Foundation degree

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The course has been developed in consultation with a number of Sussex-based countryside organisations to meet current and future employment needs. Plumpton College is the ideal place to study countryside management.

The 850-hectare estate includes a commercial farm, ancient semi-natural woodlands, chalk downland, Bronze Age and Roman sites and a network of small streams. The estate is managed for multiple land uses and provides a first-class learning resource for students on the course.

Course structure

This course consists of a balance of theory and practical with site visits and fieldwork forming an important part. The course may be studied on a full or part-time basis.

Plumpton College maintains a strong network of contacts with the Sussex countryside management industry and work experience is a compulsory aspect of the course. In addition, you have the opportunity to run New Leaf, the student-run conservation volunteer group.

Areas of study

First-year modules give you a broad background in the principles of countryside management, and include Ecology, Soil Science and Botany as well as associated practical expertise such as Field Biology Skills and Estate Skills.

In the second year, compulsory modules such as Habitat Management build on the knowledge and skills acquired in year one. You can also choose from a wide range of modules in vocational areas or developing greater scientific knowledge, particularly in ecology.

Entry Requirements:

The minimum requirement are:

  • 2 A Levels (grade D)

Full-time: 2 years 
Part-time: 4 years

UCAS Details:

The UCAS code for this course is UCAS CODE D440.

As with any course, the more you put in, the more you get out. Support and advice is readily available and is always useful and effective.  I made the most of my time at Plumpton, gaining invaluable knowledge and experience, and am now successfully pursuing my new career in countryside management.

Cally Bevis

Recent FdSc Countryside Management Graduate


  • With over 800 hectares at your disposal, we’ve got excellent facilities for you to develop your knowledge and practical skills.
  • On our College estate alone, you’ve got ancient semi-natural woodlands, chalk downland, our commercial farm, plus a network of small streams.
  • You’ll also enjoy time at our dedicated wood workshops which are fully equipped with the latest technology and equipment.

Future Opportunities

On graduating, you’ll have developed all the skills you’ll need for a career in the countryside.

You could choose to work in a variety of different roles including conservation officer, education officer, nature reserve/site manager, rights of way officer or wildlife ranger.

You could also choose to go on to study a related honours degree course in Biological Sciences or Ecology at the University of Brighton.


Year 1

  • Landscape Assessment & Legislation
  • Soil Science
  • Botany
  • Estate Skills
  • Work Placement 1
  • Interpreting the Environment
  • Ecological Methods
  • Field Biology Skills
  • Ecology

Year 2

  • Habitat Management
  • Project 2
  • Agriculture & Environment
  • Habitat Management Planning

Optional modules

  • Evolutionary & Behavioural Ecology
  • Geographical Information Systems 1
  • Career Development
  • Work Placement 2
  • Statistics (at Plumpton College or University of Brighton)
  • Nature Photography
  • Coastal Ecology
  • Health, Wellbeing & the Outdoors
  • Behavioural Ecology
  • Wildlife Conservation
  • Field Trip
  • Contemporary Study
  • Conservation Grazing
  • Managing Volunteers
  • Woodland Ecology & Management

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