Undergraduate BSc (Hons)

Wildlife Conservation with Zoo Biology with Studies in the USA

School of Science, Engineering and Environment

Attendance

Full-time

With placement

Course

Three year

Four year

Next enrolment

September 2021

Introduction

In a nutshell

Human impact on the natural world has left devastating effects on wildlife habitats and biodiversity. Our BSc (Hons) Wildlife Conservation with Zoo Biology with Studies in the USA explores conservation theory and practice both in zoos and in the wild, and offers students taking that course the chance to undertake the second year of their studies in the USA.

Accredited, career-focused learning

This course, accredited by the Royal Society of Biology, focuses on conservation both in zoos and in the wild which is ideal if you wish to pursue a career involving wildlife, working in either of those environments. The School also has close links with local zoos and aquariums to provide you with a wide range of experiences throughout your course.

Experience studying abroad 

Partnering with Otterbein University in Ohio, you will study equivalent modules in the USA that will form your second year degree mark. The School, and its USA partner, have close links with local zoos and aquariums to provide you with a wide range of experiences throughout your course.

Hands-on field work

One of the key features of this course is our strong emphasis on field trips – these include day trips as well as national and overseas residential trips with the majority of these trips being free.  

In the 2020 NSS survey, wildlife courses received 100% overall satisfaction [based on University of Salford analysis of unpublished NSS 2020 data].

 

You will:
  • Acquire the practical skills used in wildlife conservation and zoos
  • Have the opportunity to go on a variety of field trips, including to the tropics
  • Combine knowledge of theory with practical skills
  • Have the opportunity to undertake international study in the USA
Placement

options available

International

students accepted

Course details

All about the course

Loss of biodiversity is an increasing concern at national, European and global levels. To work as a professional with wildlife and in conservation, you will need both practical skills and strong theoretical knowledge to meet the challenge of saving our wildlife and wild places.

This course is designed to provide you with a broad understanding of wildlife, biodiversity and conservation of the physical environment, while also offering the opportunity to experience what it is like to study in the American university education system, a year of study with our USA university partner.

  • In your first year you will study a range of topics across several modules covering both theory and practice across the biological and environmental sciences.
  • In year two, you will be based at Otterbein University in the USA, where you will expand your subject knowledge.
  • In your final year, you will undertake a research project based on a subject topic of your choice as well as taking compulsorary and optional modules including zoo organisation and regulation.

Through a number of field trips to zoos, animal parks and wetlands, as well as the chance to travel to the Amazon Rainforest as part of your course, you will have the opportunity to apply your skills and gain real-world context for your studies and begin your journey in conservation in an unforgettable way.

Small group teaching is another key course benefit, and there are strong links between course content and University research projects. 

Industry Placements

On this course, you'll have the option to take an industry placement year between years two and three. Although you'll be responsible for securing your placement, a tutor will support you, monitor your progress and assess your final placement report.

Year one

Biodiversity

Life arose on Earth at least 3.5 billion years ago. Today, Earth hosts an extraordinary diversity of organisms, with recent study estimating that there are between 2 and 20 million eukaryote species alive today (the vast majority of which have still not been identified and described by scientists). However, this is a small fraction of all the species that have ever lived, >99.9% of which are extinct. This module will give you an overview of this remarkable biodiversity, focusing on the major groups, their characteristics, their diversity, and their evolutionary relationships.

Genes to Ecosystems

In the first trimester, this module provides a systems-led approach to understand basic concepts of genetics. In the second trimester, this approach is extended to understand basic concepts of ecosystems. 

Introduction to Zoo Biology

This module provides an integrative approach to understand basic concepts of zoo biology. It is largely lecture-based, and also includes day trips to local zoos.

Field Biology

This module will introduce students to field techniques required for ecological surveys of land and aquatic habitats. Learning will be delivered by lectures, non-residential fieldwork, computer and practical classes. The module will develop students to identification and taxonomy skills, and introduce GIS and its uses within fieldwork.

Global Distribution Wildlife

The module provides you an overview of the world’s major biomes. You learn about the importance of biogeography and the principal factors that drive the distribution of species and communities and how wildlife adapts to these factors.

Study Skills

In this module you will learn by observation, investigation, comparison and engagement and will develop practical learning and presentation methods which can be applied generically during year one and beyond. You will also gain an appreciation of Personal Development Planning and effective data handling, calculation and numerical skills.

Year two

Otterbein University

In year 2 at Otterbein University, in Ohio, you will study a range of core and optional modules.

