Access to HE Diploma – (Animal Science)

Course Code


Why study this course?

The Access to HE Diploma (Animal Science Studies) is a one-year, full time, level 3 course, which has been designed for students who want to study animal-based courses at university. There is a broad range of careers available within the animal care industry and this course is a stepping stone to accessing these degrees. Successful students would be able to apply for degrees across a variety of specialisms such as wildlife and conservation, animal behaviour, zoology and veterinary nursing (with suitable work experience)

This Animal Science access course includes the essential concepts of animal biology, welfare, health, husbandry and anatomy. This array of content will give you a solid foundation for a course at university.

There are a wide range of courses that you can study on completion of this Access diploma. Veterinary Nursing is a possibility though you would also need work experience at a veterinary practice. Courses that students have progressed to in the past from the BTEC route include Wildlife and Conservation Ecology, Animal Behaviour, Animal Welfare and Zoology.

There is a wide range of jobs you could pursue following a successful degree such as:

  • Ecologist
  • Zoologist
  • Animal Behaviouralist
  • Veterinary Nurse

A animal care related degree is also useful for the following career paths

  • Zoo Keeper
  • Animal Welfare Assistant
  • Animal Nursing Assistant
  • Trainee Ecologist
  • Conservationist
  • Ornithologist
  • Wildlife Rehabilitator
  • Animal Trainer
  • Animal Therapist
  • Boarding and Cattery Assistant

Course content

The list below are some of the units studied on the Access to HE Animal Science Diploma (subject to change)

  • Animal Behaviour and Welfare
  • Animal Health, Husbandry and disease
  • Animal Biology
  • Animal Nutrition
  • Animal Orangs and Systems
  • Principles of Genetics
  • Mammalian Reproduction
  • Animal physiology
  • Animal cells and Tissues

There are a range of strategies used to assess each unit on the Animal Science diploma, these vary and could come in the form of a presentation, a professional discussion, essay, podcast, academic poster, report or video. Each assessment will be marked and graded by your lecturer and then returned to you along with useful feedback and tips for improvement.

Entry requirements

You require a GCSE grade C/ 4 in English Language or an equivalent qualification, such as L2 Functional Skills English.

It is desirable to have GCSE grade C/ 4 in Maths or an equivalent qualification, such as L2 Functional Skills Maths as well. If not, you can study this alongside your Access Diploma, as you will need it for your Degree qualification.

If you are considering Veterinary Nursing as a future career you will also need GCSE Science or Biology in a grade C/4 or above for your Degree Qualification


Practical experience will take place on the Halesowen College Animal Unit to develop your practical skills with the basic care, health and husbandry of animals across a wide range of Taxonomic groups.

Lab coats will need to be purchased to undertake practical activities. All information relating to this will be released at enrolment.

Day, time and duration

1 year full time course

Course timetable to be confirmed

Start date

Start date: September 2024


Course fees to be confirmed

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