MSc in Wild Animal Biology
Wild animal health has become of increasing interest to non-veterinarians with a first degree in zoology and biology. Recognising this, the Zoological Society of London, together with the Royal Veterinary College have developed a unique course, aimed at non-veterinary biological science graduates and leading to the MSc in Wild Animal Biology. 138 students, originating from 25 countries, have graduated from the course.
This course provides practical exposure to wild animal species and an understanding of their health and welfare in addition to training in research methodologies relevant to the study of wildlife.
Participants benefit from working and studying alongside veterinary graduates taking the MSc in Wild Animal Health as well as learning from internationally renowned experts in their field.
A graduate of the Certificate in Wild Animal Biology must demonstrate:
- a conceptual understanding of population dynamics, threats to wildlife populations and how resources can be allocated for wildlife conservation
- a critical understanding of epidemiology and the impact of disease on wild animal populations
- the ability to evaluate interventions for the management of captive and free-living wild animals including their ethics
- a systematic understanding of the biological principles underpinning wild animal management, and the husbandry, care and welfare of wild animals
A graduate of the Diploma in Wild Animal Biology must demonstrate (in addition to the achievements of the PG Certificate):
- a critical awareness of methods to detect disease, disease surveillance systems and the effects of emerging diseases on captive and free living wild animal health
- conceptual and practical understanding of the diagnosis, management (WAB), investigation (pathology) and control of disease in captive and free-living wild animal populations
- a comprehensive insight into the interdependence of human, domestic animal and ecosystem health
- a creative approach to the evaluation of the health, welfare and reproduction of captive and free-living wild animals
A graduate of the Master of Science in Wild Animal Biology must demonstrate (in addition to the achievements of the PG Certificate and Diploma):
- a comprehensive understanding of research and inquiry including (i) critical appraisal of the literature, (ii) scientific writing and (iii) scientific presentation
- the ability to design and analyse hypothesis-driven laboratory and/or field studies
This specialist Masters course is completed over one year full-time study, commencing in Autumn 2014. Certificate and Diploma levels are available.
The course provides participants with:
- a critical awareness of current problems in wildlife disease with implications for wildlife conservation and welfare, and a new insight into interventions for the management of captive and free-living wild animals, through gaining a systematic understanding of the biological principles underpinning wild animal conservation and management, and the epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment of wildlife disease;
- basic competence in management and pathological techniques in wild animals; and
- a conceptual and practical understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create knowledge in the field of wild animal health, and a comprehensive understanding of scientific skills, including critical review of the scientific literature, and design and analysis of laboratory or field studies.
The course is delivered through two terms of lectures, seminars, tutorials and problem-based learning, with modular examinations, followed by a research project over the summer months, prior to final assessment.
Teaching covers taxa e.g. mammals, reptiles, birds and the disciplines that influence these taxa, such as epidemiology, infectious diseases, conservation and management.
Duration of Course Study
Full-time for one year, with exit points at Certificate and Diploma.
Graduates of the MSc Wild Animal Biology are now working in in-situ wildlife conservation projects, in wild animal research for example studying for a PhD, in captive wild animal management such as in zoological collections, in wild animal welfare for example working for international welfare charities, in teaching and for government animal health and management departments.
- Dr Tony Sainsbury, Institute of Zoology
- Michael Waters, Royal Veterinary College
Applicants must have (or expect to receive) a university first or second class honours degree. Applications are encouraged from candidates with degrees in Biology, Zoology, Animal Biology and the veterinary sciences. We are particularly keen to see evidence of relevant work experience with free-living wildlife, in a zoo, wild animal hospital or in wild animal research.
Fees and Financial Support
See here: MSc Wild Animal Biology - Fee Support
How do I apply?
The Graduate School
The Royal Veterinary College
Royal College Street
London NW1 0TU
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel : +44 (0) 20 7468 5134
Fax : +44 (0) 20 7468 5060