‘Proficiency in Beekeeping’ Course

‘Proficiency in Beekeeping’ is an Open College Network Northern Ireland (OCN NI) Level 3 endorsed course developed by the Ulster Beekeepers’ Association (UBKA) Education and Assessment Team in conjunction with OCN NI and CAFRE. It builds upon the knowledge gained from any introductory course successfully studied.


The course consists of 10 units, the content of the first nine to be delivered in the classroom or by Zoom, over 2 years with 15 x 2 hour sessions each year.  Unit 10 skills will be developed and assessed in apiary settings.  UBKA tutors will deliver the two-year course in a range of locations.

Course content 

  • Unit 1: External Anatomy of the Honeybee
  • Unit 2: Natural History of the Honeybee
  • Unit 3: Diseases, Parasites, Pests and Risks
  • Unit 4: Forage, Plants and Pollination
  • Unit 5: Nectar and Honey
  • Unit 6: Honeybee Products and Preparation for Show and for Sale
  • Units 7, 8 and 9: Apiary Management and Honeybee Husbandry
  • Unit 10: Practical Management of the Apiary


Assessment of Units 1 to 9 will be by continuous assessment by means of workbooks. Assessment of Unit 10 will be conducted in an Association Apiary.

All units must be completed to a satisfactory standard to achieve the Level 3 endorsed award.

Entry requirement

Successful completion of ‘Introduction to Beekeeping’ Course or an equivalent award.


£200 each year for two years, covering a registration fee, assessment fees and tuition but excluding Unit 10 Practical Assessment fee.

Details are on the CAFRE website about when and how to register. You can give an expression of interest on the CAFRE website so you don’t miss the registration opportunity. 


UBKA Education & Assessment Team Chair

[email protected]

UBKA Education & Assessment Team Secretary

[email protected]

Further information and registration

For further information and to register for a course, please visit the CAFRE website and enter ‘Beekeeping’ in the search.