Building and Construction TradesThe Building and Construction Trades (BCT) Industry Sector Program provides resources that equip students with the knowledge, skills, and competencies that prepare them for postsecondary education and/or career entry into various careers in the BCT.
The Building and Construction Trades (BCT) Industry Sector is a California Department of Education (CDE) program designed to identify and develop model curriculum standards, instructional resources, and assessment strategies for teachers, guidance personnel, curriculum planners, and administrators. Leadership in the BCT sector is fostered through partnerships with a variety of building and construction business and industry partners along with key representatives from the CDE, California Community Colleges, California State Universities, and the University of California.
The program provides tools, resources, strategies, activities, and model curriculum standards to ensure that students are offered relevant and challenging academic and career-related experiences. Through on-going implementation of high quality, standards-based programs, students may access a wide range of sequential courses of study developing skills in various BCT career pathways, as well as a focused, in-depth study of specific BCT careers.
The BCT program provides a foundation in the Building and Construction Trades industry for secondary students in California. Students engage in instructional programs that integrate academic and technical preparation and focus on career awareness, career exploration, and skill preparation in the BCT industry.
The sector encompasses four career pathways: Cabinetry, Millwork, and Woodworking; Engineering and Heavy Construction; Mechanical Systems Installation and Repair; and Residential and Commercial Construction. These pathways emphasize processes, systems, and the way in which structures are designed and built. Students acquire knowledge and skills in a sequential, standards-based pathway program that integrates hands-on, project-based, and work-based instruction. Curriculum standards included in the BCT sector are designed to prepare students for technical training, postsecondary education, and entry to a career.
The Cabinetry, Millwork, and Woodworking pathway provides learning opportunities for students interested in preparing for careers in cabinet construction, millwork, finish carpentry, and furniture making for both production and custom products. Careers associated with this pathway include, but are not limited to: Cabinetmaker, Cabinet Installer, Woodworking Machinery Operator, Custom Millwork Project Estimator, and Woodworking Engineer/Drafter (CAD). Students may also earn industry relevant certifications.
The Engineering and Heavy Construction pathway provides learning opportunities for students interested in preparing for careers in engineering and heavy industrial construction. Careers associated with this pathway include, but are not limited to: Cement Mason, Heavy Equipment Operator, Iron Worker, Welder, and Civil Engineer. Industry certifications students can earn include, but are not limited to, a California Class A driver’s license.
The Mechanical Systems Installation and Repair pathway provides students with the fundamental competencies necessary for employment or advanced training in heating, ventilation, air-conditioning (HVAC) and appliance installation, maintenance, and repair. Careers associated with this pathway include, but are not limited to: HVAC Installation and Maintenance Specialist, Plumbing Installer, Sheet Metal Fabricator, Mechanical Engineer/Technician, and Mechanical Construction Field Manager. The pathway includes preparation for a Class C California HVAC License and an Environmental Protection Agency certification.
The Residential and Commercial Construction pathway provides learning opportunities for students interested in preparing for careers in construction and building design, performance, and sustainability. The curriculum standards focus on the manner in which residential and commercial structures are designed and built. Careers associated with this pathway include, but are not limited to: Plumber, Electrician, Building Inspector, Estimator, and Carpenter. Students may also earn industry relevant certifications.
Building and Construction Trades Industry Sector Program Summary
Building and Construction Trades Industry Sector Pathways
- Cabinetry, Millwork, and Woodworking
- Engineering and Heavy Construction
- Mechanical Systems Installation and Repair
- Residential and Commercial Construction
- Career Technical Education Model Curriculum Standard: Building and Construction Trades (PDF; 2MB)
- Career Technical Education Framework, 2007 Edition (PDF; 4MB)
- CA Partnership Academies
The academy model is a three-year program, grades ten through twelve, structured as a school-within-a-school. Academies incorporate integrated academic and career technical education, business partnerships, mentoring, and internships.
Since 1965 SkillsUSA has provided leadership training to students and instructors in the career technical education (CTE) arena. SkillsUSA is a partnership of students, teachers, and industry working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce by providing educational programs, events, and competitions that support CTE in the nation's classrooms.
- Additional Resources
A list of additional resources for building and construction trades industries.
Robert Wilson, Education Programs Consultant
Technical Education Leadership Office
Career and College Transition Division
California Department of California
1430 N Street, Suite 4202
Sacramento, CA 95814