BSc Ecology and Wildlife Conservation
Learn about the ways in which living things interact with their environment and apply this knowledge to tackling the biggest challenges facing the world today.
This course will equip you with the skills you need for a career in ecology or wildlife conservation through a combination of classroom learning and hands-on experience in the field. You will learn to apply knowledge of ecosystems to environmental issues such as habitat conservation, the biological control of diseases, and the protection of the world's rarest plants and creatures.
Most of our staff are actively engaged in research, and our work on wildlife ecology and conservation feeds into undergraduate teaching. In the National Student Survey 2023, 100% of our students said that teaching staff were good or very good at explaining things (100% of respondents studying BSc Ecology and Wildlife Conservation). You will also have the opportunity to take part in original research with a potentially global impact. All graduates are eligible for membership of The Royal Society of Biology and can apply for Chartered Biologist status.
The University of Reading’s award-winning campus is home to over a thousand different animal species and is extremely useful for learning fieldwork skills. It offers multiple habitats for study, including lakes, hay meadows and woodlands, and allows you to step straight from the laboratory to the field. Additionally, the University owns a number of large farms, which can be used as sites for final year projects.
You will also be able to practise species identification and ecology skills through field trips to Spain and the tropics. These will also enable you to study biodiversity in other habitats such as arid landscapes, forests and oceans.
Furthermore, you can carry out a year-long industrial placement between the second and final years, in order to gain valuable industrial experience. You can also choose to do a short placement module. We have strong links with a number of ecological organisations including the RSPB, Environment Agency, and a range of wildlife trusts.
Students in previous years have worked at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, RSPB and Environment Agency. You can also choose to spend a year abroad, typically carrying out research for an academic institute.
Our department has a dedicated academic in charge of placements, who can provide you with advice and support.