This course would suit you if you are interested in working in the farming industry and enjoy working outdoors, with farm animals, machinery and in construction.

The Level 4 programmes are equivalent to an HND or Foundation Degree, making them suitable for people who have already completed Level 3 qualifications. This could be after a full-time college course or an NVQ/QCF Level 3 qualification. Older people with at least five years practical farm experience will also find Level 4 will give them a challenge and help them think and study at a higher level whilst working and evaluating the efficiency and effectiveness of their farm business.

DART will provide some formal teaching but people completing Level 4 will need to be self motivated and bring work in progress to tutorial sessions and be prepared to share ideas with others completing the qualification. If this sounds like your aspiration then read on!

What is Agriculture Level 4?

The qualification is designed for people working in farming who have or are in a position to take on the responsibility for day to day planning of an enterprise and be able to affect some change to the enterprise and then monitor and evaluate the impact of change. An enterprise could be; a dairy herd, beef unit, pig herd, sheep flock or crop production. To complete Level 4 the person does not have to exercise full control over the whole farm but must be aware and be able to explain and evaluate how the enterprise impacts on the whole farm business and what external pressures limit or give opportunities for the enterprise.

What qualifications and options do I have?

Level 4 is a City and Guilds qualification and is available in various forms:

  • Level 4 Award in Work-based Agriculture Management
    based on either Livestock or Crop Production.  You will need to complete at least 20 hours and gain a minimum of 10 credits at Level 4.  This may be just one unit such as plan, monitor and evaluate the nutrition of ruminants or plant nutrients and fertiliser planning.  There are over 12 units to choose from and there will be something pertinent to your farm or interest.
  • Level 4 Certificate in Work-based Agriculture Management
    This is larger in volume and reflects the skills and knowledge needed to do a job effectively. A minimum of 20 credits is needed which will be at least two units at Level 4. Learners will be advised to complete units which naturally fit together within the management of an enterprise such as a physical production unit and a financial and/or environmental unit. The Certificate like the Award will be in either Livestock or Crop Production.
  • Level 4 Diploma in Work-based Agricultural Business Management
    This is a full Level 4 Diploma with a minimum of 82 credits, most of the units must be at least Level 4. People gaining the Award or Certificate may re-use the same units plus extra ones at Level 4 or some Level 3 units to build up total credits. It will give the learner a broader understanding of the farm as a whole and involve environmental, welfare and financial considerations alongside the production from livestock and/or crops. This Diploma will suit the mixed farm as well as single enterprise operations. The Level 4 Diploma may be obtained as a whole qualification or built up over time using the unit based route. It is slightly more expensive, but allows learning and achievement at a slower rate.
What can I do afterwards?

After completion of Award and/or Certificate you can do more units for the full Diploma. This in turn would help you progress onto a full or part time degree course. A Level 4 qualification is recognition of professional achievement in the given units and should place you well for job promotion, new jobs or farm tenancies.

What is the entry process?

Call George Case on 01332 216640 to discuss your requirements and obtain advice on the way forward or email or contact the apprenticeship team

What are the entry requirements?

Ideally Level 3 qualification in agriculture and a minimum of three years practical experience in the sector.  DART will consider people without Level 3 in agriculture if they can prove ability to produce evidence of a Level 4 standard and have the motivation to succeed. Ideally candidates should be employed and in a position of responsibility.

Matthew Renshaw

"Farming is what I've always wanted to do. It's a rewarding job and I've developed lots of new skills whilst doing the course. I like the one-to-one support that DART gives me."


We offer a wide range of NPTC and short courses at DART Training, including PA1, PA2 and PA6 spraying courses, animal transportation, chainsaw, tractor driving and more.