Land-based, Animal, Environment

Getting in

Like the idea of working outdoors? Interested in the environment? Concerned about the welfare of animals?

Good with people and animals? Like handling agricultural machinery? Perhaps you’re interested in conservation or how we can cut down the impact we make on our environment?

Want a job that’s fulfilling and satisfying? Like the idea of growing, cultivating and harvesting plants? If any of these appeal to you, then a career in Land-based and environment might be for you!

Land-based and environmental is one of the UK’s most diverse and rewarding sectors.

Routes into this sector

There are various types of qualifications available: 

  • At 14 GCSEs in English, maths will help get you into this sector. Your school might also offer vocational qualifications such as BTECs, OCR Nationals, etc. related to this specific job sector.
  • At 16 you have more options, you could do A Levels,  which are general academic subjects or develop your knowledge and skills for this sector through an apprenticeshipstraineeshipsvocational qualifications,
  • At 18 or 19 your options open further - you may wish to do a higher education/university course, with 8 out of 10 A Level students choosing this pathway and half of all BTEC National students. However there are other routes into your chosen career - through apprenticeships and vocational qualifications  

With such a diverse choice of careers in this sector, from floristry to farming, it is difficult to pin-point general career pathways so you need to think about what you like.  Do you really want to work with animals?  Is looking after the environment your passion?  Are you artistic?

There are jobs which require few qualifications where you will receive training on the job or do an apprenticeship, and others such as becoming a vet where you have to train for many years at university level.

To find out more about the qualifications needed in this sector visit the Sector Skills Council’s website at Lantra - careers where you will find a comprehensive section on career pathways.

Find out what A Levels you need to become a vet

Spotlight on Animal Care Apprenticeship

A level 2 Intermediate Apprenticeship in Animal care would cover a wide range of skills to work in the industry.  You can generally choose a pathway, from animal care and welfare to animal training or dog grooming.

This level is ideal if you have some knowledge and you want to prove your competence in your role, likely to help you move from a junior to senior position. You may also be looking for a qualification to prepare you for progression to Level 3 qualifications.

You would work as an apprentice in your chosen environment and complete a Level 2 Diploma in Work-based Animal Care along with English and Maths.

Generally you will not need formal qualifications but a minimum of GCSE grade E in English and Maths is usually required as is some assessment of competency in these subjects.

Progression is available via an Advanced Apprenticeship in Animal Care or other routes like an extended Diploma in Animal Management.

Most local colleges have provision for people wanting to specialise in landbased and animal care with specific courses available.

Visit the National Careers Service for more information on becoming an Animal Care Worker

Visit The Apprenticeship Guide for more information about becoming an Animal Care apprentice.

Download a fact sheet about Agriculture and Animal Care

Websites for vacancies in this area

Why not try a free, online course (MOOC) in this job area?

Future Learn have lots of free, online courses that will improve your knowledge of this job sector and improve your chances of landing your dream job. e.g. The Open University has developed a 6 week course about Introduction to Ecosystems.  Click on the following link for more information

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