 

Core modules:

Conservation Biology

Math (Statistics 1)

Animal Behavior

Zoo Enrichment and Animal Training

Zoo Management & Conservation Engagement

 

Optional modules - you can choose 2 from the following:

Genetics

Ecology

Marine Science

Evolution

Wildlife Rehabilitation 

 

You will be supported by a tutor based in Salford whom you will have had as your first year tutor and also by a local tutor at Otterbein.   

Year three

Zoo Organisation and Regulation

Learn about the structure and function of the zoo community at a national, European and international level - its legal regulation and its role in wildlife conservation.

Frontiers in Zoo Biology

On this module you will integrate knowledge from previous zoo biology modules into a practical application. You will gain an understanding of how zoos achieve their stated aims from an economic, practical and scientific view-point and the strategies they use to advance their stated goals.

Choose one option from

 

Final Year Project and Professional Skills (HANS)

This dissertation module allows you to develop independent research skills, including both data collection/generation (for example, via lab-based research or fieldwork) and analysis, while conducting research on a topic in an area relevant to your programme of study. You will also develop your professional skills, with a focus on employability. 

Final Year Project with Science Communication and Professional Skills

This dissertation module allows you to develop independent research skills, including data analysis, while conducting research on a topic in an area relevant to your programme of study. You will learn about science communication and the variety of methods in which science can be disseminated and communicated, and then put these methods into practice. You will also develop your professional skills, with a focus on employability. 

Plus one option from

 

Animal Cognition and Social Complexity

The aim of this module is to develop an understanding of the cognitive abilities and limitations of nonhuman animals, with a particular focus on nonhuman primates. The course also develops your understanding of the cognitive challenges associated with living in complex social groups.

Environmental Geographical Information Systems

The aim of this module is to develop your knowledge and understanding of the factors controlling the design and implementation of GIS solutions to map, monitor and model terrestrial environments. You will also examine the major issues and impacts of GIS evolution and diffusion on society.

Tropical Ecology and Conservation

This module is based round a 2-week field trip to a tropical biology field station. Students will learn concepts in, and approaches to, tropical ecology and conservation and biodiversity in tropical ecosystems. The module involves an independent research project in the field that will be written up as a scientific report.

University Wide Language

Courses are available in: Arabic, German, French, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

And one option from

Applied Freshwater Biology

This module aims to enable you to gain a knowledge and critical understanding of the biology and ecology of freshwater systems relevant to the water industry and related organisations which regulate and control pollution of the aquatic environment.

It also provides you with the necessary skills and techniques to undertake biological and chemical evaluation of water quality ecology, fish population and condition to apply these in novel situations to generate data for interpretation. In particular, you will be provided with the necessary laboratory skills to test water quality to the standards of the Water Framework Directive UK.

Veterinary and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases

This module looks at the maintenance and transmission of infectious diseases of veterinary or zoonotic interest. Particular interest is focused on the role of wildlife species in the ecology and epidemiology of infectious diseases. The role of arthropod-vectors in transmitting infections, and how this influences the ecology of such infections, is also studied. 

Tropical Ecology and Conservation

This module is based round a 2-week field trip to a tropical biology field station. Students will learn concepts in, and approaches to, tropical ecology and conservation and biodiversity in tropical ecosystems. The module involves an independent research project in the field that will be written up as a scientific report.

University Wide Language Programme

This module provides the opportunity to learn or develop a language with the University-wide language programme.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

What will I be doing?

TEACHING

Learning opportunities are varied and teaching is through a combination of lectures / guest lectures, practical sessions, small group tutorials, residential field courses, day visits to sites of conservation interest, guided reading and assignments.

ASSESSMENT

Your assessment is based on a combination of exams and coursework throughout. Continuous assessment includes the dissertation, laboratory reports, field notebooks, essays, data response and presentations.

School of Science, Engineering and Environment

Rising to the challenge of a changing world, our degree courses are designed to shape the next generation of urbanists, scientists, engineers and industry leaders. 

Driven by industry, and delivered by supportive programme teams, you can develop the knowledge and skills to become unstoppable in your career.

facilities

You will experience a modern learning environment, enriched with accessible lecture theatres and AV-equipped classrooms, computing suites and multimedia libraries, with access to industry journals, databases, and simulation software. 

