AVAILABLE THROUGH: Cornwall College | LEARNING AREAS: Wildlife Conservation & Zoology COURSES

FdSc Conservation & Ecology

For 2020 start - Available with a Science Gateway qualification

Cornwall College Newquay LEVEL: 5 Wildlife Conservation & Zoology

Are you interested in wildlife and nature conservation? This is an inspirational, field-based practical course situated on the Cornwall College Newquay campus, adjacent to Newquay Zoo.

Click here to take a virtual tour of the Newquay campus!

On this programme you will learn about ecology (how organisms interact with each other and with their physical environment) and how we conserve species and habitats.  This requires knowledge about how to observe, survey, monitor and manage species and where they live. You will develop skills in Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and other relevant field and research skills.

Teaching will be through traditional lectures, fieldwork, labwork and workshops.  All our lecturers are experts in their particular field with wide-ranging qualifications, interests and experience. Some topics will be delivered by experts from organisations such as the Cornwall Wildlife Trust and the National Trust. Guest speakers play an important role in your learning and they are used regularly to provide more expert knowledge in some of the specialised modules.

You will demonstrate your learning through a diverse range of assessments, including practical work in the lab or field, seminar presentations, exams, in-class tests and problem-based learning exercises.

Work-related learning is a valuable part of the programme and you will undertake work experience locally or overseas. In this way, you will gain experience and develop graduate-level skills in the type of work that you hope to do, and learn about the expectations of those who may employ you. The contacts you make during your work experience may well be your link to future employment.

During the programme, you will have plenty of opportunity to visit the broad range of habitats and environments in Cornwall. We also run optional residential field trips or research projects to destinations further afield, including Borneo, Honduras, South Africa and the Scilly Isles.

At the end of the programme you will be equipped with the academic qualifications, personal qualities, vocational skills and techniques essential for a career in the ecological or environmental sector.

Possible Progression (subject to availability) 

– BSc (Hons) Applied Zoology (top-up) (Level 6) at Newquay

– BSc (Hons) Environmental Resource Management (top-up) (Level 6) at Newquay

– BSc (Hons) Animal Conservation Science (final year/Level 6) at Plymouth University

– BSc (Hons) Biosciences (top-up) (final year/Level 6) at Plymouth University

– BSc (Hons) Conservation Biology (entry at Level 5) at Plymouth University

Possible Careers 

– Field Ecologist or Ecological Consultant

– Work in conservation Charities, e.g. Wildlife Trust Media, Environmental Journalism

– Work in Government Organisations, e.g. Natural England, Environment Agency

– Council conservation officer

– Reserve Manager

– Research or Teaching

– Field Guide in the UK or abroad

Key Facts

  • UCAS Code: C180
  • Institution codes: CORN C78
  • Awarded by: University of Plymouth
  • Fees: Fees Explained
Entry Requirements
  • Grade C/grade 4 or above for GCSE English Language, Science and Mathematics. Alternatives at Level 2 may be considered.
  • 48 UCAS points from AS or A-Levels (at least 32 points must be at A2-level).
  • Other level 3 qualifications in a relevant subject are also acceptable. For example, Pass Grades from BTEC National Diploma / BTEC Extended Diploma (different grades may be requested for specific units).

A DBS check is required where work experience is carried out with young people under 18 or vulnerable adults.

  • 45 credits at level 3 from Access to HE Diplomas (different grades may be requested for specific units).
  • Mature applicants with relevant experience, but without the stated qualifications will be considered individually and are encouraged to apply.
Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) Silver Award

The Cornwall College Group delivers high quality teaching, learning and outcomes for its students. It consistently exceeds rigorous national quality requirements for UK higher education.

Find out more about TEF


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Course Documents

FdSc Conservation and Ecology Handbook (2019-20)
CORN Module Records Newquay (10 Sept 19)


Indicative Module Year 1


  • Ecology of Aquatic Systems
  • Key Professional Skills
  • The British Countryside
  • Diversity, Classification and Evolution
  • Animals & Their Environment
  • Field Survey Techniques

Indicative Module Year 2


  • Individual Research Project
  • Zoological Conservation in Practice
  • Habitat Survey & GIS
  • Population Genetics & Community Ecology

Optional (All students must choose one option from each pair of modules):

  • Invertebrate Ecology & Survey
  • Fish Ecology


  • Global Conservation Issues
  • Ecology Survey & Management of Mammals & Herptiles

*Modules are subject to change and availability


FdSc Conservation & Ecology

Start Date





2 years full-time

FdSc Conservation & Ecology

Start Date





3 years part-time

FdSc Conservation & Ecology - with Science Gateway

Start Date





3 years full-time

Extra Information

This option includes an additional Science Gateway year which is ideal if you don’t have the right qualifications to apply for a degree programme straight away. If you are applying for the FdSc Conservation & Ecology - with Science Gateway route on UCAS you will need to use UCAS code: F16G. Please note that when studying the Science Gateway programme, you will be based at Cornwall College Newquay.

*Courses listed on this website are indicative of the subject, nature and level of study. The college reserves the right to alter specific qualifications titles, awarding bodies and levels of qualification, which can change in year. Any cost may also vary, based on personal funding eligibility. The Cornwall College Group reserves the right to withdraw any course listed at any time.

Careers advice available

If you are considering an undergraduate programme with us, you may wish to access our free Careers and Employability advice service. This gives you the opportunity to talk with an advisor about career options before, during and after your study with us. To make an appointment, please e-mail: H.E.Advice@cornwall.ac.uk

If you come into the International category (non EU*) and Channel Island (inc. Isle of Man) the tuition fee may vary – click here for full fee information