Below are the links to the BBKA’s website that will give the up to date syllabi for both the Practical Assessments and the Modules. These are reviewed regularly and any changes from previous years are highlighted in bold. It is worth checking that you have downloaded the most recent version. As well as a reading list, you can purchase past papers, see example answers for some of the modules and some hints on exam technique on the site.

Practical Assessments

Junior Certificate for under 18 year olds

Basic To provide new beekeepers with a goal which will give them a measure of their achievement in the basic skills and knowledge of the craft. It is hoped that it will be a springboard from which to launch into the more demanding assessments.

General Husbandry To encourage all new and many existing beekeepers to improve their understanding and practice of beekeeping.

Advanced Husbandry Certificate Open only to those who have passed the General Certificate in Beekeeping Husbandry. This assessment is designed for beekeepers aspiring to lecture and demonstrate the craft of beekeeping to others.

Honey Bee Health Certificate A new assessment available from 2018 to help beekeepers who have already passed their Basic Assessment acquire some of the skills needed at the General Husbandry level. To encourage beekeepers who have been awarded the BBKA Basic Certificate and have at least three years of beekeeping experience to improve their understanding and practice of beekeeping.

Honey Bee Breeding Certificate A new certificate introduced for 2018 as part of the BBKA’s work to promote the use and improvement of local bees amongst its members. The assessment is equally applicable to honey bee breeders who work alone and to those who work as part of a group.

Cell Bar

Microscopy Certificate This assessment provides a qualification and measure of achievement for those beekeepers with an interest  in pollen, anatomy, and disease relevant to the honey bee

Show Judge Take your experience in showing honey and honey products to the next level

Master Beekeeper Hold the Advanced Certificate in Beekeeping Husbandry and Advanced Theory Certificate

Module Exams

Module 1 Honeybee Management

Module 2 Honeybee Forage and Hive Products

Module 3 Pests and Diseases

Module 5 Honey Bee Biology

Module 6 Honeybee Behaviour

Module 7 Selection and Breeding of Honeybees

Module 8 Honey Bee Management, Health and History

Waggle Diagram
The Waggle Dance – see Module 6!

Exams, Assessments, Fees and Application Form

Reading List The BBKA gives a recommended reading list but it is advisable to read outside of the list if you can.

Correspondence Courses

Bee on computer

Further study for the BBKA examinations can be very satisfying, but for some people attending day or evening classes is not convenient. Correspondence courses are a form of distance learning enabling you to study beekeeping while working at your own pace. An arrangement will be made with a qualified tutor for you to send your written answers to set questions that are designed to take you through the syllabus.

These courses cover the Basic Certificate (7 question papers) as well as the seven modules (5 question papers each) that form the route to the Intermediate Theory Certificate and then on to the Senior Theory Certificate. There is also a course which covers the learning for the oral aspect of the Microscopy assessment.

The fee for each module is £60.00. You may also need to buy or borrow a few books, which may be available in your beekeeping branch or county library.