What is an artisan?

An artisan is a skilled worker, technician or craftsman that has passed the relevant trade test.

What is a trade test?

A trade test is a final assessment that evaluates your overall competence and skill in a trade. The test is conducted by an assessor registered with the National Artisan Moderation Body (NAMB) at a Trade Test Centre accredited by a relevant SETA and the Quality Council for Trade and Occupations. The trade test includes practical tasks that you must complete within a specified time determined, once you have completed and passed the test you will be given a certificate that recognises you as a qualified Artisan in your chosen trade.

What are the requirements for writing the trade test and where can you apply?

To qualify for the trades test you will need to have successfully completed all practical training modules of the trade programme at an accredited training provider and at least 12 months of relevant work experience. In addition, you will need to have:

  1. N2 certificate which includes a module in trade theory; OR

  2. NC (V) at NQF Level 3; OR

  3. Technical Grade 11 with trade-related theory subjects; OR

  4. Relevant N6 certificate or National Technical Diploma

In order to apply for the trade test you can either: submit your application form to the relevant Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA). Your application will be reviewed to make sure that you meet the requirements criteria and that all evidence and documents needed to process your application have been submitted. Once your application has been approved, it is forwarded to a Trade Test Centre close to you. The Trade Test Centre will send you a notice that your application has been approved and the date of your test.

You can also book your trade test online at the National Artisan Development Support Centre (NADSC) at http://nadsc.dhet.gov.za/

Some Trade Test Centres offer pre-trade test training to help you prepare for the test. You will need to find out from the Centre you are registered to do the trade test whether they offer this pre-training.

How much does it cost to write a trade test?

The cost of a trade test depends on which trade test centre you write the test. Because government subsidises trade tests conducted at INDLELA in Olifantsfontein near Pretoria, the cost of the test will be much cheaper and will range between R250 and R450 depending on which trade you are writing the test in. At private trade test centres, the cost is more and ranges from R1500 to R3000 depending on the trade you write the test. For a list of all Trade Test Centres in each province, check the NAMB website http://nadsc.dhet.gov.za/site/NAMB.aspx

What is a Red Seal qualification?

A Red Seal qualification is your certificate of qualification. Once you have written and passed the trade test you will be certified as an artisan and will receive a certificate from the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO) that has a Red Seal on it. The Red Seal means you have completed your apprenticeship of at least four years and have received the proper training to operate in equipment in your trade.

Read more about NATED programmes.