Everything you need to know about becoming a construction apprentice


Once you've applied for an apprenticeship you'll be assessed and given the opportunity to talk to CITB-ConstructionSkills staff about different parts of the industry to see what's suitable for you.

What is the Skills Learning Exercise (SLE)?

As part of the CITB-ConstructionSkills apprenticeship selection process, you will be invited to complete a Skills Learning Exercise, either Online or in a classroom-style assessment. This gives you the chance to show you are capable of completing your chosen apprenticeship.

The exercise consists of questions that are relevant to construction and are based upon building plans. They will assess your spatial awareness and numeracy. You will need to pass the exercise to be accepted as an apprentice. If you don't pass, you are allowed one re-sit - in any one year.

In order to prepare for the exercise you can use our practice test website or you can download a practice test booklet. Both of these will:

  • show you the sort of things you will need to learn to complete the exercise
  • give examples of the types questions you will have to answer
  • gives hints on how to tackle the exercise

Learning Difficulties

If you have learning difficulties, and have a current Statement of Special Educational Needs or Additional Learning Needs, we can provide support during the exercise.

You will have to provide CITB-ConstructionSkills with the relevant documentary evidence in order to receive the support you require.

Key Skills/Essential Skills

Key skills (or Essential skills) are an important part of the apprenticeship framework.  If you want to improve your  reading, writing or maths, there will be plenty of help available.

There are also lots of ways to improve your computer skills - whether you are a complete beginner, or you want to build on what you know already.

Make sure you have done everything to stand out from the crowd, provide all the information for your application and prepare well for interviews.

Take a look at the information provided for applicants.