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AHC31120 Certificate III in Nursery Operations~


Next intake Ongoing 2024
LocationsEast Geelong Campus
Apprenticeship Part-time: 3 yrs

Course description

This qualification provides the skills and knowledge for a broad range of roles carried out in the nursery industry. Participants entering this course should already be employed under an apprenticeship contract with some prior experience. The training will be across the industry's retail and production sectors, providing the expertise for developing specialist skills.

Students will learn how to apply a broad range of skills in a variety of nursery settings, plan and perform tasks autonomously, select and operate equipment and coordinate resources.

~ This course is in transition.

The course code, title, units and content may change in future. Further information will be provided on The Gordon website, upon enrolment and/or during the course of your training.

Possible career outcomes

  • Nursery worker
  • General nursery hand
  • Wholesale nursery worker

Applications & attendance

Apprenticeship and traineeship applicants

To become an apprentice or trainee, you will first need to find an employer willing to employ you. An Australian Apprenticeship Support Network Provider can assist you with this and will also start your application and enrolment process. Find a local provider here

Contact us

Are you ready to start an aged care traineeship or want to find out more?


2024 Ongoing
East Geelong Campus 
Open: 1 Aug 2023
Close: 15 Dec 2024 
Class Day  Apprenticeship: Part-time: 3 yrs    


Students may need to complete some self-paced learning and assessment activities outside class time. This will be different for each course and will depend on a student’s level of skill and experience.

Class days and times in the above table are indicative. Prior to course commencement, changes may be necessary. Follow the link for more information on Attendance mode definitions. When you submit your application, please make sure you answer all the questions. Only successful applicants with complete applications will receive an offer. We issue offers as soon as possible. Follow the link for more information on Offer timing.

Many courses have limited places and high demand. We may close an intake before the date above. We recommend you apply early. If student numbers are insufficient we may cancel an intake or a course. An application does not guarantee a place in this course.

  • Applicants must be 16 years and over at the time of course commencement.
  • Applicants are expected to have literacy and numeracy skills at Year 10 or Year 11 or Australian Core Skills Framework Level 2.
  • Any student under the age of 17 must provide an Exemption from School form prior to undertaking the course.

  • You must reside in Victoria to access Victorian Government Subsidised Fees and any incentive such as Free TAFE. Full fees apply to all non-Victorian residents.

Apprenticeship and traineeship requirements

Apprenticeship and traineeship applicants must be currently employed under a training contract and referred by their employer.

Pre-training review

Each student must complete a pre-training review as part of their application. The outcome of your pre-training review assists our teachers and trainers to better understand your capabilities prior to training and enables you to be matched to the right program. Your literacy and numeracy skills will be evaluated and you may be required to undertake a separate assessment. Follow this link for more information about literacy and numeracy skills .

Personal Learning Requirements

There are personal learning requirements for each qualification at The Gordon. These are essential personal capabilities and skills required to successfully complete the course and be ready to work in the industry.

Please review the requirements here and consider any challenges you may have in meeting them. When applying for your course, please let us know what support you may need.

Selection mode

Core Units Code Hours
Contribute to work health and safety processes AHCWHS301 50
Control plant pests diseases and disorders AHCPMG302 80
Implement a plant nutrition program AHCPCM305 60
Maintain nursery plants AHCNSY308 40
Prepare and apply chemicals to control pest weeds and diseases AHCCHM307 70
Prepare growing media AHCSOL305 40
Provide information on plants and their culture AHCPCM306 70
Transport and store chemicals AHCCHM304 50
Troubleshoot irrigation systems AHCIRG338 50
Elective Units Code Hours
Apply biosecurity measures AHCBIO303 100
Identify plant specimens AHCPCM303 80
Implement a propagation plan AHCNSY313 90
Maintain pressurised irrigation systems AHCIRG347 50
Prepare specialised plants AHCNSY312 50
Receive and dispatch nursery products AHCNSY309 40
Recognise plants AHCPCM204 40


Please note that the listed electives are delivered by The Gordon but you may not need to complete all of these units to successfully complete this qualification. If you have previously completed any of the units of competency relevant to this course, you may be eligible for Credit Transfer (CT). Any previous relevant experience may qualify you for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). Find out more about CT or RPL here.

Assessment is based on:

  • Hands-on work
  • Written assignments
  • Team projects
  • Observations

This course is eligible for Free TAFE!

Eligible Victorian students who elect to use their Free TAFE opportunity will not incur any tuition fees. Material and resources fees still apply. Follow the link for further information and to check the eligibility criteria.

FeesRateUnitIndicative Course HoursIndicative Tuition Payable by StudentMax. Indicative Government Subsidy Total
Concession Tuition AUD $0.80 per hour 960 AUD $768.00 AUD $14,500.00
Standard Tuition AUD $4.00 per hour 960 AUD $3,840.00 AUD $14,500.00
Full Fee Tuition AUD $19.57 per hour 960 AUD $18,787.00

Add the costs below to your relevant tuition fee

Materials AUD $560.00
Excursions AUD $240.00


All fees and charges are correct at time of publication but may change without notice. The student tuition fees are indicative only. Additional fees may apply. Where GST is applicable to any courses or materials, the fee displayed is inclusive of the GST.

Which fee will I pay?

Your fees will be charged according to your eligibility for government funding. For more information, visit our Fees & Payments pages.

Fee help and student loans

VET Student Loans are available for eligible students for tuition fees ONLY.
The current years maximum VET Student Loan Course Cap is $

Payment plans may be available for eligible students who need assistance to manage their fee payments.

  • AHC40416 Certificate IV in Horticulture

Many Gordon courses offer pathways to higher qualifications within The Gordon and in some cases, to university degrees. Your Gordon course may provide credit points which could reduce further study time. Follow the link to find more information about pathways, or contact Customer Service.

Date published: 22/05/2024 4:01:25 PM