Take your nail expertise to a professional level by learning how to give salon-quality manicures and pedicures, as well as acrylic and gel enhancements. You'll also learn how to start your own micro business.

Why study this course?

  • You'll get hands-on experience practicing your new skills, and receive feedback from experienced Trainers.

  • Train in a real-world setting on actual clients with a work placement.

  • Learn how to set up and manage your own nail business.

  • As a student of the SHB30315 Certificate III in Nail Technology you’ll receive a range of professional nail kits to use while you perfect your practical skills and get your career as a successful Nail Technician off the ground.

  • The kits include a manicure and pedicure kit (valued at $162), a nail art kit (valued at $44) and a gel and acrylic kit with UV lamp (valued at $631).

Course number E1177
Qualification name SHB30315 Certificate III in Nail Technology
Course duration Maximum 12 months
Recommended hours per week 20.0
Qualification level Certificate III
Delivery method Online with Work Placement
Recognition Nationally Recognised Nationally Recognised Training
Assessments Case studies, Knowledge tests, Learner and Supervisor checkpoints, Multiple choice questions, Practical assessments, Short-answer questions, Visual diaries, Work Placement Final Feedback, Workplace logbook, Workplace Portfolios, Written assessments
Awarded by Open Colleges Pty Ltd (Provider number: 90796)

About the course

The industry

According to the Australian Government Job Outlook, the number of beauty therapists (including nail technicians) has expanded over the past five years and is expected to grow very strongly over the next five years from 36,100 in 2018 to 42,800 by 2023. There are likely to be around 25,000 job openings over this time from workers leaving and new jobs being created.

Who this course is for

The SHB30315 Certificate III in Nail Technology  is perfect for both those already working in the nail industry who want to improve their skills, product and business knowledge, safety protocols and customer service skills; and those who have no experience at all and want to start from scratch.

If you are an existing worker or have experience in the related industry, please inform our enrolment consultants during your enrolment conversation as you may be eligible to enrol as an existing worker and may be able to complete your studies faster.

Potential career outcomes

  • Nail Technician

What you'll learn

Under the guidance of industry experts you will learn to:

  • Perform manicure and pedicure treatments
  • Work skillfully and efficiently to carry-out acrylic and gel nail services
  • Design and apply a wide variety of nail art
  • Maintain strict infection control procedures
  • Identify the needs of a nail services micro business.

Learning materials

Your learning materials are accessed through OpenSpace. These include:

  • Online Learning Content
  • Learning Activities
  • Updates from Trainers and Assesors
  • Study Buddy System and Discussions
  • Discussion boards
  • Online forum
  • Rich media - video resources available through Openspace and external resources like newspaper articles, blogs, etc.
  • Additional resources:
    • Access to relevant legislation
    • Web links to relevant articles and information sources
    • Gale Library accessed via OpenSpace

Industry relationships

Course Materials

This course includes course materials from:

Course trainers

Andriana Demetrius

Andriana has over 15 years of involvement in the make-up industry, and has studied makeup at Arts Makeup College. She managed to situate herself in multiple factions of the industry to great success starting her early career in television making up the faces of news readers at networks such as CBA-TV, SBS and ABC. She also spent the last decade working as an events makeup artist for well-known cosmetic brands such as Christian Dior and MAC. During this time, Andriana was able to hone her skills with the fashion world leading to work on many events such as Rosemount/Mercedes Australian Fashion Week, ARIA Awards, AFI Awards and the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. Today her extensive portfolio includes published work in magazines such as Cleo, Cosmopolitan, 2 Threads, Le Black Book, Harpers Bazaar and Yen. 

Ellena Frisina

Ellena has over 15 years' experience in the beauty and cosmetic industry, which started after achieving a Diploma of Beauty Therapy, working in salons, cosmetic clinics, running her own beauty business (specialising in brow-shaping, nails and tanning), supervising work placement students, as well as lecturing experience.  Ellena is motivated by helping others to feel better about themselves, being able to pass on her knowledge to students (and seeing them develop and enhance their confidence and skills),  and being part of an industry that is continuing to grow and allow therapists to have flexible work arrangements.  

Her favourite treatments to teach includes stone therapy massage, nail treatments, brow shaping, lash treatments (including extensions), and tanning.  

