Taught course

Applied Equine Science

Royal Agricultural University · Royal Agricultural University

Entry requirements

Honours degree in a cognate scientific qualification. Mature candidates with significant work experience and lower academic qualifications may be considered. Students with other qualifications should contact Admissions to discuss suitability.

Months of entry


Course content

This course is concerned with the application of evolving scientific understanding to the management and welfare of horses and related species. It attracts students from a variety of academic and practical backgrounds, both from the UK and overseas, who may be interested in pursuing subsequent careers in one of the many practically-based sectors of the horse industry, or in the world of academic teaching and research.


You will study eight modules in the autumn and spring terms. The Research Project is then carried out to be submitted the following April. It will be presented as a thesis or a research paper within one year of completion of the taught element

You are expected to produce a Research Project that is of a standard suitable to be published in an academic journal or scientific conference proceedings. Previous graduates have published papers in the Equine Veterinary Journal, Animal Science, and the Proceedings of the European Workshop for Equine Nutrition, and delivered papers at the British Society of Animal Science, the European Workshop for Equine Nutrition, and the Equine Health and Nutrition Congress.

If you do not wish to undertake the Research Project you may choose to take a Postgraduate Diploma following successful completion of eight modules (120 credits) or a Postgraduate Certificate following completion of four modules (60 credits). If you wish to undertake part-time study you should contact the course manager to discuss appropriate study arrangements.

You will learn through lectures, tutorials, seminars, laboratory practicals, and industry-based presentations and visits. Small teaching groups enable a vibrant and creative learning environment with plenty of scope for in-depth discussion. Although significant amounts of private study are required, you will receive approximately 40-50% staff contact time during the week.

Modules are assessed through literature reviews, laboratory reports, presentations and written examinations.


  • Research methodology(half module)
  • Equine Genetics and Breeding
  • Management of Reproduction
  • Equine Pasture, Forage and Turf Management (half module)
  • Equine Nutrition
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Research Methodology and Statistics
  • Equine Health
  • Equine Behaviour and Welfare
  • Research Project

Who is the course for...
Applications for the course are invited from anyone holding an Honours degree in a cognate scientific discipline. Mature students with alternative qualifications or appropriate experience are most welcome to apply.

The taught component of the course extends from October to May and, upon successful completion of this element, you will proceed to undertake research work for your MSc dissertation. If you wish to undertake part-time study, you may come to an appropriate arrangement upon consultation with the Course Manager.

Career prospects

Our graduates are prepared for a variety of career paths within the equine industry. Over the years, they have applied their in-depth understanding of equine science to the following areas:

  • Nutrition – working in feed companies and in research and development
  • Research and development
  • Veterinary – from assistants to physicians
  • Lecturers and trainers
  • Laboratory technicians
  • Partners and directors for national organisations
  • Livery – from setting up their own business to managerial positions in established yards
  • Journalism

Working for a range of organisations:

  • Haygain
  • Propress Equine Ltd
  • European Bloodstock News
  • Donkey Sanctuary
  • Ed Dunlop Racing Ltd

Information for international students

For students whose first language is not English, the University will accept International English Language Test (IELTS) with a minimum score of 6.5 average with no element below 5.5. Other English language qualifications should be discussed with Admissions.

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

Scholarships and bursaries are available - please check our website for further details.

Qualification and course duration


part time
24 months
full time
18 months

Course contact details

Jo Charles
+44 (0) 1285 652 531
+44 (0) 1285 650 219