BTEC HND Animal Studies

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BTEC HND Animal Studies

    
Subject code: L5AS

BTEC Higher National Diploma in: Animal Studies

Working with animals is a challenging, but rewarding, experience. This BTEC HND award can equip you with the skills you need to begin working with animals, or for further study at degree level.
An internationally recognised qualification, this Level 5 qualification builds upon prior knowledge, whether gained via academic study or from practical experience.

Syllabus and Unit Specification:

Unit 1: Using ICT in animal studies

Information, communication and technology (ICT) comprises core skills for learning. In this distance learning course utilisation of methods, tools and strategies of ICT is important in order to establish and maintain a sound working relationship with tutors and the college. Students will need to develop ICT skills in order to communicate effectively and maximise their study progression.

The first unit of this BTEC in Animal Studies course explains how to set up an ePortfolio which students will use during the lifetime of the course for storage of all their files including coursework, self-assessment activities, independent research notes and reflective journals. The ePortfolio may be requested from time to time by tutors and moderators. Students will be asked at various points in the course to upload files for this purpose. The ePortfolio will not only provide students with a structured system of unique information but once completed can be used as a resource for continuing professional development (CPD), and a body of revision for future studies.

Independent research is fundamental to level 5 study and also equips students with confidence to source and evaluate information relevant to the core course topics. In this first unit students are presented with tools and strategies with which to begin to undertake independent research and integrate this into coursework activities, for example suggesting ways to read research articles and assimilate types of information from these.

The development of knowledge and understanding through writing skills is important for communicating ideas and arguments to tutors and other readers of written work. Therefore this unit reviews writing skills, and incorporates reflective writing into both the course and coursework activities. Reflective writing is a way that individuals can review their own approaches to learning and communication; and it also promotes pro-active implementation of skills enhancement through tutor feedback and self-assessment

Unit 2: Taxonomy and classification of the animal kingdom

All species are categorised or classified according to their similarities. Scientific classification is used by biologists to group both extinct and living species of organisms. The system used was developed in the 18 th century, and involves comparison the anatomy of different species in order to group them together.

Over time, these classifications are being changed to show groups of organisms that are linked not by their physical appearance, but in terms of their descent from a common ancestor. Recently, many revisions have been made as more information is acquired about genetics, and scientific tests have been developed which can tell how related two species are. The branch of science that covers scientific classification is called taxonomy. In this unit students will explore the original and historical timeline of classification and taxonomy and relate this to different species.

Each classification is divided into domains. Unit content will explain how these domains are categorised and identified using physical and genetic characteristics

Differentiation between mammals and reptiles begins with classification. This unit introduces content on a cellular level in order to facilitate understanding of differentiation

To complete discussion on classification the unit content presents discussion and information about the nitrogen, water and oxygen cycles. This discussion is linked to domains and animal characteristics, bringing into discussion environmental factors and habitat.

Unit 3: The biology of mammals

This section of unit 3 develops discussion from unit 2 and explores cellular biology. Effective and correct cellular function is essential to the maintenance of life. In this section cell structure, function and physiology is looked at in detail

The mammal’s internal body environment is rigidly controlled and this state needs to remain as constant as possible within certain ranges. The process of homeostasis is controlled by sophisticated mechanisms which are sensitive to changes that affect the body’s internal environment, and they respond accordingly. Different feedback systems operate to ensure homeostasis continues effectively. This section of the unit will look at these processes.

There are two forms of reproduction, sexual and asexual. Mammals reproduce using sexual reproduction, and asexual reproduction is used by various organisms such as bacteria, plants, and also some animals. Some animals are able to use both sexual and asexual reproduction. This section of unit 3 looks in detail at cell division and the different types of replication

Replication means that the DNA, with all its genes, must be copied every time a cell divides.

Expression means that the genes on DNA must control characteristics. A gene was traditionally defined as a factor that controls a particular characteristic (such as flower colour), but a much more precise definition is that a gene is a section of DNA that codes for a particular protein. Expression can be split into two parts :transcription (making RNA) and translation (making proteins). This is called the central dogma of genetics.

These crucial processes are described and explained within this section of unit 3 and prepare students for unit 4 and studying basic genetic processes.

