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Further Education - Colleges


Colleges offering further education qualifications in forestry, arboriculture and urban forestry

Colleges Careersportal Cbwc 270715 PtFurther education is any study completed after compulsory education (high school) that is not higher education. Vocational qualifications in forestry and A-levels can be studied in colleges across the UK. Many land-based colleges also provided industry specific qualifications such as licences to practice as well. Vocational qualifications offered at colleges are typically free to those under the age of 24. However, you should check with the college you have applied to with regard to costs and funding for a specific course.

The following are details of further education establishments that offer full-time and part-time forestry and urban forestry vocational qualifications. While every possible effort is made to keep this information up to date, occassionally colleges discontinue qualifications so you should check with the college before making any further plans. Details of distance learning qualifications offered by any of the following landbased colleges can be found on the 'Other Learning Providers' page.


Colleges in England

The following is a list of colleges offereing forestry and urban forestry qualifications in England.



Abingdon & Witney College, Oxfordshire
Corporate College Link

Within the forestry and Arb courses you will develop practical skills where you will use a range of machinery, chainsaws and cover arboriculture, tree care and habbitat management. You will also devlop your knowledge of plant, tree and soil science, tree surveying and identification, pests and diseases, business and contract management. Work experience is integral to the course and you will be helpred to find a suitable placement. There will be opportunities for students to access external assessments to gain chainsaw and other related tree care licences to practice.

Askham Bryan College, Yorkshire & Newton Rigg College, Cumbria

The forestry courses aim to provide a level of understanding of the practical and theoretical elements of arboriculture and forestry. The courses provide learners with skills and knowledge coving topics such as tree identification, woodland and habitat management, forest and woodland management skills, practical tree management and much more. Students' work is assessed throughout the course and will be demonstrated through written and practical assignments. You may also be given the opportunity to gain a selection of nationally recognised industry qualifications.

 Bicton College, Devon 

Arboriculture courses at Bicton College provide sound knowledge and practical skills in tree and forestry management. Set in an area of outstanding natural beauty with a variety of natural habitats and wildlife, the College has an outstanding collection of mature specimen trees.

The Arboricultural Association and Bicton College are working in partnership to create a learning environment that raises the standard of both arboricultural knowledge and achievement. We aim to ensure that, in a challenging and rapidly changing environment, our students and stakeholders have access to the most current information for the benefit of both people and trees.

Bridgewater College, Cannington Centre for Landbased Studies, Somerset

If you enjoy working outdoors and are looking for a career in a demanding and well skilled industry, then a career in arboriculture may be for you. The skills you will need are taught using the College's excellent practical facilities including a wide range of industry standard machinery including chippers, chainsaws, a mobile work platform and stump grinders. With our excellent links to other forestry sites, you will never be short of a practical project or tree climbing practice!

We currently have excellent links with Westonbirt National Arboretum, where students have the opportunity to work amongst the 600 acres of rolling countryside and 18,500 catalogued trees and shrubs.


Capel Manor College, Enfield   
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Courses at Capel Manor College focus on teaching practical skills in working environments, we have exceptional arboriculture and countryside management tutors who are all industry-experienced.

Arboriculture is a vital industry involved with the planting, care and maintenance of trees in woodlands, rural and urban areas. It is closely linked to forestry, which is the science and practice of managing forests and woodlands. Our students go on to set up their own businesses, or to work as tree surgeons for employers and contractors, others build careers as tree officers, tree surveyors, tree inspectors, arborists, climbers and groundspeople.


Download the Capel Manor College, Arboriculture and Forestry Course Guide here

Chichester College, West Sussex

Forestry & Arboriculture courses are run at Brinsbury, the countryside campus of Chichester College. The forestry & arboriculture course cover a range of different of practical and theory units such as practical tree care skills, forest and woodland management, industry machinery use and management, business and work experience. The course uses the estate at Brinsbury and other sites locally for training. You need to be fit but will enjoy the teamwork and practical tasks.

Derby College, Derby

If you’re interested in a career in arboriculture and forestry management, our courses give you a thorough grounding in both the science and the practice. You will develop your abilities through practical tasks in woodlands at Broomfield Hall and other rural settings. 

East Durham College, Houghall Campus, Durham

Our arboriculture and forestry management courses prepare you for a range of exciting careers in the ‘arb’ and forestry industry. All courses offer a clear progression route, enabling you to gain further academic qualifications and ultimately improve your career opportunities.

Put simply arboriculture is the science and art of caring for trees. It covers the cultivation, management and study of individual trees, shrubs, vines and other perennial woody plants. It is both a practical and science-based discipline.

The skills and knowledge our students gain include tree identification, disease recognition, strength for tree climbing and safe use of various cutting equipment.

Preparation for the workplace is an important component of our arboriculture courses too, so work-related activities and work experience placements play a vital role in your education.


Eastern Otley College, Suffolk
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The technical and practical understanding required to successfully complete aboricultural tasks are essential to employers. With Easton College’s 245 hectare estate there are plenty of trees available to train anyone keen to learn about arboriculture.


Hadlow College, Kent 
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This comprehensive course is designed for students who like working with trees and wish to pursue a career in the forestry industry. You will benefit from industry experienced tutors, learn about the environmental importance of trees and carry out remedial and preventative pruning.

Throughout this course students may have the opportunity to take, at extra cost, additional training with external evaluation to assist them in gaining their industry licence to practice awards.



Hereford and Ludlow College, Holme Lacy Campus, Hereford
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This course is run by highly experienced and qualified staff, who will teach you on our superb estate. You will have the opportunity to acquire qualifications that are recognised and required by the industry. The programme includes basic chainsaw use, tree planting and maintenance as well as developing broader skills, which ensure your progression towards a rewarding and satisfying career.

