Advanced certificate in Nature Conservation: Trans-Frontier Conservation Management

Course ID
Natural Resource Management
NQF Level 6
Various instructors
Blended Learning, Block Release methods
1 Year


The learning programme runs over a period of one academic year. Direct student contact sessions for the programme take place during two College blocks, whilst the practical application of competencies take place over an additional 16 weeks at students’ own workplaces. Provision for formal summative assessments is made after each College block.


The Southern African Wildlife College offers the Advanced Certificate in Nature Conservation: Trans- Frontier Conservation Management as a training intervention aimed at the development of Nature Conservation managers within the Southern African Development Countries (SADC) region.

The nature of conservation within the context of the SADC is evolving to enable the integration and opening up of artificial boundaries previously associated with conservation areas. Through the working relationships established through Transfrontier conservation initiatives it is becoming more and more important to enable a consistent shared approach to matters concerning conservation.

The sustainable utilisation, conservation and protection of the natural environment and resources require an integrated and holistic management approach. Effective management within Transfrontier conservation areas promotes both natural environment issues and cooperation with stakeholders including local communities.

Natural resources conservation challenges and objectives in the SADC region is the joint responsibility of countries including:

  • South Africa
  • Mozambique
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe
  • Malawi
  • Botswana
  • Swaziland
  • Namibia and
  • Lesotho

The effective management of the dynamics of Transfrontier conservation areas has particular importance from the perspective of retaining our shared African heritage. The effective utilisation of this resource as a major and increasingly important tourism attraction contributes to and promotes economic sustainability across the SADC.

The qualification addresses competencies required for managerial positions within the conservation environment, associated which positions such as:

  • Reserve Managers
  • Section Rangers
  • Game Wardens
  • Senior Field Rangers
  • Senior Wildlife Officers
  • Ranger – operations
  • Ranger – extension

Target Group

The learning programme is aimed at individuals already involved in operational positions within the nature conservation environment; who have been identified and earmarked for personal development and career advancement into management positions, based on their expertise and leadership abilities in their country of origin. Individuals earmarked for personal growth and job advancement opportunities relevant to this qualification, already have acquired a minimum of five years technical expertise in the broad focus areas associated with Nature Conservation principles and activities and have been exposed to entry-level supervisory and leadership positions within a conservation context. It is envisaged that individuals interested in the qualification will mainly fit into the following demographic profile:

Open age group with the average minimum age of the target group being between 25 and 30 years of age

Male or female

Employed in a nature conservation environment for at least five years

Above average level of technical know–how on conservation issues

Ability to work with a diverse range of individuals

Ability to work outdoors sometimes in less than optimal weather conditions

Good ability to build rapport

Entry level requirements

It is assumed that students entering this qualification are competent in:

English at NQF Level 5

Mathematical Literacy at NQF Level 5

Recognised conservation qualification on NQF level 5 or equivalent

A minimum of 5 years full-time employment in a nature conservation related role


An integrated assessment approach is incorporated into the Qualification. This implies that theoretical and practical components are assessed together. During integrated assessments, formative and summative assessment methods and combinations of practical, applied, foundational and reflective competencies are used. A range of formative and summative assessment methods are used, and ensures that all Specific Outcomes, Embedded Knowledge and Critical Cross-Field Outcomes are evaluated.

Continuous assessment is provided through:



Workplace assessments and practical workbooks

Written assignments and tests

Case studies and case presentations

Peer group evaluation

Competency evaluations of clinical

Exit Level Outcomes

Students qualifying against the learning programme will be able to:

Determine the application of conservation practices in relation to Transfrontier conservation objectives

Develop a management plan to support the effective operation of a Nature Conservation unit or area

Manage a conservation implementation plan according to organisational requirements

Report on effectiveness of implementation

This programme aims to develop future generations of Natural Resource Managers with the requisite understanding and practical skills to manage their areas effectively and in cooperation with local communities.