Get outdoors, get hands-on and learn more about nature and the environment around us with one of our land and wildlife courses.
We offer a unique study environment and excellent practical facilities with over 200 acres of estate including woodlands, farm and access to locations in the Lake District, the North Pennines, North Yorkshire and Scotland, ensuring you receive a high-quality and varied learning experience.
You will develop your knowledge and skills in a range of areas in land and wildlife management. You can expect a mixture of practical, hands-on learning alongside classroom teaching so you can turn the theory behind your course into reality. To find out more about this diverse sector, you’ll take part in trips and visits to estates, country parks and wildlife parks.
Our courses are a great springboard for those wishing to work within conservation, the environment and wildlife management. Alternatively, if you fancy going on to university, these courses set you up for degree-level study in a variety of interesting disciplines such as conservation, ecology, land management, environmental science and much more!
The College’s farms and estates provide excellent practical facilities for our Gamekeeping and Countryside and Environment students.
Scholarships and Bursaries
The Student Services Team has more information for students who would like to receive financial assistance during their study with us.
Our lecturing staff have critical subject knowledge and strong industry connections allowing them to deliver not only academic excellence but practical industry-based knowledge. Our work with local employers contributes to the knowledge and delivery of our training. Trips, visits and guest speakers will provide demonstrations and talks on the industry. This practical-based training is ideal preparation for gaining employment in the land and wildlife industries or specialist further study.
We have strong links with the National Parks and a large number of local estates. In addition, we work closely with the RSPB, National Trust, National Gamekeepers Organisation, BASC and the Gamekeepers Welfare Trust. Working with these partners gives our students excellent employment and work experience opportunities.
Management of the countryside in a sustainable and integrated way has never been more important. Integrating traditional skills and new technologies in an informed and holistic fashion will guarantee habitats and biodiversity for the future. Today’s countryside managers, including gamekeepers, estate managers and rangers need to be aware of legislative and political change, changing scientific understanding and accepted best practice within their sector. Our extensive resources, industry contacts and close work with National Parks, Natural England and other professional bodies ensure that our graduates are industry ready and up date.
Preparing For Your Course
Be prepared to study in the great outdoors in all weather! In preparation for the course you will be supplied with a detailed list of Personal Protective Equipment that will be required to attend the course. Staff can also provide a reading list for you so you read up on topics before your course starts.
There is a requirement to complete 150 hours of work placement (work experience) with an industry-related organisation. Students find work placement in the first instance; we will give support in finding a position if necessary. Students often look for a placement with industry-related organisations such as local shooting estates , game farms , conservation organisations National Parks, wildlife charities – RSPB etc .
The college offers a range of assistance and guidance through our Assisted Services Team.
Course TypeFurther Education,
Course TypeFurther Education,
Oustanding student experience
We are a specialist land-based provider developing talent for both college and university studentsApply now
Our facilities are better than ever
- Lecture rooms
- Computer suite
- 283 hectares of farm estate
- Links with RSPB, National Trust, National Gamekeepers Association, BASC and Welfare Trust
- Access to local estates and reserves
“Askham Bryan College is a fantastic college. It has been a pleasure learning here. All the tutors are willing to go above and beyond to ensure you have the best knowledge possible. I would recommend this college to anyone wanting to become a Registered Veterinary Nurse. ”
“Choosing the level 3 Arboriculture course was a big decision being a 31-year-old self-employed landscape gardener. I am now at the end of my first year and there is no looking back. I have come on leaps and bounds professionally. I have already expanded my business into arboriculture with the skills and knowledge I have learnt. Askham Bryan College has been an eye opener and I've learned skills that I will take through my entire life.”
What is a typical week like? How much time is practical? How much is theory?
A typical week will be a mix of class based theory interspersed with a mix of practical workshops and estate based exercises, the content will vary as the academic year and the shooting year progress. We try to balance the delivery so that what is being taught in the classroom has relevance in the field practical sessions, for example, we may cover pest and predator legislation in class and look at the skills to set traps in the field, within one week’s teaching .
Where have past students ended up? What jobs could I do?
Most students who have wished to progress into the gamekeeping industry have been successful in doing so, others have used their qualification to progress to degree level study in related fields including estate management and wildlife management. Some graduates have been employed as stalkers, river gillies and pest control contractors.
How many hours work experience do I need to do? How do I find a work placement? Do you find it for me?
Students are required to complete 150 hours per year on work experience and you are usually expected to find your own placement, but if you’re having difficulties, don’t worry – our staff will be able to help and point you in the right direction and our Work Placement Co-ordinators are on hand to help too.
What grades do I need?
For Level 2 courses you will need four GCSEs at grade 3 (D) or above, to include two from English, Maths and Science, with at least a grade 2 (E) in the remaining subject.
For Level 3 courses you will need four GCSEs at grade 4 (C) or above, to include two from English, Maths and Science, with at least a grade 3 (D) in the remaining subject.
Are there any exams?
You are required to sit a mandatory examination in March with an opportunity to re–sit in June if you fail in March. The examination is a mix of short answer questions with a few extended questions. The content of the examination is based on the mandatory [compulsory] units you will have studied over the year. The examination is externally set and externally marked. You will also be graded through a synoptic assessment which requires you to perform practical tasks and submit written reports relevant to your topic area.
How many UCAS points would I get?
A full Level 3 Extended Diploma (2 years) with distinctions in every module is equivalent to 168 UCAS points or the same as 3 A-level grades at A* (56 UCAS points for one A*). Pass grades across all modules is equivalent to 48 UCAS points.
What size are the classes?
Class sizes vary yearly from 15 to 20+ students.
What previous experience do I need?
There is no requirement to have previous experience, however an interest in the outdoors, conservation, field sports and the British countryside is desirable. Many of our students have a desire to find a lifelong career working in the field in the British countryside, a job with as little “desk” time as possible.
Is there a uniform? Is PPE provided?
There is no formal need for a uniform, however we do have a requirement for students to wear appropriate outdoor kit and PPE when required. So a big ‘No’ to denim and track suit bottoms as they are below the minimum requirement for useful field kit as when they get wet, they stay wet. Most students wear cotton work trousers or canvas. During shoot days students will often wear tweeds if they have them, but this is an option not a requirement. You will need safety boots, overalls and suitable outdoor gear for cold and wet weather. We will provide specialist PPE such as face masks and ear defenders for certain activities.