We can't wait to welcome you to Sparsholt College in September! 

We have created this interactive page to give you a sense of what studying Animal Management at Sparsholt College is like. Scroll down to watch the playlist of videos we have created introducing you to just a few of our animals!  

Remember, we are on social media and love posting about our students, their achievements and our beautiful campus so be sure to give us a like and a follow.  Also, if you wish to respond to anything on this page please email SparsholtApplicantWelcome@sparsholt.ac.uk with Animal Studies as the title of the email. You can also contact us at AskAnimalStudies@sparsholt.ac.uk if you have any questions regarding our courses.

At Sparsholt we also offer a lot of support to you during your time at college including Careers Guidance and Health and Wellbeing advice. 

Visit our campus virtually! 

Join our expert lecturers on an exclusive guided tour across Sparsholt College's industry standard facilities and state-of-the-art equipment!

Animal Management at Sparsholt 

At Sparsholt we have over 1200 animals across 200 species on site! Our Animal Management students get the opportunity to work across a broad range of animal species as part of their course. This kind of experience makes Sparsholt graduates well placed to excel in a career in the competitive animal management, welfare or veterinary nursing fields. 

We have created this playlist which will introduce you to just a handful of our amazing animals who you can work with when you join in September! 

Animal Enrichment

At Sparsholt we will always prioritise the welfare and wellbeing of our animal collection. Check out the video below of our on-site team providing our Radiated Tortoises - nicknamed Collin, Dotty, Special T, Lin and Ben - with dandelion and magnolia flowers for feeding enrichment! 


Industry Placements

As part of our Level 3 qualifications full-time students aged 16-18 will be required to complete a compulsory industry placement with a sector-specific employer or voluntary organisation.

Industry placements provide students with opportunities to:

  • Apply the knowledge learned at college to the workplace
  • Increase confidence as skills are developed
  • Develop communication, teamwork and problem-solving skills
  • See how a business operates in the real world
  • Identify key technical strengths and skills you will need at work
  • Test career choices and aspirations
  • Line up an employer reference and achieve an additional college certificate for future use
  • Find part-time work alongside studies or full-time employment once courses are completed

One dedicated placement day per week will form a part of our students’ weekly timetable across the academic year.

Our Industry Placement team will be here to support and guide you through this process from start to finish.

Get ahead of the rest and get your industry placement sorted before you start your course with us by emailing the team at ip@sparsholt.ac.uk.

Sparsholt staff highly commended in BIAZA photography competition!

Emma Lawlor, Herptile Technician at Sparsholt College’s Animal Management Centre has created a buzz in the animal photography world, winning a ‘highly commended’ position in the British and Irish Association of Zoo’s and Aquariums’ (BIAZA) annual photography competition!

The close-up shot captured some of Sparsholt’s Giant Katydids hatching from their eggs. Appropriately named ’Even giants start small’ the insects are pictured at only a few millimetres long, but as they continue to grow will reach up to 7cm. Upon birth, they display blue and yellow with stripes, but will turn a bright green when maturing in order to camouflage amongst the foliage and leaves they eat.

The competition was open to all BIAZA collections in the UK and Ireland, and the four categories each awarded a winner, runner-up, and highly commended position. Emma entered her photo in the ‘Behind the Scenes’ category, displaying a unique insight into the work that keepers and technicians put into their collections.

Emma is delighted with the result, saying “To have won a place on my first time entering is so exciting, especially with a photo of an insect which many people tend to overlook in favour for more charismatic mammals and birds!”

“The process of hatching is quite quick, and usually happens in the early hours of the morning, so it is an honour to have been able to capture the beginning stage of new life!”

Sparsholt College, home of the National Zoo Academy, holds 1200 animals across 200 different species, and was the first college in the country to gain a BIAZA licence. A £2 million investment in animal and zoo facilities has been granted to Sparsholt College, and work is underway on the brand new Animal Health and Welfare Research Centre.


In the News!

The Animal Management Centre and working farm have been a hub of activity for the first half of 2020 as we welcomed lots of baby animals!

The annual arrival of the College lambs, calves and piglets kick-started the spring season as students got hands on delivering the young on our sheep and dairy units prior to Lockdown.

Over at the Animal Management Centre, the college’s Edwards’s Pheasants are sitting on eggs which, if they hatch successfully, will help boost the global count of this critically endangered species.

Alongside this egg-citing news, our resident Gundi have introduced twins into their little pack, making six altogether. This unusual North African rodent species is only found at two zoos in the UK, and provides a vital source of education on desert mammals.

In our Exotics Department, 22 new baby Emperor Scorpions were welcomed all at once! Due to their docile nature and large size, this species is becoming increasingly popular as a pet. However this has been having a detrimental effect on their numbers in the wild. Captive breeding is therefore important to take pressure off the wild population.

Our Courses: 

Level 1: Animal Care 

Level 2 Technical Certificate: Animal Care  

Level 3 Advanced Technical Certificate 360/Extended Diploma 720: Animal Management - with Year 2 pathway in Zoos & Wildlife

Level 3 Advanced Technical Diploma 540/Extended Diploma 1080: Animal Management - with Year 2 pathways available in Zoo, Animal Management & Science

Animal Health and Welfare Research Centre 

A further £2 million investment in animal and zoo facilities has been granted to Sparsholt College, and the phase 4 development has now been completed on a brand new Animal Health and Welfare Research Centre.

The state-of-the-art centre will facilitate advanced welfare practices and digital technology and will add to the range of techniques, skills and industry know-how of our students.

This new facility will be the home of the National Zoo Academy – the gold standard for anyone aspiring to enter, already employed or wanting to develop their skills in the zoo industry.


We've been able to get a peek at the new new Animal Health and Welfare Research Centre - and it's really starting to come together!

Animal Management Centre Manager Calvin and Assistant Principal Mark have been showing us where all of the animals' new homes will be.

Find out more about Sparsholt College's state-of-the-art facilities online now: http://bit.ly/AnimalManagement_Facilities


Careers Guidance 

Our careers guidance aims to expand the horizons of all students enabling you to make informed career decisions in order to progress both during and after college. 

Carol is our dedicated Careers Advisor for Sparsholt College! 

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We also have our SUN Progression Mentor Anna! 

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Anna works alongside the Southern Universities Network (SUN) to help students recognise the routes of progression available to them, and to continue their journey in education! 

We recently launched the new Careers Hub located in the College library so come and say hello to Carol and Anna! 

Student wellbeing and support 

At Sparsholt College we understand that starting college in these uncertain times can be daunting and we aim to make this process as simple as possible. 

We have a dedicated team that provide our students with any additional support they need including; 

  • Counselling 
  • Carer support 
  • Childcare support 
  • Confidential one-to-one services 

Social Media 

We love to post about all our students on our platforms including their achievements, trips and excellent work - take a look at some of the highlights below and make sure you follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube



University Centre Sparsholt 

Did you know that Sparsholt also offers higher education including foundation degrees, degrees and masters courses in a variety of different areas! 

University Centre Sparsholt is the perfect place to take your education further in the interesting and varied fields of Conservation and Wildlife Management, Animal/Zoo Biology, Fishery and Aquatics, Equine Science and Performance management or Veterinary Nursing Science! 

Take a look at our website for more information and 2021 prospectus here. 

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Not already applied?

Got this link but not yet applied? Click below so you can join us in September!