Aquaculture SCQF 7 Modern Apprenticeship

What is special about this course?

Learn on the job and work towards a qualification that progresses your career while still earning a living. The Modern Apprenticeship in Aquaculture SVQ 3 enables you to gain a recognised qualification for work that you are already carrying out on a day to day basis. This course doesn't require you or your employer to organise any day release because our assessors visit you so you can open up promotion possibilities without any inconvenience.

Work towards a qualification which will be recognised by employers such as Mowi, Scottish Sea Farms, Scottish Salmon Company and the wider business sector.

Entry requirements

Candidates should be in a job or placement where they are carrying out relevant tasks and responsibilities, which allow them to gather the required evidence. 

No prior qualifications are required to undertake this qualification although previous experience/knowledge would be an advantage.

This qualification has been designed in partnership with the Sector Skills Council and Lantra, to ensure relevance to the sector. There are 3 mandatory units:

  • Controlling the aquatic production environment for farmed fish/shellfish
  • Controlling the prodcution of farmed fish/shellfish for sale or transfer
  • Providing a safe, healthy and secure working environment

There are 3 optional units to choose from including choices such as business development, use of resources and Animal Husbandry. Your assessor will help you select the options which suit your role or career goals.



How will I study my course?

  • Part Time
  • Work based
  • Vocational Pathway

How long will my course last?

12 Months

How will I be assessed?

    You will be assessed in the workplace and via e-portfolio.  Some assessment will be submissions of evidence produced in your role.  Some will be observations in the work place.

Where can I study my course?

    • Work Based

    Please note, UHI West Highland will be changing its name to UHI North, West and Hebrides in August 2023. This will not impact on your choice of course or how and where you will study.

Start date

Flexible start dates to suit you and your employer.


Most students have their course fees paid as this is a full time course. Please read our Fees & Funding information pages for more information regarding residency, previous study and bursary rates. Please contact if you have any further questions.

Rest of UK students : For students normally domiciled in the rest of the UK (England, Wales and N. Ireland, including Channel Islands and the Isle of Man), with a term-time address in Scotland, studying full time, the course fee is £5,800.

Some of our courses require students to have essential equipment/clothing.

If you are under 18, you are entitled to have essential equipment paid for whether you are entitled to Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) or not. However you must complete an application even if you know that you're not entitled to EMA.

If you are 18 and over and are eligible for a bursary, these costs will be met through your bursary. If you are not eligible for a bursary, you will need to fund these items yourself.


If you study this course as part of an approved Modern Apprenticeship, and this is agreed by your employer, you will qualify for funding from Skills Development Scotland. We will support your employer in applying for this funding. Simply email to arrange to talk with our team.

What can I do on completion of my course?

SVQ Level 3 could provide progression to further qualifications in fish farming, fish and aquatic science or degree level study at a higher education institution.

Is there more information available online?

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We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at UHI West Highland. Please note, UHI West Highland will be changing its name to UHI North, West and Hebrides in August 2023. This will not impact on your choice of course or how and where you will study. UHI West Highland operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.