Learn about the natural science aspects of conservation including genetics, ecology, wildlife management and species reintroduction. Explore the human aspect of conservation and develop your own understanding of what needs to be done so, upon graduation, you can make a real difference in tomorrow’s world.
Our degree includes a significant lab-based and field-based component. You can also conduct a research project in the UK or abroad at the end of the second year. Recent locations include South Africa, Borneo and the Peruvian Amazon.
Reasons to study Wildlife Conservation at Kent
You’ll be inspired by academics at the forefront of their fields including primate conservation, biodiversity-human wellbeing relationships, business and biodiversity, environmental change and wildlife trade You’ll become part of the growing community of conservationists in the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE), an award-winning research centre you’ll experience a thought-provoking mix of teaching methods, including lectures, small seminar groups, field visits and laboratory sessions. The student-led Conservation Society offers even more opportunities to be involved in projects and be part of a close-knit community You can go to the next level and gain real-world experience by adding a Year in Professional Practice You’ll use outstanding facilities such as modern genetics labs and an Ecology lab for your own research You’ll benefit from ongoing support in your studies through our excellent staff-student ratio, regular workshops and alumni talks as well as dedicated academic advisors and peer mentoring scheme
Queen’s Anniversary Prize
The University of Kent was awarded a highly prestigious Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education for the work of the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE).
DICE leads projects in over 50 countries, including research on human wellbeing and nature, human-elephant conflict, oil palm deforestation, online illegal trade in protected species, national park planning and ecotourism projects and the mapping of biodiversity through eDNA.
What you'll learn
Receive training in the human dimensions of conservation, for example environmental economics, international biodiversity regulation, the politics of climate change and work with rural communities. Acquire the skills to collect useable data for understanding threats, establishing conservation priorities (at the species and habitat levels) and informing decision-making.
See the modules you’ll study
Our teaching is research-led as all our staff are active in their fields. In addition to lectures and seminars, we run laboratory-based practicals and field trips. You also have an opportunity to conduct a field-based research thesis in your final year. This gives you practical experience of developing a research proposal and research questions, finding appropriate methods, conducting research, analysing and interpreting results, writing up a full research project and giving an oral presentation, all with the support of a dedicated project supervisor.
We offer you the opportunity to conduct your research project either in the UK or abroad – for example, many students have taken part in the annual expedition to the Peruvian Amazon, one of the most biodiverse regions on Earth.
Most modules are assessed by 50% coursework and 50% unseen exam. Some modules are assessed only by coursework, which takes a variety of forms, including essays, short answer tests, oral presentations, laboratory reports, individual and team projects, field reports, commentaries, management plans and statistical analyses.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain knowledge and understanding of:
- ecological and biodiversity-related concepts
- species, habitat and landscape conservation
- practical understanding of wildlife conservation
- principles of sustainable use and wildlife management
- the relationship between local communities and conservation
- issues and practices when managing wildlife within or outside protected areas
- the role of behavioural ecology in conservation
- genetics in conservation issues
- wildlife laws and legislative frameworks
- the role of statistics in conservation.
You develop intellectual abilities in the following:
- learning and study
- critical and analytical methods
- expressing ideas, in writing and orally
- design, implementation, analysis and write-up of a research project
- ability to interpret scholarly publications
- how to formulate and test theories
- presenting a structured and logical argument.
You gain wildlife conservation skills in the following:
- field biology (such as surveys and sampling)
- social science (such as interviews and questionnaires)
- research design, statistics
- analysing case studies
- environmental education
- how to evaluate sustainability of resource use
- management of protected areas.
You gain transferable skills in the following:
- writing reports and proposals
- time management
- using library resources
- independent research
- group work.
Our aims are to provide students with:
- knowledge of the science and practicalities of wildlife conservation, including the biological, social and economic aspects of the subject
- an understanding of theoretical issues, methods and practical tools
- awareness of sustainability and wildlife exploitation
- knowledge of wildlife conservation at local, national and international levels
- the abilities necessary for professional development such as analytical problem-solving, interpersonal skills, autonomous practice and team-working
- the knowledge to play a leading role in the field of wildlife conservation
- innovative opportunities for fieldwork.