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Roof structures terminology and types


The purpose of this standard is to provide the candidate with the knowledge of types of roof structures and roofing terminology.

CITB has developed this standard in discussion with industry


Minimum 1 day of 6 learning hours

Purpose / scope

The purpose of this standard is to provide the candidate with the knowledge of types of roof structures and roofing terminology.

The scope of this standard covers:

  • types of roof construction
  • types of roof attachments and accessories  
  • types of roof materials
  • types of insulated roof structures
  • types of roof decking
  • liquid applied membranes (LAMs)
  • roofing analysis and comparison
  • how to perform a roof identification test (desk-based)
  • slope/fall requirements and simple calculations
  • decking for structural and architectural roofs
  • how to identify and handle waste materials for recycling and disposal
  • environmental waste management
  • legislation, codes of practice, standards, and guides. 

Occupational relevance

Training delivered against this standard is relevant to the following occupational group(s):

  • operative and craft
  • supervision.

Candidate prerequisites

There are no candidate pre-requisites as part of this standard. However, a basic knowledge of liquid applied membrane roofing terminology and techniques would be beneficial.

Instruction / supervision

As a minimum, course instructors must be able to demonstrate that, in relation to this standard, they have:

  • A train the trainer or instructional techniques course certificate
  • Successfully completed training to this standard 
  • At least 2 years relevant industrial experience
  • A verifiable CV.


The following methods may be used in the delivery of this standard:

  • classroom and workshop

All materials and equipment must be of a suitable quality and quantity for candidates to achieve learning outcomes and must comply with relevant legislation.

The class size and candidate/instructor ratio must allow training to be delivered in a safe manner and enable candidates to achieve the learning outcomes.

This standard is considered to contain 51 per cent or more theoretical learning.


For the successful completion of training, candidates must complete an end of course practical assessment or knowledge test that measures the learning outcomes and has a pass or fail criteria.

Quality assurance

Quality assurance against this standard will require initial approval of the training organisation and their content mapped to the standard. 

CITB will also conduct an approval intervention, either desk-based or centre visit, to ensure the training organisation can meet the requirements of the Training Standard. 

Approved training organisations (ATOs) will be required to present information on records of training and assessment upon request to CITB for desk-based analysis. They will also be visited annually by the CITB quality assurance team.


There are no mandatory renewal or recommended refreshment requirements for this standard.

Approval date

November 2018

Review cycle

Either on request or in 3 years from approval date.

Learning outcomes

Learning outcomes
The candidate will be able to Additional guidance to support learning outcome

Types of roof construction including:

  • bonnet, box gable, butterfly, clerestory, combination, cross gabled, cross hipped, curved, dome, dormer, Dutch gable, flat, front gable, gambrel, half hipped, hip and valley, mansard, m-shaped, open gable, parapet, pyramid hip, saltbox, skillion, simple hip, and lean-to

Examples of:

  • manufacturer’s instructions
  • roofing drawings
  • requirements/specifications
  • architects drawings


Photos and videos of roof installations:

  • outside, inside, and during construction

Types of roof attachments and accessories including:

  • skylights, sunlights, vents, sumps, gutters, solar panels, rooflights, cowlings, exhausts, fans, terminations, upstands, air conditioning units, lightning conductors, and expansion joints

Types of roof materials including:

  • clay tiles, concrete tiles, natural slate, bituminous felt, mastic asphalt, asphalt shingles, liquid (5-types), single-ply, and metal (steel, lead, zinc, copper, alloy), wood shingles, polymer (synthetic), fibre cement, solar (PV) roofs, and green roofs

Types of insulated roof structures including:

  • cold, warm, inverted, insulation values, condensation control, terminations, perimeter details, and U-values

Types of roof decking including:

  • structural, architectural, flat, pitched, and curved

Of substrate materials including:

  • concrete, concrete screeds (normal or light), plywood, oriented strand board (OSB), softwood timber boards, foamed plastics insulation boards (polystyrene and polyurethane), and cement fibreboard


Liquid applied membranes (LAMs) including:

  • types, designs, ultra violet effects, foot traffic effects, ponding, methods of protection, how to test a flat roof

Roofing analysis and comparison including:

  • appearance, uses, materials, construction, benefits, features, advantages, drawbacks, and fire ratings

How to perform a roof identification test (desk-based)

Photos of roofs to practice roof identification

Slope/fall requirements and simple calculations

Examples of complete calculations for scenarios, and samples for practice.

