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Key details


2 year/s

This program is delivered over a period of 24 to 48 months. The length of time to complete this qualification will depend on the location, study mode and selected units.



Casuarina, Regional, Remote
Not available to international students.

Course code



This qualification reflects the role of individuals working as skilled operators with civil construction plant, who apply a broad range of skills in varied work contexts, using some discretion and judgement and relevant theoretical knowledge.

These individuals may provide theoretical advice and support a team.

Career opportunities

Occupations relevant to this qualification in industry sectors such as Civil Construction include:
>Plant Operator
>Construction worker
>Skilled Operator

Credit transfers and advanced standing

Skill recognition

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

RPL is the acknowledgement of a person's skills and knowledge acquired through previous training, work or life experience, which may be used to grant status or credit in a subject regardless of how and where they were attained, including overseas.This can include skills from:

  • Previous study excluding courses at another VET/TAFE institution, but including courses at school or college, through adult education classes or training programs at work;
  • Work experience (including both work that is paid and unpaid); and/or
  • Life experience (for example leisure pursuits or voluntary work).

RPL is a form of assessment. It is used to determine whether a person has acquired, through formal or informal learning, the skills and experience consistent with the stated competency standards that comprise a qualification. RPL is not time referenced, so there are no parameters on how or when the skills are acquired. However, the skills that have been acquired through life experience etc., must be current and must match the elements and performance criteria contained in the individual unit.

Students seeking RPL need to indicate this on their enrolment form at the time of enrolment.

For further information please refer to the Applicant's Guide to the Recognition of Prior Learning or contact Student Central on 1800 061 963 (free call) or email

Credit Transfer

Charles Darwin University as a Registered Training Organisation recognises the Australian Qualifications Framework qualifications and Statement of Attainments issued by any other Australian Registered Training Organisation.

Students are encouraged to submit any requests for credit from previous studies at the time of enrolment, to ensure they are not enrolling in units they may not need to undertake.

In order to apply for exemption/credit transfer from units completed at another training organisation, you will need to complete an Application for Exemption Form available from any campus, centre, or team, or a copy of the form can be obtained from the web.

Your completed Application for Exemption form together with attached documentary evidence (certified copy of Qualification/Statement of Attainment) to support your request for exemption/credit transfer should be submitted directly to the University either in person or by mail. Requests without documentary evidence will not be processed and will be returned to students. There are no fees attached to Credit Transfers.


VET to Higher Education Pathway Mapping for completed Awards in the same field or discipline.

Further training pathways from this qualification include but are not limited to Certificate IV qualifications within the RII Resource and Infrastructure Training Package.


2023 course fee for students who are eligible for an NT Government supported place range from $1,995.00 - $2,835.00, and for students who are not eligible range from $11,400.00 - $16,200.00 dependent on the units chosen.

VET fee exempt

Exemptions apply to VET tuition fees for NTG supported courses only.

At the time of enrolment, students in these categories will be exempt from paying tuition fees:

  • Recipient of a Centrelink payment
  • Recipient of a Veteran's Affairs payment
  • Enrolled Secondary Students
  • Permanent residents with refugee or humanitarian status

Certified copy of the evidence must be provided at the time of enrolment.

If your course is delivered in a location that is listed on the NTG’s Location Categories for VET Funded Programs, with remote as the location category you may be eligible for the Remote 2 Location tuition fee exemption.

Delivery allowance for VET funded programs

CDU trades student

Why study trades at CDU?

Whether you're an apprentice, a trainee, or already working in the industry, our trades courses are for you.

Start your career or upskill in a variety of areas from construction and electrotechnology to plumbing and metal trades. Wherever your interest lies, you'll learn from experts with industry-standard technologies and tools so you can graduate workplace ready.

  • NT's largest training provider
  • Access to specialised trade training facilities
  • Recognition of prior learning so you can qualify faster

Why study at CDU?

"Study with the Northern Territory's largest training provider and gain industry-ready skills and experience.

  • Learn from expert lecturers and industry professionals
  • Access to first-class facilities
  • Recognition of prior learning accepted
  • Packages into higher education available for most courses"

What will I study?

To achieve a RII30820 Certificate III in Civil Construction Plant Operations a total of twenty (20) units of competency must be completed comprising fifteen (15) Core and five (5) Elective units as detailed in the packaging rules and listed below. The electives offered may vary between campuses.

