About Telford

Telford logoTelford is now a campus of the Southern Institute of Technology.

Telford is part of New Zealand farming history and has been preparing students for their futures in agriculture since 1964. The Balclutha campus extends over 921 hectares of farmland with halls of residence and facilities, technical workshops (machinery, carpentry and welding), classrooms and livestock units. You will gain real-life, practical training under the supervision of experienced tutors and farm managers.

You will also have regular work experience on external farms, in your area of study.

Telford Farms are run as a commercial entity. The farms provide a commercially realistic ‘classroom’ to develop your farming skills. Each week Telford Farm Managers have up to five students undertaking work experience.Telford Campus

Telford Farms consist of:

  • Sheep and Beef Unit: 330 hectares (eff)
  • Deer Unit: 155 hectares (eff)
  • Dairy Unit: 172 hectares (eff)
  • Farm dogs: over 30 student dog kennels are on-site.
  • Forestry Unit: 65 hectares

As well as on campus programmes, Telford offers a number of programmes by distance learning, as well as STAR programmes for schools, and Taster Days.


Subjects & Qualifications Offered at Telford Campus

Click on a circle to view courses offered in subject/qualification

Masters Postgraduate Dip/Cert Graduate Dip/Cert Degree Diploma Certificate Short Course STAR / Gateway*

Agriculture, Horticulture & Floristry


Art, Design & Photography


Project Management


Veterinary Nursing, Animal Care & Equine

Masters Postgraduate Dip/Cert Graduate Dip/Cert Degree Diploma Certificate Short Course STAR / Gateway*

* STAR/Gateway programmes are only offered to NZ Secondary Schools


Farming Systems and Equipment (Level 3) (Dairy, Sheep and Beef)

3 Feb 2020 - 4 Dec 2020

1 year full-time

This is a great qualification for anyone insterested in starting out on a career in farming and agriculture! Learn farming, fencing and machinery skills to be able to assist in the management of all aspects of livestock production in a dairy, sheep or beef farming operation. This certificate is the first step in a rewarding career at the heart of New Zealand's primary sector, which could lead to farm management, farm ownership, or jobs in associated industries.

Course Details

Foundation Certificate in Agriculture

To be confirmed

17 weeks, Full-time

Study the Foundation Certificate in Agriculture to learn about soil, plants and animal systems that are essential in the agriculture industry. 

Course Details

Massey Diploma in Agriculture (Level 5)

2020 Semester 1: 02 March to 13 November

37 weeks 
Full Time

37 weeks Full-time


This course provides students with knowledge and appreciation of pasture and crop production and management; animal production, health and management; soil management; farm engineering and mechanisation; financial; business and marketing management; communication skills and personnel management.

Course Details

New Zealand Certificate in Interior Décor (Level 4)

12 August to 6 December 2019

Blended delivery - online with additional tutorial sessions at Telford Campus 

Start your journey to a qualification for professional or hobby interior design with the Introduction to Interior Décor paper, delivered by Blended Learning at Telford campus and at-home study online. Tutorials will be arranged as required.

Course Details

New Zealand Diploma in Photography (Level 5)

12 August to 6 December 2019

Blended delivery - online with additional tutorial sessions at Telford Campus 

Start your journey to a qualification for professional or hobby photograhy with the Introduction to Digital Photography paper, delivered by Blended Learning - Onsite workshops at Telford campus and at-home study online.

Course Details

New Zealand Certificate in Project Management

2020 Semester 1: 14 February to 19 June

Blended delivery - online with additional tutorial sessions at Telford Campus

Get started on the path to professional project management by learning the core skills and techniques. This unit standards based Level 4 Certificate will give you the skills and knowledge required to contribute to the management of projects and work with others in a project team.

The whole programme (60 credits) will be offered over the 17 weeks via blended delivery, so online work supplemented by face-to-face workshops.

6 weekend workshops will be scheduled from 4-7pm on Fridays and 9am-12pm on Saturday mornings.

Course Details

New Zealand Certificate in Animal Technology (Level 5) Rural Animal Technician

2020 Semester 1: 02 March to 04 December

One year, Full-time

If you love working outdoors, with animals, and are passionate about animal care, enrol in the New Zealand Certificate in Animal Care (Rural Animal Technician). You'll learn how to assist veterinarians in large animal or mixed practice, or work independently in areas such as herd/flock testing, reproduction, lab analysis and large animal health. 

Course Details

Sporthorse Care and Equipment (Level 3)

February 2020

27 weeks

You will learn about the stabling, care and exercise of horse in the Sporthorse industry, and also how to safely and effectively carry out activities involving vehicles, machinery and infrastructure with a special focus on equipment used in the equine industry.

This full-year programme includes both the New Zealand Certificate in Equine Skills (Sporthorse Stable Assistant) with the New Zealand Certificate in Agriculture (Vehicles, Machinery and Infrastructure) qualifications.

Course Details

Accommodation Telford

Telford Accommodation

The Telford Halls of Residence are made up of several different accommodation blocks with the option of single rooms with ensuites or single rooms with communal showers and bathrooms.

Accommodation is available for students to stay for 7 days or 5 days.

Prices for accommodation vary depending on chosen room option, weekly stay and total length of stay.

Please visit the Telford Accommodation page for more information.



Telford FeesPrices vary from course to course please visit the Telford Fees page for prices.

Please note that course prices do not include accommodation charges. Your full basic costs (course fee and Telford Halls of Residence fee) may be calculated by combining your chosen accommodation figures with the tuition fees for on-campus courses, together with other fees (as applicable).



Student Stories

Telford Student Stories Read through our student's stories and see what a difference studying at Telford has made for them.

Student Stories



Stationery & Equipment

Stationery & Equipment

Each Telford course has different general requirements for clothing attire, textbooks and stationery. 

Please check your course for your specific requirements.


Stationery and Equipment



Hire Facilities

Conference Facilities

The Telford campus has conference facilities for hire, so if you're thinking about hosting an event contact us to discuss the options we have available.

Hire Facilities








  • There is strong demand within the rural industry for Telford graduates.
  • A large proportion of students may have numerous job offers while they are still only halfway through their full-time programme.
  • Our training programmes start at Level 2 and go through to Diploma Level 5.
  • Some of our graduates choose to continue their studies at Massey University, or through SIT.


Please download and fill out the Telford Application form to enrol.

Telford Enrolment Application


The Telford Campus began as the Telford Farm Training Institute in 1964, resulting from successful negotiations by a group of South Otago residents who were keen to see an agricultural training facility established in the area. The land was made available from the family of William Telford and it is administered by the Telford Farm Board of Management (the Board) according to the terms of the Telford Act of Parliament 1964.

Telford operated as the Telford Farm Training Institute without any government assistance from 1964 to 1974. In 1974 a partnership was made between Telford Farm Training Institute and the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, (MAF), whereby the Board was responsible for the farms and the MAF was responsible for the education. In 1989, the Ministry of Education replaced MAF as partner, and in February 1991, Telford became a polytechnic with a council elected to operate the campus and educational facilities, alongside the Board.

Made up of representatives of a wide range of farming organisations, which assisted Telford to get established, the Board has a statutory responsibility for managing the farms. The purpose of the farms is to provide a commercially realistic "classroom" for students to learn practical farming skills.

In 2019, Telford became a faculty of the Southern Institute of Technology. 

Telford has large commercial scale dairy, sheep & beef and deer farms, with a total effective farming area of 670ha. The farms aim to perform in the top 25% for their land class.  

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Contact Telford

Tel +64 3 419 0300
Freephone in NZ:  0800 835 367
498 Owaka Highway
Balclutha 9271
New Zealand