Level 3 BTEC National Foundation Diploma in Forestry & Arboriculture


Hadlow Campus

Start Date


This course will cover the hard skills of the industry such as, tree felling and chainsaw maintenance, as well as plant and soil science and the working life skill sets that employers look for. Students develop the skills required to identify, prevent and control common pests and diseases in trees. The style of teaching is hands-on learning with classroom theory which complement each other. If you are interested in Forestry and Arboriculture, then this course will suit your interests and lead you towards gaining employment in this wide and exciting sector. Anyone looking to break into this industry base will be well prepared through this course, to both get ahead and broaden their own horizons on what they could do for a career.

The following are examples of some of the topics students can expect to study within the course:

• Professional working responsibilities
• Plant and soil sciences
• Work experience in the land-based industry
• Identification, planting and care of trees
• Trees and shrub pruning and maintenance
• Tree felling and chainsaw safety
• Estate skills
• Tree pests and diseases
• Functional skills/GCSE - English and maths

The course is taught to encourage self-learning and works to develop reflective practice amongst its students. We formatively overview students every day and build a total record as opposed to a series of simple fact checking summative tests. We do this by a combination of classroom theory work that links to small and large scale practicals. We use self-lead research projects per unit, which are guided by the lectures but are owned and developed by the students.

There are one off tests both verbal and written with a focus on drawing out knowledge from the learners not just fact checking. A key component on our assessments is cross unit linking. This helps develop a broader view and draws in learning across disciplines. The idea being we can continuously evaluate the learners over a long period and adjust our learning to fill in any weakness we see developing.

Although most units are internally reviewed some units are externally checked by the awarding body, this helps keep quality at a high level. This is normally formed of external examiners coming in and setting tasks for learners to demonstrate their knowledge and abilities. Or work being sent out to be marked by the awarding body.

Common direct employment from this course is into environmental management businesses, the National Trust, wildlife conservation organisations, local authorities, landscaping firms, Forestry estates, arboriculture businesses and also independent estate work. The opportunity to move into the wider countryside sectors. The personal skill developed are also transferable into public facing industries and those sectors that require skilled workers like the leisure sectors. We also look to build a suitable set of skills sets that allow the learner to progress into further education.

Students are required to buy specific equipment that is commiserate with working within the Forestry and Arboricultural sector. We also require that Forestry and Arboriculture College livery is worn.

There is also a reading list that is updated regularly at the College which would be worth reviewing and any books the student may find useful should be considered.

    Hadlow Campus

  • 1 Year

    Full time

  • free for 16-18 year olds

  • 19+ FEES


  • Awarding body

    Pearson Education Ltd (Formerly EDEXCEL)

Entry requirements

You will need a minimum of 4 GCSEs A*- C / 9 - 4 Grade or equivalent (Level 2 Diploma), which must include GCSE in English OR maths A*- C / 9 – 4 Grade.