Certificate III in Printing and Graphic Arts (Printing)

This qualification applies to individuals working as print machinists in the printing and graphic arts industry. Print machinists typically set up and operate letterpress, lithographic, flexographic, gravure printing presses, digital printers and work on a range of printed products. They prepare material, monitor and run equipment and machinery and apply solutions to a defined range of unpredictable problems. They may also provide leadership and guidance to others with some limited responsibility for the output of others.

Job Roles

Print machinist


Total number of units = 21 units

4 core units plus

11 elective units from Group A plus

of the remaining 6 elective units

Up to 2 elective units from Group A can be substituted with Group C elective units listed below.

1 elective unit must be selected from Group B elective units. The remaining elective units may be selected from Group C elective units.

1 elective unit may be selected from the remaining elective units or from qualifications at the same qualification level or one level higher, in this Training Package or any other endorsed Training Package or accredited course.

Elective units must be relevant to the qualification level, job role, work outcome and industry requirements. Unit selection is by negotiation and mutual agreement between the employee, employer and the RTO and is based on enterprise and individual needs.

Core Units

add topic BSBSUS201A Participate in environmentally sustainable work practices

add topic ICPSU216C Inspect quality against required standards

add topic ICPSU260C Maintain a safe work environment

add topic ICPSU262C Communicate in the workplace

Group A Elective Units

add topic ICPKN312C Apply knowledge of printing machining OR

add topic ICPKN321A Apply knowledge and requirements of digital production

add topic ICPPR385A Apply software applications to digital production

add topic ICPSU201C Prepare, load and unload reels and cores on and off machine* OR

add topic ICPSU202C Prepare, load and unload product on and off machine*

add topic ICPSU203C Prepare and maintain the work area

add topic ICPSU207C Prepare machine for operation (basic)

add topic ICPSU208C Operate and monitor machines (basic)

add topic ICPSU211C Prepare ink and additives

add topic ICPSU224C Perform basic machine maintenance

add topic ICPSU263C Perform basic industry calculations

add topic ICPSU281C Use computer systems

add topic ICPSU323C Dispose of waste

add topic ICPSU357C Apply quick changeover procedures

* Both of these units can be selected in this qualification, if the enterprise requires both.

Group B Elective Units

add topic ICPPR392A Set up and produce specialised digital print OR

add topic ICPPR413C Set up for complex flexographic printing OR

add topic ICPPR421C Set up for complex gravure printing OR

add topic ICPPR431C Set up for complex lithographic printing OR

add topic ICPPR441C Set up for complex pad printing OR

add topic ICPPR451C Set up for complex relief printing OR

add topic ICPPR496A Set up and produce complex digital print

Group C Elective Units

add topic BSBCUS301B Deliver and monitor a service to customers

add topic ICAWEB429A Create a markup language document to specification

add topic ICPCF221C Set up and produce basic guillotined product

add topic ICPCF225C Set up machine for basic flat-bed die cutting or embossing

add topic ICPCF226C Produce basic flat-bed die cut or embossed product

add topic ICPCF231C Set up machine for basic flat-bed cutting

add topic ICPCF232C Produce basic flat-bed cut product

add topic ICPCF241C Set up machine for basic single or continuous folding

add topic ICPCF242C Produce basic single or continuous folded product

add topic ICPCF243C Set up machine for basic collating or inserting (sheet/section)

add topic ICPCF244C Produce basic collated (sheet/section) product

add topic ICPCF281C Set up machine for basic laminating

add topic ICPCF282C Produce basic laminated product

add topic ICPCF341C Set up machine for complex sequenced or multiple folding

add topic ICPCF381C Set up machine for complex laminating

add topic ICPCF382C Produce complex laminated product

add topic ICPPP211C Develop a basic design concept

add topic ICPPP252C Output images

add topic ICPPP266C Produce relief plates

add topic ICPPP267C Produce offset lithographic plates

add topic ICPPP268C Make photopolymer plates (flexographic)

