Courses and Training

The National Stud are one of the world's leading providers of education to the Thoroughbred industry. Graduates of all courses are employed across the globe for breeding enterprises such as Juddmonte Farms, Whitsbury Manor, Darley and Watership Down.

The National Stud team delivers a comprehensive Education Programme throughout the year, tailored to provide students with a practical skill set and the supporting knowledge required for a successful career in their chosen field.

With accredited Level 1 to Level 3 courses, there is a programme to suit everybody. Select a tab to find out more about the courses offered at each level.

Courses and Training

Our Courses

  • Online Learning

Level 3

The National Stud’s Level 3 Stud Management and Sales Consignment Course.

A 26-week residential course offering learners the exciting opportunity to experience the whole stud year via vocational education and a comprehensive Evening Lecture Programme. Successful completion leads to a 1st4Sport Level 3 Certificate in Thoroughbred Stud Practices, 1st4Sport Level 3 Award in the Principles of Transporting Horses for Long Journeys, certificate in Emergency First Aid at Work and Manual Handling.

Term 1: September 23rd – December 20th 2024: An amazing opportunity to learn how to undertake all aspects of yearling, mare and foal sales preparation, from how to exercise for sales prep to how to present thoroughbreds to potential buyers, through a hands on work-based learning environment. Experience working the sales first hand through the completion of two week paid placements with a reputable consignor at the October and December sales.

Term 2: January 6th – April 6th 2025: Gain first-hand experience of the breeding season by foaling down mares, caring for The National Stud’s exciting roster of stallions and assisting in the covering shed. Practical stud work is complemented by rotations through the Stud and Nominations office and veterinary rounds, as well as trips, visits, management training, career mentoring and relevant additional qualifications.

A part time non-residential option is available for this course. Successful completion will lead to a 1st4Sport Level 3 Certificate in Thoroughbred Stud Practices

Entry Requirements: Applicants must be 18 years or older by the course start date and have Thoroughbred handling experience. International applicants welcome if an appropriate Visa is acquired.

This qualification can also be undertaken in the workplace.

Costs PAYMENT REQUIRED £500 Deposit: To cover exam fees (£150) and room deposit (£350) £2,300: Accommodation and Board Contribution. Bursaries are available to hep with the cost of the course.

INTERNATIONAL COURSE fees: £3,500 (Scholarship winners and those requiring assistance with visas will be subject to higher course fees)

PAYMENT RETURNED £350 room deposit returned: Pending a room inspection

Weekly Allowance: Students will receive £100 a week in recognition of practical work for the duration of the course.

Contact the Education Team on or 01638 675922 for more information


Level 2

Entry to Stud Employment course (fully funded)

An 8-week residential training programme for individuals with generic equine experience that wish to gain the knowledge and skill set which will enable them to be employed in the bloodstock industry. Completion of the residential programme will lead to a 6 -9 month paid placement with a reputable stud, learning how to assist with foalings, handle breeding stock and relevant husbandry tasks. Successful completion leads to a 1st4Sport Level 2 Diploma in Work Based Racehorse Care (Breeding Option).

Start Dates: January and September (Alternative start dates may be offered depending on applicant)

Entry Requirements: Applicants must be 18 years or older by the course start date and have generic horse handling experience. No previous formal qualifications required

Contact the Education Team on or 01638 675922 for more information

This qualification can also be undertaken in the workplace

Costs: A £200 room deposit is required on being accepted onto the programme. This will be fully refunded on departure pending a room inspection. Learners will also be required to pay a £60 contribution towards trips. Residential accommodation is provided in the on-site student hostel and learners will be provided with lunch on weekdays with facilities provided for all other meals which are to be self-catered.

<p>Level Two</p>

CPD and Short Courses

The National Stud also offers a range of short courses for those working in various areas within the industry. If you would like formal recognition of your skills or are looking to upskill get in touch to discuss the options available.

These range from required training certificates such as First Aid and Manual Handling to our Stud Administration course for those looking to expand their skillset. The Level 2 Diploma in Work-Based Horse Care (Breeding Option) and Level 3 Certificate in Thoroughbred Stud Practice can both be completed in the workplace, while the Level 4 Learning Programmes can also be achieved while working full time.

Transporting Horses

Level 3 Awards in Transporting Horses on Short and Long Journeys.

Course dates: Delivered throughout the year

The full ‘Certificate of Competence for Drivers and Attendants in Transporting Horses Pursuant to Article 17(2)’ is issued by DEFRA following successful completion of the qualification.

The Level 3 Award in Transporting Horses on Short Journeys can also be completed via The National Stud.

The National Stud also delivers the 1st4Sport Level 3 Award in the Principles of Transporting Horses on Long Journeys.

Developed in partnership with the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), this award provides a benefit to learners who already work with horses and require a qualification to enable them to transport horses on journeys exceeding 8 hours. The qualification will give the learner the skills and knowledge required to transport horses safely and legally as either an Attendant or Attendant/Driver

Stud Administration Course

Course dates: 28th-29th October 2024

The Stud Administration short course provides those with an interest in working within a Stud Administration role an understanding of key elements of the role and responsibilities.

Delegates gain background industry knowledge relating to marketing, transportation, bloodstock sales, bloodstock insurance, mare and foal registrations, stud administration procedures and veterinary practices.

The bi-annual three day programme includes lectures from industry experts, including professionals from the Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association, Weatherbys, Newmarket Equine Hospital, the bloodstock sales team at Tattersall’s and The National Stud’s Nominations Manager and Stud Office Manager.

On completion of the course a certificate is issued from The National Stud.

Course dates: Delivered throughout the year

<p>CPD and Short Courses </p>

Online learning

Funding Options

Bursaries are available to cover part of the cost of the Level 3 Stud Management and Sales Consignment course, applicants are asked to complete a bursary application form which is available through contacting Other funding may also be available if required.

Generously supported by our industry partners – the Horserace Betting Levy Board, the Thoroughbred Breeders Association and the Racing Foundation, the programmes aim to improve accessibility to the industry, offer continuing professional development to current stud staff and develop the next generation of industry leaders through a work-based learning environment and career mentoring.

Additional support via the Wavertree Education Trust from the Alborada Trust, Gerald Leigh Trust, EB Moller Charitable Trust, the John Pearce Foundation, Tattersalls, Watership Down Stud and the Tim Dunlop Memorial Trust enables us to provide our courses at a minimal cost to students

<p>Funding Options</p>