DOC offers a number of training courses to the public to encourage community participation in conservation. These include online courses that can be done by anyone, anytime, free of charge; and field courses for anyone that works or wants to work or volunteer in conservation (this includes DOC staff). Some of the field courses are also free.
Courses held in Nelson are:
Plant Identification. Learn how to identify plants using a key.
Five Minute Bird Count. Identify a range of common forest birds using the DOC 5 minute bird count protocol.
Animal Pest Control Methods. Learn how and why pest control is important and selected field methods being demonstrated.
20×20 plots and Reconnaissance. This course will teach you about the DOC 20×20 plot and reconnaissance protocol.
Introduction to Natural Heritage (online). This course will introduce various terms and concepts of biodiversity.
Also in partnership with DOC, the Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology (NMIT) provides the only National Certificate in Conservation (Trainee Ranger) in the country. This programme has fees and is studied full time. The skills acquired on the programme lead to a range of work opportunities as a ranger and other outdoor occupations. Each year DOC offers NMIT graduates a limited number of placement contracts on their two year development programme.