Course structure

The training program can be tailored to suit individual cohorts. Exceptions to this program would need to be negotiated by the student and CDU. Selection of all electives must conform to the qualifications packing rules. Individual programs will be considered on a mutually agreed basis.

The total nominal hours for the sequence listed below is 570 - 810.

CodeModule/Unit of CompetencyHours
Core units of competency
RIIBEF201EPlan and organise work20
RIICCM201ECarry out measurements and calculations20
RIICCM202EIdentify, locate and protect underground services30
RIICCM203ERead and interpret plans and job specifications40
RIICCM205FCarry out manual excavation8
RIICCM206ESupport plant operations8
RIICCM207ESpread and compact materials manually12
RIICCM208ECarry out basic levelling16
RIICOM201ECommunicate in the workplace20
RIIRIS301EApply risk management processes40
RIISAM201EHandle resources and infrastructure materials and safely dispose of nontoxic materials16
RIISAM203EUse hand and power tools80
RIISAM204EOperate small plant and equipment20
RIIWHS201EWork safely and follow WHS policies and procedures20
RIIWMG203EDrain and dewater civil construction sites20
 Total nominal hours for core units350
Elective units of competency (Select 5)
Elective Units Group A
RIIMPO318FConduct civil construction skid steer loader operations80
RIIMPO320FConduct civil construction excavator operations200
Elective Units Group B
RIIMPO317FConduct roller operations80
RIIMPO326EConduct water vehicle operations40
RIIVEH304EConduct tip truck operations60
Elective Units Group C
RIIWHS205EControl traffic with stop-slow bat20
Unnamed Electives
RIIWHS302EImplement traffic management plans20
 Total nominal hours for elective units220-460
 Total nominal hours for the qualification570-810


Entry requirements

Admission criteria

CDU Domestic Entry Requirements

There are no formal entry requirements for this qualification. However, students will need to demonstrate an appropriate level of language, literacy and numeracy skills and knowledge to undertake a course at this level.

This qualification is suitable to both Apprentices and Domestic students.

All of my lecturers were top notch former tradies with a solid grasp of what they were teaching. Whatever my issue was, they were always there for me. It was great.


CDU student

Yron VET Trades

Course details


This is a current, nationally accredited qualification from the RII Resources and Infrastructure Industry Training Package.

Employability skills

Employability Skills are embedded in the training and assessment of national training package qualifications. Information on the Employability Skills relevant to your qualification can be obtained by visiting this website and keying in the national code for the qualification:

Location and study mode

Delivery at all locations is subject to sufficient demand and resources.

Locations:Casuarina, Regional, Remote

Study Mode: On campus

Subject to demand other locations and modes may become available throughout the year.

Additional information

Vocational Education & Training
Industry groups
Occupation types
Earthmoving Plant Operator (General)
Area of study
Engineering and Mining, Building and Construction, Engineering

Contact details Phone: 1800 061 963 (free call).

You make CDU

Together we are a positive force for change in our communities and the world.

You make CDU

Our students choose to study with us because we share the same vision – to make a positive change. Whatever your motivation is, we can guide you in the right direction.

How to apply

How to apply for domestic students

CDU TAFE has several pathways for you to apply.


Visit How to apply for CDU TAFE courses for more information.


Admission requirements for domestic students

Before applying, you may want to check if you meet the admission requirements for studying with CDU.


CDU has many pathways to study, so don't worry if you don't meet the admission requirements right now. There is a study pathway to get you started on your journey.

Not sure if you are a domestic or international student?

That's OK - it can be a little tricky to know the difference.


To help you out, we've put together a guide to answer any questions you might have.

How to apply for international students

Applications to CDU must be submitted online.


The process is simple, all you need is a valid email address to create your online account.


Once you have started the application you will have the option of saving your application and resuming it at a later date.


There is no application fee when you apply online.

Find a CDU agent partner

Applicants may seek further information about international education in Australia from the Australian Government Department of Education and Training or from our overseas / external representatives.


To help with the process, we've compile a list of authorised representatives.

Not sure if you are a domestic or international student?

That's OK - it can be a little tricky to know the difference.


To help you out, we've put together a guide to answer any questions you might have.


Things like the difference between domestic and international students or the difference between course types like TAFE and undergraduate.

We’re here to help you

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