BTEC Level 1 Diploma

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The course will cover all areas of animal care, giving you the skills to handle a range of animals including reptiles, amphibians, small & large mammals, and more! Plus you’ll be able to develop your functional and personal development skills. You’ll learn lots of essential study skills and invaluable employment skills to help you in your future roles.

Offered at either Main College site or at Netherfield

Work Experience

This is a useful way for students to improve practical skills and experience what it's like to work in the animal care industry. 

Indicative Programme Content

Students will undertake a range of units which cover essential aspects of animal care, working and employment skills, functional skills and personal development skills. The programme is continually assessed via practical activities and written work, which are recorded in a student maintained portfolio.

  • Animal Accommodation
  • Animal Handling
  • Animal Feeding & Watering
  • Animal Health & Wellbeing
  • Animals in the Wild & Society
  • Wildlife & Conservation
  • Health & Safety

Entry Requirements:


  • You’ll need to have achieved 1 or more GCSEs between grade 2-1 (previous grades G-E) or another related Entry Level 3 qualification
  • Completion of the Rural Pathways programme and a strong interest in animal care
  • Successful completion of a Level 1 course in another area

Mature students without the above requirements will be considered 

Dates & Location:

September 2019


1 year

3 days per week 

Future Opportunities

After completing your course, you can choose to go on to study a Level 2 animal care programme at Plumpton or an apprenticeship.
Alternatively you’ll have the skills to take on a role in animal husbandry, exercise or feeding of companion animals. 


Core Units

  • Maintain the safety of self and others in the workplace
  • Maintenance of equipment
  • Care of animals
  • Feedstuffs for small animals
  • Animal accommodation
  • Movement and handling of small animals
  • English & Maths

Main Units

  • Check that a small animal is healthy
  • Catching and restraining a small animal
  • Working in a team
  • Groom a small animal

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