Access to Aquaculture SCQF Level 4

What is special about this course?

This course will help you develop some basic skills needed to enter the Aquaculture sector through fish husbandry and other fishfarming roles. Coursework and practical activities lead to recognised SQA and RYA qualifications useful for getting started in the industry.

Entry requirements

There are no academic entry requirements for this course.

This course is a mixture of aquaculture subjects exploring the activities and practices you will find in fishfarming around Argyll’s coastline. The main topics covered are from the headings below:

  • Aquatic Environment: Local Investigation   
  • Aquaculture: An Introduction to Finfish Production   
  • Scottish Sea Fisheries: An Introduction   
  • Work Placement plus fishfarm onsite visits

To give you additional experience and qualifications that will help you gain employment in the aquaculture sector, you'll study the following maritime subjects.

  • Seamanship: An Introduction (National 5)  
  • RYA Powerboat 2  
  • RYA 1st Aid    
  • RYA Day Skipper    
  • RYA Diesel Engine    
  • RYA Boat Electrics    
  • RYA Essential Navigation
  • And other Basic Navigational Watchkeeping skills    


How will I study my course?

  • Full Time

How long will my course last?

18 Weeks

Where can I study my course?

    • Oban Learning Centre

Start date

The start date is 24th January 

This course will run on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays for 18 weeks.


Scottish resident full-time students will automatically have their course fees paid for this course.   

If you have recently moved to, or do not normally live in Scotland, you may need to pay £5,970 in course fees, these can be paid in instalments. Families of Armed Services personnel are subject to different fees regulations and may also have to pay course fees. If you think this may apply to you, please contact us and we can advise you. 

This course is not available to students who require a Tier 4 Home Office visa to study in Scotland (international or EU). 

Part-time FE students who are on low incomes or in receipt of certain benefits may also have their course fees paid for them. Please refer to page 2 of our Fees and Funding Guide to see if you are eligible.  


Students wishing to obtain the full VHF (SRC) licence should note that there is a fee of £65 payable to RYA / Ofcom for the exam and licence. This exam is optional, not required to successfully complete the course and is therefore not covered by your bursary.

What can I do on completion of my course?

This course can lead to employment in the aquaculture sector where further study and qualifications through the Modern Apprenticeship can be achieved.

There is a large demand in Argyll for new candidates to enter into Aquaculture and fishfarming. There are a great number of varied career paths within the sector ranging from husbandry and site management to engineering, maritime or marine biology. 

Is there more information available online?

QR Code - scan to visit course page

You can use the above QR code to connect directly to the course details.

This course allows those without previous maritime or aquaculture experience or qualifications to start their journey towards employment in fishfarming. It is a great mix of practical hands-on work, experiencing working with fish farm professionals and gain qualifications that will assist you get employment in a wide range of aquaculture and maritime roles.

Don Mitchell, Project Director Maritime Industry Training Centre

I want to start in Jan 2023

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at UHI Argyll. UHI Argyll 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.