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Animal Care BTEC Level 2&3

Why study Animal Care (BTEC Level 2/3)?

The Animal Care course could help you to geain work placements once you have left Mary Hare.  The course will also enable you to move into higher education having gained practical  knowledge and skills. 

What does the course cover and what is expected of you?

The course starts off with a gentle introduction to the animals and making sure that you feel confident handling them before starting your coursework.  The type of animals you will be looking after include, guinea pigs, chickens, dogs and tortoises.  Depending on which units you choose, you may be required to clean out the chicken house, walk the dogs, be in charge of feeding and watering the animals, understand the animal welfare needs, maintain animal accommodation and understand basic animal biology.  Students may have the opportunity to spend a day on a farm doing practical work and, during the spring, there may be the opportunity to learn more about lambing! 

Over the last year the students have helped the hatching of chicken, duck and turkey eggs as well as being involved in breeding and raising a litter of puppies.  Previous challenges have included being able to show confidence in animal husbandry which was gained when a group of Animal Care students attended the Royal County Show at Newbury Showground. 

We aim to spend quality time with our animals so they are used to being handled and are well socialised. We have an annual trip to a local zoo and visit local pet shops to gain insight into other care and feeding systems. We also work with the famous ‘Sausage Dog Hotel’.


What should you wear?

You will be provided with a pair of farm overalls and a vocational top. You will be required to provide your own wellington boots which you will wear when doing practical tasks.  Please make sure that you bring some clothes with you that are warm as it can get very cold. You are likely to get very dirty so please don’t bring your best clothes – preferably something that can, if necessary, be discarded at the end of the year. 

There are support materials which students may borrow and other relevant books are available from  the library or vocational area. The vocational area has 2 support workers who will have allocated times to support students with their work.


Course assessment

The course consists of various units which need to total 30 credits. There is some theory work, a few tests and a lot of practical work. When completing the course, you will either get a pass, a merit or a distinction.

All students are required to do written assessments alongside their practical work. Your teacher will be taking photos and videos of your practical work as evidence for your folders. Your teachers will go through the units with you and discuss with you the work that will be required for the unit. You will be given a sheet before every lesson stating what is going to be covered. This will include keywords and vocabulary that you will find helpful and need to use in your written work.

The written work is just as important as the practical and your teacher will help you as much as he or she can. 

Exam Board


Teacher's Tip

Remember if you don’t understand something then you must tell your teacher, otherwise when it comes to the written work you will find it very difficult’.