Associate Degree of Equine Studies

Our Equine Studies program combines specialised equine science topics with business management skills essential for successful operation of equine focused businesses in the 21st century. The Associate Degree of Equine Studies will set you at a gallop, straight into a career in the industry. The course structure offers study options to help you design your ideal course.

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A stable of career options

Our Associate Degree of Equine Studies is essentially the first two years of the HEESEQST Bachelor of Equine Studies with minor changes. This means that on successful completion, articulation into the Bachelor Degree is seamless, or you can exit with a para-professional qualification.

The Associate Degree of Equine Studies will prepare you for a range of management roles in the equine industry, in equestrian performance, equine services, racing, research, farm and stable management, breeding or business settings. It is also a solid platform for further study or teaching.

Students who have successfully completed the Associate Degree of Equine Studies have established careers, as:

  • equestrian participants
  • equestrian sports event managers
  • stud and stable assistant managers
  • equestrian sports events managers
  • specific stud area manager
  • working in a wide range of equine enterprises

Know what you’re doing

Benefit from hands-on training at Northern Lodge, Melbourne Polytechnic’s equine specific teaching facility and equine facilities and stud farms with which Melbourne Polytechnic has Memorandums of Understanding (MoU)/arrangements.

Melbourne Polytechnic’s Associate Degree of Equine Studies has the right balance of theory and practice to ensure your contribution to the industry is valuable.

Develop industry networks through tours, work integrated learning and placements as you study in a community with students completing other Business and Primary Industries (Higher Education) programs and learn from our staff of equine industry experts.

Benefit from work placements in Victoria and interstate.

Graduate attributes

Graduates of the Bachelor of Equine Studies will have developed the beginnings of a professional network within the equine industry.

Graduates of a Melbourne Polytechnic course will be:

  • skilled, practical, flexible and solutions-oriented
  • able to demonstrate mastery of hands-on skills
  • able to demonstrate application of basic academic-cognitive skills
  • prepared to contribute immediately to their industry and their community
  • able to display leadership skills in the profession and in the wider society

Local Students




Epping 6900268462




Agriculture and Animal Studies - HE
03 9269 8400


Full-time: 2 years

Part-time: available
Flexible Delivery: new in 2016 (limited subjects on offer). Want all the information on fees and charges? See Fees information below.

Class Schedule: *

Mon - AM and PM
Tue - AM and PM
Wed - AM and PM
Thu - AM and PM
Fri - AM and PM

*Classes run across these days and times. Detailed timetable information is available from an Education and Career Advisor


Find out more on fees and charges

Entrance Requirements

  • successful completion of Year 12 VCE or recognised equivalent with a study score of at least 20 in any English and any Mathematics, and a study score of at least 20 in one of Chemistry or Biology are recommended (but not a pre-requisite)
  • successful completion of a diploma course in Horse Studies may lead to credits for subjects, while mature age entry where applicants can demonstrate capacity to undertake work at degree level will be accepted, with recognition of prior learning (RPL)
  • you must also complete and submit a Supplementary Application form
  • for additional information, we encourage you to attend a Melbourne Polytechnic Information Nights. Note: not a compulsory entry requirement

Assessment Methods

Assessment will be based on a combination of assignments, examinations and group/individual oral presentations.


Lists of materials required and book lists are provided at the start of the course.

Pathways to further study

With your Associate Degree complete, you may choose to articulate into our HEESEQST Bachelor of Equine Studies in your third year

Career Pathways

  • equestrian participants
  • equestrian sports event management
  • stud and stable assistant management
  • bloodstock agents
  • dry mare management
  • yearling management
  • stallion management
  • equine industry marketing, promotions and journalism
  • working in a wide range of equine enterprises

Enrolment Intake

  • February
  • July
  • Midyear

Units Of Study

Credit points are a basic measure of student workload. All subjects are given a credit point value. Most subjects at Melbourne Polytechnic are 12 credit points. A normal full-time annual workload is 96 credit points. The academic year is divided into two main semesters; full-time students usually enrol in 48 credit points each semester, part time students usually enrol in 24 credit points each semester or less.

Code Subjects
AEM201 Statistics and experimental design
BES104 Equine behaviour
BES109 Living systems 1
BES110 Living systems 2
BES111 Functional equine anatomy and physiology 1
BES112 Functional equine anatomy & physiology 2
BES115 Horse riding
BES116 Horse husbandry systems
BES117 Humans and animals
BES118 Stud and stable records
BES119 Equine resources
BES208 Equine reproduction
BES215 Microbiology and genetics
BES216 Equine nutrition
BES217 Applied nutrition
BES218 Animal welfare
BES222 Advanced microbiology
BES223 Rural enterprise systems
BES224 Vegetation and edaphic factors
BES225 Equine rehabilitation
BES226 Sustainable property systems
BES227 Equine health systems
BES317 Industry project
BES318 Equine genetics for breeding
BES320 Equine epidemiology
BES321 The horse from foetus to weaning
BES324 Rural event management
BES330 Equine industry placement