Unit 4: Basic genetic principles of mammals

The physical and chemical appearance of any organisms is known as its phenotype. The phenotype is the result of the genotype or genetic information, the environment in which the organisms lives and the individual or unique genetic make -up which is due to the random shuffling or mixing of genes during meiosis. This unit looks at the processes of inheritance and genetic traits and builds upon knowledge and understanding from unit 3

Genetic traits are represented in pedigree diagrams which traces how the disease passes through family members and indicates their gender and whether they have the disease. This method is an easy one for seeing and understanding disease inheritance and traits.

Cells are the building blocks from which living organisms are constructed. In order for bodily systems to work, cells cannot be isolated from their external environment, and substances must enter and leave through the membranes of them. This process is crucial to both ell division, growth repair and for processes of inheritance to take place. This unit looks at the integration of these key cellular processes

In order for an organism to be defined as ‘alive’ they need to possess the characteristics given below, which all animals have in common. The unit culminates in a reiteration of these characteristics which encapsulate the sum total of all cellular processes covered in units 1 to 4: m ovement, nutrition, respiration, excretion. Sensitivity, growth and reproduction

Unit 5: Equine anatomy and physiology

The skeleton of the horse provides structure to the body, and together with the muscles, allows the horse to move. It also protects the vital organs inside the body.

In addition to these functions, the skeleton also has other functions, for example some of the bones are also involved in the production of red and white blood cells, which are vital components of the immune and circulatory systems. The bones also provide a place for storage of minerals such as calcium and phosphorus. This unit will look in detail at the equine skeleton and compare it to that of the human one. It will also present discussion about how the horse’s movement is related to its skeletal developments

This unit will briefly explore all the other anatomical structures and their functions in the horse and identify any key differences that are present in the horse compared with humans and other animals

The reproductive systems in horses are important in terms of understanding their anatomy and physiology, particularly in terms of selective breeding programmes and breeding cycles. This unit will present detailed coverage of both mare and stallion reproductive systems and make comparisons to those of humans and other animals

Gestation in mares and foaling processes are discussed in detail within this unit. The material also looks at complications of pregnancy in horses and particular problems that can occur during and after foaling.

Unit 6: Equine inheritance processes

This unit reviews the basic principles of genetic inheritance already covered and then goes on to explore these in relation to the horse. Different pedigree charts are presented and correlating types of horse characteristics explained

Selective breeding in horses can result in complex breeding processes and genetic mutations becoming problematic. This unit identifies some of these issues and links the mutations back to genetic processes and commonly seen genetic disorders in horses.

Although it may seem that all genetic mutations are harmful and cause disorders, without the mutations that occur in individual genes, then evolution would not have occurred. It is known from the study of fossil evidence that species change (evolve) over time. When an individual inherits a characteristic that offers it some advantage in some way, then it will be more likely to survive and go on to reproduce, which means that those advantageous genes are more likely to be passed on. Therefore in this section the theoretical concepts of natural selection and selective breeding programmes will be explored

The total amount of genes within a population is known as the gene pool, and as we already know, there can be considerable variation in the genes within a particular population. As well as mutations giving rise to changes in a gene pool, changes may arise due to individuals moving from one area to another, and breeding occurring between two different populations which are genetically different to each other, causing new combinations to arise. This genetic drift process will be explored and discussed.

Unit 7: Equine health, disease and nutrition

When we think of the requirement for energy for horses, we may think of the work that we want the horse to do. However energy is required for all life processes, including the pumping of the heart, repair and growth of muscles, and the maintenance of blood pressure and the transmission of impulses through the nervous system. The requirements for energy can be classed as the energy for maintenance (staying alive) and the energy for production (work). Some horses will have additional requirements, for example those used for breeding. This unit examines nutritional requirements for horses and then goes on to relate diet to health

In order to work out how much to feed, it is necessary to work out the weight of the horse, the type of work it is doing, and whether or not it has any additional requirements. Feeding for maintenance is feeding enough to allow the horse to carry out its normal bodily functions such as growth, digestion, tissue repair and respiration. Feeding for production also takes into account work the horse is doing, or pregnancy, lactation, or improving condition of the horse. This section of the unit describes how to make these calculations and relates diet to health and disease

Discussion of the most common diseases, conditions and ailments seen in horses are described and discussed. Veterinary diagnostic techniques, processes and treatments are also covered. The unit also looks at preventative measures through diet and appropriate feed, together with some of the common drugs used in equine health maintenance and treatment

The unit presents material on equine behaviour and training. This covers issues such as gender difference, environment, applications such as racing or domestic pets, together with looking at how diet and exercise regimes can affect behaviour and subsequent training processes

Unit 8: Equine behaviour and training

The modern horse has been domesticated for around ten thousand years, which may seem a long time, although is only a very short time in terms of evolution. The horse is the descendant of Eohippus, who lived more than 55 million years ago. The horse is naturally a prey animal, and so has evolved to have the instincts of a prey animal. Humans originally kept horses for food, as well as using them to work, and more recently, for sport and leisure. Horses have had to adapt to our changing needs within a very short period of time. This unit explores this evolutionary process and makes the link to equine behaviour.

