Offering Info

Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing

  • National Course Code: ACM40418
  • TAFE NSW code: ACM40418-01V01-21OTE-022

Location – TAFE Digital


Self paced



Course Start Date


Study Commitment

16 Hours per week


2.5 Years

  • Nationally Recognised Training
  • Traineeship Allowed
  • This training is fully government-subsidised under JobTrainer

Course Details

The nationally recognised Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing equips you with the qualification to work as a veterinary nurse. Be a valued member of a veterinary team, care for a range of pets including cats, dogs, horses and farm animals and turn your love for animals into a rewarding career.


Through a mix of theory and practical course work, learn to:

  • Perform radiography and pathology nursing procedures
  • Perform dental nursing procedures
  • Carry out surgical nursing duties and coordinate theatre routines
  • Handle and restrain different species
  • Conduct physical examinations to determine the health of the animal and provide medications (including injections)


Develop the attributes to help you get ahead:

  • Collaboration and teamwork skills to support veterinarians - particularly in high pressure situations
  • Empathy and compassion for animals
  • Team work and collaboration
  • An ability to remain calm in a crisis
  • Drive and the ability to work independently


Completing the course provides you with:

  • A nationally recognised qualification at Certificate IV level
  • The skills needed to perform veterinary nursing duties
  • The knowledge to assist veterinarians to care for animals in the workplace

Career opportunities:

  • Veterinary nurse in an: animal welfare organisation, equine hospital, small animal hospital, animal specialist centre or wildlife hospital


Expand your opportunities with these further study options:

  • Statement of Attainment in Implant Microchip in Cats and Dogs
  • Certificate III in Captive Animals
  • Certificate III in Horse Breeding

When you study with TAFE NSW, we want you to succeed. Entry requirements allow us to make sure that you have the right pre-existing knowledge and skills to achieve your chosen qualification. You will need to provide evidence that you meet the requirements listed in this section.


To be selected for a place, you need to demonstrate the following:

  • A Year 10 certificate or higher
  • A Certificate II or III in Animal Studies or a higher qualification in an animal science discipline
  • Skills and knowledge in a relevant animal science discipline equivalent to any of the above qualifications
  • Confirmation you have employment or work placement secured in a veterinary practice or clinic for at least 8 hours per week, for a minimum of 480 hours for the duration of your course.

You will then undergo an interview and screening for literacy and numeracy skills. You must achieve ACSF Level 3 or above for Learning, Reading and Numeracy, and ACSF Level 4 or above for Writing and Oral Communication.


TAFE NSW also offers the Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing as a traineeship. In addition to meeting the above requirements, trainees must:

  • Be employed in the industry as this course is delivered in the workplace
  • Have a signed traineeship contract

Thinking about a traineeship? Enquire today.


You will undertake 480 hours of work placement (at least 16 hours per week) with an industry employer. Some units require different types of animals or equipment. If your workplace does not meet these requirements, you will be required to do work placement at another facility to gain those skills.

You are responsible for arranging work placement. Our team can offer support and a letter of introduction including:

  • Your enrolment dates
  • The TAFE NSW insurance policy
  • The responsibilities of your employer
  • A risk assessment form


To be prepared for this course, we recommend that you have:

  • Flexibility to work outside of business hours
  • A level of fitness to keep up with physical demands of the role
  • The budget for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)


Work placement provides you with opportunities to practise responding to situations and circumstances that cannot be replicated in a learning or simulated environment.?Work placement strengthens your training and supports continued learning and assessment in the workplace.

You will need to be employed or volunteering in a veterinary clinic for at least one day (or 8 hours) per week, and complete a minimum of 480 hours of work placement (over the duration of the course), to gain the on-the-job experience and practical skills required to be successful.

You are responsible for arranging this work placement before enrolment.

If you need support and assistance, our team can provide a letter of introduction including:

  • Your enrolment start and end dates
  • The TAFE NSW insurance policy
  • Information about the roles and responsibilities of your employer
  • A risk assessment form for your employer to complete and return


To be prepared for this course, it is recommended that you have:

  • A passion for all animals great and small
  • Flexibility to work outside of regular business hours, weekends and public holidays

If you need help preparing for study, contact us about your options.


It is recommended that you are at least 18 years old on the date of your enrolment in this course. This recommendation is based on industry and training guidelines. If you are under the recommended age and still want to enrol in this course, contact us about your options.


With 130 locations across the state, TAFE NSW tailors qualifications to meet the needs of the local community and specific student groups (like apprentices, fast-tracked and online students). To make sure this course is the right fit for you, we will need you to demonstrate that you can meet the additional requirements below.

To be enrolled in this course, you need to be able to provide evidence that you have:

  • work placement at a Veterinary Clinic or Animal Hospital for 1 day per week for the duration of the course

Before applying:

  1. download the Student work placement guide:
  2. find a suitable workplace and provide the supervisor with the Host workplace and supervisor guide:
  3. ask the supervisor to complete the online Workplace supervisor and facility checklist:

Once this has been done complete your application.
You will be contacted for screening for Literacy and numeracy skills.

To successfully complete this course, you will need:

  • good Internet access
  • to use Microsoft Word for assessment tasks. As a TAFE Digital student you can access Microsoft Office 365 for free.
  • to provide video of yourself performing practical tasks in the workplace for assessment of practical skills. A smart phone is suitable for this.