As a wildlife conservation student, you will have access to our state-of-the-art, integrated teaching laboratory known as the Bodmer Lab. The Bodmer Lab is a specialist, purpose-built facility and ensures our students benefit from the latest technologies to support their learning and remain on the cutting edge of innovation and discovery.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

EMPLOYMENT

The course is designed to help you to develop a range of personal and professional skills which will make you highly-employable. These include building specialised wildlife conservation knowledge as well as report writing, data interpretation, and team work and project management skills.

Zoos play an important role in the conservation of biodiversity and many species are now bred in captivity as part of national, regional and international breeding programmes. As a result, it is likely that zoos will increase their breeding, scientific and education activities in the future, and with this degree you could be the person they are looking for.

You have many opportunities to work in voluntary and government conservation organisations operating at local, national and international levels. Opportunities also exist for you to work in environmental consultancies, environmental education and in zoos. Previous students have gained employment in zoos, country parks, animal sanctuaries and environmental consultancies.

FURTHER STUDY

You might find you want to learn more about wildlife conservation through further study. We offer a range of wildlife conservation and environment-focused postgraduate courses where you can build specialist knowledge and take your subject interest even further. Salford graduates and alumni also receive a significant fees discount. 

Furthermore, graduates have undertaken research for a PhD including studying orangutans in Borneo, large animals in Tanzania and various projects in urban ecology.

MSc Sustainability

MSc Wildlife Conservation

 

MSc Wildlife Documentary Production 

A taste of what you could become

a wildlife trust reserve manager

a wildlife ranger

an environmental and ecological consultant

a zoo keeper

a zoo scientific and education officer

AND MORE...

Career Links

As a result of our close links to industry, you will have the opportunity to go on several field trips which may include visits to Chester Zoo, South Lakes Wild Animal Park, Knowsley Safari Park, Blackpool Zoo, Twycross Zoo, Dudley Zoo and Martin Mere (Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust). In addition, staff from some of these institutions contribute lectures to the course bringing more real world examples to your learning.

Students have undertaken work placements in a wide range of countries including South Africa, Madagascar, Spain, Greece and the USA, working with a very wide range of animals from donkeys and wolves to seals and turtles. Zoo biology students have undertaken placements in zoos in the USA, Canada and the UK. You will arrange your placement with our support.

Requirements

What you need to know

APPLICANT PROFILE

You will have a genuine broad interest in wildlife and conservation, enjoy working outdoors in all weathers, as well as collecting and analyzing data. We expect you to be interested in biology and the environment. We welcome applications from mature students who may not have academic qualifications in relevant subjects, but have experience in zoos or conservation organisations.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS

International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0, with no element below 5.5, is proof of this.

Please note: The entry criteria below are related to entry onto this course in the 2021/22 academic year.

Standard entry requirements

GCSE

English language and mathematics at grade C or 4 or above

UCAS tariff points

104 - 112 UCAS points

A level

104 - 112 UCAS points

BTEC National Diploma

DMM

Diploma in Foundation Studies

104 - 112 UCAS points, Merit/Distinction

Scottish Highers

104 - 112 UCAS points from Higher Level

Irish Leaving Certificate

104 - 112 UCAS points from Higher Level

European Baccalaureate

Pass in Diploma of at least 60% including at least one science subject

International Baccalaureate

30 points

Alternative entry requirements

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.

There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.

Please note that you should discuss the possibility of being considered for the scheme with the Admissions Tutor  before making an application. Please contact the Environment and Life Sciences school office to speak with the Admissions Tutor for this course: +44(0)161 295 4656

How much?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2021/22 £9,250per year
Full-time international 2021/22 £15,600per year
Additional costs

All field trips are funded by the university but you may need to consider additional costs such as food and spending money. 

International field trips that are part of core modules are also funded by the university but you will need to pay towards international field trips that are part of optional modules (although these are subsidised by the university) and you will be made aware of these costs before selecting the module. For the trip to the tropics (as part of the optional Tropical Ecology and Conservation module) there is a fee of about £600 and students need to pay for their own flights and visa.

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Scholarships 2021/22

Students on this course have previously benefitted from a scholarship to support their study and living costs. Visit the scholarships page for more information about available scholarships. 

To celebrate Salford's expertise and industry links, high achieving international students may be eligible for an International Excellence Scholarship worth up to £3,500. Visit the international scholarships page for more information.

 

Apply now

ALL SET? LET'S APPLY

Enrolment dates

September 2021

September 2022

UCAS information

Course ID D4C1

Institution S03

Interested in starting university in September 2022? Book your place on our next Open Day.