2 years part time
Delivery mode:
Face to Face
Start date:
3 January 2022
Application due dates:
Applications for this course are currently being accepted.


Gain the knowledge and skills to become a licensed plumber with a Certificate IV in Plumbing and Services CPC40912 at Victoria University Polytechnic.

This course is designed for registered plumbers and final-year apprentices looking to extend their technical skills and knowledge. You’ll be prepared to gain your plumbing licence with the Victoria Building Authority (VBA), subject to passing the VBA exam.

Through classroom teaching and work-based tasks, you’ll be equipped to manage and design plumbing projects. This course includes studies in:

  • drainage systems – roof, sanitary and stormwater
  • water supply
  • gas installations
  • mechanical services
  • reading plans and specifications
  • estimating work costs.

You’ll graduate with a nationally-recognised qualification, ready to operate as a contractor plumber or to start your own plumbing business.

Free TAFE - apply now

Eligible students currently won’t pay tuition fees for this course.

Free TAFE courses align with skills and jobs that are in high demand from Victorian employers.

Find out more about Free TAFE.

You will learn in our workplace-simulated workshops, where you will be exposed to all aspects of plumbing. Our workshops have dedicated areas that relate to specific streams of plumbing.

Our training infrastructure includes:

  • oxy/acetylene welding stations throughout the facility
  • 15 arc welding bays
  • 25x10 metre sand pit to allow for real in ground installation of plumbing pipes and fittings
  • backflow and thermostatic mixing valve lab
  • a realistic 6 unit structure, to complete real plumbing fixture installations as you would in the workplace once you’re employed
  • dedicated gas, roofing and mechanical plumbing workshops.

Everything you learn at Victoria University Polytechnic has direct links to the real world. You’ll learn practical skills on special purpose machinery at our Construction Hub, giving you the chance to test out your theoretical knowledge. Learning with us means you’ll get the hands-on learning to be job-ready when you graduate.

You’ll learn from teachers who have valuable industry contacts and the latest industry-standard skills. You’ll also develop links with industry and professional experience through:

  • industry projects
  • live work
  • site visits. 

VU’s Learning Hubs are welcoming spaces where you can improve your study and employability skills.

Our students can attend Learning Hubs at one of five VU campuses.

We offer maths, writing, careers and English-language advice, and show you effective ways to study and manage your time.

Our programs include:

  • workshops
  • drop-in sessions
  • peer mentoring
  • maths and writing resources
  • resume and career guidance.

We also have accessibility support services and counselling services available for all students.

Need some advice?

Request a call back from one of our experienced Victoria University Polytechnic course advisers to get your questions answered.

Request a call back

TAFE resources

Careers in plumbing

The plumbing services industry provides licensed plumbing and drainage services including installing and repairing water supply, sewer lines, septic tanks, drainage and gas systems. Plumbers mostly work in small businesses.

This trade certificate will allow you to move into positions of responsibility in the plumbing services industry. Subject to passing the VBA licensing exam, you will be eligible to work as a licensed plumber, able to supervise registered plumbers.

You may find employment as a contractor or subcontractor, and work on domestic or commercial building sites. Our graduates find work in roles such as:

  • air conditioning technician
  • team leader/site supervisor
  • business owner/self employed plumber.

Course structure

The course structure comprises the following core and elective units. These electives have been selected based on licensing requirements, industry needs, graduate pathways and/or student and teacher feedback.

To be awarded CPC40912 Certificate IV in Plumbing and Services, a student must successfully complete a total of fifteen (15) units of competency.

The Polytechnic offers the following stream: 

  • Plumbing and services - Operations stream.

