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Masonry (Brick, Stone and Concrete Work
Masonry (Brick, Stone and Concrete Work) - 100 Hours Certificate Course
Learn About Masonry (Brick, Stone and Concrete Work
This online stone masonry course will provide you with a solid foundation in choosing and working with brick, concrete and stone, in both commercial and residential construction and repairs and including both exterior and interior areas.
Stone masonry can be described as taking uncut variously shaped slabs of stone, using them to fashion accurately made building blocks and then building a structure with them.
In Medieval times, Masons were exceptionally skilled craftsmen (not monks) with a combination of skills. These included that of an architect, builder, designer plus engineer and these medieval construction professionals of their time, built amazing places such as Gothic Cathedrals. Using only their appreciation of proportion and basic skills in geometry, they built these precise structures armed only with a compass, a set square plus a rope or staff divided off in halves, thirds and fifths.
In fact Masons have been designing and building structures from the dawn of civilisation and although our online distance learning course in brick and stone masonry doesn’t promise to teach you how to reproduce the Great Pyramid, it should help you to develop the knowledge and skills honed to perfection by the stonemasons of the past, but brought up-to-date with modern methods. For example, Gothic Cathedrals normally had deep foundations and thick walls and there were often structural problems to deal with. This course covers both method and structural considerations when building, the importance of strong foundations and structural repairs, plus many other important subjects to help you become a Master Stonemason. It even covers how to build a house.
ADL’s Online course in Stone masonry will benefit anyone who undertakes or wants to undertake property management and maintenance. It is also applicable to builders and especially those who are self-employed. who wish to have a wider range of masonry skills, to maximise their earning potential.
Lesson Structure: Stone Masonry
There are 9 lessons in this course:
1 Scope and Nature of Masonry
- The language of masonry
- Masonry tools
- Masonry materials
- Legal requirements
2 Cement and Concrete
- More types of cement
- Different types of lime
- Concrete masonry units
- Concrete foundations
3 Construction Method and Structural Considerations
- Setting out levels
- Understanding loads
- Types of walls
- Making construction stronger
- Dealing with movement
- Movement joints
- Using moisture controls
- Using metal
- Copings and caps
4 Working with Brick
- Types of bricks
- Laying bricks
- Cavity wall construction
5 Working with Stone
- Types of stone used in construction
- Stone walls
- Stone walls for landscaping
- Free standing stone walls
6 Construction for Fire -Fireplaces, bbq’s, kilns, ovens and fire pits
- How to construct fireplaces and chimneys
- Chimneys that do not work
- Indoor slow combustion burners and wood/coal nurning stoves
- Brick barbecues
7 Landscape Applications & Hybrid construction
- Outdoor steps
- Other garden features
8 Repair and Miscellaneous Work
- Paints and sealants
- Plastering walls
- Fixing plaques to masonry
- Damaged walls
- Surface damage and structural damage
- Problems with paving and driveways
- Miscellaneous uses of masonry
9 Building Applications -houses, garden, farm or commercial buildings
- Choosing what materials to use
- Choosing a site
- Setting out buildings
- Basic design considerations
- Special project
Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school’s tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.
Lesson Goals: Stone Masonry
- Describe the materials, tools and equipment used for masonry construction, and the nature and scope of work that might be undertaken by those skilled in the use of those tools and materials.
- Explain how to use cement as a mortar or in concrete appropriate to the circumstances of construction
- Explain how to construct with brick stone or concrete in a way which is structurally sound and appropriate to the circumstances.
- Explain how to work with different types of bricks for different construction purposes
- Explain how to build different things with different types of stone.
- Explain how to build fireplaces and other structures that will be exposed to fire.
- Explain the use of masonry in the landscape
- Explain how stone, brick or concrete should be maintained and repaired when damaged
- Explain the construction of a house and other type of building with brick, stone and concrete.
Practical (Set Tasks)
TYPES OF BRICKS
There are different ways to classify bricks. One of the usually ways is according to use.
