Study refrigeration and air conditioning
QualificationNew Zealand Certificate in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (Trades Assistant) (Level 3)Programme code: NZ2365
International feesNot available to international students
Do you want to shorten your apprenticeship in refrigeration and air conditioning?
You could find yourself installing an air conditioning system in an office building one day and then fixing a commercial freezer on a fishing boat the next.
Learn the practical skills you need to become a refrigeration and air conditioning technician. If you don't already have an apprenticeship, study this programme to cut your apprenticeship off-the-job learning by up to a year.
At MIT our refrigeration and air conditioning facilities include a coolroom and up-to-date testing equipment.
Aspects of this programme are physically demanding, please talk with an Ask Me! agent if you face fitness or mobility challenges.
Please note: A small component of this programme is delivered by a sub-contractor.
You may be required to complete literacy and numeracy assessments as part of this programme.
Open entry for domestic students
There are no academic requirements that need to be met to enter this programme.
English language entry requirements
You will need English language competence to undertake this programme which is taught and assessed in English (an assessment may be required if your first language is not English).
Give yourself credit with Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)
Did you know you can use the knowledge and experience you already have to your advantage?
Your previous work experience and on-the-job skills, volunteering, professional development, and other providers’ qualifications can be recognised as prior learning, matched against credits in our courses, and put towards your qualification – potentially saving you money and possibly helping you to complete your qualification faster Learn more.
You will need to complete the below seven courses (120 credits):
251.201 Core Engineering Practical and Safety (15 credits)
Select, use, and care for, engineering hand and power tools, demonstrate knowledge of fasteners used in mechanical engineering, shift loads in engineering installation, maintenance, and fabrication work, and apply safe working practices on an engineering work site. Demonstrate knowledge of workplace health and safety requirements. Demonstrate knowledge of common first aid conditions and how to respond to them and provide first aid for life threatening conditions
253.227 Electrical Theory Electromotive Force and Magnetism (15 credits)
Explain the properties of conductors, insulators, and semiconductors and their effect on electrical circuits and demonstrate knowledge of electromotive force and electromagnetism theory
251.305 Core Engineering Calculations Materials and Engineering Drawing (15 credits)
Demonstrate knowledge of mathematics and mechanics, interpret heating, ventilating and air conditioning drawings. Demonstrate knowledge of common engineering materials and metals. Demonstrate knowledge of safety on engineering work sites.
253.348 Refrigeration Principles and Operations (30 credits)
Demonstrate knowledge of ozone depletion, global warming, and refrigeration and air conditioning principles and applications. Assemble commercial refrigeration and air conditioning system components
253.349 Refrigeration Assembly and Site Safe (15 credits)
Fabricate and assemble commercial refrigeration and air conditioning system, and complete a site safe
253.350 Electrical Safety and Electrical Appliance Servicing (15 credits)
Demonstrate knowledge and practical skills required for Electrical Service Technicians – Demonstrate knowledge of electrical safety and safe working practices, isolate and test low-voltage electrical sub circuits, and test instruments and take measurements
254.361 Welding for Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (15 credits)
Demonstrate and apply knowledge of safe welding procedures, Prepare and purge braze piping for refrigeration and air conditioning and join metals using the torch brazing and soldering processes.
Do you want to study a single course, without enrolling into the full programme?
Courses within some of our programmes may be offered as an individual Certificate of Proficiency (COP). Programme entry requirements and course fees apply. For more information, please speak to our friendly Ask Me! team.
Further training or study
Ongoing study is offered and managed through the relevant ITO (Industry Training Organisation). You will need to be employed in your trade to complete Level 4 apprenticeship training. Contact us to find out more about which ITO can support you with your ongoing study.
Refrigeration engineer, trades assistant, or an apprentice refrigeration and air conditioning technician.
For potential salaries visit careers.govt.nz.
“I chose to study because I'd had enough of my administration job, the government was offering free trade training and the trade campus had just opened up which is a 10-minute drive from my house. Initially, I was looking at bricklaying because I was yearning to have a job out of the office and in the sun, but when I looked through all the trade courses refrigeration seemed more like my cuppa tea (I have not regretted my choice).
MIT is one of the few places in the country that offer pre-trade refrigeration/HVAC courses. I liked that it was close to home, Auckland traffic is horrible so being by the train station and bus depot is useful. My lecturer was diligent in finding employment for the entire class which isn’t something that you see in other universities/education providers as the emphasis is usually on you to develop your own networks with potential employers.
