About the course

About the course

This VCE VET program is designed as an introduction to the equine industry. In the first year of the course you will learn the skills and knowledge to work safely with horses including basic horse husbandry and care, understanding equine behaviour, daily work routines and equine anatomy.

In the second year you will learn how to identify and monitor the signs of common illness and injury in horses; understand basic horse physiology and the impact of illness and injury on horses; identify conformation in horses and develop the ability to use appropriate conformation  terminology to describe the relationship between conformation, movement and function; and gain understanding of how to implement feeding programs, monitor the quality of feed, feed supplements and individual feeding habits of horses.

Course Details


Qualification Issued on Completion

On successful completion, you will receive certification from Box Hill Institute.

Course Length and Classes

Part time: 2 years

VDSS courses follow the same term structure as Secondary Schools

Wednesday 1:30pm to 5:00pm Box Hill, City and Lilydale

You will be required to attend full day practical training sessions (6 days in Year 1, and 3 days in Year 2).

Applications for VDSS courses are to be submitted directly to your secondary school.  The school will then enrol you in the course.  

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Entry Requirements & Applications

This course can only be completed as part of your secondary school studies in years 10, 11 and 12. For secondary school students, please speak to your school’s VET coordinator or Careers Counsellor to apply for this course. If you are home schooling, please submit an enquiry online to learn how to apply for this course.

Students must have the physical ability to be able to safely handle horses and complete tasks such as mucking out stables, moving equipment and tacking up horses. Ambulance cover and tetanus vaccination is also required when working with horses. Students must have basic horse handling skills or be willing to undertake further instruction at their own cost outside of course time. A suitable laptop or tablet device is required for all classes as many written assessments will be completed in class.


After successful completion, you may wish to further your studies in the equine industry.

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Career Outcomes

After successful completion, you may wish to apply for employment opportunities as an animal attendant, stable or stud hand, horse breeder, veterinary nurse or riding coach. Other possible industries are horse racing and retail.

Contribution to VCE, VCAL & ATAR

On successful completion of this program, you will be eligible for:

  • Year 1 - recognition of up to four units at units 1 to 4 level (non-scored)
  • Year 2 - recognition of unit 3 and 4 sequence
  • Year 2 - students wishing to receive an ATAR contribution for the Units 3 and 4 sequence of the VCE VET Equine Studies must undertake scored assessment for the purpose of achieving a study score. This study score can contribute directly to the ATAR, either as one of the student's best four studies (the primary four) or as a fifth or sixth study.

Structured Workplace Learning

The VCAA strongly recommends 80 hours of structured workplace learning (SWL) placement over the duration of the program.


Please contact your secondary school regarding fees for this program

Uniform Requirements

Students will be required to provide their own helmets and boots for practical days.

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