- Common bricks – used for any general building but with a poor appearance
- Facing bricks – used on exterior walls and chosen for their attractive appearance
- Engineering bricks – a dense brick, often with no frog, used where strength is needed
Bricks can also be classified according to quality i.e. internal (only for internal use), ordinary (external use), and special (for extreme conditions).
Bricks can also be solid, perforated, hollow or cellular.
Clay bricks are by far the most widely used brick. They contain mainly silica and alumina with small amounts of lime, manganese and iron. Different clays give different colours and textures. They are fired in kilns to harden them.
Some other bricks are also used:
- Concrete bricks – these are made with six different compressive strengths from 7 to 40 N/mm2.
- Calcium silicate bricks – also called sand lime bricks, or flint lime bricks, these are made from sand or gravel and lime which is steamed under pressure. Again they are manufactured to six compressive strengths from 14 to 48.5 N/mm2. The lowest strength bricks are only suitable for internal work. Stronger ones can be used for exterior wok and below damp proof courses but they should be used with care sink they are prone to shrinkage.
- Fire bricks – these are moulded from clays which have to be mined rather than surface clays. The type of clay used is called refractory clay. It has more uniform physical and chemical properties and a high fusion (melting) point. Fire bricks are laid using mortar which also has a high fusion point.
Laying bricks is something that many people can do with moderate success if they take their time; but to lay bricks well takes knowledge first, then practice. To lay bricks fast while maintaining a quality of construction takes even more practice. Usually mortar joints are laid at 10mm thick, so if the brick was 215 x 102.5 x 65mm this would give a wall unit size of 225 x 112.5 x 75mm.
Bricks must be bonded properly (i.e. joints must not be laid to make a straight line vertically). Bricks are bonded together by staggering each row (or course) so that each brick in the next course overlaps the brick in the course below (where the overlapped section is called the ‘lap’). Normally the overlap is by one quarter of a brick’s length but it can be half a brick. Bonding means that there should be no vertical joints that extend beyond one course. Walls that are properly bonded will become a solid single strong mass of wall with resistance to side thrust and lateral stability; but without proper consideration for bonding a wall is nothing more than a stack of individual bricks which lack any overall coherence.
In order to bond a wall, this means that as well as full size bricks you also need some bats or closers. Bats are parts of bricks, usually three quarter length bricks or half bricks. Closers are of three types:
- King closer – tapered from the header to the stretcher face
- Queen closer – half brick or quarter brick cut lengthwise
- Bevelled closer – bevelled from one footer to the other
Choice of Bond
The bond chosen will be governed by considerations such as the location of the brickwork, its use, and how thick the wall is to be. For example, the outer face of a house needs to look good but the walls of a basement would be built for strength. Some common bonds include:
- Flemish bond – probably the most widely used bond for exterior house walls, Flemish is both strong and attractive. It is made by laying alternate headers and stretchers in the same course. The headers in the courses immediately above and below a stretcher are positioned so they are aligned over the centre of the stretcher.
- English bond – this is stronger than Flemish bond and used mainly where strength is a priority. It is made by laying alternate rows of headers and stretchers.
- Stretcher bond – this is used for walls which are only a single course wide. Rows of stretchers are used throughout the construction. The centre of each stretcher lines up with the joint between the two stretchers on the courses above and below.
- Flemish garden wall bond – garden walls are built to save on the cost of facing bricks and the number of headers. Here, rows of bricks are made up of an alternating pattern of one header and three stretchers.
- English garden wall bond – this wall bond has three courses of stretchers to one course of headers.
There are many other types of bonds. Some like herringbone are only suited to very thick walls. Others, like basket weave, are best suited to brick paving.
Locking Your Construction in Place
- Joints – corner joints with acute angles are solved by using bats or closers. Squint bricks and angled bricks may be used on corners with less acute angles e.g. 135 degrees. These bricks can be purchased to suit a range of construction designs.
