MSc in Wild Animal Health
This world-class specialist Masters course (with exit points at Certificate and Diploma) has produced over 208 graduates, originating from 49 countries, since its inception in 1994. It provides qualified veterinarians with a critical understanding of the management of wild animals and the epidemiology, treatment and control of wildlife disease.
Over the last 30 years, interventions, for reasons of health, welfare and the conservation, of free-living wild animals have been undertaken with increasing frequency. Specialist veterinary expertise is required in order to assess and control the risk of accidental disease introduction to wildlife.
Emerging infectious diseases are also recognised as a serious hazard both for wild animals, and for the domestic animal and human populations that interact with these species. In addition, a large number of wild animal species are kept in captivity; in zoos and in laboratories, which has led to an increased demand for specialist skills and knowledge.
Participants of this course graduate with the analytical skills, the understanding, the confidence and the language to influence thinking and policy making within organisations.
A graduate of the Certificate in Wild Animal Health 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 Health 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
- A conceptual and practical understanding of the diagnosis, management, investigation (pathology), treatment 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 Health 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
Applications are invited from candidates with a degree from a recognised veterinary school and at least one year of postgraduate veterinary experience.
We are keen to see evidence of relevant work experience in a zoo, wildlife rehabilitation centre or wildlife hospital.
Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of proficiency in spoken and written English, including scientific usage and comprehension. They will be required to achieve an overall score of 7.0 in IELTS with a minimum of 6.5 in each sub-test; or a TOEFL score of at least 93 (internet-based test with no element below 23), or 580 (paper-based test plus 4.5 in the Test of Written English (TWE)/Essay rating).
The course is completed over one year full-time study, commencing in Autumn 2013. It is taught jointly by the Zoological Society of London and the Royal Veterinary College.
Graduates are equipped with:
- a critical awareness of current problems in wildlife disease with implications for wildlife conservation and welfare, and a new insight into veterinary 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 veterinary techniques and preventative medicine for 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
- Taught component, with modular examinations.
- Certificate and Diploma levels are available. Please see Programme Structure for more information.
- An individual research project, carried out during the summer months, leading to final assessment.
The course is organised by discipline (e.g. epidemiology, anaesthesiology, virology), with information relating to specific taxa included in lectures throughout the course. The course teaches the principles of each subject and taxa-specific lectures are included to exemplify these principles.
Course participants play an active role in lectures, seminars, tutorials and clinical work.
Duration of Course Study
Full-time for one year, with exit points at Certificate and Diploma.
Graduates go on to work with captive and free-living wild animals as clinicians, pathologists, epidemiologists, academics and senior management in zoological collections, national parks, universities and government departments worldwide.
Others continue to work towards a PhD or DVetMed, either with the RVC or at another leading research institute.
- Dr Tony Sainsbury, Institute of Zoology
- Michael Waters, Royal Veterinary College
Fees and Financial Support
See here: MSc Wild Animal Health - Fee Support
How do I apply?
See here: MSc Wild Animal Health - 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