FdSc Environmental Conservation and Heritage Management

This course has been developed in response to the increasing demand for employees within the environmental, conservation and heritage sectors from those organisations who are involved in the conservation and preservation of our landscapes, habitats and historic resources.

The input of prospective employers working within these sectors has been critical to the successful development of this course.  A unique blend of academic and practical training is offered to ensure that graduates will be fully prepared either to enter into immediate employment with a Foundation Degree qualification or to further advance their studies onto a BSc Honours conversion course.

Course structure

The course has been designed with our partners at Cirencester College, utilising the expertise and resources of both institutions.

The first year is the underpinning year, which introduces the principles of ecology, landscape development, cultural history, and heritage management. Once you have successfully completed the first year of the course, you will receive a Certificate of Higher Education before progressing onto the second year which will further develop your skills through more in-depth activities. You will undertake habitat surveys, research projects and presentations, and produce information resources.

In addition, you will be trained in a range of practical conservation, archaeological and field skills, including opportunities to complete certificated courses in machinery and equipment operations relevant to conservation activities. The cost of training courses, which are taught at the Rural Innovation Centre, are included in the tuition fees.

The course is assessed through a wide range of approaches, including research projects, examinations, case studies, business plans, portfolio, presentations, and practical skills. You will also be required to supervise and mentor first year students on practical conservation activities as part of your training in volunteer management.

Year one

  • Introduction to Environmental Conservation and Heritage Management
  • Landscape: Physical and Biological
  • Landscape Cultural History and Change
  • Field Ecology
  • Heritage Management 1
  • Practical Conservation Skills

Year two

  • Heritage Management 2
  • Landscape Conservation
  • Wildlife & Habitat Management
  • Amenity, Access & Education
  • Historic Asset Management
  • Supervisory and Mentoring Skills

Course modules are subject to change.

Work experience

You will complete a period of compulsory work experience during the summer holiday between your first and second year, to experience a blend of wildlife, heritage and environmental management activities that occur within the sector. You will be expected to produce a portfolio of evidence of your learning experience.

Progression opportunities

Upon successful completion of this foundation degree, you will have the opportunity to progress on to an appropriate BSc Honours course, such as BSc (Hons) Countryside Management at the RAU. Progression opportunities will also be available to appropriate honours conversion courses at other HEIs in the UK.

What you need to join the Course

A Level: CD (minimum one A2 Level pass)


GCSE English and Mathematics (Grade C) are required.

Alternative entry routes are available for a range of other qualifications, including Scottish Highers, Irish Leaving Certificate at Higher level, International Baccalaureate, Diploma, AVCE and GNVQ. Overseas qualifications and prior experience are also considered, subject to approval by the course manager and admissions staff.

Career Opportunities

Our graduates are well placed for employment both with statutory agencies such as Historic England, Natural England and the Environment Agency, as well as non-governmental organisations, which include the National Trust, Forestry Commission, RSPB, FWAG and the Wildlife Trusts.

How to Apply

Please visit our website or contact Dr Ian Grange by e-mail at Ian.Grange@rau.ac.uk or by telephone on 01285 652531.

Please mention ConservationJobs.co.uk when enrolling in this Course!

Key Information

Start date:

1st October 2018 at 9:00am


Royal Agricultural University


Full Time


Environment, Sustainability


Cirencester, United Kingdom

Location Map