Kristie Burgess

Kristie has over 10 years’ experience working in salons and day spas combined. She is a highly trained therapist and is motivated by her love for the business. She moved into Education where she can pass on her knowledge to students.

As a trainer Kristie is approachable and patient which makes her classroom and online environment a fun place to relax and learn treatments. She believes Beauty is an ever-evolving industry that will never go out of fashion, and it is important to teach rising therapists or technicians, new and innovative techniques. Tanning, waxing, facials and body massage are Kristie’s favourite treatments to teach and perform in the salon.

Suzanne Travers

Suzanne has been in the beauty and spa industry for over 20 years and brings a strong knowledge in both Beauty and Spa operation and Beauty Therapy Education. She has extensive experience which includes working with leading skincare brands and living and working in Australia’s luxury resort and spa destinations. 

Suzanne holds both national and international beauty therapy qualifications including ITEC Diploma of Beauty Specialist, ITEC Diploma of Microdermabrasion, CIDESCO Diploma of Beauty, CIDESCO Diploma of Spa and SIB50110 Diploma of Beauty Therapy. 

Suzanne loves to draw on her industry experience and has a strong passion for setting a high standard for successful beauty and spa graduates.   

Academic information

Once you are enrolled in this course, you will receive access to the first Module, which contains the first set of units for the course. When you have successfully completed those units, you'll be given access to the next Module. 

Open Colleges may make changes to the course from time to time to reflect changes introduced to the relevant Training Package or other regulatory requirements.

Creative nail technology

  • Establish client priorities.
  • Prepare service area.
  • Apply hand painted designs, decals, or jewelleries.
  • Review service.
  • Clean service area.

Hygienic manicure and pedicare treatments

  • Establish client priorities.
  • Prepare for nail service.
  • Provide nail service.
  • Review service.
  • Clean treatment area.
  • Comply with infection control regulations and guidelines and related legal obligations.
  • Monitor hygiene of premises.
  • Maintain infection control for skin penetration treatments.
  • Sterilise equipment and maintain steriliser.
  • Maintain awareness of clinic design for control of infection risks.
  • Protect self from infection risks.
  • Apply organisational safety procedures.
  • Use electricity safely.
  • Minimise infection risks in the salon environment.
  • Follow infection control procedures.
  • Follow procedures for emergency situations.
  • Clean salon.

You, the workplace and industry trends

  • Develop knowledge of employment rights and responsibilities.
  • Work within organisational requirements.
  • Support work team.
  • Maintain personal presentation.
  • Develop effective work habits.
  • Source and use information on beauty industry.
  • Source and apply information on legal and ethical issues for the beauty industry.
  • Update knowledge of beauty industry and products.

The business of personal services

  • Receive clients.
  • Provide customer service.
  • Schedule appointments for clients.
  • Respond to client complaints.
  • Respond to clients with special needs.
  • Operate point-of-sale equipment.
  • Complete point-of-sale transactions.
  • Complete refund.
  • Remove takings from register or terminal.
  • Reconcile takings.

Professional beauty products and services | Gel Nails

  • Establish client priorities.
  • Prepare for gel nail service.
  • Remove gel enhancements.
  • Apply, refill or repair gel nails.
  • Review service.
  • Clean service area.
  • Develop product knowledge.
  • Recommend salon services.
  • Prepare client for product demonstration.
  • Demonstrate beauty care products.

Professional beauty products and services | Acrylic nails

  • Establish client priorities.
  • Prepare for acrylic nail service.
  • Remove acrylic enhancements.
  • Apply, refill or repair acrylic nails.
  • Review service.
  • Clean service area.
  • Establish client priorities.
  • Prepare for electric nail service.
  • Use electric file equipment.
  • Review service.
  • Clean service area.


  • Identify resources needed in the business
  • Select appropriate sources for resources required in the business
  • Prepare for use of resources in the business

Be Creative. Be seen.

  • Establish client priorities.
  • Prepare for advanced nail art service.
  • Apply advanced nail art.
  • Review service.
  • Clean service area.
  • Describe the different types of social media tools and applications
  • Compare different types of social media tools and applications
  • Set up and use, popular social media tools and applications

Assessment details

  • Case studies
  • Knowledge tests
  • Learner and Supervisor checkpoints
  • Multiple choice questions
  • Practical assessments
  • Short-answer questions
  • Visual diaries
  • Work Placement Final Feedback
  • Workplace logbook
  • Workplace Portfolios
  • Written assessments

Recognition of Prior Learning

We understand that you may already have many skills and areas of expertise that you have obtained in different ways and these are recognised through our Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) process.

