Selecting projects and activities for a Construction industry placement
When planning your placement, you should think about projects and activities that can:
- allow students to apply and enhance their knowledge of the industry as well as their technical skills
- add value to your organisation
You can do this in collaboration with the student's school or college.
Students taking Construction T Levels will have a broad understanding of the sector, and will be studying occupation-specific modules.
Here, you'll find examples of projects you can set for your industry placement students, as well as tips on things to think about when planning them.
Example industry placement projects for Construction and the Built Environment
Sole trader or micro business
(onsite trade/building services engineer)
A small plumbing firm always has an apprentice to support the business. However, 1 day a week the apprentice is at college.
To have continuous support for the team, the plumbing firm arranges for a 2-day-a-week industry placement student to buddy with an apprentice on day one and then to provide cover, under supervision, on the day that the apprentice is at college.
Projects and activities:
- Interpret plumbing system information from specifications and technical manuals
- Update online customer maintenance documents and records
- Calculate resource and component requirements for maintenance assignments
- Replace and repair components in plumbing systems
- With supervision, interact with different clients to obtain information about maintenance requirements
A large construction company provides an industry placement in a block of 9 weeks.
The student works in the regional office initially to learn about a project, before observing a civil engineer, then moving to a site office to support civil engineers on a busy phase of a road project.
Projects and activities:
- Conduct research into potential civil engineering solutions
- Interpret information and data from secondary sources
- Investigate the measurement standards, guides and practice required for civil engineering projects
- Use software to analyse data and model information
- Contribute to the development of civil engineering solutions by checking the accuracy of measurements
Bench joinery (off-site)
Students start with a 2-week block, understanding the workshop and work on site, before they move to a weekly day release model supporting the bench joiners in the workshop with weekly tasks.
Projects and activities:
- Produce geometrical calculations relating to complex 3D shapes and produce drawings and sketches
- Develop draft costings associated with activities and make recommendations for minimising waste
- Mark out measurements onto timber-based products
- Use woodworking machinery and equipment to produce complex timber-based components
- Prepare components for assembly
Identifying placement projects
Look for projects and activities for placement students that:
- line up with your future skills needs in terms of growing professions and hard to fill vacancies
- will attract and challenge high-calibre students who are aiming for a career in construction
- will demand specific technical skills from students on the different T Level courses
- provide opportunities for students to make a meaningful contribution to live projects, but recognising that they are likely to be new to the world of work and so need to be involved in lower risk or less critical projects and processes
- allow learning and contribution without being an added burden for their supervisors, or slowing down overall projects or business processes
It is likely that the projects and activities listed in the above examples will require that the student has support and supervision. We encourage you to think about placement opportunities that work for a student and your organisation.
You can use the Planning the content of an industry placement article to:
- structure industry placement projects and activities
- provide meaningful experience for the student
- deliver tangible benefits for your organisation
Skills Hub preparation
Students may spend up to the first 105 hours of their industry placement in an approved skills hub (such as the CITB’s) or employer training centre. This allows them to gain practical skills relevant to their industry placement and hit the ground running when entering the real workplace. It means that they can be a valuable resource to your organisation from the start of their placement with you.
Commercial, charitable and community projects
Students studying construction T Levels can work in small teams alongside an external construction employer / industry professional(s) for 105 hours to plan and implement a project that develops students’ construction skills
If you're interested in offering an industry placement, get in touch with T Level providers near you.