Online courses provide the flexibility to participate while you balance work, family, and horses. What better way to fill up the remaining dark winter hours than to learn a new skill, increase your knowledge, or even earn a diploma?

Equine Guelph

“Study Online. Stay at home with your horses” is the motto of Equine Guelph at the University of Guelph, which have been pioneers in online education in Canada since 2002. Demand and interest is growing all the time, and there are now 20 certificate and diploma programs available in a variety of equine fields. “We have approximately 545 students each year participating in our courses, and most students will take two or three courses per year,” says Marjory Gaouette, manager of Program Development at UofG. Courses include:

  • Management of the Equine Environment
  • Health & Disease Prevention
  • Equine Nutrition
  • Functional Anatomy
  • Equine Behaviour
  • Stewardship of the Equine Environment
  • Management of the Broodmare, Stallion and FoalExercise PhysiologyEquine Genetics
  • Equine Business Management
  • The Equine Industry
  • Marketing & Communications in the Equine Industry
  • Equine Business Finance & Risk Management
  • Equine Journalism
  • Equine Event Management
  • Equine Welfare
  • Global Perspectives in Equine Welfare
  • Advanced Equine Behaviour
  • Advanced Equine Health through Nutrition
  • Advanced Equine Functional Anatomy

Certificate courses include:

  • Equine Science Certificate
  • Diploma in Equine Studies
  • Certificate in Equine Business Management
  • Equine Welfare Certificate
  • Equine Veterinary Technician Certificate

Jackie Bellamy-Zions, head of Communications & Administration at Equine Guelph, explains that while there is a timeline for completing courses, the deadlines are quite generous. For example, “The nice thing about the Diploma in Equine Studies is that you can take up to 10 years to complete it. No pressure – flexible study as much as possible, because they’re horse people and life happens.” Courses range from $495-625 CAD.

New for 2017 is – an innovative industry partnership with ten provincial equestrian federations across Canada offering their members equine training and education (also available to non-federation members). Short, practical online courses include:

  • Equine Welfare: Canada’s Code – March 6-24
  • Equine Biosecurity: Canada’s Standard – April 10-28

“There are going to be promotions, so if you’re signing up for a portal course through one of the federations there’ll be a discount,” advises Bellamy-Zions. For example, the Ontario Equestrian Federation is currently offering the two introductory pilot courses for free to members. Bellamy-Zions promises that more exciting courses are in the planning stages.

Horse Council BC

HCBC offers several courses online that are available for everyone to take for a modest fee ($10-$95, some are free), while HCBC members can take any course for free. Currently, the following courses are offered:

  • Bits & Bitting
  • Road Safety
  • Vaccines
  • Functional Conformation
  • Manure Management
  • Water Management
  • Pasture Management
  • Para-Equestrian
  • Nutrition 101
  • First Horse
  • Parasite Control
  • Hoof Care
  • Core Strength

Quick Courses – these free mini-courses offer basic information on a wide range of topics:

  • Blanketing Explained
  • Approaching, Catching and Haltering a Horse
  • Trail Etiquette & Safety Best Practices
  • Equine Law
  • Water Filtration in the Back Country provides curriculum for nine colleges and universities, with a faculty comprised of award-winning horsemen and women. The suggested sequence of courses is:

  1. Bits, Saddle Fitting and Shoeing, Nutrition for Maximum Performance, Conformation and Selection for Performance, Understanding Behavior Modification, and Training Performance Horses.
  2. Equine Health and Disease Management, Equine Reproduction, Stallion Management, and Equine Safety and Rescue.
  3. Stable Management, The Business of Making Money With Horses, and Legal Aspects of Horse Management, Riding Instructor Role & Responsibility and Riding Instructor Teaching Techniques.
  4. Showmanship in Hand, Dressage: A Foundation for All Riding Disciplines, Preparation for Competition, Equine Massage, Equine Photography

Electives include:

  • Competitive Longe Line
  • Fit To Ride
  • Ride Competitive Trail
  • Rev Up Your Dressage Scores
  • Train A Reiner
  • Train For Trail Class
  • Train for Western Riding
  • Essential Oils and Acupressure for Horses
  • Five Element Theory for Horses
  • Traditional Chinese Medicine for Horses

(A minimum of three of the electives is required for graduation.)

The Bachelor of Science degree is awarded by Breyer State University (based in Panama, with offices in Canada and the US) when the student completes the final Equine Studies Symposium. $4,750-$9,500 USD


This site, whose educational centre is located in North Wales, offers AQA UAS-approved (UK qualifications), reasonably-priced or free basic courses in:

  • Tack
  • Mucking out
  • Horse handlingHorse feeding
  • Health


My Horse University (MHU) was established in 2005 at Michigan State University. MHU brings research and knowledge from world-renowned experts to reasonably-priced online courses and products.

Premier Courses ($200 USD):

  • Horse Nutrition
  • Horse Behavior & WelfareHorse Selection & Evaluation

Series ($25-50 USD):

  • Breeding for a Champion
  • Horse Breeding and Selection Series
  • Trail Riding 101
  • Your Next Competition Horse
  • Preparing & Breeding Your Mare
  • Post-Natal Care
  • Evaluating Conformation: Form to Function
  • Uses, Breeds & Identification of Horses
  • Purchasing & Owning a Horse 101 (free)