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Certificate III in Equine Studies


Certificate III in Equine Studies 22513VIC

Course Overview

The Certificate III in Equine Studies is the recognised qualification to start working in the equine industry. You'll develop a foundation of understanding about the industry and the principles of working with horses, studying topics such as behaviour, care, nutrition, anatomy and physiology.

This course is offered in two modes;

  1. As a VETDSS subject for secondary school students, delivered over 2 years
  2. As a public course for Adult learners, where the course may be completed part-time over 1 year

Please note that riding horses is not part of the course delivery.

Pre-selected electives for Adult learners and VETDSS students applicable. Elective alternatives are available for Recognition of Prior Learning.

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 will enable successful graduates to apply for employment in different sectors of the equine industry in roles such as stablehands or stud hands.

Graduates can also undertake further study in a range of equine or equine related qualifications in horse breeding, sport or racing.

Course Dates & Times

Wangaratta - Tone Road

Adult learners - Starts on 12/07/2021 - Blended online / 2021

Adult Learners - Starts on 22nd Feb - Online & On Campus - 9am to 4pm / 2022

1. Subsidised Standard
2. Subsidised Standard (Concession)
3. Full Fee
Course Materials
Student Services Fees (per year)

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

Training package entry requirements

There are no training package requirements for this qualification.

GOTAFE preferred entry requirements

Before being accepted into the course applicants must:

  • Attend an interview (Adult students only).
  • Undertake a Pre-training Review to document previous work experience and qualifications and assess suitability for the course (Adult students only).
  • Complete a Core Skills Profile for Adults (CSPA) test to ensure the required language, literacy and numeracy levels are met for the course (Adult students only).

Applicants must also:

  • Have had some experiences with horses.
  • Be aware that working with horses can be physically demanding and a moderate level of physical fitness, agility and strength is required. Students must be able to perform tasks including carrying feed/water buckets, manoeuvring wheelbarrows, using brooms, rakes, shovels and lifting gear (e.g. rugs/saddles) onto a horse.
  • Be over 15 years of age at the time of commencement.
  • Complete a self-assessment of their horse skills, prior to entry.
  • Have reliable access to a computer, internet and email in order to undertake the online components of the course.

It is recommended students have current Tetanus immunisation.

selection process will involve the student’s school VET coordinator who will approve the student engaging in this VETDSS program.

Core Units
Handle horses safely
Apply knowledge of horse behaviour
Work effectively in an equine organisation
Implement horse health and welfare practices
Implement and monitor horse feeding programs
Relate equine form to function
Identify equine anatomy
Identify and describe equine physiology
Elective Units
Work safely in industries with horses
Lunge educated horses
Contribute to health and safety of self and others
Handle racehorses in stables and at trackwork
Examine horse breeding principles and practices
Prepare for the care of pregnant mares, foals and young horses

Assessments will be varied and have been designed to provide students to build a portfolio of evidence of their skills and knowledge. Assessment methods may include:

  • Online quizzes
  • Annotated photos
  • Written assignments
  • Practical assessment on campus and through practical placement in industry

Skye Rhodes-Mitchell

Adult students

  • The course will be completed part-time over 1 year.
  • Students undertake training by attending 38 x 1 hour webinars/tutorials, 5 practical workshops
  • It is recommended students complete 40 hours of practical experience in the equine industry, where they can undertake duties related to their units of study and gain valuable knowledge and skills.
  • Adults are required to attend the first practical workshop on commencement of course, with the other four training workshops highly recommended.

VETDSS students

  • The course will be completed part-time over 2 years
  • Students must receive the endorsement of their school to enrol in this course
  • Students in Year 1 undertake their training by attending 28 x 1 hour webinars/tutorials, 2 x practical skills workshop days plus an optional 1 x day excursion of horse breeding stud enterprises.
  • Students in Year 1 can complete 80 hours of practical experience in the equine industry, where they will undertake duties related to their units of study and gain valuable knowledge and skills.
  • Students in year 2 undertake their training by attending 28 x 1 hour webinars/tutorials, plus 3 x webinars/tutorials for exam revision if undertaking studies for ATAR, 3 x practical workshop training days.

It is important that students commit to all course requirements, including study and assessments the students may need to complete outside their normal training sessions.
These include online learning, weekly webinars and tutorials. A webinar schedule is provided on enrolment and webinars are recorded for convenience.

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

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

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 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.

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