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Environmental Conservation Level 2 (AGR1) Apprenticeship at Barnsley College

Course description

The areas of study are:


(Mandatory units)

Undertake Work Related Experience in the Land-based Industries

This unit aims to provide learners with an understanding of the principles of work related experience and how these can be applied in practice.


Environmental and Land-based Business

This unit aims to provide learners with an understanding of the principles of business within the environmental and land-based business, and how these can be applied in practice.


(Optional units)

Introduction to Animal and Plant Husbandry

This unit aims to introduce learners to skills and knowledge of animal and plant husbandry and how these can be applied in practice. The learner will understand the husbandry requirements of plants and animals used in land-based production. They will learn about the welfare of farm livestock and monitoring of livestock food, water and general health. Learners will develop their ability to work to the strict pre-planned deadlines required by all sectors of the industry.


Introduction to Environmental Studies

This unit aims to introduce learners to environmental study skills and knowledge, and how these can be applied in practice. Learners will be introduced to a range of scientific investigation skills enabling them to collect, analyse and compare environmental information about different sites. They will investigate the relationships between plants, animals and humans and consider energy and nutrient flows.


Conservation and Improvements of British Habitats

The British countryside contains a wide variety of habitats. For a small island country, the diversity of wildlife is large but the amount of space is limited. To maximise biodiversity, the small amount of natural space needs to be managed correctly. For learners to make a positive contribution to the future of rare and sensitive habitats, they need to develop an appreciation of the many different types of habitat found in the UK. This unit focuses on the identification and management of different habitats. It provides a forum for a discussion of the threats facing habitats and the management techniques used to address them. It also provides learners the opportunity to actively manage and improve habitats to benefit wildlife. Learners will develop their ability to recognise habitats and gather information, analyse it and draw suitable conclusions.


Undertaking Ecological Surveys and Techniques

Learners will investigate the planning, surveying and reporting of terrestrial and aquatic habitats. They will learn about the safe selection and use of different methods and the tools and equipment necessary in the correct and accurate collection and recording of data in the field and laboratory. They will conclude by learning the approach and use of basic statistical analysis.


English and Maths

English and maths qualifications are a requirement for most jobs and it is important that you are able to demonstrate your ability in these areas. If you do not already have a grade C or above in GCSE English and maths you will automatically undertake further study in these subjects as part of your study programme.

Course content

You will study all appropriate units listed below until you achieve an agreed number of credits for your route option. You will also study:

  • Employment, Rights and Responsibilities (ERR)
  • Level 2 Functional Skills in English and maths (if not already achieved)
  • Personal Learning and Thinking Skills (PLTS)

All learners will cover the mandatory core units of:

  • Monitor and maintain health and safety
  • Maintain and develop personal performance
  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with others
  • Maintain environmental good practice
  • Communicate with the public and others
  • Promote responsible public use of the environment

Additional units could include:

  • Prepare ground for seeding and planting
  • Establish plants or seeds in soil
  • Maintain equipment and machines

Entry requirements

  • Three GCSEs at grade A* to D including English at grade 3/D or above
  • Learners will need to be at least 16 years of age
  • You need to be employed within the land-based industry or have an employer in this area willing to take you on as an apprentice


Assessment is by a series of assignments.  There is no formal end examination.

Financial information

Financial support - If your total annual household income is less than £35,000 you could be eligible for financial support through our Learner Support Fund.* Money is available for travel (up to £700), food, trips, printing, equipment and childcare. You don’t have to pay this money back. You can pick up a Learner Support Fund application form from Student Services on the ground floor at our Old Mill Lane campus.

Guaranteed bursaries - If you are aged between 16 and 18 and currently living on your own, or in care or leaving care, you could be eligible for a non-repayable bursary of up to £1,200 per year.*

Earn to Learn - If you are aged 16 to 18 and not eligible for any other financial support you could get involved with our Earn to Learn scheme. This provides excellent work experience opportunities within College with departments including Marketing, Administration and Catering, and you will be ‘paid’ via a range of rewards including help with the cost of travel, trips and equipment or high street vouchers.

FREE bus services! - We realise that getting to and from College might not be very easy for everyone so we have funded three FREE return bus services for our students. They serve the following areas:

• Shelley

• Stocksbridge via Penistone

• Rotherham - Ecclesfield - Chapeltown - High Green


These bus routes are completely free for our students and operate on a first come, first served basis. Each route will get students into College in a morning before lessons start and a return service is provided after lessons finish. Please contact Student Services for details of pick-up points and times.

For more information on financial support, bursaries or bus routes, please contact Student Services on Tel: 01226 216 267 or Email:

*Terms and conditions and apply

Future opportunities

Education - You could progress to higher level qualifications within College; we offer a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Countryside Management. This is a two year course that can then lead to the Higher National Diploma in Animal Management (Level 5). You may also wish to consider study at the same level but in a different discipline. The Level 2 Horticulture or Level 2 Animal Care programmes will broaden your employability by giving you additional skills which many employers are now seeking, examples would be Garden Centres, and Estate management, pet shop assistant, kennel work.

Employment - Beyond College, there are many opportunities with the following organisastions: Natural England, The Forestry Commission, Environment Agency, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), British Waterways, Sport England, National Trust, Association of National Park Authorities, Countryside Alliance, local councils, wildlife trusts, local charitable organisations and volunteer groups.

Further information

We have a dedicated team available to provide information on all of our courses and to help you to make the right choices about your future. The team are based at the Old Mill Lane site.

Drop in: Monday – Thursday 9.00am – 5.00pm Friday 9.00am – 4.30pm

Tel: 01226 216 123


Our Information Advisers visit schools and provide impartial information about training and education options for school leavers.

They can help with: • Applying for courses • Arranging taster days and visits to College • Information about course requirements




How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 02 October 2017
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