Advanced Certificate in Applied Management (Horses)

Study equine management online. Learn about horse care, horse psychology, pasture management, stable design, and more.

Course CodeVBS001
Fee CodeAC
Duration (approx)900 hours
QualificationAdvanced Certificate

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  • Are you passionate about horses?
  • Do you want to learn more than just the basics of horse care?
  • Is your dream to be a professional in this field?
  • Are you working in this field and need a good solid qualification?
  • Want to combine horse management skills with business management
This course is right for you - whether you are starting at the bottom or want to progress in your current role.

Learn BOTH Horse Care and MANAGEMENT

 This course is designed to equip managers, supervisors, or people who want to work up to these positions within the industry (e.g. at a riding school, race track, stud, farm etc.) with the necessary management skills required to undertake such a role. It is an "experiential based" learning program which will get you involved with the equine industry as you study.

For ongoing success in the equine industry you need to become "connected" and remain "connected", so that you can see and adapt to recent changes, and ongoing changes as your career moves forward.

The four Core business modules
and three horse care units are combined with your selection of two general studies elective units.

The choice of electives allows you to integrate the knowledge you gain through "real-life" or relevant experiences in equine workplaces or through undertaking focused Research Projects that are directed toward your specific goals and interests.


Core ModulesThese modules provide foundation knowledge for the Advanced Certificate in Applied Management (Horses).
 Business Operations VBS006
 Management VBS105
 Marketing Foundations VBS109
 Office Practices VBS102
Stream ModulesStudied after the core modules, stream modules cover more specific or niche subjects.
 Horse Care I BAG102
 Horse Care II BAG204
 Horse Care III BAG302
Elective ModulesIn addition to the core modules, students study any 2 of the following 4 modules.
 Research Project I BGN102
 Workshop I BGN103
 Research Project II BGN201
 Workshop II BGN203

Note that each module in the Advanced Certificate in Applied Management (Horses) is a short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.



This is the final requirement that you must satisfy before receiving your award. There are two options available to you to satisfy this requirement:

One option

If you work in the industry that you have been studying; you may submit a reference from your employer, in an effort to satisfy this industry (ie. workplace project) requirement.
Another Option

If you do not work in the relevant industry, you might undertake either :
  • 2 Workshop Projects  OR
  • 2 Research projects OR
  • 1 Workshop Project and 1 Research project 



Through knowledge of natural equine behaviour we can obtain insights into how a horse should be handled. 

Domesticated horses are subjected to unnatural intervention and influence by humans.

Problems in horse behaviour (discussed in later lessons) are usually due to not understanding the inborn behavioural needs and not adequately providing for those genetically driven needs.

Though true wild horses don’t exist, there are domestic horses which do exist in the wild. By studying the behaviour patterns of such horses (and other wild equines such as zebra’s) it is possible to develop a strong insight into inborn behaviour patterns.


Social Behaviour
Natural herds are normally up to 20 individuals (either a stallion and mares, or a bachelor group. Sometimes an animal will become a loner (due to others dying, or being excluded from a group). Loners tend to join new groups or die early. Horses have an ability to form friendships with each other (and people); which can be sustained for life. Friendships are not determined by rank.

Daily Routine 
Up to 70% of the day is spent eating; 5 to 20% standing awake and 10-20% dozing. Five to 15% of the day is spent moving without feeding. Behavioural problems can result if eating time is dramatically reduced, or the days are organised into rigid schedules. It may be ideal for a horse owner to feed, groom and exercise horses at a precise time every day, but doing so is in contrast to natural routine, and can result in excess nervousness and excitement
In nature, a stallion normally holds the highest rank, followed by a dominant mare (usually older and stronger. Stronger, more experienced and fitter animals are dominant over weaker ones. Psychological factors as well as physical characteristics can contribute to rank; and it is possible for a smaller animal to rank higher than a larger one.  Higher ranked animals have privileges over lower ones. Some authorities consider rank to be primarily inborn, but others believe it is more a learned behaviour. Individual distance parameters develop (in accord with rank) between individual horses in any group. Foals will maintain a relatively close distance to their mothers of coarse, but horses at opposite ends of the rankings in a herd will maintain a greater distance apart than those closer to each other in rank.

Aggressive behaviour is in response to situations that arise. Without the stimuli, naturally aggressive animals may not demonstrate a great deal of aggression anyway.
A horse can exhibit aggression on various levels: facial expressions (i.e. Ears laying back, nostrils narrowed, mouth corners pulled back and down); threatening without contact (i.e. Swinging head, rear leg threats, bite threats) or more seriously with bodily contact (i.e. Kicking and biting)

Horses will occupy a range but are not “territorial”, so meetings between herds (or stallions) are often relatively peaceful. During mating season however, serious fighting can occur between competing stallions.


Anyone might get a job as a farm labourer, or mucking out stables, but if you want a sustainable and exciting career, plus a good, well paid job - then you need a higher level of knowledge and skill, plus a sound understanding of the scope and nature of the equine industry.

This course helps you to achieve that

Success in the equine industry is not just a matter of being able to do the job. It is also very much dependent upon the attitude you have and the decisions you make.

With the strong foundation gained through this course, you will have a great standing for a successful career in equine management.

Where can you work when you have finished this course?
  • A riding school
  • A race track
  • A horse stud
  • An agistment property

Let us help YOU towards working in your dream job!

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Dr. Gareth Pearce

Veterinary scientist and surgeon with expertise in agriculture and environmental science, with over 25 years of experience in teaching and research in agriculture, veterinary medicine, wildlife ecology and conservation in the UK, Australia and New Zealand
Cheryl Wilson

Cheryl has spent two decades working in agriculture, equine and education industries, across England, Scotland, Australia and New Zealand. She graduated with a B.Sc.(Hons), HND Horse Mgt, C&G Teaching Cert. For several years, Cheryl managed the distance
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