New Zealand Certificate in Horticulture Services (Level 4) in Arboriculture

As part of the government’s Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) to rebuild New Zealand's economy, this programme is now free^. For terms and conditions, more information, and other programmes covered by this scheme, click here.

Due to high demand, we recommend applying early.

Programme highlights

Not afraid of heights? Love the outdoors? Then a career caring for trees could be for you. 

With a career in arboriculture no two days are the same. You could be scaling a 20-metre-high tree one day and planting Titoki trees the next. 

You will develop specialist skills around residential tree care, planting, pruning, removal and felling. You will also learn about the safe use and maintenance of the tools of the trade such as climbing gear and chainsaws. 

When you graduate, you will be ready to take on a job as an arborist or become a self-employed contractor. 

As an MIT graduate you will be in a great position to start work in this exciting and physically challenging industry thanks to our relationship with Treescape. Treescape is New Zealand's largest arboriculture provider and has been awarded the contract to provide ecological and arboriculture services to Auckland Council across the region. 

Treescape has been hiring MIT students to fill these job vacancies.

Key facts

Start Month(s) February
Study Location(s) MIT Otara
Level 4
Domestic fees Free^
Youth Guarantee (fees-free*) Not available
Programme Code NZ2674-01

One year (full-time); two years (part-time)

Study Method Full-time, Part-time
Credits 120
International Fees Not available to international students
Māori and Pasifika Trades Training Scholarship (fees-free*) Available (eligibility criteria applies)
Qualification New Zealand Certificate

Arboriculture at MIT

Entry requirements


Open entry for domestic students

There are no academic requirements that need to be met to enter this programme.

English language entry requirements

You will need English language competence to undertake this programme which is taught and assessed in English (an assessment may be required if your first language is not English).


Career opportunities

Arborist, Climbing Arborist, Practitioner Arborist, Utility Arborist

Programme structure

You will need to complete the below four courses (120 credits):
Level 3

861.372 Plants and Grounds Persons Duties (35 credits)

Demonstrate communication skills, interact with team members and colleagues, select and plant plants, using and maintaining arboriculture tools, carrying out site clean-up and grounds person’s duties.

Level 4

862.401 Work Placement (30 credits)

Demonstrating communication skills and professional conduct, instructing and supervising team members, carrying out specific arboriculture tasks.

862.414 Climbing and Chainsaws (35 credits)

Using climbing gear and equipment, demonstrating climbing techniques, using and maintaining chainsaws, work safely in an arboriculture situation and carrying out maintenance of trees.

862.415 Advanced Tree Climbing (20 credits)

Carry out routine tree maintenance, carry out rescue techniques at height, working safely around utilities and power lines.

Key dates

To find the start date of your programme intake listed above, please view the trades calendar.

Information is correct as at October 2019. Programme fees are based on a full-time student and may vary depending on your final selection of courses that make up your programme. To provide you with an indication of costs, the approximate fees quoted in this publication are based on the indicative 2020 fee structure. The indicative programme fees for 2020 do not include the Compulsory Student Services Fee (CSSF). The CSSF is an additional levy to your 2020 programme or course fees. Further information about the CSSF can be found here Programmes stated as eligible for free study in 2020 are based on the 2019 fee structure and subject to funding confirmation for 2020. All fees are in New Zealand Dollars. You will be advised of the current fees at the time of enrolment. All courses and programmes will proceed subject to numbers and academic approval. Manukau Institute of Technology is accredited under the provisions of the Education Act 1989. International students must study in class and will not be able to enrol for online study options.

^Free study for this qualification may be available to you under the government’s Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF). Visit for eligibility criteria and more information. Students must be eligible to study as a domestic student and meet any other entry criteria as required. Some costs may also apply. Free study is subject to funding confirmation.