Merrist Wood is highly regarded in the animal industry as the leading animal education establishment in Surrey, with a wide range of animal care courses. There are well-equipped animal management resources including collections of domestic, companion, and exotic animals as well as a grooming parlour and supporting facilities for canine care. The College has wide links with industry and tuition is by highly qualified and experienced tutors who will ensure you gain the best possible grounding in your chosen career.
The Animal Behaviour and Welfare Foundation Degree provides a fascinating insight into the behaviour and welfare of a range of animal species and the application of theory to maintain animal welfare. This includes, but is not limited to, companion animals, production livestock, zoos and aquaria, and free ranging wild animals. Through academic course-based delivery, supported by integrated professional development, students will be able to engage with National Occupational Standards (NOS) and enhance their employment opportunities. Study of the subject area can open up a broad range of career pathways.
You must have an interest in pursuing a career in animal behaviour or welfare. The programme is ideal if you have previous animal experience or if you have achieved a Level 3 related animal course, however, this is not compulsory.
During this course you will benefit from the following:
- Taught by expert, passionate tutors with industry experience.
- Extensive grounds which include ancient woodland, species rich grassland and wetland areas. Rich fauna, including protected species of bats and amphibians.
- Friendly learning environment with small class sizes and excellent student support.
- Merrist Wood College is highly regarded in the animal industry as the leading animal education establishment in Surrey
- Animal Management Centre including facilities such as a desert biome, tropical biome and nocturnal room.
- Industry experience provides an invaluable opportunity to work in a variety of settings to support your chosen career path.
Course duration: 2 Years full-time. This course can also be taken on a part-time basis over 4 years.
Home/EU* Fee for September 2023 entry: £8,000 per year
Please note: Tuition fees are published for the first year of entry only and may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by the Office for Students.
*Fee information for European Union (EU) students: If your course starts on or after the 1st August 2021, you will no longer be eligible for financial support from Student Finance England unless you meet one of the following criteria:
- you are able to benefit from the citizens’ rights agreements
- you are an Irish national living in the UK or Republic of Ireland – benefits of Irish nationals under Common Travel Area guidance arrangement will continue
Additional costs include:
Optional trips for work experience, especially if you wish to volunteer overseas, as some of our previous students have done. Additional printing over and above the £10 allowance provided by the college,and the cost of books that you might wish to purchase.
We strongly recommend purchasing a laptop to support you in your studies on the course.
If you need any further information or guidance, please contact us at HE@activatelearning.ac.uk
What you'll learn
Year 1: professional development in the work environment 1 (30 credits), animal behaviour (30 credits), animal health, welfare and nutrition (30 credits), practical projects, enrichment and training (30 credits). Total 120 credits.
Year 2: professional development in the work environment 2 (30 credits); research methods (30 credits); animal and human interactions (30 credits); animal welfare and ethics (30 credits). Total 120 credits.
All students are supported with academic development and you will have access to a personal tutor.
How you'll learn and be assessed
There will be a range of theory, practical, and work placements. Assessment is by course work and exam.
Progress into employment or on to a one-year Top-up Animal Behaviour and Welfare BSc (Hons) degree at Merrist Wood College.
Potential careers: animal trainer, researcher, teacher, wildlife rescuer, or wildlife rehabilitator.
You could work in a wide range of organisations at home and overseas such as zoos, safari parks, rescue centres, animal orphanages, welfare centres, specialist animal collections, central and local government departments, and educational establishments; or you could work in the media.
The minimum entry qualifications for the programme are:
A Levels: 64 UCAS points normally in science-based subjects
BTEC: 64 UCAS points normally in science-based subjects
Access Diploma: Pass
Plus: English and maths GCSE and it is advantageous to have a science (biology) or psychology.
A minimum IELTS score of 6, TOEFL equivalent is required for those for whom English is not their first language. These entry requirements are subject to change.
You are advised to ensure that anti-tetanus protection via a course of injections or booster is up to date prior to the commencement of the course. You should also ensure that you have adequate clothing for outdoor work in inclement weather. Fees shown are per year. Please contact the College if you require further information.
International fee: Please contact the HE Admissions Coordinator, Sue Taylor on firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information, please contact the HE Admissions Coordinator, Sue Taylor, on email@example.com
The academic regulations for this programme can be found on Kingston University’s website
Applicants should apply through the UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) website. This includes students already at Merrist Wood College. All courses will be listed under Activate Learning on the UCAS website.
Merrist Wood offers accommodation for new and existing full-time students who wish to live in our halls.
How to apply
Applicants should apply through the UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) website. All courses will be listed under Activate Learning on the UCAS website.