Animal Science Level 6

Course Duration         

 This is a one year, full time course running from September to May.


Successful completion of this course will result in a QQI Animal Science Level 6 Certificate, 6M5153

Entry Requirements

  • Level 5 QQI Award Animal Care or equivalent
  • Mature Applicants with relevant experience are welcome

Entry onto this course is subject to interview.

Modules include the following

  • Animal Science & Health 6N5565
  • Customer Service 6N0697
  • Large Animal Husbandry 6N5567
  • Animal Behaviour 6N5568
  • Humans, Animals and Society 6N5569
  • Animal Grooming 6N6226
  • Work Experience 6N1946
  • Grooming Science 6N6227


Additional Activities

Students on this course will partake in a number of field trips and activities. Examples are listed below.

  • Dublin Zoo
  • Falconry Visit
  • Visits to National Parks
  • Dog Grooming Events
  • Charity Events

Course Progression

Upon successful completion of this course, learners may be eligible to apply through the CAO and/or the Higher Education Links Scheme for entry to a range of higher certificate and degree programmes at Institutes of Technology and Universities.

Career Options

Graduates may seek employment in

  • Veterinary Surgeries
  • Grooming Parlours
  • Pet Shops, Kennels
  • Catteries
  • Animal Welfare Establishments
  • Farms including Pet Farms
  • Zoos


Once you have applied online you will be called for an interview within a few weeks.  QQI examination fees cost €80, although Medical Card holders are exempt from paying this fee on production of a valid medical card.  Books and essential class materials may also be required.  A €200 Government levy will apply on acceptance of a place on PLC course, but medical card holders and those in receipt of a maintenance grant will be exempt.  A €100 Student Services fee also applies. An additional fee of €50 is payable for Horse Stud Activities.


Animal Science and Health 6N5565

Studying this module content allows one to be familiar with:

  • Different species and how their physiology determines their care
  • Different parasites and how different classes of animals can be infected
  • The biochemical properties of essential nutrients
  • Immunity; different types and the best time to administer vaccinations. Desired effect of immunity.
  • Histology – the study of cell and tissue types.
  • DNA: how it is involved in passing certain traits from one generation to another
  • Lab activities and experiments to reinforce the theory of Animal Science

Assessment Criteria:  Examination 40%, Project 30%, Skills Demonstration 30%

Large Animal Husbandry 6N5567

Studying this module will allow one to become proficient in:

  • The safe practices of working with cattle, sheep, pigs and horses
  • Analysing the role of the above species in the modern world
  • Moving, handling and restraining same
  • Evaluating best practice in handling these large animals
  • How to work with large animals at ease and with confidences

Assessment Criteria:  Skills Demo 60%, Project 40%

Animal Behaviour 6N5568

The course content of this module allows us to study:

  • How species live, develop and survive in the wild
  • Abnormal and normal behaviour of animals and how to let them be what they are
  • Behaviour problems and how to deal with them
  • Looking at their behaviours and their environment and how it’s all connected
  • Managing wild animals
  • How to breed and rear animals in the wild
  • The roles that animals have in a group and how these roles can change

Assessment Criteria: Examination 40%, Skills Demonstration 30%, Project 30%

Humans, Animals and Society 6N5569

This module will enable the student to:

  • Examine the role of animals in society
  • Look at the role of animals in different cultures and religions
  • Look at how domestication evolved and where we are now with it
  • Look at personal training techniques as well as other recommended methods
  • Look at animal related organisations and their specific roles
  • Examine ethics around the whole animal industry
  • Get an in-depth view as to how animals benefit society
  • See how animals are rated as regards their benefit to man

Assessment Criteria: Project 60%, Skills Demonstration 40%

Animal Grooming 6N6226

Studying this module will allow one to:

  • Look at the theory applied to setting up a grooming business
  • Explain how such a business is run and set up
  • Be aware of how different breeds demand different understanding in relation to behaviour
  • Be aware of different health issues that the subject may have
  • Demonstrate advanced techniques used in the grooming of various breeds of animal to include trimming, styling and clipping
  • Develop skills as regards health problems with dogs
  • Be aware of skin disorders and the correct advice to accompany same
  • Participate effectively in the use of a variety of dog grooming equipment
  • Appreciate the different methods of grooming used for different cases
  • Be able to give sound advice to the client as regards grooming, etc.
  • Be able to give sound advice as regards after care management

Assessment Criteria: Skills Demonstration 60%, Assignment 20% Examination 20%

Grooming Science 6N6227

On completion of this module, students will be able to:

  • Explain concepts associated with health and safety in the working environment
  • Show skill in carrying out scientific procedures using a variety of equipment
  • Differentiate between species of animals from an anatomical and physiological viewpoint
  • Obtain a grasp of how evolution has changed species and how selective breeding has led to variations in species and breeds
  • Appreciate how environment has an impact on species and how to work with this
  • Examine the nutritional requirements for a range of species and how bad nutrition can impact on health
  • Grasp the importance of environment and diet on species
  • Examine reproduction, care of offspring and prevention of pregnancy in different species
  • Demonstrate knowledge of current legislation and when veterinary assistance is needed
  • Indentify signs of bad health by observation i.e. looking at skin and coat colour. Manage parasites.
  • Look at the legalities around the transport of animals

Assessment Criteria: Project 60%, Skills Demonstration 40%

Customer Service 6N0697

In studying this module, one will be able to:

  • Evaluate the principles and practice of customer service in range of public, private and voluntary environments
  • Explain the principles underpinning customer service in a range of organisations i.e. domestic as well as global
  • Explain how policies and charters can affect best practice for customer service
  • Look at consumer legislation in our country and compare it with similar legal obligations in other countries
  • Describe processes of redress and fair play for consumers
  • Identify personnel in organisations that have responsibility over fair play for consumers
  • Describe how the principles of customer service influence long term company policies and how it operates
  • Explain how market research can assist development of customer services by looking at data sources and different collection methods for data for feedback
  • Use a range of communication skills and methods to help process complaints and address problems that consumers may have
  • Design a tool to measure customer satisfaction in some industrial context i.e. comment form, survey, questionnaire etc.
  • Manage the needs of customers within a specialised area, looking at needs of specific groups i.e. children, older people, specific cultural needs, religious needs, etc.
  • Facilitate effective teamwork in customer care, to include evaluation of performance and success
  • Design a customer service programme for staff. This will deal with frontline standards expected by staff and customers; appropriate guidelines to deal with the customer.

Assessment Criteria: Portfolio/Collection of Work 50%, Skills Demonstration 50%

Work Experience 6N1946

On completing this module, learners will be able to:

  • Look at work-related issues and trends in an animal care environment
  • Understand best practice in a work context
  • Research the rights and responsibilities of employees and employers
  • Look at challenges and opportunities in the public, private and global sector
  • Work on all skills needed in a working environment i.e. C.V., skills, technologies, etc.
  • Present a detailed personal skills audit and career plan in Animal Care
  • Work on supervisory skills and capacities, to include the skills and qualities required for particular post in the public, private or voluntary sector.
  • Investigate options for future education, training and employment during the course of study.

Assessment Criteria: Portfolio/Collection of Work 60%, Skills Demonstration 40%

Westport College of Further Education reserves the right to limit the number of places available, make changes in any course or to withdraw the course. No part of this information shall be deemed to form a contract between Westport College of Further Education and the student, or a third party.