Skip to content
Access to Land Base student, Clare Sims
The Brackenhurst campus is like a breath of fresh air, I love coming onto this campus especially seeing the cows and sheep in the fields, you would not believe that you are 30 minutes away from the city centre.

More about Clare

Why did you choose to study your course at Brackenhurst?

Being from Nottingham and a mature student, I wanted to attend somewhere that was not too far from home. I had a family member and a friend attend Brackenhurst, I thought this would be the perfect place to study. Especially, as the course offers three days a week of study, which was perfect as I was able to carry on working alongside my studies.

Tell us more about your course. What do you enjoy studying the most?

This course is an animal science based course which contained a variety of practicals which were with the animals in the animal unit, and in the laboratories, along with theory class-based modules. The study skills module was useful as it prepared me for applying to universities. I was able to write a personal statement and fine-tuned my CV, as well as understand the UCAS scoring system. These modules were assessed with either a written assignment, presentation, or an exam. The presentations helped me gain confidence in speaking in front of my fellow students which I found the most daunting of all. Overall, my favourite part of this course was the practicals as I was able to work with a wide range of animals from millipedes to donkeys. Along with learning different handling techniques, health checks, animal care, and health and safety of both us and the animals.

What do you think about the facilities available on your course and what do you use the most?

The facilities on the course are outstanding, all equipment provided in the laboratories are of high standards. The library is amazing having everything you need and easy to access, this is where I spend most of my time especially in the study rooms, which you can book for 2 hours at a time.

What do you think about Brackenhurst Campus? What do you get up to in your spare time?

The Brackenhurst Campus is like a breath of fresh air, I love coming onto this campus especially seeing the cows and sheep in the fields, you would not believe that you are 30/40 minutes away from the city centre. The views are amazing and so many routes for taking walks especially if you want to see the different wild animals around the campus. The Orangery is one of my favourite places which is spacious with a warm friendly atmosphere, where you can enjoy the views while have a nice cup of tea and a cake.

Have you had any support from other departments? How was your experience accessing these / was the service helpful?

The support on the campus is brilliant, they are quick at answering your emails. Ensuring they can sort out any issues you have as quick as possible.

What is your top tip for someone considering studying at Brackenhurst Campus?

Ensure you have a pair of walking boots and a good coat to make the most of the countryside. If you can volunteer, I would recommend it, especially at the animal unit as this will build up your confidence with all kind of animals and the unit technicians are brilliant in making sure you are comfortable with all animals.

Have you been involved in any placements, work experience or volunteering as part of your course? If so, what did you do and what did you achieve? 

After finishing my course, I decided to do a week placement in a kennels (this was not required as part of my course). It is recommended to do some volunteering, as it’s valuable and helps towards any job or course you are considering. I found the placement on NTU’s InPlace and this experience gave me skills in kennel care and handling of a wide variety of dogs especially some of the dogs which came in that were nervous.

Why would you recommend your course to someone considering studying it?

If you have been out of studying for a while, I would recommend this course as it gives you a broad knowledge and understanding of a wide range of subjects, prepares you for studying for a degree if that is the path you are considering as well as job opportunities which could be available for you. The staff are so supportive which makes you want to achieve to the highest standard.

What are your plans for after the course and how do you feel your course has / will help you to achieve that goal? 

After completing this course, I have been attending Brackenhurst for my degree in BSc Zoo Biology. All these modules have been so helpful for stepping into a degree as I felt more confident in all aspects as it mirrored the first year of the degree as well as already understanding referencing and how to plan an assignment, which was so advantageous over other students.

Any additional comments (add in anything else we need to know about the Brackenhurst experience and why it’s so great):

The campus and staff are brilliant! They go above and beyond for you to make sure you achieve the best you can. Any issues you may have, the support is always given in a professional manner, and they are easy to talk to. You are close to the city centre but then you can enjoy the fresh country air.

Still need help?

+44 (0)115 941 8418
Related student profiles
  • Profile icon


    Charlotte Fowler

    Access to Higher Education Science

    United Kingdom

  • Profile icon


    Oliver Mather

    Access to Higher Education Diploma in Land-Based Studies (Animal Science)

    United Kingdom

  • Profile icon


    Olivia Radford

    Access to Higher Education Science

    United Kingdom