Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Arboricultural Association.

Share this story


#ARBatwork #ArbMatters #PledgeLessPlastic & 12 Faces of Arb 1987 storm 2018 3ATC 3ATC UK Open 50th annual AA AA award AA Awards Aboricultural Association Accident accreditation advice AFL aftercare AGM Agrilus Biguttatus aid air quality Alert Alex Kirkley All Party Parliamentary Group on Horticulture amenity Amenity Conference Ancient Tree Forum Annual Awards app APPGHG apprentice apprenticeship Apprenticeships Approved Approved Contractors ARB ARB Approved Contractor ARB Approved Contractors ARB at work ARB Magazine ARB Show arb training ArbAC ArbCamp Arboricultural Association Arboriculture arborists Arbsafe Ash ash dieback Asian Hornet Assessments atf Australia Autumn Review award Awards Barcham Trees Bark Beetle Bartlett Bartlett Tree Experts bats beetle beyond ism Bill Matthews biochar biodiversity biosecurity branch Branches brand Brexit bs5837 bursary business Call for papers Campout Canker stain of plane carbon Cavanagh CCS Cellular Confinement Systems CEnv Ceratocystis Ceratocystis platani chainsaw chalara charity Charles charter Charter for Trees chelsea Chelsea Flower Show Claus Mattheck climate climate change climber climbing Colleges committees competition competiton conference Confor conifers conservation Consultant consultation Contractor Coroner Council Countryside Stewardship Course for beginners cross industry news Crown & Canopy Cryphonectria parasitica Cumbria DART Date for your diary deadwood death defra Design Devon disease document donate dothistroma draft EAC East Anglia ecology Economic Report economy Ecotricity education Electricity England English Elm environment environmental EPF equipment Europe European Arboricultural Council European Wood Pastures exeter Exhibitors Fatal Fatality felling Fellow Fera Field Trip Fine flood flooding Forest Research forestry Forestry Commission forests FSC Fund4Trees funding fundraiser fungal fungi Futurebuild gardening GDPR Geocells Gold Medal Gov.uk government grant grants Green Brexit Green Infrastructure Green Infratructure guidance Guidance Note 2 guides Hazard Tree Health Helliwell Help Henry Kuppen History Honey Brothers Horse Chestnut horticulture horticulturists HortWeek housing HRH HRH Prince Charles HS2 HSE ICF identification industry industry skills Infographic InfraGreen Inspiration Insurance Intermediate Tree Inspection International Urban Forestry Congress Investigating Tree Archaeology Conference Ips typographus Irma irrigation ISA iso i-Tree IUFC Job job opportunity judgement JustGiving Karabiner Kew land-based Landscape Institute Landscape Show landscaping Lantra law Leaf Minor Lectures legal legislation Liability licence London longevity LTOA Magazine maple Mayor of London MBE Melbourne Member Benefit Membership mentor Midlands moth' NASA National Geographic National Tree Safety Group National Tree Week NATO New Year’s Honours News nominations Northern Northumberland notification NTIS NTOA NTOC NTSG oak 'oak Oak Processionary Moth Oak-boring Beetle obituary Observatree occupation opm Padua parks parliament Perennial Pests and Diseases petition photo Phytophthora planning Planning Law planting Plumpton College policy poll Power Preston Twins Prince Charles Prince of Wales processionary prosecution Protect and Survive protected tree protection Qualifications Quotatis ramorum RC Reg Harris Registered Registered Consultant Registered Consultants Rememberance Day renewal Report Rescue research Research grant Resilience response results retrenchment review RFS rhs RHS Chelsea Flower Show Ride for Research Ride4Research rigging Rodney Helliwell rogue tree surgeons RSFS Safety Safety Bulletin Saftey Scotland Scotland Branch Scottish Branch SDG Accord security seminars Share Sheffield Show Sierra Leone Site Guidance skills SocEnv soil soils South East South West SRWP staff statement Stationary Rope statutory STIHL strategy student Student Conference survey Sustainable Soils Alliance Sweet Chestnut sweet chestnut blight T Levels Tatarian maple TDAG technical guide Technical Guides Technical Officers Ted Green tender Thames & Chiltern The Arboricultural Association The Woodland Trust Thinking Arbs Thinking Arbs Day Timbersports Tools top-handled chainsaws,Elcoat, TPBE4 TPO Trading Standards trailblazer training transport Tree Tree Champion Tree Council Tree Fayre Tree Health Tree Inspection tree loss tree management Tree of the year Tree Officer Tree officers Tree Protection tree register tree species Tree Surgeon Tree Surgeons Tree Week Treeconomics tree-felling TreeRadar trees trees' Trees, People and the Built Environment trust' trustee Trustees TrustMark UAG Uitlity UK favourite ukas UKWAS urban urban forest Urban Forestry Urban Tree Cover urban trees Utility Arboriculture Group vacancy VETcert veteran trees video Videos volunteer VTA WAC Wales watering solutions webinars website Western Westonbirt Wharton Witley Women Women in Arb women in arboriculture woodland woodland trust woods World Environment Day Xylella young young arborists Young People’s Breakfast Event zoo

ISA Certified Arborist training programme

Author:  Jim Mullholland
Last Updated:  21/11/2018

The ISA Certified Arborist certification has long been recognised as a valuable status for professionals wanting to make the transition from ‘tree surgeon’ to ‘arborist’. As my venerable colleague Paul Smith puts it, ‘a tree surgeon knows where and how to cut but an arborist knows why and what impacts the cut will have on the tree’.

Designed as a self-study certification, the standard way of achieving the Certified Arborist status is to buy the book, find time to read, learn the contents (as well as read around the subject) and then put yourself forward for an exam. Whilst this can be a flexible way of learning, it doesn’t suit everyone. The Certified Arborist training programme was devised to provide some structure and motivation for those who struggle to self-study.

Comprising six fortnightly classroom sessions the training programme covers all the topics required of a Certified Arborist. With 16 delegates booked, the training programme got underway in April with Andy Summerly of Tree Life AC at the helm. Known to many, Andy has a strong background in providing arboricultural training having worked in education for over 15 years. Living up to his reputation, Andy provided an engaging first session covering chapters 1 (tree biology) and 2 (tree identification) of the Arborists’ Certification Study Guide.

Whilst these topics are ones that I have covered numerous times through my biology and arboriculture qualifications, the day provided useful revision of some of the basic principles and terms. Even with level 6 qualifications in both Environmental Biology and Arboriculture, I came away having learned some new things. Evidently my understanding of the difference between excurrent and decurrent growth forms was not correct!

The beauty of these sessions is that they are not only an engaging place to learn, but Andy was able to talk around the topic, helping delegates step beyond the contents of the book – something required in the exam and real life. At the end of the day we were set homework to complete by the next session, the aim being to reinforce what was learnt in the classroom and hopefully make it stick in our memories.

The final sessions take place later this month with the exam on 14 July.

We plan to run the programme again later this year, so keep an eye here on the website and future issues of the ARB Magazine for further details.


Article taken from Issue 181 of the ARB Magazine.


Next ISA Certifiied Arborist Study Programme begins 17th January 2019. Find out more