Reptiles are secretive animals that can be incredibly hard to spot. The UK is home to several species of reptiles, which you may be lucky to find.

This introductory course is a great introduction for anyone with an interest in herpetofauna and for those looking at taking their first steps into an ecology career. All content has been created by the Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust, so you can be confident that you are getting information from leading experts working within this field.

Being able to identify species and make site adjustments for reptiles is a critical skill for anyone looking at working within a consultancy career. This course will introduce you to the key characteristics of reptiles, and will then look more in-depth into UK species. By the end of the course, you will be able to identify common UK species as well as non-native, explain their basic ecology and also have a basic understanding of key mitigations needed when working in an area of interest for reptiles.

This is a 3-week online course covering 3 topics, for which you will complete a variety of self-led online study content, activities, assignments and live Zoom sessions. Time commitment is approximately 2-3 hours a week and an E-certificate is provided upon completion.

Who Should Attend?

Nature enthusiasts, Students, Rangers, Early career ecologists.

Knowledge Level

Introductory. Level descriptors can be found on the following webpage: Framework and Course Level Descriptors

Prior Knowledge

No existing knowledge, or experience is needed for this course. Just a willingness to explore and learn.

This course will cover:

    • Introduction to Reptiles
    • UK Reptile Identification
    • UK Reptile Ecology

By the end of the course, you will be able to:

    • Explain Reptile taxonomy, anatomy, and main ID features and how they differ from other animals
    • Identify UK Reptile species
    • Describe the different habitats, ranges and life cycles of UK reptiles
    • Identify reasonable adjustments that need to be taken to protect reptiles
    • Share this knowledge with friends, family, and fellow volunteers

This is a training course from the FSC, including online course materials, expert tuition and a flexible learning style. After attending this course, you may like to progress your learning about reptiles with further relevant FSC courses, or branch out into other areas of the animal kingdom. FSC offers both online and in person courses, so you can choose the learning style that suits you best.

Please note that bookings will close at 9 am on 7th March to allow for all participants to be enrolled to the online platform – bookings will not be taken after this time.*

* Bookings will close sooner if course capacity is reached

The course gives you the opportunity to immerse yourself in a new subject and acquire novel skills. Our online portal gives you time to study at your own pace and fit the lessons around your own schedule.

  • See the ‘Example Timetable’ and ‘What’s Included’ sections below for more information about this course.
  • Each individual needs to place their own order to ensure we can sign you up to the learning platform and give you access to resources.
  • Please email [email protected] if you have any questions.

Group Bookings Made Easy

If you have a group of 10 or more individuals wanting to complete one of our courses, our team are available to discuss your options – from discounts to private team courses.

  • Discounted rates
  • Privately run courses for your group
  • Bespoke courses developed specifically for your needs

Email [email protected] to discuss your options! 

About our partner, ARC

The Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust (ARC) was established in June 2009. ARC was created around the core of the Herpetological Conservation Trust (HCT), in response to the wider needs of herpetofauna conservation, providing the UK focus for all aspects of reptile and amphibian conservation. ARC continues to focus on the UK Biodiversity Action Plan, creating an extensive network of nature reserves, coordinating monitoring programmes and volunteer networks and developing an effective role in advocacy both within the UK and Europe.

Tutor: Dr Rob Ward

Dr Rob Ward is a conservation biologist who has been working with amphibians and reptiles for 15 years and completed his PhD on the ecology and conservation of grass snakes. He is currently the Data and GIS Officer for the Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust (ARC) where his work includes developing reptile and amphibian monitoring programmes and managing the organisation’s data and mapping.  

Live Webinar Information

The webinars will take place on the following dates at 1:00pm (GMT):

  • Wednesday 16th March at 1:00 – 1:45pm
  • Wednesday 23rd  March at 1:00- 1:45pm

Please note - webinars will be recorded and uploaded to the virtual learning platform for learners unable to attend.

For Week 3 there will be a marked assignment in which the course tutor will provide feedback on your submission.

Example Timetable

Example Timetable

Week 1: Introduction to Reptiles
Self-study material available: 09/03/2022
Week 1 live webinar: 16/03/2022 at 1:00 pm

Week 2: UK Reptile Identification
Self-study material available: 16/03/2022
Week 2 live webinar: 23/03/2022 at 1:00 pm

Week 3: UK Reptile Ecology
Self-study material available: 23/03/2022
Week 3 Marked assignment due: 30/03/2022

The final deadline to complete any outstanding activities and self-study components is 13/04/2022

Time commitment: This course will require approximately 2-3 hours of your time each week. This includes covering course materials on our Moodle learning platform and the Zoom session.

Accrediting Agency

Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust (ARC)

What's Included

  • Expert Tuition

The course has been carefully created to help you continue to build on your knowledge as the course progresses. With content crafted to the online Moodle Platform and bespoke to the FSC.

The course includes:

    • 45-minute interactive Zoom workshops to connect with the tutor and other participants
    • Personalised feedback on a marked assignment
    • Expert tuition for which the FSC is renowned
    • Activities to work on independently in advance of each Zoom workshop

Once registered, you will follow well-illustrated, user-friendly ’books’ to pick up knowledge. Quizzes and skill-checks will give you instant feedback on your learning. Forums give students the chance to interact with each other as well as a place to share work. Unique to the FSC, there are also Mindful Moments: a chance to stop, step away from your screen and interact with nature and enjoy a personal moment.

You can rest assured that the absolute best content from an expert in environmental education will be at your fingertips. In choosing an FSC course, you will be joining thousands of people who learn with us each year.

Before You Attend

Once you sign up you’ll receive an email at least 48 hours in advance of the course opening with details of how to access our easy-to-use platform, Moodle.

Webinars are via Zoom so you won’t need any new software to attend

Please note that bookings will close at 9 am on 7th March to allow for all participants to be enrolled to the online platform.

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