Although the horse has retained its natural instinct to flee from predators, most horses learn to suppress this instinct. We are able to ride the horse and sit on his back. In the wild, a horse would think that something on its back was a predator. The fact that we are able to do this shows that the horse is capable of learning, and this is adaptive behaviour. This unit examines the evidence supporting learning processes of the horse and makes comparisons to other animal behaviour

The unit looks at reducing equine behaviour problems through traditional learning and conditioning processes but also through exercise, diet and environment/habitat

The unit links methods of training to behaviour management and processes. Therefore different types of training models will be discussed through the unit.

Unit 9: Feline anatomy and physiology

The skeleton of the cat provides structure to the body, and together with the muscles, allows the cat to move. It also protects the vital organs inside the body.

In addition to these functions, the skeleton also has other functions, for example some of the bones are also involved in the production of red and white blood cells, which are vital components of the immune and circulatory systems. The bones also provide a place for storage of minerals such as calcium and phosphorus. This unit will look in detail at the feline skeleton and compare it to that of the human one. It will also present discussion about how the cat’s movement and balance is related to its skeletal developments, specifically the tail

This unit will briefly explore all the other anatomical structures, body systems and their functions in the cat and identify any key differences that are present in the cat compared with humans and other animals

The reproductive systems in cats are important in terms of understanding their anatomy and physiology, particularly in terms of selective breeding programmes and breeding cycles. This unit will present detailed coverage of both male and female reproductive systems and make comparisons to those of humans and other animals

Gestation in cats and processes related to kitten rearing are discussed in detail within this unit. The material also looks at complications of pregnancy in cats and particular problems that can occur during and after kittening

Unit 10: Feline inheritance processes

 This unit reviews the basic principles of genetic inheritance already covered and then goes on to explore these in relation to the cat which have some key differences. Different pedigree charts are presented and correlating types of feline characteristics explained

Selective breeding in cats can result in complex breeding processes and genetic mutations becoming problematic, particularly when trying to achieve a breed standard, for example coat colour and coat length. This unit identifies some of these issues and links the mutations back to genetic processes and commonly seen genetic disorders in cats.

Although it may seem that all genetic mutations are harmful and cause disorders, without the mutations that occur in individual genes, then evolution would not have occurred. It is known from the study of fossil evidence that species change (evolve) over time. When an individual inherits a characteristic that offers it some advantage in some way, then it will be more likely to survive and go on to reproduce, which means that those advantageous genes are more likely to be passed on. Therefore in this section the theoretical concepts of natural selection and selective breeding programmes will be explored as was done in unit 6, but this time we confine the discussions to feline inheritance

The total amount of genes within a population is known as the gene pool, and as we already know, there can be considerable variation in the genes within a particular population. We have already studied some of these variations in previous units. The unit material looks again at mutations giving rise to changes in a gene pool, and the changes may arise due to individuals moving from one area to another, and breeding occurring between two different populations which are genetically different to each other, causing new combinations to arise. In particular we look at domesticity and feral characteristics in cats.

Unit 11: Feline health, disease and nutrition

Cats need to eat in order to live, grow and to remain healthy. The components of food, which provide all the energy and raw materials to fulfill this task, are nutrients.An individual cat’s requirements for each nutrient will vary throughout its life, depending on stage of development, exercise, health and reproductive status. In terms of nutrition requirements, the felidae are unusual animals, as throughout their evolutionary history, they have been exclusively carnivorous. The cat is an obligate carnivore, which means it needs to eat meat to survive. The nutrients in food are ingested (eaten) by the cat, subsequently digested in the alimentary canal, absorbed into the bloodstream, and metabolised by the body to fulfil the cat’s needs.

Cats, like all other living organisms, occasionally suffer from ill health, although many domestic cats will only meet a veterinarian for routine check ups, vaccinations and neutering.