Open Colleges has developed an RPL application kit for this course.

The Student Handbook, available in the Key Student Information section of our website, provides more information about our RPL process. Alternatively, you can contact an Enrolment Consultant to discuss your RPL options. 

Course duration

The duration for the course is maximum 12 months. As a self-paced online course, the time it will take you to complete is flexible and dependent on ability and time available.

Qualification awarded

Upon successful completion of this course you will receive a nationally recognised qualification SHB30315 Certificate III in Nail Technology  awarded by Open Colleges Pty Ltd (Provider number: 90796)

Work placement

What is a work placement?

A work placement is the part of your course where you learn and are assessed in a place of work related to your course which has been approved by Open Colleges.

At your work placement, you'll get practical, hands on experience under the guidance of your supervisor. Your supervisor will be someone with involvement in industry, who can mentor you during your placement.

What are the benefits?

  • By undertaking a work placement you’ll get a chance to put the knowledge you’ve learned on your course into practice.
  • You’ll also develop practical, on-the-job skills and could make contacts that could help you find a job once you graduate.
  • Work placement is often the most rewarding part of a student’s course. Working face-to-face with clients and colleagues in your chosen field makes a huge difference to your career confidence.

How do I find a work placement?

You’ll need to find a work placement yourself and ensure it’s approved by Open Colleges. When looking for a suitable work placement host organisation, have a think about the following:

  • Are you already working or volunteering in the industry your course is related to? You could potentially do your work placement at your current place of work or have contacts that could recommend a suitable work place. Ask around!
  • If you’re entering a new industry, do some research and start thinking about organisations you could approach. We have plenty of resources available to help with approaching and finding a suitable work placement organisation.

Work placement summary

You will need to undertake your work placement in a workplace that provides nail technology services. It will need to have access to the full range of nails tools, equipment and software as well as sufficient paying clients as units require demonstration of practical application. Workplaces which would offer this experience are beauty salons and nail bars. Each facility will require specific equipment and resources, including retail facilities. The specific requirements of the workplace are outlined in the Workplace Assessment Guide. Your workplace assessor will ascertain whether the workplace is appropriate.

Based on each of the units assessment requirements the course will require a minimum of 80 hours placement. This will be split into two placements:

  • Placement 1 will be a minimum of 62 hours and may be commenced after successful completion of Modules 1 to 5.
  • Placement 2 will be a minimum of 18 hours and may be commenced after successful completion of Modules 6 to 8.

Work placement hours

This course contains a minimum of 80 hours of work placement.

Host organisation

Your Work Placement will need to be conducted in an appropriate work place, supervised by a qualified staff member. You will need to secure your own Work Placement; however Open Colleges can provide advice and direction through our Work Placement Support Team.

There are a number of statutory checks that may be required by workplaces, such as a National Police Check, Working with Children Check (or state equivalent), a First Aid Certificate and signing of a Confidentiality Agreement and Code of Conduct. These may vary by state. In addition, individual workplaces may impose additional requirements on students undertaking work placement. You will be responsible for the costs of any such checks or requirements.

You will need to undertake work placement to successfully complete the units of competency in this course. As such, a Statement of Attainment cannot be issued for part completion of the qualification unless work placement is completed.

Your work placement will need to be completed in Australia, and you will be responsible for the costs of any travel, accommodation, statutory checks or other requirements related to your work placement.

You may be required to complete work placement in multiple salons if your chosen salon does not provide all of the required services.

More information can be found in the Workplace Assessment Guide.

Supervisor requirements

It is vital that your Workplace Supervisor has a level of experience and skills to provide you with the appropriate level of support and guidance in the workplace.

In the case of the SHB30315 Certificate III in Nail Technology , the workplace supervisor must must hold a Certificate III in Nail Technology or equivalent and have a minimum of three years’ industry experience working in a customer facing role performing nail treatments. 



Open Colleges recommends that you consider the work placement options in your local area prior to enrolling in this course.


Depending on the host organisation, you may also be asked to:

  • Provide a National Police Check, Working with Children Check or state/territory equivalent
  • Be equipped with a First Aid Certificate
  • Sign a confidentiality agreement and/or a Code of Conduct.

