Typical job roles

Working with metals to create high-strength welds in 2 welding positions, using at least 1 arc welding process.

Welding is a way to make high strength joints between two or more parts. General Welders use high electrical energy to form an arc. Manual dexterity is essential in controlling the arc, which is used to melt metals, allowing them to fuse together to form a structurally sound weld.

Welding is used extensively and in almost every sector of industry. There is a high demand for skilled General Welders in areas such as: automotive, marine, transport, general fabrication, construction and many more. General Welders produce items like components for cars; ships; rail vehicles; simple metallic containers; and steelwork for bridges, buildings and gantries. Welding is a safety-critical occupation and every welder takes responsibility for the quality and accuracy of their work. General Welders are required to produce joints that satisfy basic quality standards in order to ensure that the finished products function correctly, contributing to the safety of all and the global quality of life.

More Information


Typical Tasks

  • Produce good quality welds using two welding process/material type combinations (TIG, MMA, MIG/MAG, FCAW) and (Carbon and Low Alloy steel, High Alloy Ferritic/Martensitic Steel, Austenitic Stainless Steel, Nickel and Nickel Alloys, Aluminium and Aluminium Alloys) in two welding positions (Downhand, Horizontal, Vertical, Overhead).
  • Attain a qualification in accordance with one of the following standards: ISO 9606 / ASME IX / BS4872 / AWS D1.1, determined by the employer. N.B. These qualifications are regarded as licences to practice in welding.
  • Achieve quality of work to meet international standards for dimensional and surface inspection (Visual, Magnetic)
  • Particle Inspection and Dye Penetrant Inspection.
  • Position, prepare and check the welding equipment.
  • Receive, handle and maintain consumables
  • Prepare, check and protect materials and work area ready for welding.
  • Complete and check the finished weld ready for inspection and report into the production control system.
    Ensure that health and safety requirements are fully accounted for in all the above.

Entry criteria

4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) including English and Math’s for a Level 3 Apprenticeship Standard


Typical duration

18 months


Career/progression opportunities

There are numerous pathways for General Welders who may wish to pursue higher level careers in welding. These include progression to Multi-Positional Welder, High Integrity Welder or Welding Instruction and Teaching, Welding Inspection and Managing and Supervising Welding Operations.


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