Hartpury College

Animal Behaviour and Welfare



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Course Overview

This programme provides students with detailed understanding of animal behaviour and welfare and the opportunity to develop practical and research experience supported by a general foundation in animal behaviour and welfare theory; opening up multiple career prospects in the animal industries.

Throughout, there is an emphasis on the development of relevant research and vocational skills to ensure your future success, which will enhance employability.  The course will help you understand how animals function, factors that can influence their behaviour and ultimately their management and welfare, and to explore how humans and animals interact.  You will also gain the knowledge and skills to develop practical solutions for existing and emerging problems centred on animal behaviour and welfare or animal-human interactions and you will be supported to put the skills you are developing into practice in real world situations.

During your studies, you will widen your skill base, equipping you to work effectively across a range of animal related professions, develop key contacts and gain valuable experience working with a wide variety of animals in a range of situations. Gaining this qualification will enhance employability, offering a stepping stone into careers within conservation, pet behaviour counselling, zoo education, animal training, animal charities or further research.

You will benefit from access to our extensive animal resources and wide range of industry links, including the on-site small animal collection, farm, equine unit and therapy centre.  Hartpury also offers multiple additional opportunities for you to gain experience; you are encouraged to engage with complementary study courses available on site that you can undertake alongside your studies at a reduced cost to build your skill portfolio.

In the second year of the programme you have the opportunity to do an optional fieldwork module, currently in South Africa, and in the final year of study, you will formulate and execute a significant investigative project of research in the field of animal behaviour and welfare, to consolidate and extend your specialist knowledge and critical thinking.

The Integrated Masters in Animal Behaviour and Welfare can be completed full-time in four years. Part-time routes are also available and should be planned with the programme manager.

Follow us on our programme Twitter: @HartpuryABW

Entry Requirements


A minimum of five subjects at grade C or above including Maths, English Language and Science.

Tariff points range


A level subjects grades

Two A2s to include a Biological Science or equivalent

Level 3 Extended Diploma subjects grades


International Baccalaureate

27 points




For the most up to date information on your programme, you can find your course information sheet here

Apply Now(in UCAS)

Next Open Day

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07 Dec 2016 University Open Day Wednesday 7th December 2016

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In Brief

Tuition fees

Fees for September 2017 entry

UK: £9,250
EU fees: Will remain the same as UK students, £9,250
International: £11,250
Please contact us to discuss part-time fees 

When should I apply

You can apply for September 2017 entry now. 

Please check the UCAS website for application deadlines.

How to apply

Please apply directly through the University Admissions Service (UCAS)

Click to see more course information


  • Modules could include:

    • Animal Behaviour
    • Animal Genetics
    • Animal Health and Disease
    • Introduction to Animal Welfare
    • Systems Biology
    • Wildlife Ecology
  • Modules could include:

    • Animal Welfare Assessment
    • Ethics and Welfare
    • Undergraduate Research Process
    • Companion animal behaviour and training
    • Behavioural measurement
    • Management of domestic animals
    • Behavioural and evolutionary ecology
    • Field Course 
  • Modules could include:

    • Applied Research Project
    • Animal Trade and Welfare
    • Developments in Animal Science
    • Wildlife and zoo management
    • Anthrozoology
    • Animal psychology
    • Pet behaviour counselling
  • Modules could include:

    • Advances in Animal Behaviour
    • Contemporary Issues in Animal Welfare Science
    • Postgraduate Independent Project
    • Reflection on practice
    • The human-animal bond
    • The Research Process
    • Equine Behaviour and Welfare

course blog post

Animal and Land
02 Dec 2016

Good moos – an unusual arrival adds a splash of colour to Hartpury’s dairy herd

Meet Ruby Tuesday, the rare red and white calf who is breaking up the monochrome pattern of the Holstein-Friesian herd at Hartpury’s Home Farm.

Read On

Career Opportunities

The integrated masters in Animal Behaviour and Welfare will equip students with the knowledge and skills which are required by organisations such as animal charities, welfare organisations, education and research establishments and government bodies. We produce graduates who are equipped with the knowledge and skills required to progress on to a PhD in a related topic or employment in the animal behaviour and welfare sector in careers such as Animal Health and Welfare officers, Laboratory and Field Research Assistants, University and College Lecturers, teachers and Zoo Education Officers.