Additionally, you may be required to wear closed toed rubber soled shoes and have your hair tied back. Workplaces may specify a uniform they would like you to wear.

Any costs incurred will need to be paid for by you.


Open Colleges provides insurance cover for the mandatory work placement you undertake as part of your course. This insurance coverage includes Public and Products Liability Insurance as well as Student Personal Accident Insurance.


Contact our Enrolment Consultants on 1300 853 033 to discuss any questions you might have regarding the work placement requirements of the course.



There are no formal education entry requirements for this course.

Minimum age

You will need to be at least 16 years old. If you are under 18 your enrolment form will need to be signed by a parent or guardian.


This course involves reading and undertaking a range of written assessments, as well as engaging in online forums and discussions. Furthermore, the delivery mode relies on the extensive use of written communication. As such, entry to the course requires the successful completion of English to Year 10 level.

If you haven't successfully completed English at Year 10 level, you can demonstrate equivalency through one of the following:

  • Successful completion of a Nationally Recognised Training qualification at Certificate II level or higher; or
  • 2 years relevant industry experience in a role that requires the use of written documentation and communication

Open Colleges recognises that not all people are able to read, write and perform calculations to the same standard. See the Language, Literacy and Numeracy Considerations section for more information on tools, resources and support services provided to you by Open Colleges.


You will need access to a computer and the internet and have basic computing skills. Minimum specifications for your computer are:

All users:

  • Microsoft Office 2010 or equivalent
  • Broadband internet connection
  • 2GB of RAM
  • CD-ROM or DVD drive
  • Adobe Reader XI or equivalent
  • Adobe Flash Player 10 or higher
  • Access to printer and associated software
  • Access to scanner and associated software
  • Digital imaging software
  • File compression software

Windows users:

  • Microsoft Windows 7 or higher (Windows 8 recommended)
  • 1 Ghz or faster processer (2GHz recommended)

Mac OS users:

  • Mac OSX v10.5 or higher (Mac OSX v10.6 recommended)
  • 1 Ghz or faster processer (2GHz recommended)

Physical requirements

  • Some treatments require the learner to be able to physically massage the client during a treatment.
  • Able to sit for long periods of time to complete the treatments.
  • Maintain posture to minimise fatigue and risk of injury during treatment.
  • Some of the duties for manual handling in beauty salons may include:
    • cleaning treatment rooms, e.g. cleaning wax pots, removing wax from floors and benches.
    • cleaning the retail area - dusting shelves which are high to reach, packing away stock.
    • unloading and unpacking stock - unloading large boxes in a repetitive motion.
    • assisting clients - helping clients onto the bed.


To successfully complete this course, you will require basic computing skills. This includes:

  • Creating, saving and editing Microsoft Office documents.
  • Accessing and searching the internet.
  • Downloading and saving documents from websites.
  • Uploading documents through websites.
  • Participating in online discussions.
  • Compressing image files.
  • Connecting digital cameras and downloading and storing images.

Audio visual requirements

  • You will need access to software to view online videos and images. Software such as Adobe Reader, Windows Media Player, Windows Photo Viewer etc. are available as a free download from the internet. 
  • You'll also need access to a digital video recording device and/or digital camera and associated software to save and upload video and image files to OpenSpace. Many mobile phones and smart phones include this technology. 

Other technology requirements

  • Office equipment and resources including telephone, photocopier, scanner and printer.

Language, Literacy and Numeracy

Our free online assessment tool can help give you an idea of the language, literacy and numeracy skills needed to study a VET course. This tool can also help you determine your learning level and help you plan your future studies. You can access the Language, Literacy and Numeracy tool here.

Payment options

Pay in full

If you pay your course fees up-front in full, you’ll benefit from a discount. When you pay in full, we don’t have to spend extra money on administration for tasks such as payment plan processing. Instead, we get to pass this saving onto you in the form of a discount.

zipMoney Payment Plan

If you need a little more flexibility in your finances, and want to pay off your course fees over a longer period of time, we can assist by organising zipMoney to pay your course fees directly to us on your behalf, and you pay this loan back to ZipMoney over a period of agreed time with them. zipMoney provides you flexible options of selecting a 24, 36 or 48 months interest-free* payment plan (dependant on which course you are enrolling into) to suit your lifestyle, giving you more flexibility than ever before. 

