The Course

This course will provide you with a broad range of knowledge and understanding about a wide range of animals, whilst enabling your progression by developing your employability skills or preparing you for your year two programme in Animal Management, depending on your career goals.

This course is designed to serve the needs of all aspects of the animal sector, by providing the basis of academic, technical, and practical skills regarding the care of companion, farm, and exotic animals in various industries. 

You will have the exciting opportunity to work with a range of species in our highly prized and industry-relevant animal unit, including otters, wallabies, and lemurs; cuscus, chameleon, and cockroaches; tortoises, tarantula and tenrec; alongside our specialist nocturnal room, reptile room, and aquatics room. From meerkats and skunks to hamsters and goats, you will develop animal handling and husbandry skills for each species you work within their specialist environments, building knowledge and learning to look critically at appropriate animal behaviour, habitat and welfare.

You will also have the opportunity to gain vital work experience with local animal businesses to develop industry-specific knowledge and skills and experience a true taste of the career you have set your sights on.

  • What You Study

    Year 1

    • Animal welfare and ethics
    • Practical animal husbandry
    • Animal behaviour
    • Animal health and diseases
    • Work experience (including set hours of external work placement each academic year)
    • English and Maths, as required.

    Year 2

    • Animal biology
    • Investigative research project
    • Aquatic animal health and husbandry
    • Exotic animal husbandry
    • Animal grooming
    • English and Maths, as required.
  • Entry Requirements

    Four GCSEs at grade 4 or equivalent, including Science, or a relevant BTEC Level 2 / First Diploma or equivalent*. A satisfactory academic reference is also needed.

    *If you have four GCSEs at grade 4 but not Science you will be offered Level 2 Diploma in Animal Care and will then move to the Level 3 course following successful completion of the Level 2.

  • How You’re Assessed

    A range of coursework, exams and practical assessments, graded at pass, merit or distinction.

  • Progression

    Almost all areas of the animal industry require experience and qualifications. Our Level 3 courses allow you to gain practical work experience in industry, and also collect UCAS points to enable you to move on to a Foundation Degree or BSc Hons Degree, which in turn gives you the best start in the industry. 

  • Careers

    The practical skills and knowledge that are consolidated throughout the course put you in good stead for joining the animal industry with a strong work ethic and reputation behind you. You will be equipped to seek out a career working in commercial kennels, animal rescue centres, laboratories, veterinary practices, zoos and animal collections or self-employed as a dog walker, pet sitter, dog groomer or running animal parties.

  • Equipment Required

    For your course, you will need:

    • Folder with dividers to organise your work and assignments
    • Stationery including notepad for use in class, pens and pencils
    • College-branded blue kennel coat
    • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – including steel toe capped footwear (boots, shoes, or wellies)
    • Waterproof outdoor clothing and footwear (for work experience).


  • How To Apply

    Application is through our online application form or by the Common Application Process (CAP).

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