Certificate II in Animal Studies


Contact Hours

Full time:

Varies depending on study type


Subsidised Standard:


Subsidised Standard (Concession):


Subsidised Trainee:


Subsidised Trainee (Concession):


Full Fee:


Course Materials:


Student Services Fees (per year):



Wallan - High Street

Wangaratta - Tone Road

Delivery Mode


On Campus

Industry Based Training

School Based Apprenticeship



Course Overview

Start your career in Animal Care with the Certificate II in Animal Studies.

You'll learn to care for the welfare of animals, including feeding, watering, and hygiene routines, and providing basic care for domestic dogs and cats. You'll also learn to provide basic animal first aid, prepare animals for surgery, and carry out daily practice routines.

This is a general qualification for entry into sectors of the animal care and management industry, where workers provide care for animals in workplaces such as animal shelters, kennels, catteries, sanctuaries and veterinary clinics.

At this level, work takes place under direct supervision within clearly defined guidelines for work activities.

The course can be delivered in the following ways:

  • In the workplace - 12-18 months
  • In the Classroom - 6 months
  • As a school-based apprenticeship/traineeship - 2 years part-time
  • As a VCE Vocational Training Program Approved by the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority - 2 years part-time
  • As a TCE Vocational Training Program Approved by the Tasmanian Department of Education - 2 years part-time
  • As part of the Bachelor of Veterinary Technology co-delivered with CSU - 4 months
  • Online - 1 year

Studying during COVID-19 Restrictions

We've had to make adjustments to how our courses are delivered due to the restrictions imposed by COVID-19. This means that we're currently offering a combination of delivery modes including online and flexible learning and, where we can, on-campus classes with strict social distancing in place.

Career Pathways

This course prepares you to work in the Animal Care and Management industry. Weekend work may be involved and a level of fitness is required that allows for safe handling of a range of animals.

You may find work in a Veterinary Clinic, Animal Shelter, Kennel/Cattery, or Sanctuary, performing the following duties:

  • Feeding and watering animals
  • Administering medication
  • Exercise and enrichment activities
  • Cleaning and disinfection
  • Grooming
  • Customer service
  • Documentation

Further Study

After graduating, you might like to undertake further study in the:

  • ACM30417 Certificate III in Companion Animal Services
  • ACM30617 Certificate III in Pet Grooming
  • ACM40418 Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing

Course Dates & Times

Wallan - High Street

Traineeship - Open from 15/02/2021 - 2021

Wallan - Starts on Monday 12th July - Online / 2021

Wangaratta - Tone Road

VETDSS - Starts on 27/01/2021 - Wednesdays - 9am to 4pm/2021

Traineeship - Open from 15/02/2021 - 2021

Tasmania Pathway Program - Starts on 27/01/2021 - Wednesdays - 9am to 4pm / 2021

On Campus - Starts on 12/07/2021 - Monday & Tuesday - 9am to 4pm / 2021

Workplace based - Open from 12/7/2021 / 2021

VETDSS - Starts on 02/02/2022 - Online & On Campus Prac Days - 9am to 4pm / 2022

On Campus - Starts on 15/02/2022 - On Campus Mon & Tue - 9am to 4pm / 2022

Online - Starts on 24/02/2022 - Online & On Campus Prac Days / 2022

Trainees - Open from 14/02/2022 - Workplace based / 2022

Workplace Based - Open from 14th February / 2022

Fee Information

1. Subsidised Standard: $2,709.00

2. Subsidised Standard (Concession): $542.00

3. Subsidised Trainee: $1,953.00

4. Subsidised Trainee (Concession): $391.00

5. Full Fee: $4,175.00

Course Materials: $441.00

Student Services Fees (per year): $70.00

The student tuition fees as published are subject to change given individual circumstances at enrolment. Please note all fees and charges are correct at time of publication for 2021 and may change without notice.

Students will be invoiced for the components of the course that they are enrolled into for each year or semester.

Material fees cover costs associated with the following where applicable, and not limited to:

  • Classroom activity consumables, handouts and booklets
  • E-Learning resources and associated license access fees
  • Excursions

Additionally some courses require students to purchase or supply text books, kits, tools, uniforms and personal protection equipment. Some specific materials may be purchased through the GOTAFE Bookshop. A full list with associated costs will be provided to you at your course information session or during the pre-training review Interview.

