Post-Press Technician

Apprenticeship , Level 3
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Available at the following campuses:

What Our Students Say

“So the tutors are great for a number of reasons – they’re casual, you don’t feel like you’re being forced to do anything that’s uncomfortable, they’re not strict, they’ll have a laugh with you if you want to and they know how to get stuff done when they need to if we’re on a bit of a time crunch, but they also know how to have a bit of fun and not put pressure on you – and they’re great, they’re always there to give you information if you need it for at-home tasks and they’re always on Google Hangouts to message you if you need anything and they get back to you really quickly.”


“I’m working really well with my tutors – they’re really supportive and we just have a laugh. It’s like a really nice atmosphere. I think the facilities are really fantastic.”


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Course Information


Finishing is a general term used in the print industry to describe any processes after printing. This is usually in the final stages of creating a printed product such as books, booklets, catalogues, pop-ups and display units.

Special techniques are applied as part of the finishing role by using pieces of individual equipment to perform separate tasks such as cutting paper to the correct size, cutting and folding sheets into pages or gluing and stapling sections together.

Work may also be carried out in teams, with each performing different functions to hit the quality criteria and production schedule. Those with a flexible and practical mindset may find the role of post-press technician attractive due to the need to complete multiple processes using various techniques.

Start dates: October and April


What you will study

  • Pre-press and post-press processes and equipment and how their role will
    impact upon others.
  • Properties and structures of materials, adhesives and various other
    chemicals and able to explain them in detail.
  • Physical properties of the numerous paper/plastic stocks and their
    benefits & constraints, including weight, grain direction, coatings and
    how this affects the final product.
  • How to convert sheets into pages and products for example ‘sheet-work’,
    ‘work-and-turn’, and ‘work-and tumble’.
  • How to safely and effectively convert the source materials into the
    customer’s specific product by using a combination of machinery and processes.

  • The benefits and constraints of the many different folding types including
    parallels, gatefolds, barn door flap folds, and letter folds.
  • How to apply different finishes to different substrates e.g. scented
    varnish, holographic foiling, soft-touch laminate, near-field communication
    sticker etc.
  • How the final product is expected to perform and the process by which it
    is to be received by the customer.

Benefits and skills

Set up, run and maintain a specific range of finishing equipment at the appropriate speed and at quality levels a set out by the work instructions and company guidelines, such as: guillotines, stitching-trimming machinery, binding machinery, laminating equipment, die-cutters. This can include cleaning and servicing key elements or preparing the machine for the next shift.

Entry requirements

Maths and English at level 4 or above.

Available Apprenticeships and Progression options

Full time employment with the employer.

Assessment types

  • Observation at work
  • Online exam at a GQA centre
  • Professional discussion at work

Course details

Duration: 2 years
Study Type: Full time
Course Code: 74482-01

Please note that for all courses starting on 9th September, there will be an induction week, WC 2nd September.

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