- Ties – brick ties are used to tie two walls, or leaves, together. This is necessary in cavity walls where the inner wall is able to share some of its static and live loads to the exterior wall through the ties. Cavities have to be of a certain width (typically more than 50mm and less than 75mm), and the inner and outer leaves also have to be of particular thicknesses (usually not less than 90mm). Ties are made of durable material like steel and coated with zinc, galvanised wire, or stainless steel. Different shapes include butterflies, twists and double triangles. Plastic ties may also be used.
- Ties are positioned in the mortar bed as walls are constructed. They can fail for a number of reasons such as poor materials, poor choice (e.g. too short), corrosion from aging (usually only in older buildings), or occasionally because the mortar used has corroded them (e.g. black ash type mortars).
How to Cut Bricks
Sometimes you only need part of a brick to fill a space, for a closer or bat, or when building more complex constructions like arches. To cut the bricks various methods are used. Your choice will be governed by availability of tools as well as skill level in using those tools.
The quickest way to cut a piece off a brick is to use the edge of the blade on a brick trowel. First the brick is marked on each edge by tapping with the trowel. Then the trowel is used to hit swiftly along the line between the two edge marks. This method is fine if the cut edge doesn’t have to be perfect. It should not be attempted on harder bricks since you can quickly ruin your trowel.
A similar level of accuracy can be obtained using a brick hammer. Once again, mark both edges first by tapping with the hammer and then join up the space in between with swift hits of the wedge shaped edge.
A hammer and bolster is the simplest means of cutting bricks with reasonable accuracy. First mark a line around all sides of the brick by holding the bolster in position and tapping gently with the hammer. Once done, you have to place the brick over a support so that it overhangs from where you want to cut it. Make the first proper cut on the shortest face and then finish off on the longest face.
Another option which provides greater accuracy is a special tool called a ‘scutch chisel’, or a ‘scutch hammer’. A scutch chisel is a chisel with a groove in the end into which is placed a blade with a toothed edge. The blade is called the ‘scutch comb’ or ‘drove’. The chisel is used like any other brick chisel by holding in position along the line to be cut and hitting the head with a lump or club hammer. A scotch hammer serves the same purpose but the scotch comb holder is on either one or both ends of the hammer. It’s not as accurate as the scotch chisel since you have to swing the hammer whereas you can hold the chisel exactly where you want it before striking.
Various types of power saw can also be used, an angle grinder being an obvious example, but a proper brick saw gives the best results. These use flowing water down the blade which helps to dampen noise, reduce dust, and increase the accuracy of cut whilst minimising loss due to fracturing of bricks. If other power tools are used they should be fitted with a dust extractor bag to prevent silica particles from being inhaled.
Any construction that is exposed to water can be more at risk of deterioration. Buildings have to have damp proof courses so that moisture from the ground doesn’t move up the walls. Water must also be stopped from spreading downwards. Barriers to water can be built into a construction in various ways.
A damp-proofing course between the bottom of a wall and the ground (at least 150mm above ground level)
- Inside a concrete slab floor
- Beneath a concrete slab
- Above lintels in cavity walls to prevent downward movement of moisture
- In chimneys and parapets
- Around windows and doors
A waterproof layer plastered on the back of a wall that has soil or anything wet behind it
To stop moisture from entering brickwork, a damp-proof course has to be impervious to water. It also has to be durable so that it will last for the lifetime of the construction. The material used ought to be able to withstand the load placed on it without deteriorating.
There are different options for damp-proofing as follows:
Flexible – these damp-proof courses are the most widely used since they are suited to many situations. Materials used include polythene or plastic, bitumen felt, lead and copper sheeting. They are used exclusively over openings in cavity walls and are ideal where damp-proofing needs to be incorporated into unusual shapes or is stepped.
Semi-rigid – a mastic asphalt course is suitable for dense walls where the damp-proof course is under a heavy load. Semi-rigid layers can also be built from a mix of hard and soft materials.
Rigid – sometimes a more solid damp-proof course is needed. Materials used include epoxy resins and sand, brick and slate, stone or concrete with waterproofing materials added.
Grouts – mixes of cement slurry and polymers can also be applied.
