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Work-based Animal Care Advanced Apprenticeship Diploma at Derby College

Course description

If you have worked in the animal care industry for some time, have plenty of experience and are looking to gain a formal qualification, this may be the course for you. Ideally it would suit a learner who manages others as a supervisor or in a managerial position in the animal care setting.

This qualification will allow you to exhibit your skills in planning and organising the care of animals, as well as demonstrating your leadership skills in managing staff.

Course content

This qualification involves completing a series of units, some mandatory and some optional, to suit your chosen pathway. During your induction, the assessor will help you to choose the units most suitable for you.

There are eight different pathways you may choose from:

  • Animal Care and Welfare
  • Zoos/Wildlife Establishments
  • Dog Grooming
  • Pet Care and Retail
  • Animal Welfare Enforcement
  • Animal Training
  • Dog/Animal Wardens
  • Animals in Education and Entertainment

You will complete Level 2 Functional Skills in Maths and English (unless you are exempt) and the Employment Rights and Responsibilities Workbook and Personal Learning and Thinking Skills (developed by LANTRA).

In addition, you will complete the main Level 3 Diploma in Work-based Animal Care programme, which includes the independent assessment, a short answer test.

Entry requirements

It is advisable that you have a good level of maths and English as you will be required to provide a portfolio of evidence either by e-portfolio or in paper-based style.

There are no formal entry requirements. However, you should be employed as a manager or supervisor in an appropriate animal care environment, such as a boarding establishment, zoo, grooming salon, animal charity or wildlife centre.


You will provide a portfolio which will include a range of evidence types including case studies, knowledge questions, a photographic diary and practical assessments. These will support the skills you have gained with your training to prove your competence within your job role. You will also sit an independent assessment as part of the course. A College work-based assessor will visit you in your placement to observe you and assess the evidence you have provided.

Future opportunities

This qualification may lead to you undertaking a higher education course, such as a HND or foundation degree in animal management (subject to specific college/university entry requirements) or other related courses such as behaviour or grooming.

It will also confirm to future employers that you have the right knowledge and practical abilities, particularly if you were to apply for a managerial position within the animal industry.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Derby College directly.

Last updated date: 27 January 2016

Key information