Signs of illness are varied and can include the following: weight loss or gain, coughing, sneezing, nasal discharge, loss of appetite or difficulty eating, vomiting, difficulty in urinating or bloody urine, dullness, increased thirst, marked change in behaviour, excessive scratching/licking, diarrhoea or constipation, third eyelid showing, difficulty in breathing, mouth ulceration, pale lips/gums, swollen abdomen, unusual gait, and fur loss/unkempt coat. Although this section will discuss some of these diseases in detail, it should not be used as a replacement for diagnosis and treatment by a qualified veterinarian. This unit examines some of the more common diseases found in cats and also looks at vaccination programmes related to domesticity and feral cats

Feral cats are domesticated cats or those that descended from them, but living as wild animals. Some are abandoned pets; others are born in the wild to existing ferals or to strays. Kittens born in the wild, with no exposure to humans during the socialisation period, (3-8 weeks) become wild animals. Many ferals approach familiar people for food and some become tame through regular contact or are tamed by carers. Farm cats (barn cats) are often considered to be "semi-feral" or "semi-tame" since they are accustomed to some limited human interaction. Because of the difficulty with rehabilitation and control of feral cats this unit presents some detailed discussion on the issues of maintaining the health of non-feral and feral cats

 The last section of the unit discusses welfare of cats in institutionalised environments such as catteries and breeding establishments. Relevant legislation is also discussed

Unit 12: Feline behaviour

In natural environments, cats are solitary hunters, but domestic cats are a flexible species, capable of forming relationships with each other and with humans. Certain factors dictate how cats live with each other and with humans. These factors include availability of resources such as food and shelter and territory size. Female cats live in groups often by necessity since they live with their kittens for much of their lives. Independent adult males and females do not form permanent groups, unless there is a pressing need to do so. This unit therefore looks at social behaviour in cats related to other feline groups, other animal species and humans

The maintenance of a complex social structure such as is found within the domestic cat must rely on good communication. Cats communicate in many different ways including visual, vocal, olfactory and tactile. This unit discusses the different methods of feline communication and makes comparisons to other animals and humans

Socialisation of kittens is a complex process and shapes the adult cat’s ability ot form attachments with human beings. This unit looks at the theoretical and practical perspectives of socialisation and attachment and also what happens when things go wrong, such as indoor marking and aggression

Phobia can be common in felines including nervousness, phobia, separation anxieties, over grooming, self-mutilation and pica (ingestion of non-food items). All these problems involve taking a detailed case history and trying to understand the cat’s behaviour. Unlike dogs, most cats do not have an overwhelming desire to please their owners. To discourage one type of behaviour and encourage another, the cat must come to appreciate the benefit of the change. In most cases, increased interaction with the cat, providing it with a stimulating environment, (particularly with indoor cats) whilst providing safe non-stimulating areas, where it will not be disturbed for sleep, toileting and feeding, will result in a happy, well adjusted pet. It must however be borne in mind that all felines, like people, are individuals with varying personality traits. These will be topics of discussion in the unit

Unit 13: Canine anatomy and physiology

The skeleton of the dog provides structure to the body, and together with the muscles, allows the dog to move. It also protects the vital organs inside the body.

In addition to these functions, the skeleton also has other functions, for example some of the bones are also involved in the production of red and white blood cells, which are vital components of the immune and circulatory systems. The bones also provide a place for storage of minerals such as calcium and phosphorus. This unit will look in detail at the canine skeleton and compare it specifically with the wolf.

This unit will briefly explore all the other anatomical structures, body systems and their functions in the cat and identify any key differences that are present in the dog compared with humans and other animals

The reproductive systems in dogs are important in terms of understanding their anatomy and physiology, particularly in terms of selective breeding programmes and breeding cycles. This unit will present detailed coverage of both male and female reproductive systems and make comparisons to those of humans and other animals

Gestation in dogs and processes related to puppy rearing are discussed in detail within this unit. The material also looks at complications of pregnancy in dogs and particular problems that can occur during and after birth

Unit 14: Canine inheritance processes

This unit reviews the basic principles of genetic inheritance already covered, direct students to revised basic principles and concepts, and then goes on to explore these in relation to the dog which have some key differences. Different examples are presented and correlating types of canine characteristics explained

Selective breeding in dogs can result in complex breeding processes and genetic mutations becoming problematic, particularly when trying to achieve a breed standard, for example coat colour and coat length and ‘desirable’ characteristics or traits This unit identifies some of these issues and links the mutations back to genetic processes and commonly seen genetic disorders in dogs

Although it may seem that all genetic mutations are harmful and cause disorders, without the mutations that occur in individual genes, then evolution would not have occurred. This topic has been well covered in previous units. Students are directed to these and the topics related to canine inheritance

The total amount of genes within a population is known as the gene pool, and as we already know, there can be considerable variation in the genes within a particular population. We have already studied some of these variations in previous units. The unit material looks again at mutations giving rise to changes in a gene pool, and the changes may arise due to individuals moving from one area to another, and breeding occurring between two different populations which are genetically different to each other, causing new combinations to arise.

