footwear with covered uppers, steel capped toes and non-slip soles to AS2210, leather gloves to AS2161, and hair protection. You should also wear 100% cotton drill industry-standard clothing. If you fail to meet these minimum standards of dress, you will not be permitted entry into practical classes.

It is recommended that you have access to a reliable internet connection to access TAFE Queensland's online learning system Connect, and a computer with up-to-date software, including Microsoft Office, Adobe Acrobat Reader and Adobe Flash Player. This equipment and software is available for use at all TAFE Queensland locations.

Need to know

Existing workers in the Building and Construction Industry, or those returning to the industry, may be eligible for funding under the CSQ Skills Assessment and Gap Training (SAGT) program. For further information about this great funding opportunity, please visit the CSQ Website or contact us.

Replacement Qualification
This program has been replaced by RII30820 - Certificate III in Civil Construction Plant Operations, as of 24 January 2021. A transition period applies to enable current students to complete their study. The transition period finishes on 23 January 2022. If required, enrolments will be transitioned into the replacement qualification.

Assessment Methods

Skill and knowledge assessments are an essential step in progressing through your course. You may be assessed in a number of ways while you are studying at TAFE Queensland, including observation, written assessment, questioning, portfolios, work samples, third-party feedback, and through recognition of prior learning. Read more about assessment methods.


All information was accurate at time of publication, however TAFE policies, tuition fees and course content is subject to change without notice. Course commencement is dependent on sufficient enrolment numbers. Timetable information is subject to change prior to commencement and/or during the duration of your course.

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How to apply

How to apply

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and credit transfers

Fast track your way to a formal qualification by earning credit for the things you already know. Getting recognition for the skills you've gained from the workplace or previous learning means less study time for you, and getting the paper to prove you're qualified a whole lot sooner. We can assess your skills, directly apply credits from previous successful study, and give you advanced standing in your course.

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Get started with TAFE Queensland

If you have read and understood the student rules, refund policy, understand your fees and payment options, have a Unique Student Identifier (USI) and checked you meet the entry requirements and selection criteria for this course, you're ready to get started.

University pathways

If you want to go on to further study at university, TAFE Queensland has a pathway option to get you there. In many cases, completing one of our diplomas may give you a full year of credit towards a degree with one of our partner universities.

Learn more about university pathways
  • James Cook University
  • University of Queensland
  • University of Canberra
  • Federation University
  • Griffith University
  • Queensland University of Technology
  • University of Southern Queensland