Access to HE Diploma (Land Based Studies – Animal Management)

Course code


Why study this course?


The Access to HE Diploma (Land Based 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)

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

This land-based 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.

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

  • Animal Behaviour and Welfare
  • Animal Health and Husbandry
  • Animal Biology
  • Animal Nutrition
  • Animal Anatomy
  • Principles of Ecology
  • Canine Training, Behaviour and Welfare

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


You will need access to notebooks and stationery.

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

Course timetable to be confirmed

Start date

September 2024


If this is your first full level 3 course and you are aged 19 – 23 years, this course may be free 

An Advanced Learner Loan is available for this course 

If applying for an Advanced Learning Loan we will need evidence of application before enrolment can be completed, we can also support you to make this application 


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