Work Placement is a requirement of this course. You will need to complete:

  • a minimum of 480 hrs of work placement in order to complete the practical aspects of the course and meet the mandatory work placement requirement
  • be reasonably physically fit to undertake the work placement as the tasks and activities involve handling animals and may involve manual lifting
  • Some units require you to demonstrate skills with several different types of animals or demonstrate the use of specific equipment. If your workplace only deals with one species, or doesn't have the equipment required for all the tasks in a unit, you will be required to do some work placement at another facility to gain and demonstrate those skills.


There are no information sessions currently scheduled for this course.


This is a online course. You will need to complete approximately 7 hours of online study, each week, for your enrolment duration of 2.5 Years
You can increase the hours of online study per week to complete the course sooner.

You may also be required to complete approximately 9 hours of additional study each week outside of online study hours, including work placement, private study, research and gathering evidence for assessment tasks.


This course offering is designed for people who:

  • are self-directed learners
  • have good computer skills,
  • have high levels of literacy, numeracy and good communication skills
  • wish to become a Veterinary Nurse and meet the course pre-requisites.


There are additional learning and study tools available for this course, including:

  • the course Education Support Officer (ESO) offers one on one assistance by phone, online or by Email, to assist you to understand the learning materials, and to navigate the course and assessment requirements as required
  • weekly tutorial sessions are run by a study coach.

We offer student services and study support to ensure you can achieve your goals. Learn about TAFE NSW Student Services

As a TAFE NSW student in this course, you will have access to:

  • LinkedIn Learning (formerly
  • Smarthinking - after hours online study support service
  • Easy computing online short courses
  • Access to local TAFE libraries
  • Accessibility and Disability Support Services
  • Access to Read&Write learning support software at TAFE and at home

An individual training plan will be provided when you enrol in this course. Your plan will outline the recommended study timetable and detail your units and assessments.

This is a fully government-subsidised JobTrainer course. Eligibility criteria applies.


This course is government-subsidised, meaning you pay a portion of the full course fee to TAFE NSW and the NSW Government will pay the balance. However, you must meet certain eligibility criteria for this to apply.

Depending on your previous qualifications and experience, your fee may be less than the maximum fee quoted. Your actual fee and eligibility for concession/exemption will be calculated and confirmed during the enrolment process. Payment plans are available through TAFE NSW for Smart and Skilled eligible qualifications.

For further information about eligibility and explanations of the different fee categories, visit Are You Eligible?

For further information on fees and charges please see

Please ensure you also read and understand the associated fee policies and conditions related to withdrawal from a course, applying for a refund of fees, applying for a deferral to your studies and if you are behind in payment of instalments.


Learn about TAFE NSW Fees

Learn about TAFE NSW Payment/Funding


Recognition is a process of acknowledging previously completed qualifications, skills, knowledge or experience relevant to your course. This may reduce the amount of learning required, reduce your course fees and allow you to achieve your qualification faster.

Learn about Recognition at TAFE NSW Recognition

Applying with us is easy, though the exact process does depend on your course and any prerequisites that go with it. Be sure to read all course information carefully to make sure it is the right qualification, location and study type for you. As you progress through the application and enrolment process you will be prompted to provide additional information.

For further information or assistance, call 131 601.

If you are interested in studying as a Trainee please call 131 601 for full details. (only if available as a trainee)

Core Units
Number Title
ACMWHS301 Contribute to workplace health and safety processes
ACMINF301 Comply with infection control policies and procedures in animal care work
ACMGAS307 Identify animal anatomy and physiology for animal care work
ACMVET202 Carry out daily practice routines
ACMGAS308 Communicate effectively with clients and team members
ACMVET416 Assist with the preparation of veterinary drugs and poisons
ACMVET406 Nurse animals
ACMVET408 Provide nutritional advice and support for animals
ACMVET409 Provide specific animal care advice
ACMVET401 Coordinate veterinary reception duties
ACMVET404 Perform practice office procedures
ACMVET407 Carry out medical nursing routines
ACMVET405 Coordinate and perform surgical nursing routines
ACMVET403 Perform clinical pathology procedures
ACMVET410 Carry out veterinary dental nursing procedures
ACMVET413 Prepare for anaesthesia and monitor animal anaesthesia and analgesia
ACMVET402 Apply imaging routines
Elective Units
Number Title
ACMGAS301 Maintain and monitor animal health and wellbeing
ACMGAS302 Provide enrichment for animals
ACMSPE305 Provide basic care of domestic cats
ACMSPE304 Provide basic care of domestic dogs

Note: Not all elective units listed may be available to study, please enquire for more information.

Whether you're a school leaver, an aspiring apprentice, looking to kickstart a career, or you're upskilling, reskilling, or re-training, there's a TAFE NSW course to give you the skills you need for the job you want.

Apply Now

Course Location

OTEN (Open Training Education Network)
51 Wentworth Rd, Strathfield
Phone 131 601

Fees information

We understand that many students are confused by different fees for similar courses, and want to reassure you that studying with TAFE NSW won't damage your hip pocket.

Learn more about Fees information.

Payment options and assistance

Explore payment methods, pay by instalment, scholarships and VET Student Loans.

Learn more about Payment options and assistance.


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21OTE-022 S:01 Jul 2021 E:30 Jun 2022 D:364