Assessment is based on a combination of completing all assignments and sitting for a final short one and a half hour exam, in your own location.
If you don’t cope well with exams then you may elect to undertake a project instead. This is a popular option.
In addition, most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson placed before the assignment. This is an opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge and skills and practical experience. This ADL feature is an added bonus not found at most online schools. Set Tasks are not required for assessment.
Some courses also have optional Self-Tests which are available on our online learning platform. These are not available by correspondence or by USB, and do not form part of your overall grade.
How our courses work
- Choose Your Learning Method
You choose how you would like to receive your course material, i.e., Online, USB or Correspondence. The choice is yours. You may also work on online or offline.
- Tutor Allocation
Every student is assigned their own dedicated tutor who is an expert in their subject area. They provide as much or as little individual contact as you require. You can contact your tutor whenever you need – your hours are not limited.
- Feedback and Assignments
Tutor Feedback is an essential component in helping you understand the subject matter. Tutor feedback is given in the form of notes written on the assignment. We encourage you to contact your Tutor where help with clarification and understanding of course material may be required.
Your assignments are located at the end of each lesson. You submit them for marking whenever you are ready. There is no time limit.
- Set Tasks and Self-Tests
Most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson before for the assignment. This is where you get the opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge, skills and practical experience. Many modules also have short Self-Tests.
Once all assignments have been completed you may then elect to sit for a one and half hour exam in your own location. If you prefer not to take the exam you do have the option to undertake a project instead.
Once the exam or project part of the course is completed, your Certificate is then processed. Please allow approximately 4 weeks for this.
- Design Your Own Qualification
ADL offers students the flexibility to self-design their own qualification – bundling together a combination of 100-hour modules into a qualification higher than a certificate.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Due to our years of experience and wide range of online courses, here are a list of our FAQs and Answers asked by Students.
Q. Do I need to buy text books?
A. No, you are not required to purchase expensive text books for any of our courses, since each module has been written by highly qualified tutors and writers, and our courses are updated on a regular basis, adding new information, methods and knowledge. You are supplied with all “essential” references. Extra books are always useful though, especially for special projects. Tutors will advise you what to buy if you decide you would like to have extra reading material, but it is not essential. Check out our eBookstore if you’re looking for a starting point.
Q. What sets the Academy apart from other institutions?
A. A unique feature of our courses is that we combine knowledge of the subject matter with practical tasks (set tasks, found at the end of each lesson). So you get to do practical components in each lesson. The benefits of this approach are immense: – your skills and knowledge are developed to a much higher level not normally found at other distance learning institutions.
Q. How do the practical exercises (set tasks) work?
A. The practical component of each lesson can be in the form of : Field Research, Networking and Analysis, Conducting Surveys, Growing, Collecting, Photographing and Processes.
Q. Can I pay by instalments?
A. Yes, you can view all available payment options here.
Q. Are there any hidden costs?
A. There are no hidden extras – the tuition fee covers all course material, unlimited tutor support, assignment marking/feedback and any text books where specified and exams. The only extras are for the public examinations fees for the ICB Bookkeeping course and the RHS (Royal Horticulture Society) exams.
Q. Are your courses up-to date?
A. Our courses are continually updated. The course content is rapidly updated and improved without the red tape and bureaucracy experienced at other educational institutions.
Q. Do you have a Cancellation policy?
A. We have a cancellation policy that is fair and equitable. For further details please click here.
Q. What Recognition do you have?
A. The Academy for Distance Learning has various forms of recognition:
These include TQUK (Training Qualifications UK) – an Ofqual Awarding Organisation – ADL is an approved TQUK Centre.
IARC – International Approval Registration Centre, approved member. Accredited Training Provider for ICB (Institute of Certified Bookkeepers) and Approved Distance Learning Provider for the RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) and many more. Our graduates come from many parts of the world and have used our qualifications for successful employment and progression onto higher education. To view our full list of recognition and memberships please click here,
Q. Will I have any opportunity to engage with other students?
A. We have a Student Community group based on facebook! If you don’t have a facebook account already, you could make one just for talking with fellow students on the group.
