Weekend OCN Level 3 Diploma for Dog Grooming (Ofqual Regulated Qualification)

The OCN Level 3 Dog Grooming course is designed to create passionate and professional dog groomers. The course enables students to learn and understand what it takes to become an effective pet groomer and (if you wish) a self starting business owner. The qualification is Ofqual approved and is a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) with the same credits as other NVQ Level 3 qualifications. The Level 3 OCN is the new and improved industry standard and covers all the bases for kicking of your career in the pet grooming industry.

This course is for people who are 1) Passionate about pets. 2) Serious about starting an exciting new career. 3) Confident self starters with a passion to learn. Our award-winning tutors will build your knowledge, skills and confidence regardless of your ambitions in the industry.

This course runs each Saturday and Sunday for 10 weekends, 5 weekends then 1 weekend off before starting another 5 consecutive weekends.

Although this is a weekend course, it’s no walk in the dog park. In order to train you properly and push you to be the best dog groomer you can be, each day is filled to the max with both hands on practical lessons and informative theory courses. All designed to make you an effective and commercially viable dog groomer.

In order to meet the criteria to pass the Level 3 OCN you will have to produce a portfolio of pets you have successfully groomed. But don’t worry you’ll be surrounded by a highly experienced team of teachers who will guide you to create a high quality portfolio of work. Since the Level 3 OCN is based on your portfolio, there is no written exam at the end! Rewarding consistent effort and hard work.

What you'll learn on your Weekend OCN Level 3 Dog Grooming Course

Canine first aid

Carry out styling and finishing of dogs

Health checking a dog by a dog groomer

Promote and maintain the health and well-being of animals

Welcome, receive and care for customers

Assessing, planning and recording your dog grooming work

What is an OCN Level 3 diploma equivalent to?

OCN awards credits at different levels, with each level indicating a different level of difficulty. An OCN Level 3 Diploma is a National Certificate that is equivalent to a Grade A-C at A-level and other Advanced Level qualifications, such as Level 3 NVQs or BTECs. Unlike some other awarding bodies, the previous level does not need to be completed in order to undertake a level 3 course. 

Why is this OCN Level 3 grooming qualification different to other courses?

The Open College Network and City and Guilds are both Awarding bodies that are regulated under Ofqual (The national qualifications regulator). They are both recognised by the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) and offer a large variety of National Vocational Qualifications (NVQ). Both offer qualifications that are recognised throughout 182 countries worldwide. 

The OCN Level 3 Diploma is identical to the City & Guilds Level 3 Diploma in terms of the national standard for education within the sector and they are identical in terms of the educational credits.

So, where do OCN and City & Guilds differ?  

The key differences are that City & Guilds requires the student to have attained the Level 2 qualification prior to acceptance onto the Level 3 Diploma course. Additionally, the student will be required to sit an external exam in a centre which is available at only two points in the year (June and November). The average cost at a private school for both is around £6,500 and you could wait for several months before becoming qualified.  

In contrast the OCN Level 3 Diploma does not require the student to have attained the Level 2 in order to be accepted on to the Level 3 Diploma course. There is also slightly more emphasis on your practical skills and critically the course is portfolio-based which means that you will only be assessed on the quality of your work and will not have to sit a final exam. So, when you have completed your portfolio and your assignments then your work will be submitted to the awarding body for approval. The Cost of the OCN Level 3 Diploma is £4,950.

What you'll get from the OCN Level 3 Dog Grooming course

The confidence and skills to set up your own dog grooming business

Theory of 5 book by Melissa Verplanck to help with your shaping and styling

A professional GroomArts Academy certificate

An OCN Level 3 Diploma

A Wahl equipment bag

A professional comb and slicker brush


This course runs each Saturday and Sunday for 10 weekends, 5 weekends then 1 weekend off before starting another 5 consecutive weekends The choice of course dates can be found at the bottom of the page. There is one group and it runs from 9:00am through to 6:00pm.

All lessons are held at our spacious academy in London Colney, Hertfordshire.

Just give us a call to find out more information.

What you'll need to buy

We require students to buy their own scissors so that they can get used to their own equipment. You do not need to buy these before you join us, we have our own professional range of scissors which you can purchase from our website or at the academy. You use your scissors every day so invest in them!

All other equipment we will provide during your course.

Professional Range of Scissors

Frequently Asked Questions

Take a sneak peak behind the scenes

What qualification will I receive?

A Level 3 Diploma, which is equivalent to an A Level.

Is the qualification internationally recognised?

Yes, in 182 countries.

Will this qualification allow me to get a job or run a business?

Yes, a Level 3 Diploma will fully qualify you to do all aspects of grooming, as well as allowing you to run your own business.

Is funding available?

You can find all the information on this under Affording Your Course in our Student Advice section. We also have finance options available, please contact us to find out more.

What qualifications do I need?

None, all you need is to have a good grasp of English and a pen and paper!

How often do the courses run?

Quarterly, one starts every January, April, July and October.

  • 2022
    Date Availability Book
    Saturday 8th October - Sun Dec 11th
    Fully Booked
    Fully Booked
  • 2023
    Date Availability Book
    Saturday 14th January - Sun Mar 26th
    Fully Booked
    Fully Booked
    Saturday 8th April - Sun Jun 18th
    Fully Booked
    Fully Booked
    Saturday 8th July - Sun Sep 17th
    Fully Booked
    Fully Booked
    Saturday 7th October - Sun Dec 17th
    Fully Booked
    Fully Booked

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