Top up degree BSc (Hons)

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This course is designed for those who wish to establish careers in animal collections and zoos, with rescue and welfare centres and with organisations and businesses where an in-depth knowledge and understanding of animal behaviour is vital for their success.

It’s a great thought-provoking course where you’ll get to discover subject-specific skills and extensive knowledge all focused on animal behaviour. With the skills and knowledge that you gain, these will be comparable with those employees with several years’ experience.

Course structure

The course enables students to bring subject-specific skills and knowledge to the industry, comparable with employees with several years’ experience.

At present, an Honours Degree is a minimum requirement for accreditation with industry recognised organisations such as the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors.

Areas of study

The course provides progression for those who are looking to further develop their skills and knowledge in the Animal Welfare and Management sector.

The course is suitable for any individual who has previously completed a foundation degree or equivalent in animal science/management or a related subject.  Emphasis is placed on the developing of the knowledge and understanding of factors affecting welfare and legislation of companion and captive animals.

It also explores the role of behaviour on aspects of animal welfare and management.  Students will build on their existing knowledge and experience as well as further develop their academic and personal skills.

Entry Requirements:

You will have completed a foundation degree in a relevant subject with a mean grade of 55% or above, or hold a similar qualification.


Full-time: 1 year 
Part-time: 2 years 

UCAS Details:

UCAS code 2B7C

As well as covering behaviour and conservation, the course also provided highly stimulating welfare modules which further improved not only our own knowledge of animal welfare, but also how to debate and discuss topics with more focus.

As such I found the course to be not only thought provoking and intellectually stimulating but it also nurtured my desire to seek out information and to delve deeper into the facts which I think a HE course should do.

Andrew Anderson

Recent BSc (Hons) Animal Behaviour and Welfare Graduate


You’ve got a fantastic animal management unit to discover here at Plumpton where you’ll be able to experience the latest technology and equipment. Each of the different animals requires a certain level of care so you’ll be able to experience managing different environments.

  • All types of animal care management

We cater for an extensive range of animals: from amphibians to birds, fish to livestock, mammals to reptiles.

  • Extensive farming facilities for you to discover

You’ll be able to develop invaluable practical handling skills at our Plumpton College farm site which manages a huge range of livestock. 

  • The perfect learning environment for your studies

We’ve got great facilities for you to work in and develop your practical skills no matter what course you’re studying.

Future Opportunities

Following graduation, you will be eligible to apply for higher degrees in Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling, enabling you to gain professionally recognised qualifications to be animal trainers and counsellors. Graduates from equivalent courses remain within welfare and behaviour areas of the animal care industry.


Course Programme

  • Animal Welfare & the Law
  • Animal Cognition in Behavioural Management
  • Anthrozoology
  • Research Project

Optional Modules

  • Wild Animals in Captivity
  • Domestication & Behavioural Development of Farm & Companion Animal Species
  • Independent Study Module
  • Neuroscience
  • Parasitology
  • Plant & Animal Interactions
  • Applied Ecology & Conservation
  • Zoonoses

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