Foundation Degree Veterinary Nursing
Agriculture and Animal Care
11 September 2023
5 GCSEs at grade C or above, which must include mathematics, English Language (or Welsh First Language) and at least 1 science subject. No alternative to the GCSE is acceptable. In addition, you must have a minimum of 64 UCAS points (new tariff) to include an A Level in a biological science, a relevant BTEC National/Extended Diploma or an equivalent qualification.
You should have already undertaken a minimum of two weeks of work experience in a small animal veterinary practice before enrolling onto this course (work undertaken in dog kennels, cattery, rescue centres or pet shops will not satisfy this criterion). You must be able to provide evidence of this work experience and it must be recent (i.e. no more than two years prior to your application date).
We appreciate that it may not be possible to gain the required work experience during the Covid-19 pandemic.
An enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check will be required.
In a nutshell
You will gain a nursing clinical competency, based on an underpinning knowledge of veterinary nursing practice.
This course is for you if...
... you work in the veterinary profession and want to take the next step in your career.
... you don't yet work in a veterinary practice and you want to be a veterinary nurse.
... you want a blend of academic study, work-based learning and skills development.
What will I be doing?
This will enable you to pursue a career as a qualified veterinary nurse and you will be eligible for entry onto the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) Register of Veterinary Nurses (subject to RCVS conditions).
The course will cover theoretical and practical aspects of anatomy and physiology, health and husbandry, veterinary nursing skills, veterinary diagnostics, pharmacology, anaesthesia, emergency and critical care, animal behaviour, communication and ethics.
The clinical placement, undertaken in a small animal veterinary practice, gives you the opportunity to put your theoretical knowledge into practice and build on your practical veterinary nursing skills and complete the RCVS Nursing Progress Log. You will spend 52 weeks (1800 hrs) working full time in a small animal veterinary practice.
The course is theoretical and practical, so you will get lots of hands-on experience to practice what you have learnt in the classroom. Experts from the field of veterinary nursing and animal health professions deliver guest lectures and you will participate in research projects and group work. There are numerous educational visits where further opportunities to listen to lectures from the best speakers in the profession are to be had.
You will be assessed with written and practical examinations, written assignments and presentations. During your Clinical Placement, you will be assessed using the RCVS Nursing Progress Log. At the end of your course, upon successful completion of all other criteria, you will be entered for the final practical (O.S.C.E) examinations; this is the final requirement to be eligible to enter the RCVS Register of Veterinary Nurses.
This means you will be a fully qualified and Registered Veterinary Nurse and able to work in the UK as a small animal veterinary nurse.
You will achieve a Foundation Degree which is equivalent to the first two years of study (Level 4 and Level 5) on a degree programme.
This qualification is awarded by the University of South Wales. Please be aware however, that due the nature of this course, you are required to complete one year in Clinical Placement, therefore the Foundation Degree Veterinary Nursing takes three years to complete.
What is expected of me?
To enrol on the course you’ll need a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics/Numeracy and English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent, but consideration is given to individual circumstances. In addition, you must have a minimum of 64 UCAS points to include an A Level in a biological science (minimum grade C). Applicants with BTEC Extended Diploma in a science subject or an equivalent qualification, will be considered on an individual basis.
You should have already undertaken a minimum of two weeks work experience in a small animal veterinary practice before enrolling onto this course (work undertaken in dog kennels, cattery, rescue centres or pet shops will not satisfy this criterion). You must be able to provide evidence of this work experience and it must be recent i.e. no more than two years prior to your application date.
We appreciate that it may not be possible to gain the required work experience during the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is a three year, full time course. You’ll be expected to attend college for sessions timetabled Monday to Friday. During your Clinical Placement you will be expected to attend full time for the days and hours dictated by your Clinical Placement Veterinary Practice.
What comes next?
Upon successful completion of the Foundation Degree Veterinary Nursing and the RCVS Nursing Progress Log, as well as passing the RCVS final practical exams (O.S.C.E.s) and completing the minimum number of Clinical Placement hours, you will be fully qualified to practise as a small animal veterinary nurse in the UK.
You will also have the exciting opportunity to take your academic career to the next level and study the BSc (Hons) Veterinary Nursing here at Coleg Gwent.
Due to the professional aspect of this course, students must satisfy the following criteria and will incur additional costs:
- Signing of a Coleg Gwent & University of South Wales Declaration Statement confirming that the student is aware of the RCVS Fitness to Practice requirements. This includes the disclosure of any and all physical and mental health conditions and disabilities, prior to enrolment on the course, so that careful consideration can be given to the student's ability to complete the RCVS Day One Competencies and Day One Skills in order to enter the Register of Veterinary Nurses after graduating from the course
- Enrolment with the RCVS as a Student Veterinary Nurse £210
- Coleg Gwent DBS Check £59.09 + update service £13/year
- Coleg Gwent Student Veterinary Nurse name badge £6
- Student Veterinary Nurse uniform for use whilst on Clinical Placement. The approximate cost of one pair of bottle green trousers and one green/white stripe tunic is £45.
- You will also need to budget for transport, accommodation and living costs during your Clinical Placements as you will be working full time as an unpaid intern across the summer break after year one and year two.
Have any questions or are not sure if this is the right course for you?
Contact our Student Recruitment team