Certificate of Higher Education in Thoroughbred Stud Operations - Writtle University College

*Certificate of Higher Education in Thoroughbred Stud Operations

UCAS Code: D432

Thoroughbred Stud Operations - Mares and Foals - photographer – Sarah Farnsworth
  • This award aims to combine a sound knowledge of breeding theory with a range of assessed practical competencies to ensure that the graduate will be a sought-after employee within the thoroughbred stud industry. The one-year Certificate of Higher Education in Thoroughbred Stud Operations award will provide a tailored course to appeal to those students interested in developing their knowledge across a range of disciplines pertinent to breeding thoroughbred racehorses. This theoretical knowledge is combined with extensive practical experience and the development of an appropriate work ethic.

    Combining the acquisition of practical and transferable skills with theoretical understanding, the award will produce graduates capable of applying their scientific knowledge to the successful production of young thoroughbreds. The racing industry is worth £1.1bn to the UK economy, with the stud sector accounting for £189m (British Horseracing Authority). Despite the obvious career opportunities, many of the large and well-known studs are in need of appropriately qualified and highly skilled staff; this award works directly with these breeders to provide students with an unrivalled entry point into this exciting industry.

    The practical and work experience modules embedded within this award are designed to enable a dedicated, hard-working student to really stand out to potential employers. Writtle University College boasts a new purpose-built stud facility on campus to support the delivery of this award. The course has been designed in conjunction with some of the biggest and most prestigious names in UK thoroughbred production; representatives from these studs will work closely with Writtle University College staff to provide an unrivalled work experience placement for a January to June foaling season. Placements will be offered to those students who prove themselves committed and dedicated to developing their skill set, both on the yard and in the classroom. Whilst out on placement, students will be responsible for handling some of the most valuable horses in the UK, so each individual student must be physically fit and will be assessed for competence, attitude and aptitude during their first taught semester at Writtle, before commencing their placement.

    The course examines how we can meet the requirements of the foaling mare whilst developing a sense of the scale of the industry. It includes modules in Producing Thoroughbreds, Neonatal Challenges, Applied Thoroughbred Industry Techniques, Structure and Function of the Breeding Horse and Management and Handling for the Stud Industry. The aim is to provide the student with a thorough understanding of all of the possible contributors to production performance; thus enabling the individual to contribute positively to the industry following completion of the course. Developing a thorough scientific understanding, combined with the ability to apply that knowledge practically, will enable the individual to take a proactive role following graduation. Writtle's approach of 'science into practice' is particularly evident in this programme.

  • Course Modules

  • The table below show the modules taught during each semester of study.

    Management and Handling for the Stud Industry Applied Thoroughbred Industry Techniques (Work Placement)
    Professional Skills for the Stud Industry Producing Thoroughbreds
    Structure and Function of the Breeding Horse Neonatal Challenges
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  • Entry Requirements

  • The following information provides students with the entry requirements for this particular course.

    UCAS Tariff Points
    GCE A Levels
    48 UCAS tariff points, to include one GCE A level grade C or above
    Irish Certificate
    48 UCAS tariff points, to include 2 x B3 or H3 higher
    Scottish Highers
    48 UCAS tariff points, to include 1 x B & 1 x C
    International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma
    Total (IB) Diploma point score of 24 or more
    BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma
    BTEC Level 3 Diploma

    Please note:
    An equivalent or higher combination of grades to that indicated above will also be accepted.

    All applicants must hold a minimum of four GCSE passes at grade C or above to include English, Maths and Science.

    Access course
    Writtle University College welcomes applicants studying Access to HE Diploma courses. For more information please contact Admissions.

    Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL/APEL)
    Information about our Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL/APEL) policy can be found on our Policies and Procedures page.

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  • Who is the Course for?

  • This course is appropriate for those who wishing to pursue a sustained and progressive career in thoroughbred horse production.

    As an individual seeking employment within the racing industry, it is imperative to understand the influencing factors that affect the successful production of young foals. The young thoroughbred is a complex creature, with supporting needs that require careful consideration and appropriate intervention at all stages of production. In addition to the management of the foal, mare and stallion, students will develop an awareness of the wider industry and the opportunities that exist for capable, talented staff to progress into a range of different roles given the right experience.

    The programme will suit individuals who have studied a related award at level 3 in the UK or abroad, or who have an interest in horses with other appropriate academic qualifications. Mature applicants with a background in the equine industry are also welcome.

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  • Learning & Teaching Methods

  • The following list shows the variety of learning and teaching methods experienced on this course.

    • Theoretical learning
    • Small group work
    • Lectures and tutorials
    • Practical sessions
    • Fieldwork and workshops
    • Case study work

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  • Assessment Methods

  • The Certificate of Higher Education in Thoroughbred Stud Operations contains a variety of assessment methods to ensure practical and academic competence.

    • Coursework
    • Essays and reports aimed at different audiences
    • Presentations and class discussions
    • Practical and theoretical situations
    • Portfolios

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  • After Completion of Your Course...

  • There are a range of jobs within the racing industry and associated ancillary industries that would suit a graduate from this programme.

    They primarily include stud-based roles, where the industry has identified a critical shortage of appropriately qualified staff. Individuals who demonstrate competence and appropriate knowledge through this award will have a greater opportunity in seeking employment in the industry.

    WUC is also currently considering expanding the Certificate of Higher Education by providing a second year and a second substantial work placement to enable the student to complete a Foundation Degree and widen their prospects within the racing industry.

    Alternatively, successful completion of this programme will enable you to progress directly onto year two of our BSc (Hons) in Equine Performance and Business Management award.

    Please contact us if you'd like further information.

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* Subject to final validation approval

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