All students are required to pay an annual Student Services Fee (SSF) of $70.00. The Student Services Fee contributes to the provision of student engagement, learning and support services. SSF does not apply to short course participants.

Further details on fees available

Entry Requirements

Training package entry requirements

There are no mandated training package entry requirements.

GOTAFE preferred entry requirements

Before being accepted into the course applicants must:

  • Undertake a Pre-training Review to document previous work experience and qualifications and assess suitability for the course
  • Complete a Basic Key Skills Builder (BKSB) online test to ensure the required literacy & numeracy levels for the course are met. (excluding VETDSS Students)
  • For Trainees, please apply through an Apprenticeship Network Provider with your employer to organise your apprenticeship/traineeship contract prior to applying for this course.
  • Attend an induction which may be face to face, via skype/Teams or phone
  • Must be 16 years and over
  • Have access to reliable internet, email and Microsoft teams
  • Have physical stamina to safely handle a variety of animals
  • It is recommended that all successful applicants be immunised against tetanus and Q fever.

It is also desirable that all applicants:

  • Have at least an intermediate level of digital literacy to undertake the online component of the course

Workplace-based applications are required to have a minimum of 15 hours of paid employment in an approved animal care industry and as part of the Pre-training Review, provide previous work experience and qualifications.

Victorian & Tasmanian VETDSS students will have their suitability determined by their school.

Bachelor of Veterinary Technology students will have their suitability determined by CSU - a minimum ATAR of 70 is required.

Course Study Units

Core Units
ACMGAS201 - Work in the animal care industry
ACMGAS202 - Participate in workplace communications
ACMGAS203 - Complete animal care hygiene routines
ACMGAS204 - Feed and water animals
ACMGAS205 - Assist in health care of animals
ACMGAS206 - Provide basic first aid for animals
ACMSUS201 - Participate in environmentally sustainable work practices
ACMWHS201 - Participate in workplace health and safety processes
Elective Units
ACMCAS307 - Provide companion animal hydro-bathing services
ACMGAS101 - Investigate job opportunities in animal care and related industries
ACMGAS102 - Catch and handle a range of quiet animals
ACMGAS103 - Assist in the care of animals
ACMGAS208 - Source information for animal care needs
ACMGAS209 - Provide information on companion animals, products and services
ACMGAS308 - Communicate effectively with clients and team members
ACMINF301 - Comply with infection control policies and procedures in animal care work
ACMSPE304 - Provide basic care of domestic dogs
ACMSPE305 - Provide basic care of domestic cats
ACMVET201 - Assist with veterinary nursing reception duties
ACMVET202 - Carry out daily practice routines
ACMVET203 - Assist with surgery preparation
ACMWHS301 - Contribute to workplace health and safety processes

Assessment Methods

Assessment methods may include:

  • Written assignments
  • In class and/or online discussion forums
  • Short answer questions
  • Animal recognition photographs
  • Practical skills demonstration
  • Oral assessment – this may be conducted face to face or via skype/phone/zoom
  • Third-Party reports

Additional Information

Material fees are dependent on the enrolment type and cover all online and on-campus learning resources and consumables.

The following are recommended texts which are not covered by material fees, they may be borrowed from the library or purchased online. GOTAFE may have a limited number available for purchase. Please note these books are not compulsory.

  • Hotston-Moore, P. & Hughes, A., BSAVA Manual of Practical Animal Care, British Small Animal Veterinary Association, 2007 ISBN: 978-1-4051-3795-9
  • Dallas, S. E., & Jewell, S., Animal Biology and Care, ed 3, Wiley-Blackwell, 2014 ISBN : 978-1-118-27606-8

Stationery Requirements:

  • Notebooks
  • Pens
  • Colour highlighters
  • Sticky labels

IT requirements include the following access to:

  • a computer with reliable internet
  • YouTube for viewing training videos
  • Adobe for viewing PDF files
  • Microsoft Office
  • A printer and scanner

Course Co-ordinator

Skye Rhodes-Mitchell

Attendance & Commitment

It is important that students commit to all course requirements, including study and assessments the student may need to complete outside their normal training sessions.

