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New Zealand Certificate in Apiculture

Level 3

Discover the fascinating world of sustainable beekeeping and how to become a beekeeper in UCOL's New Zealand Certificate in Apiculture.

Beekeeper holding honeycomb
Quick info

Level: 3

Locations: Palmerston North, Whanganui

Duration: 5 months full-time

Palmerston North
24 Jul 2017 - 24 Nov 2017

24 Jul 2017 - 24 Nov 2017

Domestic Fees:*
$2,790.08Scholarship info

International Fees:*

* Fees are indicative only, and are inclusive of the student services levy and GST (goods and services tax). Fees for multi-year programmes are for one year of study.

Learn how to start beekeeping by acquiring the skills and knowledge to work safely and productively in a beekeeping environment, and contribute to this sustainable primary industry. 

UCOL's New Zealand Certificate in Apiculture is taught by bee keeping industry professionals and delivered via blended delivery and practical learning in real environments. 

In addition to gaining skills and knowledge valued by employers, you'll have the opportunity to complete an industry approved American Foulbrood Recognition course.

Career & Study Outcomes

Graduates of the qualification will be able to perfom the following tasks working as an assistant beekeeper for a commercial operator or as an independent beekeeper with a small number of beehives:

  • Maintain, manipulate and operate beehives to produce quality products and pollination services
  • Assist to transport beehives and bee products, and establish hives in new sites
  • Carry out a beehive disease management plan.

Student & Staff Profiles

Domestic Entry Requirements

NCEA Level 1 (including 10 Literacy credits and 10 Numeracy credits at Level 1)


Equivalent academic achievement


On a case-by-case basis at the discretion of the Executive Dean

International Entry Requirements

English language proficiency
International student applicants whose first language is not English must have an IELTS General or Academic score of 5 with no band score lower than 5 (or equivalent, including TOEFL). IELTS scores used must be taken from a single IELTS Test Report Form (i.e. combining scores from more than one test is not permissible). UCOL is a TOEFL iBT testing centre. The English Proficiency test is accepted for English language entry into all UCOL programmes. 

Under 20 years of age
For international applicants under 20 years of age who do not hold NCEA, International Academic Qualifications Entry Criteria apply.

Advice & Guidance

UCOL's New Zealand Certificate in Apiculture (Level 3) comprises 65 credits.

Students need to be aware of possible allergic or anaphylactic reactions that may occur following interaction with bees.

If you have any special needs or requirements, put these in writing and advise the Programme Leader before the course begins.

Learning is a blend of theory, technical skills and practical work experience to help students gain a good mix of essential skills and knowledge in the classroom, on-line and on the land. You'll need access to a computer and Internet to complete on-line learning requirements.

Work experience
Work experience of up to 80 hours is part of the programme. You'll need to budget for associated travel costs.

Additional qualification
Students will be given the opportunity to complete the American Foul Brood (AFB) Recognition Course and Exam, which is an initial compliance component for individuals to meet industry requirements specific to the Disease Elimination Conformity Agreement (DECA).

Recognition of Prior Learning
Applications for Recognition of Prior Learning, including Cross Credit, Credit Transfer and Assessment of Prior Learning may be made on the Recognition of Prior Learning Form where a student believes all learning outcomes for a course have already been met.

Application checklist
It will make the process easier if you prepare the following before you apply:

  • National Student Number (NSN) (If you don't have a NSN, you may request one from NZQA, or you can supply a verified copy of your birth certificate, passport or Whakapapa statement.)
  • Evidence of your highest level of academic achievement (and evidence of prior learning, if applicable)
  • Evidence that you meet the entry requirements of the programme
  • Check if you're eligible for additional support or a scholarship. If you're 19 years or younger, you may be eligible to enrol in one of our free Youth Transition programmes.

Note that you will need to provide any verified documents in person, via post or email.

Course Information

  • Beekeeping Fundamentals
  • Beehive Disease Management Planning
  • Beehive Disease Management Control
  • Manipulating Hives

The programme includes the opportunity to complete the American Foulbrood (AFB) Recognition Course and Exam leading to application for Disease Elimination Conformity Agreement (DECA).


The programme is approved by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority under the provisions of the Education Act 1989, and Universal College of Learning (UCOL) Trading as Universal College of Learning (UCOL) is accredited to teach it.