Decking for structural and architectural roofs


How to identify and handle waste materials for recycling and disposal

  • SDS sheets for COSSH


Environmental waste management including:

  • emergency preparedness (risk assessment, procedures, controls), emergency response (spill kits, procedures, containment), waste licence, legislation, local authority requirements, and employer policies


Examples of:

  • PPE
  • SDS sheets for COSSH
  • risk assessments
  • safe work practices/procedures
  • environmental legislation

Describe where to find legislation, codes of practice, standards, and guides 


Extracts/prints/PDFs of:

  • legislation, BS/EU standards, codes of practice (BS), and HSE Guides

Additional information about this standard

Training at height

  • BS 8454:2006 Code of practice for delivery of training & education for work at height and rescue

Work at Height Safety Association

  • View WAHSA Technical guidance notes. These are a free resource, provided and maintained by WAHSA and its member companies for reference. They assist specifiers, managers, and end users of fall protection equipment.

Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Working at height guides

HSE guides


See relevant legislation

  • Health and Safety at Work etc Act (HSWA) 1974
  • The Work at Height Regulations (WHR) 2005
  • Work at Height (Amended) 2007
  • Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) Regulations 2002
  • Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) at Work Regulations 1992
  • Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER) (1998 UK 1999 NI)
  • Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH )2002
  • Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) 1998
  • Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR ) 1995
  • Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (CDM) 2015
  • Construction (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1996
  • Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 as amended 2002
  • Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005
  • Control of Vibration at Work Regulations 2005

Building regulations

  • Building and Buildings, England and Wales: The Building Regulations 2010.
  • The Building (Scotland) Regulations 2004
  • Statutory Rules of Northern Ireland

British standards

View all available British Standards at the BSI website.

  • BS EN 1847: 2009. Flexible sheets for waterproofing. Plastics and rubber sheets for roof waterproofing. Methods for exposure to liquid chemicals, including water.
  • BS 6229: 2003 Flat roofs with continuously supported coverings. Code of practice. 
  • BS 5250: 2011+A1: 2016. Code of practice for control of condensation in buildings. 
  • BS EN 13501-5: 2016. Fire classification of construction products and building elements. Classification using data from external fire exposure to roofs tests.
  • BS 476-3: 2004. Fire tests on building materials and structures. Classification and method of test for external fire exposure to roofs.
  • BS 8000-0:2014. Workmanship on construction sites. Introduction and general principles. BS 8000-1 to 16 are partially replaced/superseded by BS 8000-0:2014.
  • BS 8437:2005 Code of practice for selection, use and maintenance of personal protection systems and equipment for use in the workplace

European technical approvals (ETAs) ETAG 005

  • Part 1 General
  • Part 2: Polymer modified bitumen emulsions and solutions
  • Part 3: Glass reinforced resilient unsaturated polyester resins
  • Part 4: Flexible unsaturated polyesters
  • Part 5: Hot applied polymer modified bitumens
  • Part 6: Polyurethanes
  • Part 7: Bitumen emulsions and solutions
  • Part 8: Water dispersible polymers

National Building Specification (NBS)

  • A multi-volume subscription library of clauses covering most elements of building construction. Liquid applied membrane roofing is in Specification J42.

Building information modelling (BIM)

Liquid Roofing Waterproofing Association (LRWA)

The LWRA provides free downloads of technical information PDFs

LRWA guidance notes

  • No 1 – Roof, balcony & walkway inspection for the specification of liquid applied waterproofing systems
  • No 2 – Substrates for liquid applied waterproofing systems for roofs, balconies & walkways
  • No 3 – Generic types of liquid applied waterproofing systems for roofs, balconies & walkways
  • No 4 – Roof, balcony & walkway refurbishment using liquid waterproofing systems
  • No 5 – Health & safety for liquid applied waterproofing systems on roofs, balconies & walkways
  • No 6 – Safe use of liquid applied waterproofing systems
  • No 7 – Specifier guidance for flat roof falls
  • No 9 – Waterproofing of profiled fibre cement sheet roofing & cladding
  • No 10 – Waterproofing of metal profiled sheet roofing & cladding
  • No 11 – Use of adhesives for liquid flat roof systems
  • No 12 – Termination of waterproofing at cills & thresholds
  • No. 13 – Drying of existing roof substrates prior to installation of liquid waterproofing systems

LRWA detail drawings (roof sketches)

  • 1 - Perimeter kerb detail GRP trim
  • 2 - Upstand termination detail to pre-cut chase
  • 3 - Termination detail to outlet with sump gutter
  • 4 - Insulated upstand to lead flashing
  • 6 – Rooflight detail
  • 7 – Termination bar detail to upstand
  • 8 – Roof pipe penetration detail
  • 9 – Roof expansion joint detail

LRWA codes of practice

  • Roofs, balconies & walkways code of practice
  • Hot melt code of practice
  • Car park code of practice