HomeProgrammesAgriculture & ConservationTe Kura Tapere: Certificate in Introductory Conservation

Te Kura Tapere: Certificate in Introductory Conservation

Te Kura Tapere: Certificate in Introductory Conservation

Level 3

Are you interested in nature and conservation? Get the skills you’ll need for New Zealand conservation work with Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre and UCOL, through our Te Kura Tapere: Certificate in Introductory Conservation.

The UCOL and Pūkaha logos with a forest in the background
Quick info

Level: 3

Locations: Wairarapa (Pūkaha Mt Bruce / Wairarapa UCOL Te Pūkenga Campus)

Duration: 33 weeks part-time
(See Course Hours & Duration for details)

12 Feb 2024 - 27 Sept 2024

(For 2024 intakes, call 0800 468 265 or register your interest at https://www.ucol.ac.nz/contact-us )

Domestic Fees: *

Scholarship info

International Fees:*
Not applicable

Additional Fees
Compulsory course costs may apply.

* Fees are indicative only, and are inclusive of the student services levy and GST (goods and services tax). The fee shown is for one year of study.

Learning on-site at Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre, this programme will help build your knowledge and understanding of the natural world through Pūkaha’s conservation work. Get the foundational skills you’ll need to help restore and protect our native taonga, with the option to progress into the New Zealand Certificate in Conservation Operations.

"I loved all the time learning about birds out in the bush. I’ve learnt many skills that will be useful in the future. I can now identify many native birds and introduce animals that I couldn’t before. I had heaps of fun with my group and the team at Pūkaha." - Jordan Haglund, Wairarapa College

 Course Hours & Duration

This programme runs for 34 weeks part-time, including 4 holiday weeks.

Per week, your learning will include approximately:

Class Time
6 hrs

In-person, online and in-work.
Industry Experience

Work integrated learning.
Study Time
4 hrs

Study in your own time.

 Career & Study Outcomes

Successful completion of the UCOL Te Pūkenga Te Kura Tapere: Certificate in Introductory Conservation programme will equip you with new skills and a taste for the industry, and you will know what you need to do to pursue a career in conservation. Graduates of this training scheme will be able to:

  • Contribute to the kaitiakitanga of te ao tūroa to minimise the impact of introduced pests
  • Explain the significance of te ao tūroa to Māori
  • Provide customer service in an environmentally focused organisation

If this is for you, you can undertake further tertiary studies in:
New Zealand Certificate in Conservation Operations (Level 4)

Employment opportunities include:

  • Pest Management
  • Wildlife Park Assistant
  • Conservation Work

 Course Information

Note: As a subsidiary of Te Pūkenga - New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology, UCOL Te Pūkenga is committed to providing the best learning outcome for you. As part of this, all programmes are currently being reviewed to make them portable, consistent, and closely aligned with the needs of the industry. When published, this course information is correct, but the courses offered may change over time. If you have any questions call an Enrolment Advisor on 0800 468 265.

The UCOL Te Pūkenga Te Kura Tapere: Certificate in Introductory Conservation programme consists of 30 credits.

The programme was named by Rangitāne Cultural advisor Mike Kawana “Te Kura Tapere” and references “Te Tapere nui o Whatonga”. Discover more info on Te Tapere Nui and its relevance to Rangitāne here.

Edu-tourism/ Manaakitanga in te ao tūroa 15 credits
On completion of this module learners will be able to:

  • Explain the significance, behaviour, impact, and management, of plant and animal species in te ao tūroa
  • Adapt own behavioural style and apply customer service techniques to manaaki visitors
  • Assist with preparing and leading an outdoor activity in te ao tūroa

Kaitiakitanga/ Conservation of te ao tūroa 15 credits
On completion of this module learners will be able to:

  • Describe the impacts of pest animals and pest animal operations on te ao tūroa
  • Locate, prepare, check, and maintain, traps for pest animals
  • Plan, undertake, and evaluate kaitiakitanga activity in accordance with the tikanga of mana whenua

 Domestic Entry Requirements

Applicants for this programme are required to have NCEA Level 1
Equivalent Academic Achievement
On a case-by-case basis at the discretion of the Executive Dean.

English language proficiency
If English is not your first language, you must also demonstrate English language skills equivalent to an IELTS overall band score (academic) of 5.0 with no band score less than 5 (or equivalent including TOEFL). IELTS scores used must be taken from a single IELTS Test Report Form (i.e. combining scores from more than one test is not permissible).


For more information about NCEA Credits see the UCOL Te Pūkenga NCEA explained page.

 International Entry Requirements

This programme is not available to internatinal learners.

 Advice & Guidance

Learners need to be aware of the physical requirements when working in the New Zealand bush.

Learners will be advised to put any special needs or requirements in writing and advise the Programme Leader before the programme begins.


The programme is approved by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority under the provisions of the Education and Training Act 2020, and Universal College of Learning Limited, a subsidiary of Te Pūkenga is accredited to teach it.