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Course summary

Why choose this degree?

  • Gain the knowledge needed to become a Clinical Animal Behaviourist as the course can be used towards accreditation following graduation.
  • Develop expertise through an extended animal behaviour dissertation project.
  • Combine study and work with this flexible, part-time course.
What makes UCS special? As a UCS student you will benefit from lecturers with a wealth of industry experience that comes from working with BIAZA and EAZA research committees/ working groups and a wide range of zoos. UCS is also supporting member of the ABTC and staff are members of the Fellowship of Animal Behaviour Clinicians. Our teaching staff have experience and expertise in all areas of animal work including veterinary nursing, health and welfare, research, zoo industry and husbandry and animal behaviour and training. UCS has an unrivalled collection of animals and species in its purpose-built Animal Health and Welfare Research Centre and was one of the first colleges in the country to be awarded a zoo licence and is part of The National Zoo Academy. The centre offers a wide variety of habitat styles and management systems to maximise the student learning potential and experience. What will I learn? This course covers a wide range of topics related to animal behaviour, you will study human and animal psychology, consider how physiology impacts on behaviour and develop links between legislation and ethics. Using an evidence-based approach the evolving relationship between humans and animals is explored in detail including application to developing training techniques. Utilising techniques developed throughout the course you will design and conduct your own behavioural dissertation study. Previous students have conducted research on:
  • Impact of scent enrichment on behaviour of reptiles.
  • Effect of noise levels in grooming facilities on dog behaviour and stress levels.
  • Cooperative care doesn’t scare - impact of choice and control on stress levels in dogs during routine nail clipping (presented at the ISAE Benelux 2022).
  • Investigation into veterinary professionals’ knowledge of cognitive dysfunction syndrome in cats.
How will I be assessed? You will showcase your knowledge through a combination of written assignments, case studies, seminar presentations and time constrained assessments. At Level 6 the dissertation module will prove your skills within the field of research and we encourage students to present this work to other organisations. Where can I go from here?" The course works towards the knowledge elements that are required for certification as a Clinical Animal Behaviourist as identified by the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour and the Animal Behaviour and Training Council. You can also continue your studies to MSc and PhD level. Sparsholt students have developed their own businesses focused on behavioural consultations for a range of species including dogs, cats and horses. Others work in the veterinary industry. Several students have progressed on to postgraduate study, one continuing and developing her dissertation project in to a PhD.


LEVEL 6, YEAR 1 • Animal Communication Learning and Training • Ethology Domestication and Anthrozoology • Mechanisms of Behaviour • Ethics Welfare and Law LEVEL 6, YEAR 2 • Human Psychology and Clinical Practice • Dissertation and Data Analysis

Assessment method

You will showcase your knowledge through a combination of written assignments, case studies, seminar presentations and constrained assessments. At Level 6 the Dissertation module will prove your skills within the field of research and we encourage students to present this work to other organisations.

How to apply

To apply for this course you will be taken to the provider's website, where you can find out more information and make an application.

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

International applicants

We welcome applications from international students who have permissions to study on a part-time course. For further details on the English language requirements, visa requirements and student life, please see our website

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

Diploma of Higher Education, FdSc or HND in a relevant subject, plus GCSE Maths and English at grade C/4 or above (or level 2 equivalents).

Additional entry requirements


GCSE Maths and English @ Grade C/4 or above (or level 2 equivalents)

English language requirements

TestGradeAdditional details
IELTS (Academic)6Overall score of 6.0 with minimum scores of 5.5 in any of Speaking, Reading, Writing and Listening (CEFR B2)
Trinity ISEPassPass in each of Speaking, Reading, Writing and Listening (CEFR B2)
PTE Academic60Minimum score of 60 or higher in each of Speaking, Reading, Writing and Listening (CEFR B2)

We will also accept the following qualification: LanguageCert International ESOL SELT - minimum score of 33/50 in each of Speaking, Reading, Writing and Listening (CEFR B2)

Please email [email protected] for details

Unistats information

Operated by the Office for Students

There is no data available for this course. For further information visit the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

England £4625 Year 1
Northern Ireland £4625 Year 1
Scotland £4625 Year 1
Wales £4625 Year 1
Channel Islands £4900 Year 1

Additional fee information

Sponsorship information

If your household income is under £32,960 you could receive a bursary of up to £375 per annum. This can be used to help towards travel costs, books and equipment or anything else that will help you during your course. Depending on the financial information disclosed in your Student Loan application, UCS may make an automatic bursary award based on specific criteria as set out in our Access and Participation Plan. If this is not the case you may still be able to apply for financial support to the UCS HE Hardship fund by completing a Bursary Application Form (available from end of |Term 1). For more information please [email protected].

Applied Animal Behaviour (Top-up) at University Centre Sparsholt - UCAS