South Devon College

Inspiring our community through learning for all

Contact us on: 08000 380123

Painting and Decorating

Studying Painting and Decorating at South Devon College is the perfect way to learn the skills that will open up not only this varied trade, but also a number of creative fields. Whether you want to become a skilled painter and decorator, or you want to branch out into set design or shop fitting, our courses will help you achieve your goals.

Working in painting and decorating can lead to a range of different and challenging work environments; you only need to consider the variety of properties in Torbay, not only with residential housing but with historical and protected buildings too, to realise how valuable a detailed knowledge of this trade can become. During your studies, you will learn the techniques that will shape you into a skilled professional, learning from our dedicated staff who have years of industry experience.

In the classroom, you will discover how building processes work, from design through to completion, before applying your knowledge in a practical setting. As you enhance your skills you will have the opportunity to incorporate your own creative ideas into your training, and also be given the opportunity to participate in competitions and community projects to support your learning and provide valuable experience that employers will look for.

Whether you want to be a successful tradesperson, a set designer, work on a building site or even become a foreman, the opportunities are there for you at South Devon College!


Why South Devon College?

South Devon College is an outstanding place to learn, and the perfect place for your education and development. In 2014, we were delighted to be recognised as the top Further Education and Tertiary College in England, in results published by the Skills Funding Agency for 2012-13. We were also graded as 'Outstanding' in our most recent Ofsted inspection.

We are proud to promote a culture of success within the College, with fantastic results across the entirety of our provision. With an exceptional learning environment and our inspirational teaching team, we know that together, you will enjoy the same success in your studies and achieve your goals, whatever they may be.

Personalised Learning Programmes

Every student at South Devon College has a Personalised Learning Programme; a custom plan tailored to you as an individual that ensures you gain the academic, vocational and employability skills necessary to achieve your goals and find employment upon the completion of your studies.


Gemma Harvey: Painting and Decorating student

I began at South Devon College by studying functional skills in English and maths. This gave me the foundation to progress to the Painting and Decorating Level 1 Diploma, and I'm now advancing the Level 2 programme. It's been great to progress through the levels and I'm learning new skills all the time, and am looking forward to my career in this industry.


Steve Orme: Painting and Decorating lecturer

I'm a past student from the College, gaining my own qualifications many years ago. I was able to use those skills and enter the industry, enjoying a successful career. Painting and Decorating is a real passion for me, and nothing beats passing on that enthusiasm and dedication to our learners. Seeing them achieve their qualifications and their goals before successful and confidently progressing into the industry, like I did myself, always fills me with pride, and it's always a joy to see a new cohort of learners ready to start their journey in this career.

We have 3 fulltime courses in Painting and Decorating:

Painting and Decorating - Level 1 Diploma

The facilities here at South Devon College Paignton and Newton Abbot Campus are fully equipped to introduce you to the world of Painting and Decorating and enable you to achieve your goals. During your studies at South Devon College Paignton or Newton Abbot Campus you will develop your skills and gain an understanding of the materials and techniques used within the industry. You will also gain valuable work experience within the industry through community projects and off-site activities. These may include visits to trade shows and other events.

What will I learn?

  • Health, safety and wealfare in construction
  • Construction technology
  • Technical information, quantities and communication with others
  • Access equipment
  • Preparing surfaces
  • Applying paint by roller and brush
  • Applying wallpapers
  • Producing decorative finishes
Painting and Decorating Level 1 Diploma

Entry Requirements

  • You should have a genuine interest in this subject

Locations available

  • Paignton Campus
  • Newton Abbot Campus

Painting and Decorating - Level 2 Diploma

The Painting and Decorating Level 2 Diploma is a great way of developing your existing knowledge, furthering your practical skills and understanding of the construction industry. You will begin using more advanced techniques and equipment, gaining experience with HVLP spray equipment and experimenting with modern and traditional methods, to give you a deeper understanding of this trade. Upon completion, you will have the skills that prepare you well for an apprenticeship or employment, or you could further your studies by progressing to the Level 3 Diploma.

What will I learn?

  • Health, safety and wealfare in construction
  • Construction technology
  • Technical information, quantities and communication with others
  • Access equipment
  • Preparing surfaces
  • Applying paint by roller and brush
  • Applying wallpapers
  • Producing decorative finishes
  • Applying paint with HVLP spray equipment
Painting and Decorating Level 2 Diploma

Entry Requirements

  • You must have completed an appropriate vocational qualification at Level 1
  • You should have a genuine interest in this subject

Locations available

  • Paignton Campus
  • Newton Abbot Campus

Painting and Decorating - Level 3 Diploma

This is the ideal course for someone who has completed a related Level 2 qualification and wants to develop the advanced skills that will help them excel and work to a very high standard in this industry. You will have the chance to participate in various projects that enable you to gain relevant, vocational experience that employers will look for, whilst allowing you to work on a meaningful and rewarding project. Upon completion of this course, you will be well equipped to gain employment in the industry, or could potentially consider progression to a Higher National Certificate in Construction.

What will I learn?

  • Health, safety and wealfare in construction
  • Preparing surfaces
  • Applying various coatings by roller and brush
  • Applying wall coverings to ceilings and walls
  • Producing advanced decorative finishes
  • Architectural feature work
  • Using airless spray equipment
Painting and Decorating Level 3 Diploma

Entry Requirements

  • You will be required to have achieved Maths at Level 1
  • You will be required to have achieved English at Level 1
  • You must have completed an appropriate vocational qualification at Level 2
  • You should have a genuine interest in this subject

Locations available

  • Paignton Campus

Apprenticeships with South Devon College

Could an Apprenticeship be the right path for you?

South Devon College is a leading provider of apprenticeships, offering nearly 40 different types of apprenticeships and we work with over 1000 apprentices and 500 employers a year. Our apprenticeship are the perfect option for you if you want to study towards a qualification and increase your employability whilst getting paid.

By working in your chosen trade or sector, you'll be developing vocational experience that employers look for and putting the skills you learn at the College into practice, giving you the ideal preparation for starting a career.

We offer a wide variety of apprenticeship frameworks, working at a range of levels across different industries and job roles, so we are confident that we can find the right course to help you achieve your goals. To find out more about South Devon College's apprenticeship programmes, click here:


My future with South Devon College

Careers: I want to be...

Our courses at South Devon College have been designed to provide you with the skills and knowledge employers seek, enabling you to find employment and take the first steps towards a successful career. Our Painting and Decorating courses will help you gain employment in the following industries:

Work with my hands

If you want to work with your hands, outside of an office and getting involved in the thick of the action, then we have the course for you. Whether you want to build, create or change, our courses will lead to a rewarding career as:


Energy Expert
Marine Engineer
Police Officer
Set Designer