Kingston Maurward College, Dorset

Studying for a diploma in Arboriculture is an ideal way for school leavers to start in the Dorset tree industry. These courses blend of theory and practical sessions which will build on your love of the outdoors. Learn a wide range of skills which will give you opportunities for future study or entry to employment. You will learn and practice modern methods of arboricultural techniques and tree care on the Kingston Maurward College estate and in local woodland sites.

Merrist Wood College, Surrey

Lessons are carried out in the woodlands and ornamental grounds of tthe College's 400 acre estate, classrooms, laboratories and field trips. Skilled and experienced tutors make full use of the site and their varied backgrounds during the course, whilst the diverse range of tree and shrub species in the woodlands, ornamental grounds and plant nursery provides an excellent resource for developing plant knowledge. Several renowned gardens and aboreta, such as Kew, Wisley and Winkworth, are within easy reach of Merrist Wood.


Corporate College Link

Moulton College, Northampton

Arboriculture students make use of an extensive range of practical resources as an important part of their course.  These include a well-stocked arboretum including over 100 different species  of specimen trees and an extensive College estate which includes areas of woodland and ornamental shrubberies with decorative trees, shrubs and herbaceous plants. There are specialist workshops for machinery maintenance and a wide range of specialist equipment including brushwood chippers, chainsaws, mobile elevated platforms and tree climbing ropes and harness to enable students to perfect all of the necessary skills for tree-work. In addition the college staff and students have special access to areas of woodland on local estates to develop tree felling and woodland management skills.


Myerscough College, Preston
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Arboriculture involves all aspects of the care and management of trees and woodlands in urban and rural areas, so that people and trees can co-exist in a sustainable environment. The arboriculture industry is rapidly expanding, fuelled by growing awareness of the need for correct tree management and increased current public interest in environmental issues.

Myerscough College works closely with employers and industry organisations to ensure that our students have the necessary skills and expertise to meet the requirements of this growing industry. Myerscough College really is at the ‘cutting edge’ of developments in arboriculture. It is rightly regarded by many people as the leading UK centre for further and higher education in the subject.


Northumberland College, Kirkley Hall, Northumberland
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Northumberland College offers a range of exciting forestry and arboriculture courses. Our courses include units such as tree climbing, tree pruning, legal aspects, plant science, tree identification, tree planting, tree felling and chainsaw use and many more.


Plumpton College, Sussex
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The forest industry is wide ranging and global in it’s influence and impact, from small community woodlands to issues of massive deforestation. Timber production affects practically every person on this planet either directly or indirectly. Forestry is primarily about the production of timber and timber based products to support continued global development. The need for people with specialist skills, vision and sensitivity to the enviroment has never been greater. Planning, forest nurseries, planting, maintenance, pest and disease control, harvesting, transportation, research,conservation, management systems, amenity and recreation are all areas covered by our range of Forestry courses.

Reaseheath College, Cheshire 

This course focuses on tree science, woodland management, forestry and tree care. Studying at Reaseheath and on other estates including some belonging to the Forestry Commission, you will gain a broad base of knowledge and skills, ideal for branching out into the forestry and arboriculture industry.

The course is designed to give you the skills and knowledge needed to pursue a career working in a variety of technical roles, including woodland management, professional tree care and allied industries, or to enable you to progress to a more advanced course.


Sparsholt College, Hampshire
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Undertaking a course in arboriculture or woodland management and conservation is essential for a career in this important area which focuses on the sustainable development of our countryside, our urban spaces, our leisure pursuits and the countryside environment. We provide courses for the people who will manage and work in our forestry industries for timber production as well as those who want to become tree surgeons working on individual trees in parks, streets and private gardens. Learning from experts in the field our students will acquire all the practical and scientific skills to work in the industry or to study at an advanced level. 


Warwickshire College Group, Pershore and Moreton Morrell
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These course will introduce students to all of the main areas of work involved in tree management, forestry and tree surgery. Subjects covered include understanding of the identification and selection of trees and shrubs, maintaining tools and machinery, felling and processing trees and plant and soil science. Students will also have the opportunity to undertake work experience in a relevant industry. Study is both practical and theory based.

Colleges in Scotland

The following is a list of colleges offereing forestry and urban forestry qualifications in Scotland.


Scottish Rural Universities Colleges, Barony Campus, Dumfries and Galloway

A forestry or arboricultural qualification from Barony Campus has opened doors for many students to develop wide ranging and interesting careers from becoming skilled forest craftsmen to technically proficient arborists and forest machine operators to forestry managers

Colleges in Wales

The following is a list of colleges offering forestry and urban forestry qualifications in Wales.



Coleg Cambria, Coleg Llysfasi Campus, Flintshire
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You will work towards industry standards to gain practical skills, as well as an understanding of forestry and conservation theory within approximately 150 acres of dedicated woodland managed under the Better Woodlands for Wales Scheme.

Whilst studying you will use a range of machinery and chainsaws on a daily basis, you will also have the opportunity to undertake external assessments to gain chainsaw and other related tree care certificates.

Hands on practical work experience and work placements are integral to the course and vital for future employment opportunities.


Coleg Meirion Dwyfor, Glynllifon Campus, Dolgellau
Corporate College Link

Our level 2 course is designed for students who have limited knowledge of the industry, and want to learn more about a range of topics and environmental issues. It prepares you to start your career, or to progress onto vocational qualifications at an advanced level.

Our level 3 course builds your knowledge of the sector, including aspects of wildlife, habitats, ecology and conservation. It prepares you to enter a range of careers, including those dealing with countryside organisations, their policy and planning, and their relationships to other bodies like Natural Resources Wales, RSPB and local councils. It also provides a vocational route into Higher Education.


Coleg Gwent, Usk Campus
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