What you can get
Zoo Science : Associate in Applied Science Degree Program
Visit our college catalog  for more information about program options, required courses, and credit hours.
What it's about
The Zoological Science Technology curriculum prepares students for employment in zoological parks, aquaria, or other settings requiring animal care, breeding, education/conservation, or health of exotic animals.
- Animal Keeper
- Animal Trainer
- Animal Caregiver/Caretaker
- Animal Attendant
- Animal Service Worker
- Animal Technician
- Animal Nursery Worker
Courses you'll take
Course work emphasizes anatomy, physiology, reproduction, behavior, and nutrition of exotic animals that are on exhibit for education and/or conservation purposes or for animals maintained for medical purposes. Students have practical experiences with basic husbandry skills, animal handling/capture/restraint skills, the ability to detect illness, and creative design of exhibits.
What you'll gain
Graduates of the curriculum should qualify for entry-level employment opportunities in a variety of settings, including zoos, aquaria, nature science centers, and animal research facilities.
This program focuses on the application of biological principles to the study of vertebrate wildlife, wildlife habitats, and related ecosystems in remote and urban areas. Potential course work includes instruction in animal ecology; adaptational biology; urban ecosystems; natural and artificial habitat management; limnology; wildlife pathology; and vertebrate zoological specializations such as mammalogy, herpetology, ichthyology, ornithology, and others.
Upon successful completion of this program, the student should be able to:
1. Demonstrate the ability to follow written protocols.
2. Communicate with public in a professional manner.
3. Effectively apply principles of Environmental Enrichment in a zoo or aquarium setting.
4. Demonstrate skills valued in the workplace.
Applicants for admission in the Zoo Science Technology program must have:
- Completed and submitted an Application for Admission to DCCC.
- Completed and submitted Zoo & Aquarium Science “Intent to Enroll” form.
- Graduated from high school or have an Adult High School Diploma or have passed the High School Equivalency with an equivalency certification which meets minimum requirements set by the State of North Carolina. Official high school transcript and copy of AHS diploma/High School Equivalency certificate and official college transcripts, where applicable, must be on file in the Admissions Office.
- Physical health, emotional health, and vaccination requirements successfully met and documented as part of the program application process.
- Achieved grades of “C” or higher in any required course in the curriculum taken prior to entry into the Zoo & Aquarium Science program.
In addition to DCCC requirements and course objectives, there are professional standards that encompass communication and motor skills and professional conduct that are essential for the competent study and practice of zoo science. These performance standards are available in the Zoo & Aquarium Science Laboratory and Co-operative Experience Handbook.
Criminal Background Check
A criminal background check and/or drug testing may be required by the co-op animal facility prior to participation in the cooperative education experience.
If any co-op animal facility refuses to allow the student to participate in co-op experiences in that facility, the student may not be able to progress in the program.
Probation and Suspension
Zoo & Aquarium Science students are subject to the same probation and suspension policies as all other students enrolled in the College.
Since requirements for progression in the ZAS program are in addition to the general requirements of the College, a student suspended from the program is not necessarily suspended from the College. Students who are eligible to do so may continue their supporting courses and apply for readmission to the program at a later time or may elect to change their major.