A pre-trade is your opportunity to be curious and do a deep dive into the industry without having to commit yourself to an employer. Refrigeration/HVAC is so multifaceted that if halfway through you realise that it might not be the path for you, you have a range of other areas to segway into.
Everything you learn in pre-trade is important to the role. This isn’t the kind of job where you can be given 1 week's training and be expected to hit the ground running, there is a lot to learn!
When you have a pre-trade you are more likely to be hired in your chosen field because it shows employers that you’ve invested your own time into learning more about the industry.
As a mature student, I already have several qualifications and a colourful 15-year career behind me, so I’ve learnt not to plan too far ahead as you never know what’s around the bend, especially after COVID. Looking at my apprenticeship path I should be finished in 4 years but beyond that, the sky is the limit with where an apprenticeship could take me.
Utilise the resources available to you and if you’re not sure seek out advice. The tutors here are usually flexible, and with the online canvas platform there is more capability to complete assignments and study from home if you need to continue working.”
MIT TechPark is an award-winning centre of excellence for engineering and trades.
Having won a Learning Environments Australasia Awards which recognises planning, design and construction of educational facilities throughout the region, our state-of-the-art campus is the home of our engineering and trades school. Coupling stunning architectural learning spaces with a myriad of high-tech facilities for our students, it's easy to see why it's been given such high praises.
Our TechPark building is situated on the corner of Lambie Drive and Manukau Station Road. It is across the road from the existing MIT Manukau campus, currently home to the schools of nursing, health and counselling, business, and digital technologies.
“I got a job in my chosen field before I even finished my course at MIT. Our teachers created a good learning environment, classes were always interesting and we were well prepared for the workplace. I also made great friends during my studies.
I got a job in my chosen field before I even finished my course at MIT. As an apprentice, my job involves working with fully qualified technicians to help install service air conditioning units in big industrial buildings.
High school wasn’t the right fit for me so I started the MIT Trades Academy and became full-time halfway through my final year of school.
Studying for a New Zealand Certificate in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning was a great choice. Our teachers created a good learning environment, classes were always interesting and we were well prepared for the workplace. I also made great friends during my studies. Now I’m working in a job I love, with supportive colleagues and no two days are the same.”
“When I'm not studying I work two days a week at a refrigeration company so I'm getting a good balance of the practical and the theory. I'm hoping to jump straight into an apprenticeship after this and the things I'm learning here at MIT will help me get ahead in my apprenticeship.
I chose MIT because I thought it was the best fit for me coming from a high school that didn't focus much on the practical work I wanted to slowly build into the practical side of things instead of jumping straight into the trade.”
Free study for the first year of your Level 3 or above qualification may be available under the government’s fees-free study scheme. Visit feesfree.govt.nz for eligibility criteria and more information. Students must be eligible to study as a domestic student. Free study for Level 3 may be available for 16 to 24 year olds (Youth Guarantee). Free study for up to one year for Levels 3 and 4 may be available under Māori and Pasifika Trades Training (MPTT), a government-led training initiative to encourage young Māori and Pasifika people to gain trade qualifications. All free study is subject to funding confirmation. Proof of residency status required. Entry criteria, and some costs, may also apply. Eligibility for student allowances or student loans may vary. Contact StudyLink for more information.
Information is correct as at 29 November 2023. Programme fees are based on a full-time student and may vary depending on your final selection of courses that make up your programme. To provide you with an indication of costs, the approximate fees quoted in this publication are based on the indicative 2024 fee structure. The indicative programme fees for 2024 do not include the Compulsory Student Services Fee (CSSF). The CSSF is an additional levy to your 2024 programme or course fees. Further information about the CSSF can be found here www.manukau.ac.nz/cssf. Programmes stated as eligible for free study in 2024 are based on the 2023 fee structure and subject to funding confirmation for 2024. All fees are in New Zealand Dollars. You will be advised of the current fees at the time of enrolment. All courses and programmes will proceed subject to numbers and academic approval. Manukau Institute of Technology is part of Te Pūkenga – New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology. Te Pūkenga is accredited under the provisions of the Education and Training Act 2020. International students must study in class and will not be able to enrol for online study options.