Plumbing and services - Operations stream:

twelve (12) core units, comprising of:

  • four (4) common core units, and;
  • eight (8) Plumbing and services - Operations stream core units;

three (3) electives, ensuring that any licensing requirements are addressed of which:

  • up to three (3) units may be selected from the list of elective units in the Plumbing and services – Operations stream;
  • two (2) of the three (3) units may be selected from a Certificate IV qualification in another endorsed training package or from the core or elective units of another stream within the Certificate IV in Plumbing and Services, ensuring both the integrity of the AQF alignment and the industry context of the qualification are maintained;
  • one (1) of the three (3) units may be drawn from Certificate III or Diploma Plumbing and Services qualifications, and;
  • no more than three (3) units may be selected from the list of elective units common to all streams.

Electives must be industry relevant as well as be approved by the Polytechnic.

VU Polytechnic delivers the electives listed in the ‘course structure and units’ below. These electives have been selected based on industry needs, graduate pathways and/or student and teacher feedback. Alternative suitable electives are only available via Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer (CT).

Core units


Plumbing and services - Operations stream


Plumbing and services - Operations stream

Recognition of Prior Learning and/or Credit Transfers

Previous completion of units at the Polytechnic or any other Registered Training Organisation and/or previous attainment of skills and knowledge may be credited towards this course. Units must satisfy the completion rules of the qualification and be assessed as appropriate by the Polytechnic.

This qualification provides an outcome for specialist plumbing services tradespersons and operators seeking to deepen their technical skills.

Fees & scholarships

Fee type for this course: VET

Fee type definitions

The amount you pay for your course depends on whether you’re offered a government subsidised place or a full fee-paying place.

Students who enrol in a:

  • government subsidised place pay subsidised tuition fees (the government contributes the rest), and may be required to pay a Student Services and Amenities Fee along with any material fees
  • full fee-paying place pay the full fee tuition rate (which includes Student Services and Amenities Fee and any material fees).

Calculate your VET course fees.

Find out more about:

Scholarships & assistance

Apply for a scholarship to help with your study costs.

We can help with fee assistance and advice.

Admission & pathways

Meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee you entry into this course. Some courses receive more applications than the number of places available. In this situation we will also assess your education, work and other relevant experience.

If you do not meet the minimum requirements you may be eligible for one of our special admission programs.

Find out more about how to apply for our courses, and our commitment to admissions transparency.

Entry requirements

Applicants must have successfully completed the Certificate III in Plumbing or equivalent.
As part of the application process, applicants must complete a Pre-training Review (PTR) and undertake a literacy and numeracy (LN) assessment to determine suitability for admission and to identify support needs.

There are many ways you can start your education journey at VU. Pathways offer an easy transition between courses at different levels, so that you can start with a certificate and progress right through to postgraduate study.

Find out more about pathways and credits.

You may be able to complete your qualification sooner through formal recognition of your existing skills. This is known as Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

To receive RPL, we assess your previous work, education and life experiences against recognised qualifications. Applications for RPL can be made prior to enrolling.

Call us on 1300 TAFE VP (1300 823 387) to discuss RPL options with the course manager.

How to apply

Prior to enrolment, all applicants will be required to complete a literacy and numeracy assessment to assist with determining eligibility and to identify learning support needs.

Before you apply

Before starting your application, please read through the step-by-step VU Polytechnic application process to make sure you have all the necessary documents and information ready to successfully complete your application.

Before applying, you should consider whether you also want to apply for:

Apply direct to VU

Apply direct to VU using our admission centre, submit applications for one or more courses, track and save your progress and upload additional information.

Apply direct to VU

Already a VU student?

If you are already a VU student, apply direct to VU using our Admissions centre to transfer into this course. Remember it’s best to be accepted into your new course before withdrawing from your current one.

After you apply

  • It’s important to check for emails from us (which may go to your spam/junk folder).
  • Complete any requests for information by the given dates, otherwise your application may not be considered

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Please note that if changes to this course occur, VU will notify students as soon as possible.

At Victoria University, we aim to display accurate and complete course information online. However, we are unable to guarantee that every course change is currently displayed. You may contact the University directly on +61 3 9919 6100 to confirm the most up-to-date course fees, pathways and credit transfer, recognition of prior learning, admission and enrolment procedures, examinations and services available to our students.