Q. Why should I enrol with the Academy for Distance Learning?
A. Here at the Academy our students are our priority – we treat every student as a unique individual. This philosophy allows us to nurture those who are “slow and steady” learners rather than letting them fall through the cracks, while catering for those who are in a hurry to complete.
Q. Can I study from anywhere in the world?
A. Our courses are available to anyone, anywhere in the world from the comfort of your own home. The course content is relevant to any country, culture or economy.
Q. Completing the course- how long will it take?
A. Completion of modules varies from student to student. Many factors come into play such as work commitments and family life- there are always distractions. Some students work quicker than others. For a 100 hour module many students will take up to 3- 6 months, others take less time and some are even longer. It’s all up to you. There is no pressure to complete or deadline to finish. Naturally, longer courses will take more time.
Q. What learning formats are there?
A. Your enrollment comes with the Online Classroom study option by default. For a small additional cost you also have the options of USB or Correspondence.
USB: Your course is sent to you on a USB stick, so that you can carry it in your pocket. Ideal for those with unreliable internet connections. This option is an additional £5/module
Correspondence: You download the course content and then print your own copy to your requirements. You can then bind the lessons to suit your needs.
Q. Assessment – how does it work?
A. For each 100 hour module you are assessed by assignments (at the end of each lesson) and a final one and a half hour exam (or you may elect to complete a project instead of sitting the exam) – the choice is yours – you sit for the exam in your own location, or you can visit us in Canterbury, England to sit the exam if want to. Exam fees are included in the tuition fee you paid. You can read more about the examination process here. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment. You submit it to the academy who then submits it to the tutor for marking, comments and feedback. Our policy is to have a grade for you within 5 to 7 days.
Q. How many assignments do I need to complete for each module?
A. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment – so if a course has say, 10 lessons there would be 10 assignments. The number of lessons per module varies from module to module. See the course content from our website for further details.
Q. When do I have to hand in my first assignment?
A. There is no deadline for handing in the first assignment. Submit when you are ready. There are some students who hand in assignments within the first couple of weeks of enrolment – while there are others who submit their work 6 months later. It’s all at your own convenience to suit you. Everyone has different work and home commitments and we cater to these needs.
Q. I am having difficulty attending workshops/industry meetings, what can be done?
A. If your course requires attendance at workshops, conferences, or industry meetings; alternative arrangements can be made in your country; however, there may be an additional expense. We can appoint an appropriately qualified person anywhere to work through curriculum documentation supplied by us, to satisfy the requirements set down in a course.
Q. What qualification will I receive?
A. For individual modules, you would receive a Certificate (providing you complete all assignments and the exam). If you just want to complete the assignments only, then a Letter of Achievement would be awarded. For more details on qualifications awarded please click here.
Q. Is there a next level to progress to?
A. Yes – you can progress from one module to a combination of many modules and to higher qualifications i.e. Advanced Certificates, Diplomas and Higher Advanced Diplomas. Read more about course levels here.
Q. Can I customize my diploma/higher qualification?
A. Not all educational institution’s certificates /diplomas meet everyone’s needs. The opportunity to design your own diploma at the Academy (subject to our approval) is an added bonus, not found at other colleges. It’s a very popular option and widely used by many students. You quite simply choose the appropriate number of related modules needed to complete the qualification and submit them to us for approval as a custom diploma.
Q. What do I get when I complete the course? Will I receive a transcript?
A. At the completion of a 100-hour Certificate course and providing all assignments and exam have been completed, you will receive a Certificate and Transcript. The Transcript will list your GPA. Each 100-hour module is worth 3 credit hours.
Q. Do I have to sit for an exam?
A. Exams are optional but need to be undertaken in order to receive the Certificate or higher qualification. Exams are one and a half hours long. You appoint an adjudicator (subject to our approval) to supervise the exam. You sit for the exam in your own location. Its that simple.
