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Urban Forestry - Arboriculture

Algonquin College
Program overview
1 year
Diploma / certificate
Scholarships available
Start dates
September 2022

September 2023

September 2024
Algonquin College

About this program

Urban Forestry - Arboriculture

Provide environmental, social and economic benefits in today`s society with a career in urban forestry.

In the one-year Urban Forestry - Arboriculture Ontario College Certificate program, you experience a hands-on education exploring arboriculture science with tree care skills.

You acquire the skills and knowledge related to a range of tree care services provided by professional arborists, including:

  • tree climbing
  • tree identification
  • tree pruning
  • tree removal
  • tree care
  • tree planting
  • indenification of common tree wildlife
  • identification, diagnoses and management of tree diseases

Spend the majority of your time in the program outdoors, in a variety of weather conditions and heights. Working on real trees, practice climbing techniques and learn to become proficient in the use of arborist-related equipment, including chainsaws, chippers and pruning essentials.

Develop foundational tree identification and safe tree climbing skills through theoretical, laboratory and hands-on learning.

Participate in workplace scenarios that replicate actual challenges faced by arborists. In classroom and labs settings, examine tree science and arboriculture practises, such as planting, pruning and removal.

Admission requirements

This program is well-suited for students who:

  • Enjoy physical activity and working outdoors.
  • Are willing to work in extreme weather conditions.
  • Are comfortable working at heights exceeding 25M (80 feet).
  • Are able to lift one`s own weight.
  • Have an affinity to working with trees and shrubs.
  • Work well in a team environment.
  • Enjoy problem solving.
  • Possess good communication skills.

College Eligibility

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent. Applicants with an OSSD showing senior English and/or Mathematics courses at the Basic Level, or with Workplace or Open courses, will be tested to determine their eligibility for admission; OR
  • Academic and Career Entrance (ACE) certificate; OR
  • General Educational Development (GED) certificate; OR
  • Mature Student status (19 years of age or older and without a high school diploma at the start of the program). Eligibility may be determined by academic achievement testing for which a fee of $50 (subject to change) will be charged.

Program Eligibility

  • English, Grade 12 (ENG4C) or equivalent with a grade of 60% or higher.
  • Applicants with international transcripts must provide proof of the subject-specific requirements noted above and may be required to provide proof of language proficiency. Domestic applicants with international transcripts must be evaluated through the International Credential Assessment Service of Canada (ICAS) or World Education Services (WES).
  • IELTS-International English Language Testing Service (Academic) Overall band of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each band; OR TOEFL-Internet-based (iBT)-overall 88, with a minimum of 22 in each component: Reading: 22; Listening: 22; Speaking: 22; Writing: 22.

For more information about admission requirements, please visit the college website.

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Program content

Level: 01

  • Communications ICommunications I
  • Basic Tree Climbing
  • Equipment Operations and Maintenance
  • Advanced Tree Climbing
  • Tree Entomology and Pathology
  • Dendrology

Level: 02

  • Tree Sciences and Practices
  • Arboriculture Practices
  • Tree Removal
  • Urban Soils
  • Tree Pruning Techniques
  • Choose one from equivalencies:
    • General Education Elective

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the college website for more information.


For more information about tuition fees, please visit the college website. 


The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Explain principles and procedures relating to urban forests and ecosystem,s to inform clients` decision-making when selecting tree sites, species and planting procedures.
  2. Treat trees by considering the relationship between tree anatomy, physiology and urban soil conditions to maintain tree health and management.
  3. Recommend and apply integrated treatments and preventative care, to promote healthy trees.
  4. Use complex climbing systems with basic industry-recognized fall protection techniques, to climb and prune trees safely while addressing tree wound reactions in juvenile and mature trees.
  5. Implement proper tree maintenance and safe removal procedures in accordance with industry standards, policies, and legislation.
  6. Employ safe operational and maintenance procedures for arborist-related hand tools and large equipment, in accordance with recognized standards.
  7. Prepare reports and field records in compliance with industry regulation and established policies and procedures.
  8. Utilize industry-related personal protective equipment and safe working practises, to ensure optimum health and safety of self, team members and the environment.
  9. Apply the fundamentals of hazardous tree assessment, tree appraisal and tree risk management, in order to implement safe and appropriate harm reduction actions and procedures.
  10. Identify and apply discipline-specific practices that contribute to the local and global community through social responsibility, economic commitment and environmental stewardship.

Career paths

Graduates of the program may find employment as Head Arborist, Crew Leader, Arborist, Ground Crew, Lead Climber, Climber, and Consulting Arborist.

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About this institute

Algonquin College

Consider Algonquin’s unique campuses Algonquin College, located in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, offers an experience that includes personalized learning and industry-ready skills through field-work, work placement and co-op.  With more than 300 programs, including degrees and graduate certificates, we have the...

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Why study at Algonquin College

Canada ranked #1 study abroad country

Canada has been ranked the #1 study abroad country in the world for 2020! Known for its untouched natural beauty, friendly and welcoming locals, and a culture of tolerance and diversity, Canada is a clear choice for students looking to study abroad.

Contact info

Algonquin College

1385 Woodroffe Avenue
K2G 1V8 Ottawa Ontario

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