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So I'm fairly new to the industry and during that short time I've been working through tickets. By the end of August I'll hopefully of achieved CS39 and after that I'm very keen to begin working towards some sort of formal qualification.


Now I've done a fair bit of research into my options and therein lies my conundrum!


In an ideal world I'd study towards a Level 2 Diploma in Arboriculture, followed by Level 3 and eventually I'd like to study at a degree level. The problem with that is that I'm 25 years old and I can't afford too many days off to attend college. That being the case, work based/distance learning seems the only viable option to me?


I've read good things about the RFS Certificate and also recently I've discovered something known as a Level 2 Apprenticeship in Trees & Timber. The RFS Certificate as far as I'm aware requires no college attendance and can be achieved solely in my own time but although I know very little about the Level 2 Apprenticeship in Trees & Timber it does require a small amount of college attendance but again is mostly achieved in my own time.


My real question is can anybody shed any light on the pros & cons, real world worthiness etc...?


Any help would be much appreciated as I'm finding this a bit of a minefield at the moment.



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Hi Daniel - I've just completed the RFS theory course and you're correct, there's no class attendance if you opt for one of the online providers ( I went with Myerscough College). Be aware though that just because it's all online it's not simple, and there's quite a workload that has to be completed. I believe that we had quite a few people drop out over the year through not being able to keep up with all the assessments and online exams (Each term you have around 10 assignments and 6 exams to complete). Message me and I can send you some more info on the course.




PS - an alternative would be the Level 4 and Level 6 courses offered by Tree Life - they can be distance learning too, though take a few years - http://www.treelifeac.co.uk/Pages/TreeMail.aspx

Edited by adamthearborist
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