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Home arrow Careers arrow Arboorism
Arboriculture is the planting, care and maintenance of trees and shrubs within public recreation areas, domestic gardens, community woodlands and urban forestry. It shares many skills with the forestry industry.
Tree management involves pruning, thinning and surgery. Designing and implementing landscaping schemes is also a major part of an arborist's work.
There are many opportunities for arborists to progress, supervise others and really use their initiative. Chainsaws, chippers and stump grinders are used, so technicians and machine operators are always in demand. These machines can be dangerous to use, so operators are required to have full training and a healthy regard for a safe working environment.
Some employers will help employees gain certification but there are many course provider who will help train you so that you can obtain a basic chainsaw certificate. Full qualifications range from a First Diploma or National Certificate to a Masters Degree or Doctorate.  Vocational and professional qualifications exist which combine practical hands-on training and theoretical knowledge. Certificate courses at worker and craftsmen level lead to NVQ/SVQ Levels 1 and 2, BTEC First Diploma or City & Guilds National Certificate. They can be taken as a full-time one year course or as blocks of training. Studies in arboriculture are frequently linked to amenity horticulture courses.
Students should be at least 17 years of age, physically fit and should have completed one year of relevant work experience, or a government funded Training Scheme leading to NVQ/SVQ level 2, or a full-time introductory forestry course together with some additional relevant industrial experience.
Diploma courses are available as 3 year sandwich courses leading to a National or Higher National Diploma.  For entrance requirements please check with your training provider.
The Royal Forestry Society Certificate in Arboriculture and Diploma in Arboriculture and the Technician’s Certificate in Arboriculture are offered by examination after periods of practical experience and self-study.
Degree courses available include: Forestry, Ecological Science with Forestry, joint Honours in Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Economy, Agroforestry, Soils and Forest Science, Forestry and Wood Science. (Wood Science courses are intended for those who wish to follow a career orientated to the wood-using industries). Provision can be made for an additional sandwich year during some of these courses for the purpose of gaining practical forestry experience.
Post-graduate courses all offer taught MSc degrees of one year’s duration with varying emphasis on forestry, and research degrees leading to MPhil or PhD. Entry qualifications vary but the usual requirement is for a good honours degree in a biological or land-based subject.
The Institute of Chartered Foresters (ICF) is the representative body for professional foresters and arborists in the United Kingdom and offers chartered status by examination to professionals with two or more years experience in approved practice.
Technical and managerial courses are short courses for foresters and arboriculturalists and are available from various sources and at colleges throughout the country. Details can be obtained from Lantra Awards and college Principals.
Depending on the level of qualification and experience someone with the basic level certificates and little experience can earn approx £70-90 per day whereas someone with 5 years experience can earn approx £170-£200 per day.

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