Climbing Arborist Apprenticeship

The Arboriculture Trade includes three distinct and progressive Certificates of Qualification. The three are; Arborist Technician, Climbing Arborist and Field Arborist.

Download the pdf handout for the Arboriculturist Apprenticeship with complete information on each of the Arboriculture apprenticeships

The Arboriculturist Apprenticeship program is independent from the Red Seal Landscape Horticulturist and Certified Utility Arborist programs.

Watch this video ‘Climbing Arborist Apprenticeship‘ for a quick summary of the Climbing Arborist Apprenticeship Program.

Level Two – Climbing Arborist

  • ITA Climbing Arborist program
  • Must have your Certificate of Qualification as an Arborist Technician
  • In-school training for 8 weeks
  • Require 1,800 workplace hours with confirmation of hours by your employer
  • Practical Assessment to demonstrate necessary skills to perform the routine tasks of a Climbing Arborist.
  • This level of training will focus on climbing skills and technical skills used while working in trees
  • A Climbing Arborist;
    • performs advanced rigging and cutting
    • structurally support trees
    • select trees for planting
    • identify common pests and diseases
    • capable of performing rescues
  • This will result in a Certificate of Qualification and a Certificate of Apprenticeship as a Climbing Arborist.

Steps to become a Climbing Arborist Apprentice

  • Step 1: Register the apprenticeship with the ITA. You must have a Sponsor who is either a Certified Tradesperson or has Sign-Off Authority and has registered with the ITA. Click here for Sponsor information. can be your sponsor for the school duration if you do not have employment in the field. Contact – [email protected] one of 2 ways using the same Trade Worker Identification Number (TWID#) you were assigned as an Arborist Technician; this must be submitted to ITA, to register with the ITA as a Climbing Arborist, so your technical training and work based hours can be logged.

    1. Register as an apprentice online

    2. Register as an apprentice using a paper-based system

            • If you prefer to use a paper-based system; or, this is the sponsor’s first apprentice registration since either completing their Climbing Arborist Technician Certificate of Qualification or receiving sign-off authority status, complete the Apprenticeship and Sponsor Registration Form with your sponsor and mail or fax to the ITA (contact info is on the form).
      • Read the Apprentice/Trainee Guide and the 6 Steps to Success guide provided by ITA

Step 2: Register for Technical Training. Register with your chosen training institution for the in-school training portion of the apprenticeship. Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Langley offers the program.

Step 3: Track workplace training hours. Track your hours along with your employer using the online ITA Direct Access system or by filling out the paper-based system Work-Based Training Report form.

Step 4: Climbing Arborist Practical Assessment Exam. Once the technical training and 1,800 workplace training hours have been completed; complete the Climbing Arborist practical assessment application form; then Contact to schedule the practical assessment.

Step 5: Apply for Certificate of Qualification. After completing the Climbing Arborist Technical training, 1,800 workplace training hours, and the Climbing Arborist practical assessment a ‘Recommend for Certification’ form must be signed by your sponsor. This form is provided by ITA upon completion of training and work based hours.

Contact ITA Customer Service for any assistance

Tax Credits

      • Remember that you may be eligible for tax credits starting at $1000 per completed level.

What does it cost?

These costs are based on the Kwantlen Polytechnic University program and are subject to change.

    • A $10 non-refundable Apprentice Evaluation fee will be charged for each registration
    • Tuition Fees – Winter 2015 fees are $2300 for 8 week session (not including additional student fees)
    • Required Texts – Approximately $200 for Level Two – Climbing Arborist
    • For a list of textbooks view the Program Outline, and go to page 65
    • Additional Costs – Field trips, CSA safety footwear, rain gear, accommodations, basic school supplies and study materials.

Funding options

    • Apprentices may be eligible to collect Employment Insurance benefits during school technical training sessions. Some apprentices qualify for additional benefits such as travel or lodging allowance. Contact your local WorkBC Apprentice Services Centre to enquire about EI and additional benefits.
    • Apprentices are eligible for a tax credit starting at $1000 per completed level.
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