Course: Introduction to Animal Care Level 1

Study Level

Level 1


Great Yarmouth Campus


1 Year



This course will provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in the animal care sector. You will gain theoretical and practical hands-on experience, and this will be accompanied by a greater understanding on key themes such as animal health and welfare, feeding and accommodation, exotics, science and British habitats.

You will help the animal team care for our own on-site animals, including rabbits, guinea pigs, rats, a leopard gecko, bearded dragon and snakes. You will be responsible for health checking, monitoring behaviour and general day-to-day care.

You will be taught by experts in the animal care industry, including a veterinary nurse, experts in exotics, animal behaviour and ecology.

Modules you will study include:

  • Animal behaviour
  • Animal health
  • Wildlife
  • Practical handling and restraint
  • Veterinary nursing
  • Animal welfare

Why study with us:

  • We offer a curriculum designed in partnership with industry professionals including trips to zoos and nature reserves both in the UK and abroad. These experiences will assist you to achieve your qualification and future career connections.
  • We have excellent collaboration and placement opportunities across Norfolk and Suffolk, including Africa Alive, Colchester Zoo, RSPB Minsmere, Sea Life Great Yarmouth and the UmPhafa Nature Reserve in South Africa.
  • You will benefit from experience looking after our on-site animals where you will be responsible for health checking, monitoring behaviour and general feeding and care.



This course is suitable for students have achieved four GCSEs at grade 2 including English and maths. You will also need a passion for animal welfare.

These entry grades are set as a guide, however we encourage students who are interested in this course and unsure of the grades they will achieve to submit an application and come along for a discussion with the course lecturer to assess your suitability.


Assessments vary for each module containing a variety; written portfolio, case studies, presentation, field work and poster work. Assessment is on-going throughout the year and will occur in college and on placement.


After completing this course, you can progress to study Animal Care Level 2 or an apprenticeship. You can gain employment in careers such as dog grooming, zookeeper, animal training or veterinary assistant.

Animal Care is an excellent course if you want to go on to study a degree in subjects such as veterinary nursing, animal rehabilitation, ecology, conservation or animal welfare. You can progress to study FdSc Conservation Science and Animal Management (Wildlife and Zoo) through the University of Suffolk at East Coast College or other universities.

"At UmPhafa, the students are exposed to life on a game reserve from various perspectives by actually working alongside those that work here on a daily basis. Over the course of the trip, the students are exposed to many different game reserve areas to give them an idea of conservation through an educational experience. We were delighted to have East Coast College join us as it gave us the chance to educate and show the students interested in the field of conservation the practicalities of running a game reserve."

UmPhafa Nature Reserve

Amanda Warren, Reserve Manager

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FdSc Conservation Science and Animal Management (Wildlife and Zoo)

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