add topic ICPPP269C Produce photopolymer plates for pad printing

add topic ICPPP272C Produce gravure cylinders manually

add topic ICPPP352C Output complex images

add topic ICPPP370C Produce multiple image plates

add topic ICPPP372C Produce gravure cylinders electronically

add topic ICPPP397A Transfer digital images

add topic ICPPR211C Mount and proof flexographic plates for basic printing

add topic ICPPR214C Produce basic flexographic printed product

add topic ICPPR222C Produce basic gravure printed product

add topic ICPPR232C Produce basic lithographic printed product

add topic ICPPR242C Produce basic pad printed product

add topic ICPPR261C Set up for foil stamping

add topic ICPPR262C Produce foil stamped product

add topic ICPPR271C Set up for basic coating

add topic ICPPR272C Produce basic coated product

add topic ICPPR282C Produce and manage basic digital print

add topic ICPPR288A Produce basic relief printed product

add topic ICPPR313C Set up for basic flexographic printing

add topic ICPPR314C Produce complex flexographic printed product OR

add topic ICPPR321C Set up for basic gravure printing

add topic ICPPR322C Produce complex gravure printed product OR

add topic ICPPR331C Set up for basic lithographic printing

add topic ICPPR332C Produce complex lithographic printed product OR

add topic ICPPR341C Set up for basic pad printing

add topic ICPPR342C Produce complex pad printed product OR

add topic ICPPR382C Produce and manage complex digital print

add topic ICPPR383C Prepare for personalised digital printing

add topic ICPPR384A Set up and produce basic digital print OR

add topic ICPPR394A Produce complex relief printed product

add topic ICPPR385A Apply software applications to digital production

add topic ICPPR386A Troubleshoot digital media

add topic ICPPR387A Use colour management for production

add topic ICPPR388A Preflight and import complex images for digital device

add topic ICPPR389A Manage digital files

add topic ICPPR390A Generate a proof for digital production

add topic ICPPR393A Set up for basic relief printing

add topic ICPPR494A Apply advanced software applications to digital production

add topic ICPSP311C Reclaim screen manually

add topic ICPSP215C Prepare screen

add topic ICPSP222C Prepare and cut screen print substrate

add topic ICPSP270C Manually prepare and produce screen prints

add topic ICPSP273C Semi-automatically produce basic screen prints

add topic ICPSP275C Automatically produce basic screen prints

add topic ICPSP351C Prepare machine and drying/curing unit

add topic ICPSP374C Operate a semi-automatic screen printing machine

add topic ICPSP382C Produce computer image for screen printing

add topic ICPSP383A Prepare film for complex screen printing

add topic ICPSU212C Prepare coatings, adhesives

add topic ICPSU221C Pack and dispatch product

add topic ICPSU222C Pack and dispatch solid waste

add topic ICPSU235C Lift loads mechanically

add topic ICPSU236C Shift loads mechanically

add topic ICPSU241C Undertake warehouse or stores materials processing

add topic ICPSU271C Provide basic instruction for a task

add topic ICPSU311C Prepare ink and additives (advanced)

add topic ICPSU342C Undertake inventory procedures

add topic ICPSU351C Undertake basic production scheduling

add topic ICPSU362C Communicate as part of a work team

add topic ICPSU381C Operate and maintain computer resources

add topic MSACMC210A Manage the impact of change on own work

add topic MSACMS200A Apply competitive manufacturing practices

add topic MSACMS201A Sustain process improvements

add topic MSACMT230A Apply cost factors to work practices

add topic MSACMT240A Apply 5S procedures in a manufacturing environment

add topic MSACMT280A Undertake root cause analysis

add topic MSAENV272B Participate in environmentally sustainable work practices

add topic MSAPMSUP390A Use structured problem solving tools


    Pathways into the qualification

    Candidates may enter the qualification with limited or no vocational experience and without a relevant lower level qualification. However, the preferred pathway for candidates entering this qualification is one of the following qualifications:

    ICP20110 Certificate II in Printing and Graphic Arts (General)

    ICP20210 Certificate II in Printing and Graphic Arts (Desktop Publishing)

    ICP20410 Certificate II in Printing and Graphic Arts (Print Production Support).

    Pathways from the qualification

    At the completion of this qualification candidates could choose to enter a:

    ICP40310 Certificate IV in Printing and Graphic Arts (Printing)

    ICP40610 Certificate IV in Printing and Graphic Arts (Management/Sales)

    ICP40710 Certificate IV in Printing and Graphic Arts (Process Leadership).

Entry Requirements

There are no entry requirements for this qualification.

Licensing Information

There is no direct link between this qualification and licensing, legislative and/or regulatory requirements. However, where required, a unit of competency will specify relevant licensing, legislative and/or regulatory requirements that impact on the unit.

Units in Qualification with Prerequisites

Code and title

Prerequisite units required

ICPSU311C Prepare ink and additives (advanced)

ICPSU211C Prepare ink and additives

ICPPR494A Apply advanced software applications to digital production

ICPPR385A Apply software applications to digital production

Employability Skills

The following table contains a summary of the Employability Skills required for this qualification. The Employability Skills facets described here are broad industry requirements that may vary depending on qualification packaging options.

Employability Skill

Industry/enterprise requirements for this qualification include:


negotiating requirements and methods of production with clients

reading and interpreting job requirements

using printing industry terminology and vocabulary correctly and accurately


operating production processes in association with fellow workers

working with clients to decide on the best printing processes and ensure proofs meet their requirements

Problem solving

monitoring production quality and making minor adjustments to processes

conducting a proof run, inspecting and testing the proof for quality and adjusting the printing machinery to ensure the product meets quality criteria

Initiative and enterprise

anticipating and rectifying production problems

monitoring trends in the printing industry to inform personal work practices

recommending improvements to quick changeover procedures

Planning and organising

selecting appropriate print processes and inks and additives

collecting and assessing data about printing processes and machine specifications and how these interact


following principles and obligations of copyright in personal work practices

following procedures and using personal protective equipment correctly


giving and following simple routine instructions

implementing and monitoring new technology and work processes


selecting and using printing processes based on knowledge of the capabilities and limitations of the processes

using computerised control, monitoring and data entry systems

using information technology, such as computer hardware and software to access data from files