Unit 15: Canine health, disease and nutrition

The carnivore is designed to acquire most of its energy from meat sources which are low in carbohydrates, so fat and protein are the main energy sources, in contrast to humans, for whom the main source of energy is carbohydrate. This unit revises the basic nutritional requirements and goes on to discuss canine nutrition in detail

Diseases in the dog can have many causes. Sometimes physiological systems simply break down over time and then the correct functioning is impaired, or there may be genetic links which predispose a dog to a particular condition. This unit examines some of the more common diseases seen in dogs, together with diagnostic tests and treatments

As dogs are largely domesticated in the UK we look at prevention of disease in detail and this included maintaining a dogs health and well being through vaccination, flea and worm control

In addition to presentation of diagnostic procedures and treatments this unit discusses common injuries seen in domesticated and working dogs and presents some first aid treatments as well as alternative therapies in common use

Unit 16: Canine behaviour and working with dogs

The dog is very closely related to the wolf, and so displays many behavioural similarities, although the domestication and selective breeding that it has been subjected to mean that its behaviour also differs. In this unit we look at how dogs have been domesticated and what this means in terms of innate instinct and adapted behaviour. Theories and models will be presented and evaluated.

In addition to the natural instinctive behaviour of the dog, much behaviour can be accounted for by learning. There are many different ways that learning can take place. The definition of learning or conditioning, as it is more correctly described, is any relatively permanent change in response that occurs as a result of experience. This section explores conditioning and applies different types of conditioning to domestic pest and working breeds

Many owners may believe their dogs are exhibiting ‘abnormal’ behaviour, when in fact the behaviour is entirely normal. For example a dog showing aggressive behaviour may be doing so in response to pain, or because it has learned that being aggressive results in chasing away a perceived threat. These behaviours are not abnormal, even if they are unwanted. Because humans have such a close relationship with dogs we look at ‘abnormal’ or perceived abnormal behaviour and seek to attach meaning and explanation to some of the more common expressions

We continue the theme of behaviour as we look at different environments that dogs inhabit, for example kennels, breeding and human-dog partnership such as the working dog.

Entry Requirements

All students must be 17 years of age and above. Students should have completed a Level 3 Diploma or an A level standard course (or equivalent) before the Level 5 qualification.

Please note that you can enrol on this course anytime.

Study Hours

Approximately 60 hours per unit

Assessment Method

16 tutor marked assessments

Award

BTEC in BTEC HND Animal Studies

You will receive a certificate from Edexcel. These fees are included in the course fee.

The course can be enrolled on by students internationally.

There are no deadlines for enrolments.

To view the differences between our qualifications, please click HERE

What's Included?

Online study materials to enable the student to successfully complete the Higher National Diploma.

Full support is provided by a personal tutor via the online system for the entire duration of the course (2 years).

All coursework marking and moderating.

Examination board certification upon completion.

Course Fee

£3,500.00

Payment by Instalments

You may pay the course fees in monthly instalments. Click HERE to download our instalment plan.

Further Information

The course is delivered online via the Oxford Learning 'On Campus' website.

In the student ' 'On Campus' area you are able to take part in the student chat room and forums as part of our online student community.

After enrolling online you will receive your username and password to access the 'On Campus' area within 3 working days.

Materials and support provided by Oxford Learning.

A paper copy and/or a PDF copy of the course materials are also available to purchase during the online enrolment process.

How can I Progress?

Pearson BTEC HND Progression Opportunities

Many of our BTEC HND students' progress on to university courses, often gaining exemptions of 1 or 2 years, in recognition of their BTEC HND. However each university is in charge of its own requirements, so please do contact Oxford Leaning to discuss your plans in advance, or contact the universities you wish to progress to directly to find out what they offer to students who complete this BTEC HND.

Whilst we have devised our own BTEC HND qualifications to meet the specific needs of our learners, they are regulated by Pearson - the UK's leading awarding organisation - whose standards are recognised widely by universities and employers.

Course Fee

£3,500.00

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