Payment Plan

Pay for your course in weekly or fortnightly instalments. By paying in instalments, you can schedule your payments around your regular outgoings and get ahead without breaking the bank. Open Colleges payment plans are interest-free.

Studying online with Open Colleges

Flexibility - study at your own pace

When you study online with Open Colleges you’re in control.

You can choose to complete your course quickly or keep to a steady pace, and with no deadlines or schedules to stick to, fitting your learning around your everyday commitments is easy.

Everything you need to study is online so you can study wherever you like – but that doesn’t mean you’re on your own.

OpenSpace is our purpose-built online learning platform. It’s where you’ll go to access your learning materials, contact your expert trainers and assessors, upload your assessments and find all the support and motivation you need to keep going from the OC community.


Your online community

What is OpenSpace?

Open Colleges offers you a custom-designed online-learning platform called OpenSpace.

Your learning platform is the heart of your study experience. This is where you'll navigate through your course materials, contact your trainers and assessors, and connect with other online students.



What can you do in OpenSpace?

OpenSpace provides you with a secure, interactive learning environment that allows you to access a wealth of learning resources. In OpenSpace you can:

  • Access all your course materials, including videos and other digital resources
  • Complete the learning activities related to your course
  • Get the latest news about Open Colleges and your course
  • Get to know your fellow students by posting in the course forums, and find a 'Study Buddy'
  • Connect with your Trainers and Assessors
  • Access extensive online libraries for research
  • Upload your assessments, view feedback, and access your grades 

It’s just like a real campus – but it’s available anywhere and anytime.

How to get support

Academic support

Your experienced trainers are available in OpenSpace to answer any questions you may have regarding the learning materials or assessments.

Your training operations manager can also provide you with advice and support regarding the overall course. 

Student support

The student support team is your one-stop service centre for all student administrative issues – including enrolment, change of contact details, OpenSpace support, assessment results and certification.

You can access the student support team in OpenSpace or by email or phone

Online Community Support Officers

Your friendly in-platform support officers help students make the most out of their OpenSpace learning experience through managing the discussion forums, providing orientation and study skill webinars, and one-to-one support calls.

Peer support

As a student of Open Colleges you will join a community of over 65,000 people who are also studying online. Through OpenSpace you can connect and collaborate with others to share study tips and advice. 

Our students find this is a great way to keep motivated and build lasting friendships and networks. 

Work Placement Support

If your course contains work placement, the work placement support team can provide you with support, advice and resources if you encounter difficulties in securing a workplace for your work placement.

You can access the work placement support team via your trainer and assessor or the student support team.

About Open Colleges

Our history and heritage

Open Colleges has been delivering quality education for over 125 years. During this time, we have honed our unique learning model to become one of Australia’s leaders in online learning.

We’ve achieved this by continuously evolving our approach to meet the needs of our learners by offering flexible, accessible, affordable and supportive courses.

We have helped over 450,000 people in the last decade alone gain the skills to launch, change or take the next step in their careers.

All of us at Open Colleges put the student at the centre of everything we do, whether that’s helping you find the right course, designing a new course, making improvements to our online campus or giving the support you need to reach your goals.

Commitment to quality

December 2013 saw Open Colleges Australia (the holding company of Open Colleges Pty Ltd) become part of Apollo Education Group, Inc.

Being part of Apollo gives Open Colleges access to the expertise, experience and educational resources of the University of Phoenix (USA), Institute of Professional Development (USA), BPP University (UK) and other institutions in the Apollo global network.

Our ongoing partnerships and place within the Apollo family ensure we continue to deliver a student experience that’s best in class.


With Open Colleges you can:

  • Study nationally recognised qualifications
  • Choose from over 100 online courses
  • Fit study around your family or work commitments
  • Enrol 365 days of the year
  • Find a payment option that works for you
  • Get academic and student support – online or over the phone
  • Join a community of thousands of like-minded students

Get in touch

Still got a question?

Call an Education Advisor on 1300 161 345 for more details about this course and the enrolment process.

It’s our priority to ensure you enrol in the perfect course so an Education Advisor will be in touch shortly to discuss your specific goals and what you want to achieve through studying online. They’ll clearly explain the course options that would suit you best and why they would work for you and talk you through how online learning with Open Colleges works.