ACM20121 Certificate II In

Animal Care Intensive (Veterinary Nursing Pathway)

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Start your Pathway to a Career in Veterinary Nursing

Are you passionate about caring for animals and see your future self working in a veterinary hospital one day? ACM20121 Certificate II in Animal Care Intensive (Veterinary Nursing Pathway), previously ACM20117 Certificate II in Animal Studies, is just for you!

This certificate will allow you to meet the prerequisite for the national qualification in veterinary nursing or start your career as an animal carer or attendant in a veterinary hospital.*

This 10-week intensive course is based at our AVT Veterinary Training Facility in Ascot, WA. The course format means you do not have to spend time finding your own work placement. Instead, you will learn your hands-on practical training alongside a small group (12) of other students. Highly experienced AVT trainers will instruct and supervise you and you will also be required to complete home-based online learning throughout the week.

Course snapshot

NRT - nationally recognised training - for animal studies, horse care and vet nursing
Vet Nursing Pathway Course in Perth
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Course outline

Blended learning, 1 day practical training, plus online eLearning.

Your course structure will be as follows:-

  • an Orientation Day on-campus,
  • followed by one day per week on-campus. Training days will be held from 8.00am-3.00pm on either a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.
  • you will also undertake home based online study to complete your theory and submit assessments.

We will endeavour to meet your preference for practical training / on-site training days but this can not be guaranteed and students are expected to participate in ALL practical training days.

Students must:

  • be available to participate in ALL training days (1 day per week)
  • have received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine
  • be physically capable of restraining animals, handling animal feed e.g. large bags of food of up to 10 kg and standing for extended periods of time
  • have a reliable internet connection and access to a desktop computer or laptop. You will be required to write, submit and in some cases upload assessments and various types of multi-media files online in your own time, therefore we strongly recommend using a desktop or laptop computer for your studies
  • be proficient in speaking and writing in English
  • not attending high school for the duration of the course
  • due to the required workload and level of study, have a minimum level of schooling up to and including year 10, with a good understanding of science and maths.

This course is highly competitive and has limited places. Therefore, successful students are selected based on prior work experience, education, individual attitude and aptitude. Shortlisted applicants will be interviewed by an AVT team member.

Credit transfers

Students with eligible credit transfers may apply, however due to the course delivery format, 100% attendance is required for orientation/induction and practical placement days and therefore full course fees will apply.

You will be required to wear:

  • an AVT scrub top and name badge (supplied by AVT)
  • enclosed black shoes (supplied by student),
  • neatly presented, long comfortable work pants suitable for bending and manual work (supplied by student).

What will you learn?

During our Vet Nursing Pathway course, you will become familiar with the fundamental principles of working in the animal care industry. In addition to the topics covered in the Certificate II in Animal Care course, you will be introduced to:-

All of the skills and knowledge you will learn can be applied in an entry level position such as an Animal Attendant in a veterinary hospital or can be used across a broad range of animal care organisations. For more information on careers working with animals read our article Top 6 Animal Care Careers.

Veterinary Nursing Pathway prerequisite course - Cert 2 in Animal Studies

Course outcomes

Our graduates go on to a wide range of roles across the animal care industry. 

Job Outcomes

Students who have completed the Certificate II in Animal Care go on to careers as a:

  • Animal care attendant
  • Welfare shelter attendant
  • Kennel hand
  • Cattery attendant
  • Pet shop attendant
  • Assistant dog groomer
  • Stable hand
  • Vet assistant

Skills Outcomes

Some of the skills you will be able to apply once qualified include:

  • Assist in preparation of animals and surgical areas and instruments 
  • Carry out veterinary reception duties
  • Provide post-operative care to animals
  • Conduct animal hygiene routines e.g. clip, brush, wash
  • Assist with the assessing the health of animals
  • Administer basic animal first aid 
  • Safety and correctly handle and restrain animals
  • Identify and interpret animal behaviour
  • Accurately complete animal care records

Course content

All students must complete the following core units:

  • ACMWHS201 Participate in workplace health & safety processes
  • ACMGEN202 Complete animal care hygiene routines
  • BSBCMM211 Apply communication skills
  • ACMGEN203 Feed & water animals
  • ACMGEN204 Assist in healthcare of animals
  • ACMSUS201 Participate in environmentally sustainable work practices
  • ACMGEN201 Work in the animal care industry
Certificate II Intensive (Vet Nursing Pathway) Students will also be required to study:
  • ACMINF201 Handle companion animals safely and follow infection control guidelines
  • ACMVET201 Assist with veterinary nursing reception duties
  • ACMVET203 Assist with surgery preparation
  • ACMSPE317 – Provide general care of domestic cats (Species-specific unit)

Why choose an intensive pathway course for your Animal Care course?

*Please note: Completion of this qualification meets the prerequisite for ACM40418 Cert IV in Veterinary Nursing. However, it does not guarantee you a place on one of our own courses. Due to high demand, our AVT selection criteria also apply. Please read full details on our Veterinary Nursing Course Entry page.

Nationally recognised animal care course in Australia NRT

What students are saying about this course

Fees & inclusions

Total course fees: $3,648*

Payable via our monthly payment plan. Initial payment of $1,500 plus 3 x $716 monthly payments and includes:-

*Fees, inclusions and payment plan amounts are subject to change. If you decide to withdraw from study for any reason, refunds are not issued. Please see our policies page for full details.

Apply now - Vet Nursing Pathway

Course Dates
Application Status
February 2022 Intake
Course runs 8th Feb - 14th Apr
May 2022 Intake
Course starts May 2022

This course has limited places with high demand. We reserve the right to close course intakes before the advertised close date. We recommend submitting your application below, as early as possible. For full details of the application process please visit this link.


To receive a credit for a unit of competency that you have previously been awarded, you must be able to supply a verifiable Testamur (certificate) or Statement of Attainment obtained from the issuing provider.

A Testamur or Statement of Attainment must either contain the wording ‘The qualification is recognised within the Australian Qualifications Framework’ or the AQF logo authorised by the AQF Council.

A Record of Results or Statement of Academic Record by itself is not sufficient when applying for a credit transfer of a nationally recognised unit of competency.

If you do not have a copy of your Testamur or Statement of Attainment you are responsible for requesting a copy from the issuing provider, we are unable to do this on your behalf.

For more information about RPL see our frequently asked questions here.

Why choose AVT?

Dedicated Animal Care College

AVT has been training Animal Care and Vet Nursing students for over 20 years. It's safe to say there are no plumbing or hairdressing courses here!

Prerequisite course for veterinary nursing

Prerequisite for Vet Nursing

ACM20121 Certificate II in Animal Studies meets the prerequisite for ACM40418 Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing. Completing our Animal Care course is the best pathway to becoming a Qualified Vet Nurse.

Prerequisite course for veterinary nursing

Safe and Supported Learning

Our qualified teaching team have many years of experience as well as extensive backgrounds in the veterinary and animal care industry. They are approachable and dedicated to helping students succeed.

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