NPTC Advanced Technical Certificate in Horticulture (QCF) Level 3 | Kirkley Hall Campus | LBI0104F |Northumberland College

NPTC Advanced Technical Certificate in Horticulture (QCF) Level 3

Kirkley Hall Campus
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NPTC Advanced Technical Certificate in Horticulture (QCF) Level 3

Start Date:
10 September

Who is the course for?

This study programme offers a comprehensive introduction to a professional career in horticulture. The practical elements cover about 40% of the course and the theoretical elements about 60%. Examples of subjects taught are Plant Identification, Lawn Care, Plant Health, Garden Machinery, Plant and Soil Science. The depth of this knowledge will allow candidates to access employment in the sector or to progress onto a degree course as this qualification is fully equivalent to A-levels.

Do I need any formal qualifications?

Candidates would be expected to have at least 4 GCSEs at grade 4 (old grade C) or above, ideally including maths, English and science. Alternatively, a suitable Level 2 vocational qualification at Merit or above and maths and English at Level 2. Applications will also be considered from those with relevant experience. Mature students will be considered on their experience and skills.

What will I study on the course?

Your study will include: Identification, selection and use of ornamental plants, maintaining turf in parks and gardens, plant and soil science, land based machinery operations and Principles of plant health and protection.

This is a full time course with sessions over three days for one year. You will also have the opportunity to create a portfolio of 150 hours of work experience as part of your study programme

Your progress will be assessed through successfully achieve the following assessments:

- Multiple choice Health and Safety test

- An externally set, externally moderated assignment

- A synoptic examination

- One portfolio of evidence

- Optional unit assessments as required.

Additional enrichment qualifications include a Practical award in Horticulture and opportunities to complete NPTC courses i.e. Level 2 Award in the Safe Use of Brush-cutters and Trimmers (additional examination cost)

NPTC Advanced Technical Certificate in Horticulture (QCF) Level 3

After successful completion of the course you could progress with further studies at Kirkley Hall on a Foundation Degree in Horticulture then onto a top up BSc Hons Degree in Horticulture or employment in the following career pathways:

- Plant nursery work

- Landscaper

- Garden designer

- Garden centres

- Soil analysis laboratories

- Agronomist

- Garden consultant

- Botanic research

- Plant breeder

- Garden maintenance business

- Sport turf surfaces

- Conservationist

- Work in private estates or charities

Many of our learners study for free with a Fee Waiver when they are in receipt of qualifying benefits or studying a first full Level 2 or Level 3 qualification and meet age restrictions or are aged between 16-18.

If you are not entitled to a Fee Waiver, you may be entitled to receive Learner Support Funds to help with paying your course fees, or if you are aged over 19 and planning to study at Level 3 or 4 and have not previously studied at Level 3 or above you will be able to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan that covers the costs of your tuition fees. The loan will not cover the cost of any examination / registration fees and these will need to be paid for separately, or you may be entitled to receive Learner Support Funds to help cover the cost.

All learners may also apply for help with the cost of travel to college and the college may be able to help with the costs of childcare, travel, books, equipment and meals.

For more information our Help Hub team is available on 01670 841 200 or email

How can I apply for this course?

Apply online by clicking here and registering, alternatively please contact our Help Hub on 01670 841 200, email or drop in to one of our open events.

Alternatively, if this is the course for you please click Book and Enrol Now – please note this option is only available for certain courses.

Where can I get any further information about the course?

You may find further information within this website including within case studies and our media gallery. You may also come along to an open event – dates of college events are listed here

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