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The construction trade is a reference to a range of vocations that involve building, modifying, repairing, or demolishing various structures, systems, or projects.

A career in the construction trades can offer steady employment, a good salary, and a variety of opportunities for professional development. Most construction jobs don't require a college degree, making these fields accessible to people who are unable to complete a degree program. Construction companies often offer new hires the opportunity to work as an apprentice or participate in training programs in order to develop the necessary skills to become proficient in the trade.

Workers involved in the construction trades require hands-on experience, although some construction trades also require higher education and degree programs.

Although some construction trades can be accomplished by a single individual, most involve working with a team of people involved in the same trade or collaborating with those from other construction trades to complete a project.

Commonly, construction refers to the process of designing, planning, building, maintaining, repairing, modifying, and expanding buildings, industrial facilities, and infrastructure, as well as their eventual decommissioning, dismantling, or demolishing.

There are three broad sectors of construction: buildings, infrastructure, and industrial. Building construction is subdivided into residential and non-residential, while infrastructure (civil engineering) includes bridges, highways, railways, public works, water or wastewater, and utility distribution. Industrial construction includes offshore construction, such as energy installations, as well as mining, quarrying, refineries, chemical processing, power generation, mills, and manufacturing plants.

The Standard Industrial Classification and the North American Industry Classification System both classify companies that engage in construction by three subsectors: building construction, heavy and civil engineering construction, and specialty trade contractors.

There are also categories for professional services firms, such as architecture, engineering, project management, and surveying, which are generally included among the construction trades.

The list of construction trades is a long one, as a lot of people, with a variety of skills, come together to put up a bridge, a building, or an industrial plant, and to maintain them.

Some of the more common are carpenters, cabinet makers, framers, joiners, and drywall installers, as well as electricians, fencers, glaziers, heavy equipment operators, and HVAC technicians. Then, there are boilermakers, carpet installers, cement and concrete finishers, electricians, fencers, glaziers, insulation workers, ironworkers, laborers, landscapers, linemen, masons, millwrights, painters, pile drivers, pipefitters, plasterers, plumbers, roofers, sheet metal workers, steel fixers, steelworkers, and welders.

Among the construction trades, there is generally an apprenticeship period that may last from two to five years, after which a tradesperson progresses through the ranks, which may include pre-apprentice, apprentice, and journeyman. Depending on the trade and the country, more experienced tradespeople may achieve status as a master, a leadman, a foreman, or a superintendent.

Some construction trades require a degree, or careers may be enhanced with a degree, particularly at the leadership levels. For example, the Associate of Applied Science in Construction Management is a two-year program designed to train for entry-level positions as a construction project manager, and the Associate of Applied Science in Construction Technology degree can help someone find work in the construction industry or prepare construction workers for promotions. The Bachelor of Science in Construction Management degree is sometimes required for higher-level management positions or to provide the opportunity to specialize in various areas, such as residential or commercial construction. Degrees indicating higher levels of education in the construction trades include the Master of Science in Construction Management and the Doctor of Philosophy in Construction Management

Sometimes considered outside of the trades, but certainly related, is the architectural profession. While the professional requirements for architects vary from country to country, it usually consists of a university degree, a period of internship, and an examination for registration within a jurisdiction. Historically, however, architects carried the title of Master Builder.

Architects plan, design, and oversee the construction of buildings. In most developed nations, the practice of architecture is restricted to those who are qualified with an appropriate license, certification, or registration with a government or relevant body.






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