The professions related to the machining industry and the mastery of the different conventional and CNC machine tools are trades of the future. Indeed, specialists in machining techniques are sought after by both machine shops and various industries. But what training is required to work in a machine shop?

The DVS in Machining Techniques

The Diploma of Vocational Studies in machining techniques is a program that lets you prepare for the professions of foreman, machinist, machining and tooling inspector, tool and die maker, and machine tool operator.

The in-class and workshop training is followed by a three-week internship with a company at the end of the program. It totals 1,800 hours and teaches students how to:

  • Measure, trace, adjust, assemble, and repair pieces made of metal or other materials
  • Perform the mathematical calculations necessary to practise the profession
  • Adjust and use specialized equipment such as milling machines, lathes, hand-operated grinding machines, and computer-aided machine tools
  • Carry out machining operations from a plan or sketch
  • Select and prepare the appropriate measuring instruments and cutting tools.

As this is one of the trades recognized by the Red Seal Program, this diploma allows the holder to practise in Québec as well as all the provinces that participate in this program.

The AVS in Machining with CNC Machine Tools

The Attestation of Vocational Specialization is accessible to holders of a DVS in Machining Techniques or equivalent (the short 420-hour program, or about 4 months) and, in certain establishments, to people attesting professional experience related to the program (the long 885-hour program, or about 8 months, including a 2-week internship with a company).

At the end of this program, students are capable of:

  • Interpreting complex drawings related to machining on CNC machine tools
  • Manually and automatically programming CNC machines such as lathes
  • Machining both simple and complex pieces, and in series, using a lathe with a CNC machining centre.

Like the DVS, the AVS leads to the professions of foreman, machinist, tool and die maker, machining and tooling inspector, and machine tool operator, but it also gives the holder access to professions such as CNC programmer and shop inspector.

Where to Take these Courses

In Québec, these courses are generally taught at several CFPs (Centres de Formation Professionnelle, or Vocational Training Centres), such as the CFP de Neufchâtel, the CFP des Moulins, the CFP de l’Alma, and the CFP l’Envolée de Montmagny. Other institutions also offer them, such as the École des métiers de l’aérospatiale de Montréal.

Most institutions offer both levels of training – that is, the DVS and the AVS – except for some, such as the Centre intégré de mécanique, de métallurgie et d’électricité, which only offers the AVS but grants professionals who do not hold a DVS access to the program.

Even though the DVS in Machining Techniques and the AVS in Machining with CNC Machine Tools are the optimal path to land a job in a machine shop, it’s not impossible to practise in this field with a college diploma. DEC or AEC graduates in mechanical engineering techniques begin their careers on the factory floor and can subsequently progress towards the professions of technicians. They even have the possibility to follow a program to receive an AVS, as offered by, for example, the Centre intégré de mécanique, de métallurgie et d’électricité.