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Study Animal health and welfare today

Certificate in Animal Welfare Investigations

Are you passionate about protecting animals from cruelty or neglect? Take the first step towards becoming an animal welfare investigator with this one-year programme that offers the convenience of distance learning, with three five-day compulsory on-campus block courses.

120 (1.0 EFTS)
Mt Albert
Start dates
Full-time distance learning for one year (including three five-day compulsory block courses and compulsory work experience)

Programme overview

Gain the skills and knowledge required to become a warranted animal welfare investigator in Aotearoa New Zealand. Explore the requirements, procedures, and powers of this role in terms of animal welfare law, animal health and husbandry, and learn communication skills and techniques for investigations and prosecutions.


  • Essential for industry recognition: to become a warranted animal welfare investigator under the Animal Welfare Act 1999, you need to have the Certificate in Animal Welfare Investigations and be employed by an approved organisation.
  • 28 hours of compulsory work experience: you'll spend 20 hours working alongside a practicing warranted animal welfare investigator and eight hours in a district court.
  • Suitable for mature students, school leavers and those who work with animals and want to know more about animal welfare and the Animal Welfare Act 1999.
  • Learn from a teaching team who are passionate about animals, experts in the fields of animal welfare investigations, animal behaviour, health, and welfare, and continue to work closely with industry.
  • Visiting industry experts and guest lecturers will give you a real feel for the career opportunities available in animal welfare investigations.

Admission requirements

For this programme, you will need the following:

1. A minimum of 12 credits at NCEA Level 1 in English
2. A minimum of 12 credits at NCEA Level 1 in Biology and/or Chemistry, or another relevant science subject
3. Be at least 16 years old by the time the programme begins
4. If English is not your first language, you will need one or more of the following:

  • Have achieved NCEA Level 3 and New Zealand University entrance
  • Be able to provide evidence you satisfy our criteria for existing English proficiency
  • Have achieved at least one English proficiency outcome in the last two years

Don’t have NCEA? We also accept:

  • A relevant qualification at Level 3 on the NZQF or above or an equivalent qualification; or
  • Provide sufficient evidence to be eligible for special or discretionary admission.

For more information download the programme regulations:

Programme Regulations

Courses and timetables

For more details on the courses, please click on the course names below. Please note that our systems are updating with new course timetable information for 2019; please check back again soon.