You must commit to attending all on-campus classes/workshops and work placement requirements.

All students are expected to:

  • Complete online study by logging onto the online campus at least twice a week to complete self-paced learning activities
  • Attend the weekly webinars, these are recorded and uploaded to the online campus so students who miss the live webinar are able to view the webinar

Workplace-Based Students:

  • Will be required to have their supervisor sign off specific tasks within the workplace
  • Trainers will attend the workplace 4 times annually to conduct training and assessment - students must be available to meet their trainer at the agreed time and date.
  • Complete online study by logging onto the online campus at least twice a week to complete self-paced learning activities

Victorian VETDSS Students:

  • Victorian students attend the Wangaratta Regional Study Centre for single-day workshops on each school holiday, April, July and September
  • Students are expected to attend the compulsory weekly webinars, these are recorded and uploaded to the online campus so students who miss the live webinar are able to view the webinar
  • Students are required to organize their own work placement of 40 hours in an approved animal care industry

Tasmanian VETDSS Students

  • Attend a 4-day practical program held in Tasmania.
  • All VETDSS students must complete 40 hours of structured workplace learning in an animal care facility.
  • Students are expected to attend the compulsory weekly webinars, these are recorded and uploaded to the online campus so students who miss the live webinar are able to view the webinar

B. Veterinary Technology Students:

  • Must attend the ASC180 residential school at the Wangaratta Regional Study Centre in line with their residential school's program timetabled by CSU.
  • Must complete 80 hours of work placement


  • Students must attend the Tone Rd Campus Wangaratta 2 days per week
  • Students are required to organize their own work placement of 40 hours in an approved animal care industry


  • Students are expected to attend the compulsory weekly webinars, these are recorded and uploaded to the online campus so students who miss the live webinar are able to view the webinar
  • Students are required to organize their own work placement of 40 hours in an approved animal care industry
  • Students must attend practical workshops at the end of each semester at Tone Rd Wangaratta Regional Study Centre

Educational Support Services

As an enrolled student at GOTAFE you may access a wide range of academic support services to assist you to meet the academic challenges of your course from our Learning Support Unit.

Learning support

A free and confidential service to help you build the foundation skills you need to be successful at TAFE. Improve your english language, maths and/or writing skills; enhance your computer, exam and study skills.

Learn more about our learning support services


Our library team are passionate about supporting students to achieve their study goals. They have subject guides, referencing help, and online resources to assist you with you assessments.

Find how to reach out to our library in Shepparton

Jobs and study options

Our Skills and Jobs Centres can assist and talk through options for courses, careers, assistance with job applications and more.

Reach out to our Skills and Jobs Centres

Student Support

Whether you need support with time management, your mental health, grief and loss, a diagnosed disability, financial hardship, or any other challenge life through your way, we are here to help.

Support for personal issues

We have a dedicated team to ensure students have the help they need with personal issues impacting studies such as homelessness, family problems & setting up payment plans.

Find out how the Student Experience Team can help you

Disability support

Get access to the supports and adjustments you need for your disability or medical condition to be successful in your studies.

Seek support from our Equitable Learning Advisors

Counselling services

We offer free counselling services to help you work through life's challenges including grief and loss, mental health or relationships.

Learn about our Student Wellbeing Advisors

Learner's Rights

Refer to the Student Handbook for information regarding Learner’s Rights Student Handbook.

Further information is provided at course induction.


Please note: Eligible individuals who wish to access a government subsidised place, must participate in a Pre-training Review. This will consider your:

  • Aspirations/career goals
  • Educational attainment and capability
  • Literacy and numeracy skills
  • Suitability for Recognition for Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer

Enrolment in general public entry courses will require a selection interview. Please call 1300 468 233 to enquire further.

Skills Recognition

Skills Recognition is an assessment only process that may result in credits towards a part or full qualification. There is no formal training involved, although you may choose to complete further training as a result of the assessment process.

You can apply for Skills Recognition before you enrol in the qualification you are seeking. You can apply for Skills Recognition through one or both of the following processes:

  • Credit Transfer for formal training that might be equivalent to a new qualification or partial qualification
  • Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for people who have relevant and current skills and knowledge that they have gained through non-formal or informal learning i.e. work or life experience.