Q. I don’t cope well with exams – what can I do?
A. If you feel you don’t cope well with exams you may elect to undertake a Project (set by the tutor) instead of sitting the exam. Many students prefer this option as they find researching the material for the project sharpens their research skills.
Q. If I don’t sit for the Exam do I still get a qualification?
A. If you don’t sit for the exam but complete the project alternative, you will still receive your endorsed qualification. If you don’t sit for an exam or complete a final project, providing you have completed all the assignments you will be awarded a Certificate of Achievement.
Q. Do I have to sit for the exam at the Academy?
A. No – whilst you are more than welcome to come to our location in Canterbury, U.K. and sit the exam in our classroom; the more popular option is to sit for the exam in your own location. You appoint an adjudicator to supervise the exam. Click here for more information on that process.
Q. Our tutors – who are they?
A. We only employ tutors who have are currently active in their industry with at least 5 years of real-world experience. Not only are they highly qualified but also experienced, knowledgeable, and professional- experts in their chosen fields from all parts of the world.
Q. Can I contact my tutor at any time?
A. Yes- you have unlimited access to tutors. We strongly encourage students to develop a dialogue with their Tutor. This is why we encourage students to submit their first assignment fairly quickly at the beginning of the course.
Every Academy student is assigned a tutor who supports you throughout your course and beyond. Your tutor is there to guide and facilitate your learning and provides as much or as little individual contact as you would like. When you submit your coursework the tutor will give you feedback that helps you develop your ideas and provides motivation. For those who do like to have interaction with other students, the ADL discussion forum connects you to students from all over the world.
Q. How do I contact my tutor?
A. You have direct contact with your tutor by email through the Online Classroom. Alternatively, you can write, fax, email, or phone the academy. Leave a message if your tutor isn’t available and they will phone, write or fax back; whatever suits you.
Q. If I don’t understand a question or a lesson may I contact the tutor?
A. You may contact a tutor as often as you like. There is no additional charge or restriction on this service. Contact can be made via the Student Zone, email, or by phone.
Q. Practical work – How is this done?
A. To find out more about this part of the course please visit the section on How Our Courses Work here.
What your tuition fees include
There are no hidden extras
FAQ - RHS Theory Qualifications
If you require further details about any of the RHS industry recognised qualifications please, call one of our friendly RHS Course Advisors on +44 (0)1227 789 649 or email: [email protected]
Q: When can I Enrol/Start My RHS Course With ADL?
A: Anytime, Anywhere. There are no enrolment deadlines.
Q: I live Overseas. Can I Study From Overseas?
A: You can study any of the RHS theory qualifications overseas. All courses are offered in English. You will need to email RHS Qualifications direct to arrange sitting for your examination overseas.
Q: Is There a Time Limit for Completing an RHS Qualification?
A: At present there are no time limits. However, RHS is contemplating in the future, the introduction of course time-lines.
Q: Are There Any Entry Requirements (Pre-Requisites)?
A: The RHS Theory courses do not require prerequisites, previous experience or any knowledge of horticulture. You just need passion for all things horticulture.
Q: What Course Should I Start With First? I Am New To RHS Qualifications.
A: We highly recommend that you start with Level 2 – Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance.
Q: What Does ADL Course Material Include?
A: Includes Power Point Presentations, Videos and written course lessons.
Q: When Do Exams Take Place?
A: Exams are held on fixed dates in February and June of each year. You should register as a candidate at least 3 months before these dates, so please do not leave exam registration to the last minute
Q: Where Do I Take My Exams?
A: UK: You take the exams at the RHS Wisley Centre, located between Cobham and Ripley in Surrey or at other authorised RHS centres around the UK.
Overseas: please email RHS qualifications direct for centre information.
Q: Exam Pass Marks?
A: Module – pass 50%. Commendation 70%.
Qualification: 50% pass for all modules.
Commendation awarded for all modules.
Each question carries a value of 10 marks.
Q: I’m Not Happy With My Exam Results?
A: You have the opportunity to re-sit your exam at the next opportunity.
There are no restrictions on the number of re-sits you can take. The highest mark you achieve will remain.,