The aim of this programme is to enable the learner to develop the knowledge, skills and competence in a broad range of equine skills to work in a variety of equine sectors under supervision, or progress to further education or training.

In North Connaught College our students will be facilitated to explore Horsemanship with a view to re-skilling/up-skilling and exploring concepts and subject areas that may interest the learner in future programmes or employment.

Students will gain vast practical experience in the areas of:

• Stable and Yard Routine
• Young Horse Training Techniques
• Equine Anatomy and Physiology
• Sport Horse Riding

Other areas of study include:

• Communications
• Safety & health at Work

Work experience is also a core feature of the Horsemanship programme with students spending time in an equine setting. This facilitates the enhancement of employability and transversal skills.

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Programme Progression

On completion of this programme learners will have the skills, knowledge and competencies in a broad range of equine skills to work as an assistant in a variety of equine sectors, including riding schools, studs, competition stables, livery stables, young horse training and dealing yards.

The training received from the Level 5 course would also prepare the learner for the British Horse Society (BHS) Stages 1 and 2 exams and the Stage 2 Teach. By taking the BHS exams the learner would have internationally recognised qualifications.

There is also the option to progress to further education or training.


  • Education: No formal education or qualifications are required although applicants may have participated in primary and secondary education. Applicants will be expected to demonstrate a standard of knowledge, skill and competence equivalent to NFQ Level 5 when accessing a Level 6 programme.
  • Aptitude: Applicants must have a motivation to learn, an interest in the subject and the ability to acquire the knowledge, skills and competencies set out in the course.
  • Previous Experience: Applicants must be able to demonstrate a broad range of knowledge, skills and competencies relevant to the course and be able to exercise initiative and independence when carrying out course activities.


Title Award Awarding Body
Work Experience Work Experience (5N1356) QQI
Safety And Health At Work Safety & Health at Work (5N1794) QQI
Communications Level 5 Communications (5N0690) QQI
Stable And Yard Routine Stable & Yard Routine (5N3355) QQI
Young Horse Training Techniques Young Horse Training Techniques (5N3357) QQI
Equine Anatomy And Physiology Equine Anatomy & Physiology (5N3360) QQI
Sport Horse Riding Instruction Sport Horse Riding Instruction (5N3362) QQI


On completion of this programme learners will have the skills, knowledge and competencies in a broad range of equine skills to work in a variety of equine sectors under direct supervision, or progress to further education or training.


Below is a more detailed description of each of the Components.


One of our most important modules, whether in the workplace or in a college environment it is essential to be able to transfer knowledge in a clear and concise way and also to be aware of the different types of communication. The module covers both written and practical aspects of communication and gives learners practice and confidence for public speaking which is very important for the third level where presentations are compulsory.

Equine Anatomy & Physiology

The purpose of this module is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence to understand the structure and functions of the horses body. Examine the difference between anatomy and physiology with emphasis on the roles of cells, tissues and organs. Investigate the skeletal system. Outline the functions and locations of the muscles, ligaments and tendons on a horse. Examine the following systems, circulatory and lymphatic systems, respiratory system, digestive system. Explain breeding cycle.

Safety & Health at Work

The purpose of this module is to equip the learner with the skills to promote and maintain safety and health in a work environment. Create an awareness of safety and health issues in the workplace. Examine the responsibilities and duties of the employer and the employee with regard to health and safety. Develop skills in identify hazards and carry out risk assessment. Familiarise the learner with the relevant national legislation and statutory bodies.

Stable & Yard Routine

Examine the different types of feed and rules of feeding and watering. Explain the functions of nutrients in the diet and supplements. Discuss a range of aspects of grooming, padding and bandages, saddles, nosebands and martingales. Describe common foot problems in horses and forms of treatment, and also general health issues with horses. Discuss the various types of shelters and fencing available for use with horses kept on grass. Be able to demonstrate how to deal with the areas above.

Work Experience

Students must find a work placement in which they must complete 120 hours, a diary is kept of experience learned while also the skillset of writing a C.V, cover letter and interview techniques are all covered. An excellent module for anybody wishing to prepare for or return to the workplace.

Young Horse Training Techniques

The purpose of this module is to enable the learner to train young horses under supervision. Examine the risks involved in handling young horses and the importance of implementing safe working practices. Discuss a training programme for a young horse. Explain and explore sequences of paces and walk, trot and canter and recommended exercises. Show competence in lunging. Procedures for jumping over trot poles and small fences.