facebook pixel content

carpentry I

With professional carpentry skills, you join the ranks of an elite group of skilled workers responsible for bringing blueprints to life.

From foundations to finishing, this high-demand role is integral to the success of any construction project.


You can tap the button below to join the mailing list and be the first to know when carpentry training re-opens:

Carpentry I Course Description

NCCER’s carpentry curriculum covers the basic skills and competencies needed in the commercial construction industry. Beginning with an orientation to the trade, the course explores construction materials, plans, and building layouts. Students also learn about floor, wall, and roof systems, in addition to basic stair layout and building envelope systems.


Prerequisite: Core Certificate or Employer Approval

Course Details

Carpentry I Instructors:

Clark Causely

Project Supervisor, Lakewood Construction

Headshot of Justin Gould - Instructor for Carpentry I course

Justin Gould

Field Manager, EV Construction

Carpentry I Curriculum

Orientation to the Trade (2.5 Hours)

Reviews the history of the trade, describes the apprentice program, identifies career opportunities for carpenters and construction workers, and lists the skills, responsibilities, and characteristics a worker should possess. Emphasizes the importance of safety in the construction industry

Building Materials, Fasteners, and Adhesives (20 hours)

Introduces the building materials used in construction work, including lumber, sheet materials, engineered
wood products, structural concrete, and structural steel. Also describes the fasteners and adhesives used in construction work. Discusses the methods of squaring a building.

Hand and Power Tools (10 Hours)

Provides descriptions of hand tools and power tools used by carpenters. Emphasizes safe and proper operation, as well as care and maintenance.

Introduction to Construction Drawings, Specifications, and Layout (22.5 Hours)

Covers the techniques for reading and using construction drawings and specifications, with an emphasis on drawings and information relevant to the carpentry trade. Introduces quantity takeoffs.

Floor Systems (25 Hours)

Covers framing basics and the procedures for laying out and constructing a wood floor using common lumber, as well as engineered building materials.

Wall Systems (10 Hours)

Describes procedures for laying out and framing walls, including roughing-in door and window openings, constructing corners, partition Ts, and bracing walls. Includes the procedure to estimate the materials required to frame walls.

Ceiling Joist and Roof Framing (47.5 Hours)

Describes types of roofs and provides instructions for laying out rafters for gable roofs, hip roofs, and valley intersections. Covers stick-built and truss-built roofs. Includes the basics of roof sheathing installation.

Introduction to Building Envelope Systems (12.5 Hours)

Introduces the concept of the building envelope and explains its components. Describes types of windows, skylights, and exterior doors, and provides instructions for installation.

Basic Stair Layout (12.5 Hours)

Introduces types of stairs and common building code requirements related to stairs. Focuses on techniques
for measuring and calculating rise, run, and stairwell openings, laying out stringers, and fabricating basic stairways.

Female carpenter wearing safety equipment measures a board for cutting

Work performed by carpenters:

Professional carpenters combine techniques that have evolved over thousands of years with next-generation technology to delivery high quality work safely and consistently. A few opportunities for an entry level carpenter can include: 

  • Building structural frames and concrete forms
  • Installing drywall and acoustical ceilings
  • Erecting steel studs and install insulation
  • Completing interior and exterior finishing

Common Interests and Skills:

Carpenter earnings:

*wages/benefits vary by geographic area

Year 1 - 2
$33,436 – $63,200 + benefits*
Year 3 - 4
$51,666 – $80,077 + benefits*
$60,789 – $ 84,295 + benefits*
$72,485 – $97,010 + benefits*
$98,100 – $131,018 + benefits*